The England keeper was typically vocal throughout and impressed when called upon. Got down well for Gervinho's first-half snap shot but was given a relatively comfortable afternoon. Pulled off a fine injury-time save to deny Vermaelen late on and secure the points.
The 26-year-old switched flanks after starting at right-back in City's loss to Chelsea and started superbly, delivering an inch perfect ball to Aguero, only for the striker to blaze over from a matter of yards. Hit the post with an unstoppable effort and always looked dangerous.
Looked sharp from the off, beating Walcott for pace on the seventh minute with the England winger threatening down the left. Simply didn't put a foot wrong at the Etihad.
Came up against his former club and kept it neat and tidy alongside the more dynamic Kompany. Did lunge in with one clumsy tackle in the area but just about won the ball. Did his chances of a regular first-team spot no harm at all.
Returned to the City line-up after missing his side's visit to Stamford Bridge with a calf injury and didn't show any signs of rustiness and played in Balotelli with an excellent cross after powering down the right.
Dictated the game in the early exchanges, starting a couple of City counter-attacks after breaking up the visitors' play. Faultless distribution by the 30-year-old, though he was backed for a poor tackle from behind on Arteta.
Faced a torrent of abuse from his former fans throughout the afternoon but appeared unaffected, causing Mertesacker and Djourou all sorts of problems with some confident forays down the left wing. Could have doubled his side's lead shortly after the opener but elected to pass the ball rather than shoot and wasted the chance. Subbed off late on.
Was described as a star by compatriot and counterpart Mikel Arteta in the build-up to the clash and fulfilled the description yet again. Maintained possession, probed the Arsenal back-line and was in the right place at the right time to convert City's opener from no distance. A class act, yet again.
Wasted a fine opportunity on the half hour mark by electing to chip a ball through to his striker's when he had plenty of options out wide. Otherwise it was a typically powerful showing from the Ivorian, with some direct running through the middle. Replaced by De Jong with five minutes remaining.
The former Atletico Madrid man was wasteful early on, smashing a half volley over from close range before hesitating in front of Szczesny. Saw a rasping left-footed effort fly wide on the hour mark. A fine performance but just not quite Aguero's day in front of goal.
Was in the mood from the opening minute and set up Aguero with a superb through ball on the 10th. Was denied from a couple of yards out by the alert Szczesny after controlling the ball and getting a shot away in one movement. Got the shot away that led to City's goal and possibly deserved one himself.
The young Pole exuded confidence early on, pulling off a cheeky flick after four minutes with Balotelli closing him down and frustrated the Italian again 20 minutes later after getting down sharply to block his point-blank effort. Could do little about City's opener.
Left Mertesacker isolated with some breaks forward but worked hard in tracking back. Looked to be moving a little cautiously shortly after the break and was swiftly replaced by Miquel.
Didn't really convince on the right side of the defence as the hosts broke down the left flank at will when Djourou moved up-field. Couldn't keep up with the home side's pace and went to ground far too often.
Was hesitant in an early tackle on Aguero early in the game but grew into the game and worked hard to quell the threat of Balotelli and Aguero. Got caught too high up-field for Silva's goal but was otherwise very solid.
The Belgium international was solid but rarely ventured forward with any great vigour as the Gunners looked short on options down the left wing. Did well against Richards but looked more comfortable after moving in-field following Miquel's introduction and pulled a fine save out of Hart late on and hit another fine effort wide.
Possibly should have been booked early on after bringing down a galloping Richards and was caught in possession on the 22nd minute in a move that nearly led to a City goal. Let Balotelli past far too easily for City's opener on a disappointing day for the hitherto in-form midfielder.
Kept hold of the ball and spread the play to the flanks when required in the first half but struggled to gain a foothold in the second. A methodical midfield display from the young Welshman.
Sat fairly deep in the opening 20 minutes and looked to be the catalyst for Arsenal's movement going forward. Showed some classy touches but lacked the dynamism required to push his side forward.
R. van Persie
David Silva may have insisted that his side weren’t obsessed with the Dutchman but he was near enough marked out of the game for the opening 45 minutes. Struggled for goalmouth action and was called for offside when he did eventually put the ball in the net early in the second half. Worked hard but struggled for service.
Looked to get on the ball early on but was left frustrated by the powerful Kompany. Appeared low on confidence for much of the game and gave the ball away on numerous occasions. Subbed off with 20 minutes remaining after a disappointing display.
Made some dangerous early runs and got a good shot away shortly after the quarter hour mark. Constantly looked to turn defence into attack with some breaks down the left but was often let down by his end product. A tireless effort.
- C. Pantilimon
- 6 J. Lescott
- 15 S. Savić
Replaced Balotelli with just over a quarter of an hour remaining and kept City ticking along with some neat passing.
N. de Jong
Came on with five minutes to go and helped City tighten up in midfield.
- 11 A. Johnson
Made a cameo appearance late on but didn't have enough time to shine for the hosts.
- 1 Almunia
Replaced Djourou shortly after half-time and slotted in at left-back. Never looked fazed as the home side ploughed forward and positioned himself intelligently.
- 7 T. Rosický
Came on for Walcott in the second half but did little to inspire his side off the bench.
- 30 Y. Benayoun
- E. Frimpong
Brought on with nine minutes remaining as the visitors chased an equaliser but added little threat.