Manchester City vs Liverpool player ratings: Did Stevan Jovetic get the highest score?

A look at the individual performances following Manchester City's 3-1 victory at the Etihad

Manchester City striker Stevan Jovetic ensured former club favourite Mario Balotelli's return to England was relegated to a sideshow as the Premier League champions ruthlessly brushed aside the team who ran them so close last season.

Read more: Balotelli takes seat at the Etihad
Match report: Man City 3 Liverpool 1

While all the pre-match talk was of Liverpool's new £16million striker - watching from the directors' box just hours after finalising his move from AC Milan - it was another forward who had previously made the move from Italy who took centre-stage.

The Montenegro international endured a miserable maiden campaign dogged by illness and injury but is now reaping the benefits of a full pre-season with City's first two goals either side of half-time in a 3-1 victory.

Sergio Aguero, his main rival for a starting spot up front, added a third less than 20 seconds after coming off the bench to wrap up victory before Pablo Zabaleta's late own goal offered Liverpool some consolation.

Here, we take a look at how those involved performed...

 

MANCHESTER CITY

Joe Hart

England man offered a strong presence throughout to reaffirm claims to be City’s No 1. Stood up well to Sterling and Sturridge’s efforts.7/10

Pablo Zabaleta

Had hands full with pace of Sterling on his belated first appearance of season. Fine run halted by Gerrard just before opener and also blazed over.6

Vincent Kompany

Troubled by the trickery of Sturridge in opening exchanges but remained in control. Fine tackle on the England forward after the break. 7

Martin Demichelis

Commanding display from the Argentine. Hacked clear from Moreno as visitors started strongly. Ever-improving partnership with Kompany.7

Gael Clichy

Restored to left-back berth and looked far more comfortable, both going forward and in defensive mode. Set up Zabaleta for early effort. 6

Fernando

Has impressed since move from Porto and continues to keep near-namesake out. Unfussed and unhurried in possession and rarely ceded ball.7

Yaya Toure

Ivorian has yet to catch fire this season. Fired one shot from outside the box straight at Mignolet and booked for pulling back Coutinho.6

Samir Nasri

Played his part in both of Jovetic’s goals – beginning the move for the first with a lovely chip to Silva before passing across the box for the second.7

Edin Dzeko

Again put his heel to good use to send Zabaleta clear. Shot wide early on but offered foil to Jovetic’s movement. Taken off for Aguero for final quarter.6

David Silva

Found space behind Gerrard and offered continual threat on left side. Enjoyed better of battle with Glen Johnson before being replaced by Navas.7

Stevan Jovetic

Returned to haunt Liverpool five years after scoring against them in the Champions League with Fiorentina. Showed fine composure for his goals.8

BEST OFF THE BENCH: Sergio Aguero

Replaced Dzeko for final 20 minutes and found the net within seconds. Ran onto Navas’ through ball before slotting past Mignolet.7

 

LIVERPOOL

Simon Mignolet

Was not overly extended before opener other than gather Touré’s effort but could do little with Jovetic’s first. Left exposed for other two goals.6/10

Glen Johnson

Left oceans of space for Jovetic to hit his and City’s second - reduced to flailing helplessly on the line as the Serb thrashed in. Struggled throughout.5

Martin Skrtel

Made crucial interceptions in front of Dzeko and Jovetic but struggled along with the rest of his backline as City turned up the pressure.6

Dejan Lovren

The Croat’s first real test in a Liverpool shirt and his hurried header presented Jovetic with his opener. Easily beaten for pace by Aguero for City’s third. 5

Alberto Moreno

Offered encouragement on debut but erred badly for City’s first. Crucial block on Dzeko before losing Nasri for the second and nowhere for the third. 5

Jordan Henderson

Added to defensive cover but not able to repel City onslaught after positive start to the game. Did not enjoy one of his better showings for Liverpool.5

Steven Gerrard

Good in possession and with distribution but unable to track quick feet of Silva. Game seemed to pass him by as City upped the tempo toward end.6

Raheem Sterling

As with last season, impressed at the Etihad. Buzzed around to varying effect but no end product. Shot wide after dinking early run.7

Joe Allen

Showed why Rodgers keeps faith and stuck dilligently to task but given too much to do as City surged on. Taken off for Emre Can towards the end. 6

Philippe Coutinho

Finished last season strongly, including the winner against City in April, but struggled to have an impact on game here. Pulled back by Touré.5

Daniel Sturridge

Tricked his way past Kompany but found Hart equal to his effort at the near post. Early second-half effort ruled out for offside and left frustrated.6

BEST OFF THE BENCH: Rickie Lambert

Came on for Sterling for final 11 minutes and forced Zabaleta to put through his own goal before going close to an improbable second. n/a

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