Chelsea gave the Manchester City boys brigade a lesson in clinical finishing as they maneuvered the visitors all around the Stamford Bridge parade ground on their way to an emphatic 5-1 Emirates FA Cup win.
First class goals from Diego Costa, Willian, Gary Cahill, Eden Hazard and sub Bertrand Traore floored Manuel Pellegrini’s young side to earn a quarter final date with Everton.
And Pellegrini was as good as his word in sticking the youngsters into this mouth-watering tie with six of his U21 squad, including 19-year-old Kelechi Iheanacho who slammed in a hat-trick at Aston Villa, lining up against a Chelsea side unchanged from their Champions League trip to Paris St Germain.
Chelsea 5-1 Manchester City
The Emirates FA Cup
4pm, Sunday 21 February 2016
Stamford Bridge, Chelsea FC
Winners receive £180,000 from prize fund
Live on BBC One
Click here for Opta stats match page
And one of them, 19-year-old David Faupala crowned his day with the 37th minute equaliser that cancelled out Costa’s spectacular diving header just moments before.
Pellegrini's stance was based on a bundle of injuries to top stars and the need to travel to Ukraine on Monday ahead of Wednesday's Champions League game against Dynamo Kiev followed by Sunday's Wembley date with Liverpool in the League Cup final.
So the likes of left back Tosin Adarabioyo and midfielder Bersant Celina, both 18, also had a chance to make a name for themselves and certainly in the first half, the City ‘Boyzone’ stood up to the test and offered a terrific glance at the future for travelling fans.
They were enterprising, matched the Blues in passing ability, energy and endeavour, and promised to make a real game of it.
But the wheels came off the wagon in the second half when rampant Chelsea stepped up a gear and won with ease. Costa got things going after 35 minutes with his header, the result of Cesc Fabregas feeding Eden Hazard on the left. The Belgian midfielder hooked over an inviting centre and Costa did the rest.
The promising Faupala was involved in the spadework that led to his goal, when eventually the ball was shifted to the right where Iheanacho bore down on the home defence before releasing a teasing low cross that was too good for Cesar Azipilcueta.
The Chelsea full-back had the chance to clear but got caught up in the moment and Faupala stole in to divert past Thibaut Courtois.
Earlier, Pedro had hit the post with a third minute drive and Fabregas had a decent shot saved by Willy Caballero, who then excelled with a point black 41st-minute stop from Pedro who fed off another great ball from Fabregas. Willian also tested Caballero before the break.
The visitors may have been young at heart but they showed maturity in the tackle and on the counter attack, with the two Garcias, Aleix and Manu, in creative mood.
Faupala is no Sergio Aguero just yet, but his positional sense was to be commended and he opened up by forcing Courtois to save from 15 yards before Iheanacho blazed over from 25 yards seconds before Costa struck at the other end.
But after half time, the Blues killed things off. Hazard set up Willian for their second in the 48th minute, a low drive across Caballero into the far corner of the net.
Then Cahill strode forward to fire home from 18 yards with Caballero hindered by the dive of Fernando in front of him, before Hazard, having been felled by Martin Demichelis, hammered in the resulting free-kick from 20 yards.
Sub Oscar, a hat-trick hero at MK Dons in round four, missed a 66th minute penalty awarded for Demichelis’ unnecessary shove on Traore, who wrapped the scoreline up with an 89th minute header from Oscar’s left wing cross.
Chelsea: (4-2-3-1): Thibaut Courtois; Branislav Ivanovic, Gary Cahill, Baba, Cesar Azipilicueta; Cesc Fabregas, Mikel; Eden Hazard, Pedro, Willian; Costa
Substitutions: Bertrand Traore for Costa, 70; Oscar for Pedro, 70; Nemanja Matic for Mikel, 82
Subs not used: Asmir Begovic, Remy, Matt Miazga, Ruben Loftus-Cheek
Goals: Costa, 35; Willian, 48; Cahill, 53; Traore, 89
Manchester City: Willy Caballero: Pablo Zabaleta, Martin Demichelis, Tosin Adarabioyo, Aleksandar Kolarov; Manu Garcia, Aleix Garcia, Fernando, Bersant Celina; David Faupala, Kelechi Iheanacho
Substitutions: Brendon Barker for Celina, 53; Cameron Humphreys for Fernando, 77
Subs not used: Joe Hart, Vincent Kompany, Raheem Sterling, Gael Clichy, Fernandinho
Goal: Faupala, 37
Referee: Andre Marriner
Emirates FA Cup highlights: Chelsea 5-1 Manchester City