MAN UTD 0, MAN CITY 3
Erling Haaland’s double and a strike from Phil Foden provided derby delight for Manchester City and underlined the chasm in class between the neighbours.
City looked every inch Treble winners while United laboured and decidedly second best in every aspect of the game.
And in Haaland they had a proven winner as, incredibly, in only three Premier League games against United he has contributed to eight goals – five goals and three assists.
The Reds were even unable to feed on the emotion of the tribute to Sir Bobby Charlton who was remembered pre-match one week on from the death of the Reds’ legend aged 86.
They are eighth in the table and already eight points adrift of the top four Champions League spots. And having lost five of their first 10 league games, this is their worst start to a league campaign since 1986/87.
“Amazing. A fantastic win and the game was incredible and the team, everything, especially this guy,” [Bernardo Silva – next to him], said Haaland.
Bernardo Silva added: “When we come to these places, like Anfield and Old Trafford, we know what teams are waiting for – for us to lose the ball and counter.
“It is definitely one of the best wins. To win 3-0 away with this crowd, I think it is definitely one of the best performances.”
City manager Pep Guardiola, who, incredibly, has won seven times at Old Trafford since 2016, said: “The second goal was the key point of the game, and in the second half we were brilliant.
“It is always special to win at Old Trafford.”
Guardiola singled out Silva, adding: “He is one of the best-ever players I have seen in my life – intelligent and clever.”
And he reiterated an earlier point the biggest title will be this season after last season’s Treble.
“I have seen the progress of the players and their mentality, and it is so nice to watch this team,” he explained.
United manager Erik ten Hag said: “The way we lost was disappointing.
“In the first half we executed the game plan well and went toe-to-toe, but the penalty changed the game.
“In the second half we had to be more offensive and, when they went 2-0 ahead, it was a difficult game.”
United made three changes from the side which beat FC Copenhagen in the Champions League on Tuesday.Embed from Getty Images
Casemiro was not in the squad and still unavailable following the ankle injury that caused him to miss United’s last two fixtures.
Victor Lindelof and Jonny Evans came in at the back in place of Raphael Varane and Sergio Reguilon while Christian Eriksen replaced Antony in midfield.
Guardiola opted to make six changes to theside which won against Young Boys in the Champions League on Wednesday.
Kyle Walker, Josko Gvardiol, John Stones, Silva, Julian Alvarez and Foden came into the starting line-up.
Defender Manuel Akanji was suspended following his red card against Brighton.
There was a moving tribute to Sir Bobby as former United and City greats joined the current players in the centre circle for the minute’s applause before kick-off which was emotional and demonstrated the universal love from the whole football family for the legend.
City had the first clear-cut chance in the seventh minute when Foden’s header was well kept out by Andre Onana.
And as Haaland looked set to tap home the rebound, Onana managed to palm the ball to safety with Harry Maguire completing the clearance.
The breakthrough came midway through the opening half when City won a penalty for a shirt pull by Rasmus Hojlund on Rodri following a free kick.
Referee Paul Tierney didn’t spot the offence but was referred by VAR to view the incident on the pitchside monitor.
Tierney awarded the spot kick, the first City have been awarded at Old Trafford in the Premier League era, with Haaland sending Onana the wring way from the spot for his 12th City goal of the season.
Hojlund, keen to make amends for his blunder, made a great break but was driven wide before cutting the ball back to Bruno Fernandes who fired over, United’s best opening shortly after the half hour.
United almost levelled in stoppage time when a great pass released McTominay whose shot from the edge of the box was brilliantly kept out by Ederson.
Then in the dying seconds of the four added minutes, Onana pulled off an unbelievable stop to keep out a point-blank header from Haaland to keep United in the game.
United made a change at the break as Sofyan Amrabat, who was on a booking, was replaced by Mason Mount.
But the Reds had an uphill challenge when Haaland doubled the lead in the 49th minute with his second of the game.
A sweeping move from, right to left ended with Silva floating a cross from the left for Haaland to loop home a header from six yards, his 13th goal of the season.
It looked as though it might be an embarrassing afternoon as Grealish twice came close to adding a third goal, forcing a decent save from Onana and then firing narrowly wide.
United kept battling and Marcus Rashford fashioned an opening only to drag his angled shot from six yards narrowly wide as they looked for a way back into the game.
Haaland had a great chance to complete his hat-trick with 20 minutes left, but Onana was quick off his line to make an important block to deny the Norwegian.
Ten Hag made a double change with 16 minutes left as Hojlund and Victor Lindelof made way for Alejandro Garnacho and Sergio Reguilon.
City scored the third their enterprising play deserved with 10 minutes left.
Onana parried a drive from Rodri and Haaland squared the rebound to the far post for Foden to tap in, his third goal of the season.
Foden then went close with a spectacular overhead kick as the home fans were streaming away from Old Trafford.
There were further late changes. Rashford and Christian Eriksen made way for Anthony Martial and Antony for United while City introduced Mateo Kovacic and Jeremy Doku for Julian Alvarez and Grealish.