Football: Kinkladze's brilliance takes City into unfamiliar territory

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The Independent Online
Oxford United 1 Manchester City 4

Georgi Kinkladze scored twice and set up two more as Manchester City extended their unbeaten record under Frank Clark to five games at the Manor Ground yesterday.

Marco Gabbiadini was making his debut for Oxford on loan from Derby and his new side almost went ahead after 20 minutes. Joey Beauchamp crossed to Mark Angel, whose close-range shot was tipped over by Tommy Wright. Oxford, who had conceded just nine goals in 14 previous home First Division games, fell behind in the 28th minute. Kinkladze's corner was nodded goalwards by Uwe Rosler and the ball went in off the head of the defender Phil Gilchrist.

Five minutes later Rosler found Kinkladze in a crowded penalty area and the Georgian international scored with a well-placed shot after cleverly beating three defenders.

Kinkladze's pace and skill also provided City's third goal in the 65th minute as he ran forward to score his second of the game after Angel had lost possession in midfield.

Shortly afterwards the generosity of the Billericay referee Andrew D'Urso denied the visitors a penalty when Nicky Summerbee was brought down by Les Robinson in the area. Paul Moody, a 69th-minute substitute for Angel, scored Oxford's consolation 11 minutes after joining the action. However, two minutes from the end, Oxford, who had won 3-2 at Maine Road in November, failed to clear another Kinkladze corner and Rosler completed the rout.

It was Clark's first League win at City after three draws and an FA Cup victory at Brentford, and it lifted the club one place above Bradford City to the dizzy heights of fifth from bottom.

Goals: Gilchrist (og, 28) 0-1; Kinkladze (33) 0-2; Kinkladze (65) 0-3; Moody (80) 1-3; Rosler (88) 1-4.

Oxford United: Whitehead; Robinson, M Ford, Smith, Marsh (B Ford, 54), Gilchrist, Angel (Moody, 69), Gray (Murphy, 69), Gabbiadini, Jemson, Beauchamp.

Manchester City: Wright; Brightwell (Heaney, 45), Ingram, Lomas, Symons, Kernaghan, Summerbee, McGoldrick, Horlock, Kinkladze, Rosler. Substitutes not used: Crooks, Creaney.

Referee: A D'Urso (Billericay).

Bookings: Oxford Utd: Gray. Manchester City: Ingram.

Man of the match: Kinkladze.

Attendance: 8,824.