It was labelled the biggest Manchester derby in history, and it was City who came out on top as Pep Guardiola got one over his arch-nemesis Jose Mourinho to take three points and guarantee City are the only team with a 100% winning record in the Premier League.
Guardiola’s side traveled six miles across Manchester to Old Trafford where he was met by a transformed Manchester United side. Five games in all competitions, five wins, 17 goals scored and just three conceded meant Guardiola’s start to his career in England couldn’t have been more perfect.
A goal from Kevin De Bruyne before Kelechi Iheanacho doubled City’s lead was enough for City to guarantee the victory. Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored a consolation after Claudio Bravo fumbled a cross on his City debut.
And these three players were crucial in Manchester City’s victory over Manchester United…
A leader, disciplined, strong, brave and committed. This is the new (or old) Nicolas Otamendi we are now seeing at Manchester City under Pep Guardiola.
Otamendi’s performance on Saturday was his best in a City shirt after he struggled to capture his form under Manuel Pellegrini last season.
The form of Otamendi will make Vincent Kompany’s job to get back into this team even more difficult. Defensively Otamendi was superb and the leader in a star-studded City team.
Under Guardiola, David Silva has stepped back into a three-man midfield – a position almost unheard of under previous regimes. Questioned by many as work-rate and commitment were not attributes you would consider when referring to David Silva.
Against Manchester United, Silva was first to every 50/50 challenge and dominated a midfield against Marouane Fellaini and Paul Pogba. A truly superb performance by Silva who has re-established his world-class form under Pep Guardiola.
A lot of the attention surrounding the game was Kevin De Bruyne’s failure to produce in big games. It took him fifteen minutes to silence any critics after he converted City’s opener on Saturday.
It wasn’t just the goal, as his overall performance was beyond exceptional. He was the key man as City dominated, decimated and destroyed United in midfield and the crucial part in everything City achieved going forward.
Performances like this increase any argument that De Bruyne is the best No.10 in the Premier League.