Raheem Sterling joined an elite list of players as Manchester City secured a 5-0 win over West Ham on the opening day of the new season, becoming just the eighth player to ever score a hat-trick on matchday one.
It was Gabriel Jesus who opened the scoring at London Stadium with a tidy finish at the near post following an outstanding run from Kyle Walker, but it was Sterling who took centre stage with three goals, while substitute Sergio Agüero also netted a late penalty.
Sterling’s hat-trick has seen him become just the eighth player in Premier League history to score three goals on the opening weekend, a feat which was last accomplished by Chelsea legend Didier Drogba in 2010.
The England international was one of Manchester City’s standout performers, but it took some time before Sterling found his groove at took off where he finished last season.
A sloppy opening 45 minutes from City was, however, overshadowed by their ruthless second-half performance, which also saw Jesus have a potential second goal ruled out for a tight offside.
Pep Guardiola’s side also escaped largely unscathed at the other end of the pitch, with goalkeeper Ederson only being called into one notable action where he produced a stunning double save to deny Javier Hernández and Manuel Lanzini.
There won’t be any respite for Manchester City as they now prepare for their first home game of the season next weekend, with Mauricio Pochettino’s Tottenham set to travel to the Etihad in Saturday’s evening kick-off on matchday two.