Manchester City soared to the top of the Premier League as the opening weekend concluded, after they comprehensively beat 10-man Newcastle United 4-0 at the Etihad stadium.
Manuel Pellegrini followed suit of his rivals David Moyes and Jose Mourinho by getting off to a winning start. Goals from David Silva, Sergio Aguero, Yaya Toure and Samir Nasri sealed a comfortable victory for his side over the hapless Magpies, who had Steven Taylor sent off in first-half injury time.
City produced a dominant performance and gave debuts to Jesus Navas and Fernandinho, while Alvaro Negredo came off the bench later on.
Alan Pardew’s side were clearly unsettled and appeared to be affected by Arsenal’s rejected £10m bid for Yohan Cabaye earlier in the day, causing their star midfielder to be left out of the squad with just a few hours to go before kick-off.
They were on the backfoot immediately as Tim Krul was forced to make smart saves to deny Aguero and Edin Dzeko. However within six minutes they were behind as Dzeko’s cross from the left deflected off Taylor, and into the path of Silva who headed home from eight yards out.
City had won 11 of their last 13 meetings with the Toon, including a current run of seven straight wins, and their authority on the game had been firmly stamped by the time they doubled their lead on 22 minutes. Skipper Vincent Kompany dispossessed Papiss Cisse in his own half and found Aguero, via Dzeko’s flick, and the Argentine beat Krul from a tight angle having gained a yard on Taylor.
Newcastle’s faint hopes of a first ever win at the Etihad were soon dashed later in the half when they lost Jonas Gutierrez to a pulled hamstring, before Taylor received his marching orders in injury time for a needless arm in the back of Aguero’s head.
The hosts’ domination continued into the second half and Dzeko was once again denied from point-blank range by Krul, but within a minute it was three when Toure curled a 25-yard free-kick beautifully into the top corner leaving the Dutch keeper with no chance.
Substitute Nasri made it four with 15 minutes to go when he latched on to Zabaleta’s pass, just getting there before Mathieu Debuchy and coolly slotting past the helpless goalkeeper when clean through.
The one downfall to City’s night saw Kompany limp off with a suspected calf strain.
Negredo almost made amends as he came off the bench and had a debut goal wrongly chalked off for offside later on, but it could not dampen the spirits of the hosts who enjoyed a successful start to the season as they attempt to regain the Premier League crown.
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