Raheem Sterling stars as Manchester City smash Southampton for six

Premier League, Etihad Stadium - Manchester City 6 (Hoedt OG 6', Aguero 12', D Silva 18', Sterling 45', 67', Sane 90+1') Southampton 1 (Ings P 30')

Raheem Sterling netted a brace as champions Manchester City hammered six past strugglingSouthampton at the Etihad on Sunday.
An own-goal from Wesley Hoedt opened the scoring for City and Sergio Aguero fired home his 150th Premier League goal to double the lead.
David Silva made it three with a thumping finish before Southampton got on the board thanks to a calm penalty from Danny Ings.
Sterling then took over as two fine finishes gave him his fifth and six Premier League goals of the season.
And the England international teed up Leroy Sane for the sixth in added time, it is the fourth time City have scored six goals under Pep Guardiola.
City go two points clear at the top of the table with the win whilst Southampton remain in 16th.

TALKING POINT - Free-scoring City can't be stopped

Since their goalless draw with Liverpool, Manchester City have gone on to win three straight Premier League games - scoring an eye-watering 12 goals in the process - but the frightening thing is that they have yet to hit top-gear.
City hit Burnley for five without being close to their best; they downed Spurs at Wembley in third-gear and it didn't even feel like they had to work very hard to humiliate Southampton.
Undoubtedly, Pep Guardiola's side will be pushed harder than they were last season in the title race, but if top spot is decided by goal-difference, well, it's still difficult to look past City as they already hold an amazing 13-goal advantage over Liverpool. At this rate, they have scored a league goal every six minutes.

MAN OF THE MATCH - Raheem Sterling

In a week in which it has been reported that Sterling has signed a mega new deal at Manchester City - making him the highest-paid English player - the forward went some way to prove his value to his side, as he played a part in all six team goals. It is easy to see why City are desperate to keep him at the club - the 23-year-old must be an absolute dream to play with; his pace, vision and ability to be in the right place at the right time are all valuable assets for a title-winning team.

PLAYER RATINGS

Manchester City: Ederson 5, Walker 6, Stones 6, Laporte 7, Mendy 7, Fernandinho 7, B Silva 8, D Silva 8, Sane 8, Sterling 9, Aguero 8. Subs: Kompany 5, Delph 5, Foden 6.
Southampton: McCarthy 4, Soares 5, Stephens 5, Hoedt 4, Bertrand 5, Redmond 4, Ward-Prowse 5, Hojbjerg 4, Lemina 5, Long 4, Ings 6. Subs: Elyounoussi 4, Armstrong 4, Obafemi 5.

KEY MOMENTS

6' - GOAL! Man City 1-0 Southampton: And there is the opener! Aguero plays it to David Silva, he releases it through to Sane who drills it across the face of goal. Sterling is positioned for a tap-in but Hoedt gets there first and can only stick it into his own net.
12' - GOAL! Man City 2-0 Southampton: Goal 150 for Aguero, but it's created and crafted by the wonderful Sterling. The Englishman is released by Bernardo Silva, he races to the byline with electric pace and pulls it back for Aguero who is left with a tap-in. Game over already?
18' - GOAL! Man City 3-0 Southampton: Oh dear, this is becoming embarrassing for the Saints. Sterling is involved again, he receives a pass from Bernardo Silva and fizzes a cross into the penalty area. Stephens can only head as far as David Silva who rifles a left-footed volley into the top corner.
31' - GOAL! Man City 3-1 Southampton: Game on?! Surely not, but Ings has given the travelling Southampton fans something to cheer about, at least. He steps up and strokes the penalty to the left, sending Ederson the wrong way.
45'+2 - GOAL! Man City 4-1 Southampton: City re-establish their three-goal lead before the break. Cedric tries to shepherd an overcooked pass out of play but then Aguero nips in the other side and wins it back, pulling it back for Sterling. His first shot is blocked but he gets a second bite of the cherry and makes no mistake, slotting it past a helpless McCarthy.
67' - GOAL! Man City 5-1 Southampton: The home side pile more misery on the Saints with another excellent team goal. Fernandinho passes into the feet of Aguero, he has Sterling bombing forward on his right and he plays a perfectly-weight pass to the Englishman who slots home from a tight angle. And now you have to fear for the tiring Southampton.
90'+1 - GOAL! Man City 6-1 Southampton: Sane scores his third of the season to wrap the game up nicely for City. Foden races forward, eating up a lot of ground, he feeds it to Sterling who finds Sane. And the German international is allowed to check back onto his left-foot and strike a powerful shot from the edge of the box.