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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Liverpool stun Man City as Philippe Coutinho and Roberto Firmino shine

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Liverpool shocked Manchester City with three first-half goals at the Etihad Stadium to earn a 4-1 win against Manuel Pellegrini's Premier League title contenders.

Eliaquim Mangala scored a comical own goal seven minutes in, while Brazilian duo Philippe Coutinho and Roberto Firmino capitalised on more weak defending from City to put Jurgen Klopp's men 3-0 up within 32 minutes.

Sergio Aguero hit back a minute before half-time as Manuel Pellegrini's side tried to regroup, but the damage was already done as Martin Skrtel volleyed home late on with Liverpool denying City the chance to retake top spot from Leicester City.

Klopp selected a starting XI with no out-and-out striker, but that mattered little for Liverpool as City could not cope with the visitors' movement in between the lines.

Liverpool started brightly and punished City seven minutes in -- Bacary Sagna was caught in possession at right-back, and Firmino's low cross to the near post was finished by Mangala as he struggled to readjust his feet.

Klopp's side continued to press a City back line without captain Vincent Kompany, and had their second on 23 minutes on the counter once more.

Roberto Firmino and Philippe Coutinho were in superb form for Liverpool at the Etihad Stadium.

Firmino played an inch-perfect cross-pass for Coutinho from the right flank, and the playmaker turned the ball home underneath Joe Hart's legs to double their advantage.

The City defence was again left brutally exposed following a fine back-heel from Emre Can to release Coutinho, and he unselfishly teed up Firmino to tap into an empty net.

Aguero handed City hopes of a comeback 44 minutes in as he curled home a 25-yard effort past Simon Mignolet, while Pellegrini made two half-time changes as Fernandinho and Fabian Delph replaced Jesus Navas and Yaya Toure.

The end-to-end football continued Hart made a superb save on the hour to stop Firmino adding Liverpool's fourth, with Coutinho then rounding the keeper to finish but was flagged offside.

Sterling then had an ideal chance to score against his former club with 25 minutes to go, but the winger dallied under pressure from Mignolet and fed Aguero, who saw the Liverpool No. 1 save his goal-bound effort. 

Kelechi Iheanacho was sent on for Aguero with 24 minutes left, but City were made to pay for failing to find a way back as Skrtel hit a fine volley past Hart from 15 yards to cap a superb day for Klopp and his side.

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