Raheem Sterling banged in a hattrick on Saturday as Manchester City hammered West Ham 5-0 in their first Premier League game of the season.
Outside the huge scoreline, VAR also made its mark in the Premier League for the first time in Saturday’s game at the Olympic Stadium in London.
While Sterling had three goals to his name, it was Gabriel Jesus that struck in the first half and Sergio Aguero came off the bench to score a penalty in a thumping 5-0 win for the champions.
However, City were denied another after a goal was disallowed by VAR for the first time in the Premier League when Sterling was ruled offside by millimetres.
Then VAR ruled Aguero’s spot-kick, initially saved by Lukasz Fabianski, should be retaken as the goalkeeper had stepped off his line. The Argentinian did not make the same mistake twice.
City ’s opening goal arrived when Kyle Walker burst down the right and crossed to the near post, where Jesus was lurking between defenders to guide the ball home.
While Pep Guardiola’s men could not increase their tally in the first half, within six minutes of the restart City doubled their lead.
Kevin De Bruyne expertly laid the ball off for Sterling to finish.
City thought they had scored the third when Sterling crossed for Jesus to tap home, but a lengthy VAR intervention eventually saw the goal ruled out by the thickness of Sterling’s shirt.
But Sterling did grab the third off an assist from Riyad Mahrez
Aguero got his season up and running with his late penalty, at the second attempt, before Sterling raced through to complete his treble as last term’s treble winners began the new campaign with a five-star performance.
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