With the Premier League title sealed last week, Liverpool were welcomed onto the Etihad Stadium pitch with a guard of honour — but City didn’t take long to give the Reds a reality check as Pep Guardiola’s men produced a statement 4-0 victory.
Jürgen Klopp named an unchanged XI from the side that tore apart Crystal Palace 4-0 the previous week, but watched on in horror as his team lost by the exact same margin here.
The Reds started the game well, registering the first chances on goal as Mohamed Salah tested Ederson before striking the post minutes later.
Despite the superior attacking performance by the Reds, it was City who took the lead in the 25th minute through Kevin De Bruyne from the penalty spot after Joe Gomez was adjudged to have illegally impeded Raheem Sterling in the box.
Against the run of play yet again City doubled their lead in the 34th minute with Sterling netting the second following an inch-perfect ball from Phil Foden. The young Englishman fed Sterling who took Gomez out the game with his first touch before sliding it past Alisson and into the bottom corner.
With the breathing space of the second goal, City slowed the game down and began to take control knocking the ball about with ease and comfort. This led to the home side scoring a third just before the half-time break through Foden after a mistake by the usually reliable Andy Robertson.
The left-back burst out of position with Foden simply playing the ball and running past the Scotsman. The young Englishman was then put through on goal and expertly dispatched his effort past the onrushing Alisson to put the hosts 3-0 ahead at the break.Embed from Getty Images
The second half saw Liverpool continue to perform the way in which they ended the first, lacklustre in possession and wasteful in front of goal.
City, on the other hand, continued to look dangerous with every attack and netted a fourth in the 66th minute. Sterling burst in behind again, cutting inside on his left and releasing an effort that cannoned off Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and into the back of the net.
Liverpool had their chances, with some sloppy play from City defenders giving them a number of half-chances and a couple of others that perhaps should have been taken, but in truth the Merseysiders rarely looked like they would truly threaten Ederson’s goal.
Instead, City almost got their fifth in the last minute of added time, but substitute Riyad Mahrez’s finish was disallowed for a handball spotted in the build-up.
The Reds are next in action on Sunday where they will be hoping to bounce back from this humiliation and pick up their first win as champions when they welcome Aston Villa to Anfield.
Never miss a thing
Get all of our content sent straight to your inbox — free of charge.