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Transfer Rater: Nicolas Pepe to Man City

Football Whispers
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David Silva, Sergio Aguero take centre stage as Man City run riot vs. Burnley

Manchester City continued their impressive start to the season with an emphatic 5-0 victory over Burnley to maintain their lead at the top of the Premier League. Sergio Aguero settled the nerves with a first-half strike before goals from Bernardo Silva, Fernandinho, Riyad Mahrez and Leroy Sane as City cut loose in the second-half performance.

Positives

City were again completely dominant, controlling the possession as they wanted and creating chances with ease. But it may be more pleasing that a physically dominant side failed to have a single attempt on target as City's mean defence continues to grow in confidence.

Negatives

Pep Guardiola isn't going change his style of passing out from the back, and while there were few problems, there was the odd loose pass that had the City manager holding his head in his hands in frustration. Better sides than Burnley could have punished them, just as Lyon did during their shock Champions League victory.

Manager rating out of 10

8 -- Guardiola is in his third Premier League season, and the City boss is now able to pick different formations for different opponents. Sean Dyche's side have a slightly more attacking approach than many teams that come to the Etihad Stadium, but the Clarets really only threatened from dead-ball situations while many players, who had been on international duty were given a break.

Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)

GK Ederson, 7 -- There was a little more extra pressure on the Brazilian to perform with returning hero Joe Hart making his first start at the Etihad Stadium as an opponent. Had little to do in terms of stopping shots, and his confident short passing game mixed with his long distribution showed exactly why the City boss was right to change his number one.

DF John Stones, 6 -- With an injury to Danilo, which is likely to rule him out for a number of weeks, Guardiola took the opportunity to give Kyle Walker a rest. Stones wasn't able to provide the same attacking thrust, but he added some strength and height against Burnley's physical attack.

DF Vincent Kompany, 6 -- The City captain had an uncomfortable afternoon not helped by picking up a yellow card inside 35 seconds for a clumsy high challenge. He also had a couple of unconvincing moments in his own box with rushed clearances but just about came out on top in his battle with Burnley's bruising forwards.

DF Aymeric Laporte, 7 -- The French defender kept the door shut whenever there was an opportunity for a Burnley counter-attack and was given the extra task of covering for Benjamin Mendy's forward runs. He had a couple of sloppy moments giving the ball away in his own half but continues to impress.

DF Benjamin Mendy, 6 -- With Sane ahead of him as an orthodox left winger, he was asked to play a slightly different role, occasionally taking up central midfield positions when City controlled possession. His best moments were still when he got wide and fired over his trademark dangerous crosses, and he finally got an assist with his cross for Sane's goal.

MF Fernandinho, 7 -- Neat and tidy in the centre of midfield in a typically dogged performance in which he stopped danger and Burnley from starting up counter-attacks. Capped a strong showing with his exquisite goal, when he passed into the top corner.

David Silva didn't score one of Man City's five goals but was still the side's best vs. Burnley.
David Silva didn't score one of Man City's five goals but was still the side's best individual vs. Burnley.

MF David Silva, 8 -- The Spaniard has retired from international football and looked to have benefitted from a two-week rest. The playmaker was a nightmare for Burnley to deal with as he flitted between the lines and created City's best opportunities.

MF Bernardo Silva, 7 -- He continues his improvement in his second season, linking up dangerously with David Silva. Amid the chaos around the second goal, he kept alert and lashed home the ball emphatically.

FW Riyad Mahrez, 7 -- A mixed bag from the Algerian winger who had standout and frustrating moments almost in equal measure. But his brilliant curling goal will give him a lot of confidence after his disastrous penalty miss against Liverpool.

FW Sergio Aguero, 7 -- If you give the Argentine enough chances, he will punish you, and that's exactly what happened to Burnley. He looked fresh, buzzing across the forward line and could easily have had a hat trick with Hart doing his best to keep him out.

FW Leroy Sane, 7 -- His pace and skill caused Matthew Lowton problems all afternoon, particularly with Bernardo Silva close by. But he may have been frustrated that he didn't have even more of an end-product to his good work.

Substitutes

MF Kevin De Bruyne, 6 -- City have gone top of the league without the talismanic playmaker, and they will get even better with him back in the side. His vision and touch have not left him in his three-month hiatus even if his fitness may not be 100 percent yet.

FW Gabriel Jesus, 6 -- He is still short of some confidence after a disappointing World Cup but looked lively in his 25-minute cameo and went close with one header.

MF Phil Foden, N/R -- Brought on for the final 15 minutes to continue his Premier League education.

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