Man City's winners, losers and ratings as De Bruyne masterclass makes up for Haaland blank

Kevin De Bruyne Erling Haaland Man City 2022-23Getty/GOAL

If Erling Haaland doesn't get you, don't worry there's plenty of Manchester City players that will. The Norwegian didn't find the net on his first appearance at the Etihad Stadium but that didn't stop the Premier League champions tearing apart Bournemouth apart in a 4-0 win.

The newly-promoted Cherries simply had no answers to the brilliance of Kevin De Bruyne, Phil Foden, Riyad Mahrez and Ilkay Gundogan, who combined to produce a mesmerising performance that will have City's title rivals fearing that Pep Guardiola and his players will prove unstoppable this season...

  • Kevin de Bruyne

    The Winners

    Kevin De Bruyne:

    Another season, another performance of quality as the Belgian continues to set remarkably high standards at the Etihad Stadium.

    Irrespective of his involvement in the goals, De Bruyne has an incredible work rate that his team-mates have to follow. and that’s matched by sheer quality.

    His goal was a work of art, with the attacking midfielder completely throwing Bournemouth’s defenders with an incredible dummy that gave him enough time and space to curl a delightful shot into the corner with the outside of his right boot.

    Then, of course, came the assist, with De Bruyne stretching the Cherries’ backline before playing a perfectly-timed nutmeg pass for Phil Foden to run onto and score.

    Ilkay Gundogan:

    He was the hero at the last game at the Etihad – the dramatic, title-clinching victory over Aston Villa – but admitted afterwards that he was disappointed that he hadn’t started.

    But those two goals were a reminder of why he is so important, with Guardiola hailing his ability to take up goalscoring positions.

    Getting a breakthrough always takes the pressure off City and once again it was Gundogan that found the opener after exchanging passes with Haaland.

    That and his constant running earned him a deserved hug from Guardiola when he was replaced midway through the second half.

    Sergio Gomez:

    The new left-back has not yet been confirmed as a signing but he was at the Etihad Stadium to watch the brutal dismantling of Bournemouth.

    And he must have been licking his lips at the thought of playing in this City team, with his move from Anderlecht expected to go through imminently.

    Gomez began his career as an attacking midfielder and, therefore, will have been delighted to see Joao Cancelo effectively play as a winger.

    Guardiola spoke enthusiastically about what Gomez can bring to his team and now he must be desperate for the deal to go through as quickly as possible so that he can join up with his new team-mates for their next outing.

    Bernardo Silva:

    Speculation continues to grow around Silva’s future, with big-spending Barcelona making no secret of their ambitions to sign him.

    Starting on the bench for City’s second successive Premier League game will only add to the rumours, even if Guardiola’s decision to leave him out was tactical.

    The City boss has made it clear that he wants the Portuguese star to stay, although he cannot be certain what will happen before the transfer window closes.

    And City fans made their affection for Silva clear when he was introduced as a second-half substitute, with a deafening roar followed by the constant chanting of his name.

  • Scott Parker

    The Losers

    Scott Parker:

    Choosing to wear a cardigan on one of the hottest days in Premier League history was a strange decision, but trying to stop City in this mood was largely out of his control.

    His side counterattacked intelligently but the reality was that City were simply too strong and Bournemouth spent the majority of the game on the edge of their own box.

    The Cherries have been bouncing between the top divisions for the past few seasons and are among the early favourites for relegation.

    A chastening visit to the Etihad Stadium is the last thing that Parker needed after an encouraging victory on the opening day against Aston Villa and he must get his players to forget about it as quickly as possible.

    Erling Haaland:

    The Norwegian striker played well but he looked frustrated at not scoring when he was replaced midway through the second half.

    His last touch had come moments earlier when he scuffed a shot just wide with what was probably his only sight of goal.

    It was also a tough start as he didn't touch the ball for the first 16 minutes, although he should be happy that when it came, it teed up Gundogan for the game's crucial opening goal.

    There was little space for Haaland to work in and he will have easier days but this was hard work in high temperatures.

  • Joao Cancelo Manchester City Bournemouth 2022-23Getty

    Man City Ratings: Defence

    Ederson (6/10):

    The goalkeeper’s biggest test was to remember to put on sunblock on an afternoon where he was largely watching from the best seat in the house. But he stayed alert to make one smart save from Ben Pearson’s snapshot.

    Kyle Walker (7/10):

    Reprised his new role as a hybrid full-back-midfielder and once again revelled in the position. His sharp, intelligent passing is exactly what Guardiola would have wanted from him.

    Ruben Dias (7/10):

    Always alert to any danger whenever Bournemouth tried to overload on the counterattack. Saw a lot of the ball at his feet and continues to improve at starting attacks from deep.

    Nathan Ake (8/10):

    Was left isolated on a couple of occasions but swept up without fuss. Continued his impressive start to the season.

    Joao Cancelo (7/10):

    A typically impressive performance as he helped the build-up throughout and his intricacy and calmness panicked Jefferson Lerna into an own goal.

  • Phil Foden

    Midfield

    Rodri (7/10):

    The Spaniard doesn't generate many headlines in his holding midfield role but he completely controlled the middle of the park with his reading of the game.

    Ilkay Gundogan (8/10):

    With Bournemouth lined up on the edge of their box for long periods, he played as a second striker at times, getting the crucial opener and making dynamic runs.

    Kevin De Bruyne (9/10):

    Incredible quality coupled with a fantastic attitude shows why he remains one of the most impressive performers in world football.

  • Erling Haaland

    Attack

    Riyad Mahrez (8/10):

    The only change from the victory at West Ham and the winger looked like he had a point to prove as he terrorised Jack Stacey for 90 minutes.

    Erling Haaland (6/10):

    Helped break the deadlock by holding off two Bournemouth defenders to tee up Gundogan, but couldn't find a goal for himself.

    Phil Foden (7/10):

    Should have squared an early chance to Haaland for a simple tap-in but ran non-stop to make up for it and claimed a goal.

  • Pep Guardiola

    Subs & Manager

    Jack Grealish (5/10):

    Was the only player left out from the victory at West Ham and helped maintain City's dominance when he came on at half-time but without making a key contribution.

    John Stones (6/10):

    His first minutes in the first team since last season and was afforded an easy return against a beaten team.

    Bernardo Silva (5/10):

    Added even more energy to the midfield for the last 25 minutes.

    Julian Alvarez (5/10):

    Dropped deeper than Haaland to offer a different option.

    Rico Lewis (6/10):

    A solid debut for the 17-year-old full-back.

    Pep Guardiola (9/10):

    Teams continue to come to the Etihad to defend and the City boss continues to find ways to take them apart. This was another ruthless masterclass from the Catalan.