City start off with a bang
They dominate Gunners from the start as Reds show they are in top form too
MANCHESTER City began the defence of their title with an impressive win away to an Arsenal side playing under new manager Unai Emery yesterday.
Attempting to become the first team since Manchester United in 2009 to retain the title, the champions were good value with goals by Raheem Stirling and Bernardo Silva.
Sterling went past two weak challengers to put City ahead in the first quarter of an hour with his 50th league goal.
Soon after debutant Riyad Mahrez from Leicester City was substituted, Bernardo Silva added the second in the 65th minute.
Meanwhile, last season’s Premier League top scorer Mo Salah was on target again as Liverpool began their campaign with an easy win at home to West Ham United.
The Egyptian gave Juergen Klopp’s side the lead after 19 minutes from Andy Robertson’s precise low cross.
West Ham’s new manager Manuel Pellegrini gave debuts to five of their 10 close-season signings, but his revamped team rarely threatened Liverpool’s expensive new Brazilian goalkeeper Alisson.
Poor defending cost them a second goal just before the interval, to Sadio Mane, who added a third after 53 minutes from an offside position.
Substitute Daniel Sturridge made it fourjust seconds after coming on.
Salah’s goal featured an important contribution from new signing Naby Keita.
Guinea’s Keita was excellent throughout. Liverpool’s other debutant, Alisson, was much less involved as the London side struggled to make chances.
Their best one followed a lucky bounce off the referee but Marko Arnautovic miscued his shot.
By the interval they had conceded again after leaving three attackers unmarked in front of goal. Mane was the one who knocked in James Milner’s pull-back.
He scored Liverpool’s third, which might have been disallowed for offside, and Sturridge came off the bench in the final few minutes to score at the far post from a corner with his first touch.
Pellegrini gave debuts to Lukasz Fabianski, Ryan Fredericks, Fabian Balbuena, Felipe Anderson and Jack Wilshere, then introduced a sixth newcomer Andriy Yarmolenko as a substitute.
Anderson and Yarmolenko had their moments but overall the visitors were comprehensively outplayed.
Elsewhere, Southampton were held to a goalless draw at home to Burnley with Joe Hart making some key saves on his league debut for the Clarets.
Burnley dominated the first half and thought they had gone ahead in the eighth minute when former Southampton midfielder Jack Cork sidefooted home, but the effort was ruled to have been offside.
Southampton looked the more likely to score but England international Hart produced some fine saves to frustrate Mark Hughes’ side.