Manchester City returned to the top of the Premier League, with another Sergio Aguero hat-trick, and did so by destroying Chelsea.
The Etihad Stadium in Manchester, England was on fire as English Premier League reigning champion, Manchester City downed title contender, Chelsea, 6 goals to nil.
Sergio Aguero scored brace, Raheem Sterling and Gundogan all scored the six goals.
They humiliated them and their head coach Maurizio Sarri – and that is dangerous territory for a club with Chelsea’s ambition.
Four goals arrived in the first-half. Or, rather, the first half of a first-half in which it felt like only Eden Hazard and Gonzalo Higuain had the stomach for the fight in the Chelsea team. The first goal summed it up.
Jorginho, badly struggling at the base of the midfield, needlessly fouled Kevin De Bruyne, who took a quick free-kick. Neither Hazard nor, even more so, Marcos Alonso were alert to the danger and Bernardo Silva ran in from the touchline to cross low.
David Luiz deflected the ball out but only as far as the onrushing Raheem Sterling who slammed it high into the net.
There was then an extraordinary miss by Aguero who somehow side-footed wide from just two yards out, with the goal beckoning, after a wonderful run and low cross by Bernardo but the striker quickly made amends.
He took possession from Oleksandr Zinchencko, weighed up the shot and sent a superb curling 25-yard effort that Kepa Arrizabalaga got a hand to but which tore past the goalkeeper.
Chelsea were reeling and they unravelled when Zinchenko scooped the ball into the penalty area with David Luiz heading it out. That should have been the end of it but, for some reason, Ross Barkley headed it back towards his own goal, playing Aguero onside and he stole in to steer a low shot past Arrizabalaga. It was Aguero’s 159th league goal for City – a new club record.
City struck again and once more Chelsea were at fault with no pressure as Aguero sent the ball out wide to Sterling who returned it back to the striker with both David Luiz and Rudiger standing off him before Rudiger managed to intercept. But the ball only ran out to Ilkay Gundogan on the edge of the area who struck a low first-time shot into the corner of the goal.
It was the first time that Chelsea had conceded four goals in consecutive top-flight away matches since December 1990; following on from the 4-0 defeat away to Bournemouth. They created two first-half chances, but the game was up.
For the first Pedro broke into the City area, running clear onto Higuain’s clever back-heel, before Ederson blocked his low shot. Then the goalkeeper pushed over a powerful volley by Higuain.