FA Cup verdict: Manchester City 1 Reading 0

City booked their first appearance at the new Wembley, and their first FA Cup semi-final since 1981 courtesy of a Micah Richards header from a David Silva corner. Reading provided spirited opposition but the return of Nigel de Jong helped ease City through.

Signs of fatigue were inevitable in a City side who had only returned from the Ukraine at 5am on Friday morning. Mancini sought to refresh his side intelligently with four changes in the shape of Vieira, de Jong, Wright-Phillips and Tevez.

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FA Cup player ratings: Manchester City v Reading

Hart – Excellent protection ensured only one routine save was required. Provided some well-directed distribution to Yaya’s head. 6

Richards – Focused on keeping the dangerous looking McAnuff quiet in the first half. Micah scoring with a header from a corner has been coming for a while now, and this was the perfect time. 7

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FA Cup preview: Manchester City v Reading

On paper a home tie against Championship opposition might look like an straightforward tie. The reality is different for a City side currently on a run of tired performances and having only arrived back from the Ukraine at 5am on Friday.

As a result, it’s to be hoped that Mancini endeavours to refresh the side. The most welcome returnee would be Nigel de Jong. Boateng, Vieira, Boyata and Jo all missed out in Kiev and should be considered. Tevez and Wright-Phillips only made substitute appearances and would be fresher than the likes of Barry and Yaya.

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