(Reuters) - Sergio Aguero bagged a hat-trick as free-scoring Manchester City climbed to the top of the Premier League with an irresistible 6-0 victory over Watford on Saturday.
Neighbours United had won many of the plaudits for their impressive start to the season but at Vicarage Road Pep Guardiola’s side - led by the sublime quartet of Aguero, Gabriel Jesus, David Silva and Kevin de Bruyne - were rampant.
Aguero opened the scoring in the 27th minute, heading home De Bruyne’s superb free kick, and doubled the lead within four minutes when he converted Silva’s teasing cross from close range.
City were in exuberant mood and added a third before the break when the excellent Jesus latched on to Aguero’s cute pass to stroke the ball home.
After Nicolas Otamendi headed in a fourth in the 63rd minute, Aguero completed his treble with a neat finish at the end of a sensational run.
Raheem Sterling added a sixth from the penalty spot after he was brought down by Christian Kabasele late on.
Guardiola initially signalled for Aguero to take the penalty but the Argentine selflessly allowed the England winger to complete a hugely impressive victory.
“It was so good, especially after an away game in the Champions League,” Guardiola said at the end of a week which also yielded 5-0 and 4-0 victories over Liverpool and Feyenoord.
“The way we played as a team, we are so happy,” the Spaniard added.
“I was lucky to manage Barcelona with many outstanding performances but this week has been a lot of goals.
“We have found our game, we can make short passes and we have a lot of energy from our full backs. The people who come from the bench always give us something new. Clean sheets are a consequence of you controlling the game.
“You have to be serious until the end, goal difference could be important but it is Aguero’s decision [to give the penalty to Sterling.]”
City have 13 points from five games - three more than rivals Manchester United who play Everton on Sunday. Watford, in 10th, have eight points after their first defeat of the season.
Reporting By Tom Hayward,; Editing by Clare Fallon and Ed Osmond