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trophy chasers Pep Guardiola refuses to discuss quadruple as Man City see off Everton in the FA Cup

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Pep Guardiola celebrates after FA Cup Quarter Final match between Everton v Manchester City at Goodison.  (Photo by Peter Powell - Pool/Getty Images)

Pep Guardiola celebrates after FA Cup Quarter Final match between Everton v Manchester City at Goodison. (Photo by Peter Powell - Pool/Getty Images)

Pep Guardiola celebrates after FA Cup Quarter Final match between Everton v Manchester City at Goodison. (Photo by Peter Powell - Pool/Getty Images)

With each passing week, Manchester City are ticking off the boxes as they close in on perfection.

Late goals from Ilkay Gundogan and Kevin De Bruyne allowed Pep Guardiola’s side to finally find a way to see off a dogged Everton side at Goodison Park last night, as they marched into the FA Cup semi-finals in ominous fashion.

With the Premier League title all but assured after a stunning run of winning form since the turn of the year and a place in next month’s Carabao Cup final against Tottenham already assured, this was a night to add another piece to the jigsaw in their pursuit of perfection.

“The boys were incredible again, what more can I say about them,” declared a beaming Guardiola.

“Everton made it so tough for us and we knew it would be like that copming here after the Champions League game on Tuesday, but these players keep finding a way.

“We are in an incredible position to be in another FA Cup semi-final, but we know we have to stay focused. Nothing is won yet.

“It was a really tough game. We saw the commitment from Everton, how focused they were, they defended really aggressively.

“We conceded nothing, we were patient. It was one of the toughest games we’ve played in the last four months. It was the toughest game since the last international break we had.

“It was incredible commitment from my players. An incredible victory. Hopefully the bubbles are controlled. I’m looking forward to everyone coming back safe."

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Ilkay Guendogan of Manchester City celebrates after scoring their side's first goal.  (Photo by Peter Powell - Pool/Getty Images)

Ilkay Guendogan of Manchester City celebrates after scoring their side's first goal. (Photo by Peter Powell - Pool/Getty Images)

Ilkay Guendogan of Manchester City celebrates after scoring their side's first goal. (Photo by Peter Powell - Pool/Getty Images)

Gundogan admitted Everton made it tough for his side, as he was relieved to provide the late breakthrough.

“Everton did really well, they defended well and they are a great team, so it’s not easy,” he stated. “We knew that we could struggle before the game but we overcame it and we did really well.

“I just tried to be there waiting for the rebound. I think the timing was perfect - it was a great win.

“If you want to win trophies and fight for everything, you have to find a way to win.”

Plenty of teams have been good enough to complete the fabled clean sweep of trophies that comprises the Premier League, Champions League, FA Cup and the League Cup.

This game was in the balance until the closing stages, when Aymeric Laporte strode out of his defensive position and was given too much space to get his shot in on goal, with a save from keeper Virginia falling into the path of Gundogan who stooped to head home the crucial goal seven minutes from time.

De Bruyne then added a late clincher with a fine finish, with Guardiola now set for an anxious couple of weeks as he waits to see the damage that could be inflicted on his players as they fly around the world to play for their national teams.

Such is their domination of their local rivals that a domestic treble now looks to be within their grasp, with Champions League glory the final part of their dream.

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