Raheem Sterling’s second-half brace and goals from Leroy Sane, Sergio
Aguero and Fabian Delph gave Manchester City their latest big win.
Free-scoring Manchester City added to Crystal Palace’s mounting misery with a 5-0 win at the Etihad Stadium, a result that sent Pep Guardiola’s men top of the Premier League.
Palace are the only team without a goal in Europe’s five major divisions this season after a sixth straight top-flight defeat, and the scale of the task facing the recently appointed Roy Hodgson is thrown into a stark light by a fixture list that places Manchester United and Chelsea next on their agenda.
Contrary to the final scoreline, Hodgson’s men acquitted themselves well in the first half and should have led through Ruben Loftus-Cheek before a splendid opener from Leroy Sane arrived a minute before half-time.
Raheem Sterling’s quickfire second-half brace put the result beyond any semblance of doubt and an overworked Wayne Hennessey in the Palace goal was unable to keep out Sergio Aguero’s 79th-minute header from Sane’s cross.
The goal moved Aguero to within one strike of Eric Brook’s all-time club scoring record of 177 and an excellent fifth from substitute Fabian Delph extended the
goal-difference advantage Guardiola’s side enjoy over Manchester United at the summit to four.
Palace were rocking and Aguero released Sane into the box, where Hennessey stood firm despite his earlier protection having evaporated.
Guardiola remonstrated extensively after a Sane penalty claim fell on deaf ears with 15 minutes to play, but it is his slumped counterpart in the opposite dugout who could reflect on more genuine reasons for anguish by the time Aguero got in on the act.
Hodgson handed Delph his England debut in 2014 but would have rather not seen a career that has stalled through fitness woes in Manchester show a dazzling
spark a minute from time as he cut inside and looped a right-footed shot into the top corner.