Guardiola, fans left in awe after Stoke rout

Leroy Sane, Manchester City

Pep Guardiola lauded his players for what he called “the best performance” of his tenure on Saturday after Manchester City crushed Stoke City 7-2 at the Etihad Stadium.

The win saw City move two points clear of neighbours Manchester United and equalled their best ever start to a season.

The last time City won seven and drew one of their first eight matches was in 2011-12 when they went on to win the Premier League.

Guardiola was understandably happy: “I cannot deny that was the best performance since I arrived here.”

“Except two actions when Stoke scored, and we have to learn from that, in general we made a very good performance from everyone. We played quickly because we played simple.

“We were very good in the build-up and after that the quality from the midfielders, wingers, strikers was clear.

“We know each other more, I know much more about my players and I know even more how to damage the opposing teams and we know more how to score.

“We made a point to the players of needing to start well because these games after the international break can be hard and we did that.”

The Spaniard also singled out Kevin De Bruyne, who put in an outstanding performance on his 100th game for the club.

“He’s such a dynamic player, always picks the right pass at the right tempo. When he has the ball, the wingers, the strikers, they know to move because the ball is coming their way. He’s a big, talented player.”

Fans were also blown away by City’s latest goal fest.

Some fans took time to reflect on how far their team has come in the last few years.

While others took a dig at rivals Manchester United after their overly defensive showing at Anfield earlier in the day.