Manchester City thumped rivals United 4-1 in an incredible Premier League match at the Etihad Stadium.
A stunning volley from Sergio Aguero got the hosts off to the perfect start before Yaya Toure doubled their lead on the stroke of half-time.
Any hope of a United fightback was dispelled two minutes after the restart when Aguero volleyed in his second before Samir Nasri quickly added a fourth but, to their credit, the visitors steadied themselves and grabbed a late consolation through Wayne Rooney.
The win lifts City up to third in the table with United languishing in eighth.
The hosts started brightly, refusing to allow their rivals any time on the ball, and grabbed an early lead when Aguero adjusted himself to superbly volley home Aleksandar Kolarov’s cross.
Without Robin van Persie, who missed out with a groin strain, United struggled to create any major openings and it was City who scored the second when Toure diverted Alvaro Negredo’s header past David De Gea.
City continued to dominate in the second half and put the game beyond doubt with two quick-fire goals, Aguero volleying home from Negredo’s cutback before Nasri grabbed the fourth after good work from Jesus Navas down the right wing.
United did pull a goal back when Rooney superbly curled his free-kick beyond Joe Hart but the damage was already done as City claimed a famous win.
PRE-MATCH: Robin van Persie misses out. A groin strain rules out the prolific Dutchman which means Wayne Rooney will partner Danny Welbeck in attack.
16′ – GOAL: City 1-0 United: Nasri slips in Kolarov down the left and the defender whips in a dangerous cross. It’s slightly behind Aguero but the striker adjusts his position to somehow volley the ball beyond De Gea. Stunning strike.
45+1′ – GOAL: City 2-0 United: Zabaleta wins a late corner. Nasri whips it in, Negredo beats Smalling to the ball and although his header isn’t going on target, Toure pops up to shin in the loose ball. The Etihad erupts!
47′ – GOAL: City 3-0 United: Negredo rolls his marker inside the area and crosses for Aguero who, despite volleying straight at De Gea, sees his shot bundle over the line. Wow.
50′ – GOAL: City 4-0 United: Navas bombs down the right as an army of City players race up to join him. The United players hardly look interested as the cross finds Nasri who volleys home City’s fourth. This is ridiculous.
80′ – GOALMOUTH SCRAMBLE: Evra loses Aguero but sees his header crash against the post. The ball breaks to Rooney who beats two light blue shirts before floating the ball back into the area which Hart comes to punch clear. England’s number one is briefly out of position which encourages Rooney to strike at goal. Hacked off the line. A goalmouth scramble ensues. City survive.
87′ – GOAL: City 4-1 United: Rooney’s free-kick was worth the wait as he curls his effort beyond Hart into the top corner. Stunning strike. Makes the score slightly more respectable for United.
Sergio Aguero equals Niall Quinn as the club’s leading Premier League scorer against Man United. Both have four goals against their city rivals.
Man United suffer their heaviest Premier League defeat since the 3-0 away loss to Newcastle in January 2012. It is their heaviest away PL defeat to Man City since a 4-1 loss in March 2004.
Man United’s last Premier League defeat directly following a European tie was the 6-1 loss at home to Man City, a run of 12 matches
TALKING POINT: Have City wrestled power back from United? They were better in every department from start to finish and, on this showing, are the only side in Manchester capable of launching a title bid this season.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Vincent Kompany (Manchester City): Won his personal duel with Rooney, led his side from defence and made numerous crucial interceptions. Yaya Toure was a close second.
Manchester City: Hart 7, Zabaleta 7, Kompany 9, Nastasic 7, Kolarov 7, Nasri 7, Fernandinho 7, Toure 8, Navas 7, Aguero 8, Negredo 7. Subs: Garcia 6, Milner 6, Dzeko 6.
Manchester United: De Gea 5, Smalling 5, Ferdinand 4, Vidic 5, Evra 4, Valencia 5, Carrick 6, Fellaini 5, Young 5, Rooney 6, Welbeck 5. Subs: Cleverley 6.
Source : Ben Snowball