MANCHESTER City began life without Roberto Mancini with a routine victory at rain-sodden Reading last night.
Scorers: Aguero 40, Dzeko 88
Referee: Martin Atkinson
Saturday’s FA Cup final defeat to unfancied Wigan proved the final straw for big-spending City, who sacked the Italian a year to the day after he led them to the Premier League title. The post-Mancini era began in haste at the Madejski Stadium, where his former assistant Brian Kidd took caretaker charge for the penultimate match of a frustrating campaign. Malaga coach Manuel Pellegrini is overwhelming favourite to take over from Mancini, although he would not have learned much from watching last night’s fare.
With Reading already relegated and City’s Champions League place assured, the match had a distinct end-of-season feel about it. Royals goalkeeper Alex McCarthy was one of few outstanding players, making a string of fine saves either side of Sergio Aguero’s emphatic strike at the end of the first half.
Reading came close to levelling on a number of occasions in a tense second period, only for substitute Edin Dzeko’s cool finish to wrap up a win that secures second place in the closing stages.
Reading: McCarthy, Gunter, Morrison, Mariappa, Kelly, Karacan, Guthrie, McCleary, McAnuff (Blackman 69), Robson-Kanu, Pogrebnyak (Le Fondre 62). Subs Not Used: Taylor, Pearce, Harte, Akpan, Carrico.
Manchester City: Hart, Richards, Toure (Maicon 15), Lescott, Clichy, Toure, Barry (Javi Garcia 58), Milner, Silva, Tevez, Aguero (Dzeko 62). Subs Not Used: Pantilimon, Nasri, Kolarov, Rodwell.