Brazilians pounce to break brave Iron's will

Scunthorpe United 2 Manchester City 4

City had been knocked out by a Championship side in each of the last two seasons but any suspicions that Roberto Mancini's team might not have the stomach to see off another ambitious underdog on a damp and murky afternoon in Lincolnshire were dispelled, in the end, quite emphatically, earning a home tie with Stoke City in the fifth round of the FA Cup.



With Arsenal put out by Stoke yesterday and Manchester United already gone, the Italian sees a chance to win silverware in this competition. "There is still Chelsea, Aston Villa and maybe Tottenham, some good teams," he said. "Stoke will be a hard game but there is a possibility for us."

Doughty Scunthorpe, fighting for survival in the second tier, were good enough to equalise after slipping behind early in the game and came back a second time to trail 3-2 with 20 minutes left. But their manager, Nigel Adkins, was quick to acknowledge the Premiership side's sure-footed performance.

"We thought there might be a giant-killing in the offing and we gave it our best shot," he said. "But you can't intimidate them. They are just too professional."

They were put in their place ultimately by the least likely figure as Robinho, making what is widely tipped to be the farewell appearance of his largely forgettable time as a City player, signed off with their fourth goal, before being immediately substituted.

There was no doubt this was a tie with banana skin potential. Scunthorpe, who would never pretend to be anything but a small club, were in League One last season and their Glanford Park ground holds only 9,000 spectators. But they sit close to the narrow pitch and in the misty chill of yesterday afternoon there was no mistaking which was the away side.

Yet City, who made eight changes from the XI that took a step towards Wembley in the Carling Cup last week, were ahead even before the home crowd had anything to be excited about. Robinho's extravagant stepovers outside the Scunthorpe penalty area seemed a little pointless but when, eventually, he sent the ball left, Martin Petrov went past Garry Thompson in a blur before lashing a left-foot drive between the angle of post and bar as keeper Joe Murphy flapped helplessly.

It was not good defending, but Scunthorpe put it behind them quickly and went about their business with no sign of panic. They had been thumped 5-1 at Eastlands in the Carling Cup last November but there was no Carlos Tevez to worry about, the Argentine getting the day off ahead of Wednesday's return semi-final against Manchester United, while Craig Bellamy and Shaun Wright-Phillips started on the bench and their plan to press City in their own half paid off.

They were close to pulling level after a quarter of an hour, squandering two chances that seemed unmissable. Cliff Byrne somehow headed against the bar when a Gary Hooper cross found him unmarked at the far post, then Paul Hayes scuffed wide from close range as the City defence continued to wobble.

But persistence gained its reward in the 29th minute. When Martyn Woolford, whose father and grandfather both played professional rugby league, hoisted an up-and-under as City's back four pushed out, Hayes was deemed to be onside as the ball dropped and his volley gave the debutant City keeper Stuart Taylor no chance.

City struck again in the dying moments of the half, full-back Nedum Onuoha slipping behind their defence to pick up a clever pass from Stephen Ireland and restore their lead. Eight minutes into the second half, only a fingertip save from Taylor against Sam Togwell denied Scunthorpe a second equaliser, but when Silvinho's superb dipping shot from 30 yards provided City with a third goal, Mancini's passage to the fifth round looked assured.

The Italian knows something of the passion of the FA Cup, however, and he was not surprised that Scunthorpe would not lie down. Murphy kept them in the hunt with a triple save and after Byrne's shot found the net via a deflection off Dedryck Boyata, City faced potentially a tough last 20 minutes.

Yet the home side could not summon up the storming finish they wanted and instead, as City imposed their quality, Petrov set up Robinho for an effortless final goal and a parting celebration in front of the travelling fans.

Scunthorpe United (4-4-2): Murphy; Byrne, Jones (Milne, 82), Mirfin, Williams; Thompson, McCann (Wright, 88), Togwell, Woolford; Hayes (Forte, 88), Hooper. Substitutes not used: Lillis (gk), Sparrow, May, Crosby.

Manchester City (4-3-3): Taylor; Onuoha, Boyata, Kompany, Sylvinho; Ireland (Zabaleta, 66), De Jong (Cunningham, h-t), Ibrahim; Robinho (Bellamy, 85), Benjani, Petrov. Substitutes not used: Nielsen, Richards, Wright-Phillips, Barry.

