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Manchester City's Phil Foden shines on FA Cup weekend where powers prevail over minnows

Phil Foden and Manchester City put an end to Newport County's FA Cup run, beating the League Two side at Rodney Parade to reach the quarterfinals.

While the Premier League may have taken a break this week for the fifth round of the FA Cup, Nick Miller had no such leisure. Here are his top storylines from the weekend that was in England's oldest competition. All FA Cup games are live on ESPN+ in the U.S., find out more here.

Disappointment of the weekend

To give you an idea of exactly how boring the results have been so far in this FA Cup fifth round, not only did no lower division team beat one in a higher league, but even in the fixture between...

Man City keep 'quadruple' pursuit alive as everybody wins in throwback FA Cup tie at Newport County

Phil Foden and Manchester City put an end to Newport County's FA Cup run, beating the League Two side at Rodney Parade to reach the quarterfinals.

NEWPORT, South Wales -- As Newport's players soaked in the applause at full-time, Pep Guardiola circulated the Rodney Parade pitch until he had shaken hands with each and every one. He had an extra word or two for Padraig Amond -- the striker who had, for a tantalising minute or so, given the League Two side a vision of the impossible. In the end Guardiola could afford to be generous with his sentiments and Manchester City, with the most fiendish of banana skins avoided, retain their dream of a...

Phil Foden takes centre stage as Man City successfully navigate FA Cup trip to Newport County

Phil Foden and Manchester City put an end to Newport County's FA Cup run, beating the League Two side at Rodney Parade to reach the quarterfinals.

Manchester City avoided a giant-killing to reach the quarter-final stage of the FA Cup with a 4-1 victory at Newport County. The Premier League leaders had to survive some uncomfortable moments in a goalless first half before strikes from Leroy Sane and Phil Foden seemed to end the tie. But Padraig Almond pulled a goal back late on for Newport only for Foden to add his second just over a minute later before Riyad Mahrez scored a fourth in injury time.

Positives

This was a no-win situation against...

For Liverpool and Man City, beating the 'low block' could be decisive in tight title race

Despite Manchester City's strong run of form, ESPN FC's Paul Mariner explains why Liverpool remain his favourites to win the Premier League title.

The 2018-19 Premier League season offers the most intriguing title battle in many years, yet unfortunately, we won't witness a genuine title-decider between Liverpool and Manchester City. The two contenders have already played each other twice -- a boring goalless draw at Anfield early in the season, and then a 2-1 City win at the start of January.

Instead, the title might be decided by which team is better at breaking down minnows who are deploying a low block.

The phrase "low block" has...

Newport's incredible revival gets them taste of FA Cup magic against Man City

Appearing on our new 'That FA Cup Podcast' Paul Mariner and Shaka Hislop believe there's zero chance of an upset between Newport and Man City in the FA Cup on Saturday.
Newport County's Matt Dolan recaps his surreal moment scoring the late equaliser for his League Two side against his boyhood club Middlesbrough.

NEWPORT -- Pep Guardiola has probably never experienced anything quite like Rodney Parade, the home of FA Cup fifth-round opponents Newport County, during his gilded career with Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Manchester City.

Opened in 1877 -- it hosted a Wales rugby union international against Scotland as far back as 1884 -- the old ground is lacking the amenities that Premier League stars take for granted. Don't expect underfloor heating, mood lighting or individual lockers in the visitors' changing...

 By Shaka Hislop

Power Rankings: Man City stay on top as Juve, PSG climb, Barcelona fall

Shaka Hislop reveals his latest power rankings which see Manchester City keep hold of the top spot and Manchester United drop out.
Craig Burley breaks down how Manchester City were able to stretch N'Golo Kane, Ross Barkley and Jorghino, allowing their star play makers to run rampant.

Manchester City remained on top of the heap after torching Chelsea, while Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain climbed up this week's edition of Shaka Hislop's Power Rankings.

Dropping out: PSV Eindhoven, Manchester United

Agree? Disagree? Let us know, and watch Shaka defend his picks on ESPN FC TV.