What a day in the Manchester sun. City were as hot as the British heatwave, and they dispatched the Cherries with ease. Here are all the headlines to get you caught up before all the Sunday EPL action.
Man City kill another Erling Haaland debate in Bournemouth stroll - Simon Bajkowski - Manchester Evening News
Bajkowski notes that our Norwegian number nine keeps showing how he will certainly fit in to the side. No goal for Erling but he still figured in the scoring.
Bournemouth did hold out for over 17 minutes, but were undone by the strength and finesse of City’s new No.9. There was an extra fizz in the crowd whenever the ball got played into the box, although it was further from goal that the Norwegian made an impact.
As Ilkay Gundogan played the ball into Haaland 25 yards out, he used his power to hold off both Jefferson Lerma and Ben Pearson before, as he fell to the turf, dinking it back into the path of City’s final-day hero from last season to score the first home goal of the new campaign. The 22-year-old said when he arrived that he was happy to be double-marked if it freed up space for his teammates and did exactly that.
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola praises Kevin De Bruyne’s performance in Bournemouth thrashing - Declan Harris - City Xtra
KDB keeps impressing the boss. I too am running out of ways to describe the brilliance the exudes from De Bruyne.
Post-match, Pep Guardiola reflected on the brilliance of De Bruyne’s performance, emphasising the spacing of his strike, as well as his assist for Phil Foden’s goal which cushioned the Blues’ lead.
“There was no space with this type of shot and it was an incredible goal,” said Guardiola.
“It was an incredible performance, the assist for Phil came from him,” the 51 year-old continued.
The Belgian’s offensive wizardry came a surprise to the City manager, as Bournemouth usually keep a tight seal on their penalty box, claimed the Blues head coach.
“Against Bournemouth it is difficult to do because they defend the box and they hold their line really well,” said Guardiola.
BBC’s Bevan describes the dominance he saw from the Champions on the day.
City had dominated since kick-off, and it did not take long for more goals to follow Gundogan’s opener.
The impressive Kevin de Bruyne made it 2-0 with a dazzling solo strike, running to the corner of the area before bending the ball into the bottom corner with the outside of his boot.
And Phil Foden made sure of the points before half-time, running on to a De Bruyne pass and letting fly with a shot that Cherries keeper Mark Travers got his body behind, but could not keep out.
Bournemouth spent most of their time defending in a compact 5-4-1 formation, and only forced home keeper Ederson into action once, through a Ben Pearson snap-shot from the edge of the area.
They never looked remotely capable of staging a comeback in the second half, which had turned into a stroll in the Manchester sunshine for the home side long before Jefferson Lerma’s own goal made it 4-0.
Man City 4-0 Bournemouth: Kevin De Bruyne stars as champions cruise to victory over Cherries - Richard Morgan - SkySports.com
Pep reminds us that even though he makes the job look effortless, Haaland’s role is not as easy as it seems.
Haaland, however, was replaced after having just eight touches of the ball during his 74 minutes on the pitch, although his manager was quick to defend the Norwegian after the game.
“He plays the most difficult job in the world,” Guardiola said of the 22-year-old. “When you are a striker and in the defensive areas, teams like Bournemouth have three central defenders and two players in front and you are in the middle, how can you survive in that?
Erling Haaland had eight touches for Manchester City against Bournemouth putting him among the payers with the fewest touches in a Premier League game
“It’s so difficult. We know it. We’ll find many situations. It’s just a question of time. The right moments, the right movements, and with the quality of the players we have behind him to assist him we’ll find him. I don’t have any doubts about that.
Man City player ratings as Kevin De Bruyne runs Bournemouth ragged - Simon Bajkowski - Manchester Evening News
In a day of fine form from the side as a whole, Simon singles out three Manc Blues who stood out among the rest.
Rodri: Played with impeccable timing, nipping in to stop rare Bournemouth counters before they began and making important contributions to the attack. 8
Ilkay Gundogan: Another excellent performance from the skipper and he picked up where he left off with another significant goal at the Etihad 8
Kevin De Bruyne: City’s best player. He looks as fresh as a beaming Pep Guardiola reckons he is and ran the show again with a goal and an assist. 8
Manchester City Crush Home Opener, 4-0 vs Bournemouth: Reaction & Tweets - Saul Garcia - Bitter and Blue
Saul gathers reactions and tweets from around the web, including from the man who’s opinion matters most.
Manchester City win the home opener and beat Bournemouth, 4-0. Goals and performances from Kevin De Bruyne, Phil Foden and more made it an enjoyable match at home.
On to the reaction:
Pep Guardiola Reaction
“We started really well, with three or four corners and we had chances.
“After we scored one or two they don’t want to attack and we had to be patient. It is not easy for many reasons. We made a really good performance again.
“The most difficult job in the world is when you’re a striker vs a [defence] with three CMs, three CBs and you’re in the middle. We’ll find many of these but it’s a question of time. With the quality we have, we’ll find him.”
Manchester City Crush Home Opener, 4-0 vs Bournemouth: Reaction & Tweets https://t.co/LXndAXofBo— Bitter and Blue (@BitterandBlue1) August 13, 2022
Manchester United fans let the players and Glazers know what they think of them in Brentford thrashing - Samuel Luckhurst - Manchester Evening News
And finally... Speaking of reactions. A bit of schadenfreude from the red side of Manchester. You really love to see it.
Manchester United’s garish kit clashed with the manicured grass at the Community Stadium and Brentford stomped all over them as though they were the turf.
“You’re not fit to wear the shirt,” the United supporters spat. Watching the defeatist players clad in attire more befitting a cyclist, the wheels have already come off under the new regime this season.
Steve McClaren urged Cristiano Ronaldo to approach the away end and he was not having any of it. “Hey Jude” largely drowned out the United fans but they booed those who approached them.
Enjoy your Sunday everybody. It doesn’t get much better than this.