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West Brom 2-3 City: Super Sane and record start

CLASS: Sane stood out on a fine day for City at West Brom

CLASS: Sane stood out on a fine day for City at West Brom

It’s now 13 consecutive wins for Manchester City in all competitions.

The 3-2 victory away at West Brom on Saturday means Pep Guardiola’s side remain unbeaten in 15 games this season.

It’s been an incredible campaign so far. Here, we take a look back at City's record-breaking afternoon in the Midlands

Leroy! Leroy! Leroy!

There’s was little doubt who the star of the show at the Hawthorns was.

Leroy Sane opened the scoring with a powerful left-footed strike and gave the home side problems all afternoon with his pace and dribbling ability. West Brom, a well-drilled side with a manager known for his defensive acumen, couldn't contain the 21-year-old. 

It’s rare to see a footballer of his age with such quality. He's quick, both with and without the ball, and can beat players with ease. But he's also patient and intelligent, a player who can keep the ball in tight areas and involve himself in the team's intricate passing moves. 

He’s been directly involved in 11 goals in his last seven Premier League games (six goals, five assists). Not only is he brilliantly entertaining and capable of putting defenders on the backfoot with his pace, he also consistently delivers in the final third.

Sane has everything needed to reach the very top of the game. 

SUPER SUB: Raheem Sterling scores City's third just three minutes after coming on.

Highlights

Video

West Brom v Man City: Extended highlights

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Sterling display 

Raheem Sterling is making a habit of being in the right place at the right time.

He now has nine goals in all competitions this season. Of those playing in the English top flight, only Harry Kane (13) and Romelu Lukakau (11) have more.

He bagged City’s third at the Hawthorns, the result of a patient build up involving 19 passes. City moved the ball from side to side, waiting for an opportunity to exploit space. Eventually, Kyle Walker found room down the outside, delivered a pinpoint cross into the box and Sterling was there to apply the finish.

The England man made the perfect run, and not for the first time this season. His goals tally is no fluke.

READ: Pep delighted with win

READ: Fernandinho taking it one game at a time

Records tumbling 

The win at West Brom saw City record their best-ever start to a Premier League season.

City’s 28 points from 10 games with a goal difference of +29 is the best they've managed since the top-flight was re-branded in 1992. They sit five points clear at the top of the table, with a far superior goal difference to any other side in the division.

And in a run stretching back into last season, City are now unbeaten in 21 games in all competitions, which is the longest sequence in the Club’s history.

Many experts believe this is the best squad City have ever assembled. The statistics are proving that assertion correct.

THUNDERBOLT: Fernandinho hands City the lead again with a strike from distance.

Interviews

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Fernandinho: The goals will be the difference

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Stylish Blues

But it isn’t just the results that are impressing.

Guardiola sees the value in aesthetics. He wants his side to win but they must also entertain, and who could deny his City team are doing that at present?

Sterling’s goal yesterday was City 45th in all competitions this season, an average of three per game. 

And City completed 844 passes at the Hawthorns, the most since Opta began collecting data at the start of the 2003-04 season. It was a masterclass in keeping the ball, the likes of which we’ve rarely seen on these shores.

It’s early in the season and Guardiola will not be getting carried away, but the quality of City’s play could have a lasting impact on the English game. 

Fixture congestion

The big games continue to come thick and fast.

City travel to Napoli this week for a crucial Champions League game on Wednesday, before hosting Arsenal next Sunday in the Premier League. 

Rest and recovery will be vitally important ahead of a hugely important week. 

Media Watch

Media Watch: ‘City taking football to a new level’

KEY MEN: Kevin De Bruyne congratulates Fernandinho on his strike

There is much to discuss in Sunday morning’s media round-up.

From West Brom reaction to England Under-17s’ World Cup triumph; Yaya Toure’s wish to win the Champions League with City to a new contract for Kevin De Bruyne…

Men's Team

Pep delighted to win at The Hawthorns again

Men's Team

Phil Foden puts on a performance

TOP OF THE WORL: Phil Foden (top) celebrates

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