Manchester City outclassed Manchester United to maintain control of the Premier League title race with an outstanding display at Etihad Stadium.
City remain six points clear of Liverpool having played one game more after a victory that was arguably even more convincing than the scoreline suggests.
Ralf Rangnick’s side were without injured Cristiano Ronaldo and Edinson Cavani, as well as Raphael Varane and Luke Shaw, who have Covid-19, and found themselves overwhelmed by the quality and intensity of the reigning champions.
Kevin de Bruyne was at the heart of it all. He put City ahead with a crisp early finish then restored their lead before half-time after Jadon Sancho put United level with precise low strike, the Belgian’s second hammered home in a goalmouth scramble.
City turned up the tempo after the break and got the goal their vast superiority deserved after 68 minutes when Riyad Mahrez met De Bruyne’s corner on the half-volley to beat United keeper David de Gea. The goal came via a deflection off United captain Harry Maguire, who endured a nightmare afternoon.
It got even better for City in the closing moments when Mahrez raced clear to beat De Gea, the goal being given after a lengthy VAR check for offside.