Referee: K Friend (Leicestershire).

Booked: Manchester City Cunningham.

Man of the match: Petrov.

Attendance: 8,861.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
Robin van Persie leaves the field at the King Power Stadium last Sunday
football
News
In this photo illustration, the Twitter logo and hashtag '#Ring!' is displayed on a mobile device as the company announced its initial public offering and debut on the New York Stock Exchange on November 7, 2013 in London, England. Twitter went public on the NYSE opening at USD 26 per share, valuing the company's worth at an estimated USD 18 billion.
news

Arts and Entertainment
tvPresenter back after daughter's Halloween accident
Arts and Entertainment
Martin Freeman and Benedict Cumberbatch as John Watson and Sherlock Holmes in Sherlock
tv

Co-creator Mark Gatiss dropped some very intriguing hints ahead of the BBC drama's return next year

Arts and Entertainment
music Band accidentally drops four-letter description at concert
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

US immigration: President Obama ready to press ahead with long-promised plan to overhaul 'broken system' - but will it get past a Republican-controlled Congress?

Immigration: Obama's final frontier

The President is ready to press ahead with the long-promised plan to overhaul America's 'broken system' - but will it get past a Republican-controlled Congress?
Bill Cosby rape allegations explained: Why are these allegations coming out now? Why didn’t these women come forward earlier? And why has nobody taken legal action?

Bill Cosby rape allegations explained

Why are these allegations coming out now? Why has nobody taken legal action? And what happens next for the man once thought of as 'America's Dad'
Four years of excruciating seizures caused by the 1cm tapeworm found burrowing through a man's brain

You know that headache you’ve got?

Four years of excruciating seizures caused by the 1cm tapeworm found burrowing through a man's brain
Travelling to work by scooter is faster than walking and less sweaty than cycling, so why aren’t we all doing it?

Scoot commute

Travelling to work by scooter is faster than walking and less sweaty than cycling, so why aren’t we all doing it?
Paul Robeson: The story of how an American icon was driven to death to be told in film

The Paul Robeson story

How an American icon was driven to death to be told in film
10 best satellite navigation systems

Never get lost again: 10 best satellite navigation systems

Keep your vehicle going in the right direction with a clever device
Paul Scholes column: England must learn to keep possession and dictate games before they are exposed by the likes of Germany and Brazil

Paul Scholes column

England must learn to keep possession and dictate games before they are exposed by the likes of Germany and Brazil
Michael Dawson: I’ll thank Spurs after we win says defender as he prepares to return with Hull

Michael Dawson: I’ll thank Spurs after we win

Hull defender faces his struggling former club on Sunday ready to show what they are missing. But he says he will always be grateful to Tottenham
Frank Warren column: Dr Wu has big plans for the professionals yet he should stick to the amateur game

Frank Warren column

Dr Wu has big plans for the professionals yet he should stick to the amateur game
Synagogue attack: Fear unites both sides of Jerusalem as minister warns restoring quiet could take 'months'

Terror unites Jerusalem after synagogue attack

Rising violence and increased police patrols have left residents of all faiths looking over their shoulders
Medecins sans Frontieres: The Ebola crisis has them in the headlines, but their work goes far beyond West Africa

'How do you carry on? You have to...'

The Ebola crisis has Medecins sans Frontieres in the headlines, but their work goes far beyond West Africa
Isis extends its deadly reach with suicide bombing in Kurdish capital

Isis extends its deadly reach with suicide bombing in Kurdish capital

Residents in what was Iraq’s safest city fear an increase in jihadist attacks, reports Patrick Cockburn
Underwater photography competition winners 2014 - in pictures

'Mysterious and inviting' shot of diver wins photography competition

Stunning image of cenote in Mexico takes top prize
Sir John Major: Negative West End portrayals of politicians put people off voting

Sir John Major hits out at theatres

Negative West End portrayals of politicians put people off voting
Kicking Barbie's butt: How the growth of 3D printing enabled me to make an army of custom-made figurines

Kicking Barbie's butt

How the growth of 3D printing enabled toy-designer to make an army of custom-made figurines