Manchester City started the defence of their Premier League title with a resounding 5-0 win over West Ham.

Raheem Sterling was in sparkling form, plundering a hat-trick, with
Gabriel Jesus and Sergio Aguero also on target in a game that suggests
the rest of the league will have their work cut out stopping Pep
Guardiola’s side marching to a third consecutive title.

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Liverpool, who pushed City so close last season, also picked up where
they left off, scoring four first-half goals to defeat promoted Norwich
City 4-1 at Anfield.

Marcus Rashford scored twice as Manchester United thumped Chelsea 4-0
at Old Trafford, while Harry Kane was at his ruthless best as Tottenham
came from behind to see off Aston Villa 3-1.

STERLING TREBLE SETS CITY ON THEIR WAY

City laid down an ominous marker in their opening game of the season, sweeping aside West Ham with apparent ease.

The result means they have won their last 15 Premier League games –
three short of their own record of 18 set between August and December in
2017.

Central to their success was Sterling, who became just the eighth
player to score a hat-trick on the opening weekend of a Premier League
campaign, and the first since Didier Drogba in 2010.

Jesus was a surprise starter ahead of Aguero but the Brazilian repaid
his manager’s faith with the opener – his 13th goal in his last 10
starts.

West Ham, meanwhile, have now lost their last four opening fixtures
to a Premier League season, including each of the last three by an
aggregate score of 0-13.

LIVERPOOL’S FIRST-HALF BLITZ DOWNS SORRY CANARIES

Norwich experienced a baptism of fire on their return to the top
flight on Friday, with Liverpool racing into a four-goal lead by
half-time.

The Reds scored three goals in the opening 30 minutes for the first
time since February 2014 when they were 4-0 up after just 20 minutes
against Arsenal.

One of those goalscorers, Mohamed Salah, extended his impressive
opening-day record, which has seen him score in Liverpool’s first
Premier League match of the past three seasons.

Trent Alexander-Arnold was typically impressive at right-back and his
assist for Divock Origi’s goal means he is the first player to register
an assist in five consecutive top-flight games since Mesut Ozil in
2015.

It should perhaps come as little surprise that Norwich left
Merseyside with nothing given their woeful record on the opening day –
they have won their first match of the league season in just one of the
last 17 seasons.

UNITED RUN RIOT AGAINST BLUES

Manchester United’s resounding Premier League win over Chelsea on
Sunday was their biggest top-flight victory over the Blues in 54 years.

United were not at their best against Frank Lampard’s side but they
proved lethal in front of goal, with strikes from Rashford (2), Anthony
Martial and Daniel James enough to secure all three points.

The last time the Red Devils beat Chelsea by such a margin in the
league was in March 1965 under Matt Busby, when they also won 4-0.

As well as suffering the joint-heaviest defeat of his brief
managerial career to date, Lampard was dealt the biggest reversal by a
Chelsea boss in their first game in charge since Danny Blanchflower
oversaw a 7-2 loss at Middlesbrough in December 1978.

The defeat also means Chelsea ended a day in the Premier League relegation zone for the first time since September 2000.

KANE COMES TO SPURS’ RESCUE AGAIN

Tottenham once again were indebted to Kane’s clinical finishing as they claimed all three points against Villa.

The England captain’s two late goals mean he has now scored six goals in as many Premier League games against the Villains.

Mauricio Pochettino’s side had earlier cancelled out John McGinn’s
opener courtesy of Tanguy Ndombele’s strike from distance, making the
Frenchman the first player to score on his Spurs debut since Eric Dier
in August 2014.

Defeat for Villa, meanwhile, continued Jack Grealish’s unfortunate
run, which has seen him lose each of his last 19 Premier League games –
the longest run of consecutive defeats suffered by a player in the
history of the competition.

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