London - Manchester City stormed
to the top of the Premier League as Sergio Aguero's hat-trick inspired a 6-0
demolition of Watford, while Philippe Coutinho's return couldn't lift Liverpool
in a 1-1 draw against Burnley on Saturday.
With previous leaders Manchester United not in action until
Sunday's clash with Everton, City had a chance to move three points clear of
their title rivals.
Aguero ensured they did just that as the Argentine forward
maintained his mastery of Watford at Vicarage Road.
Pep Guardiola's side took the lead in the 27th minute when
Aguero headed in from Kevin de Bruyne's free-kick for his seventh goal in five
games against the Hornets.
Aguero wasn't finished inflicting pain on Marco Silva's men
and he struck again four minutes later, tapping in after Watford goalkeeper
Heurelho Gomes couldn't hold David Silva's cross-shot.
Having notched his fifth goal of the season, Aguero turned
provider in the 38th minute, slipping in Gabriel Jesus for a nonchalant finish.
It was City's 12th goal of a memorable week that also
included a 5-0 thrashing of Liverpool and a 4-0 win at Feyenoord.
Nicolas Otamendi added to that tally when he headed in the
fourth from Silva's cross in the 63rd minute before Aguero completed his 10th
City treble with nine minutes left.
There was still time for Raheem Sterling to win and convert
an 89th-minute penalty to cap City's swaggering display.
At Anfield, with Sadio Mane suspended, Coutinho made his
first Liverpool start since his failed attempt to force a move to Barcelona.
Brazil forward Coutinho missed the first five games of the
season with a back injury before coming on in Wednesday's 2-2 Champions League
draw against Sevilla.
But despite his return, Jurgen Klopp's team were rocked when
Scott Arfield put Burnley in front in the 27th minute.
Liverpool drew level three minutes later through Mohamed
Salah's cool finish from Emre Can's pass, but the Reds couldn't find a winner
with Coutinho substituted in the closing stages.
Roy Hodgson was unable to stop Crystal Palace hitting a
historic low as Steven Davis sealed Southampton's 1-0 win at Selhurst Park.
Former England boss Hodgson was taking charge of Palace for
the first time following his appointment on Tuesday as successor to the sacked
Frank de Boer.
But Hodgson couldn't inspire an immediate upturn in Palace's
fortunes, with Davis's goal condemning the Eagles to a piece of unwanted
Palace sit bottom of the table after becoming the first
English top-tier team to lose their opening five fixtures without scoring a
Jamie Vardy rescued Leicester City as his penalty secured a
1-1 draw at Huddersfield Town.
Laurent Depoitre, on his full Premier League debut, put
Huddersfield ahead in the 47th minute, only for England striker Vardy to equalise
with a spot-kick three minutes later following Chris Lowe's foul on Andy King.
Jamaal Lascelles was Newcastle United's hero again as he
clinched a 2-1 win over Stoke City at St James' Park.
Rafael Benitez's side took the lead when Christian Atsu volleyed
home for his first Premier League goal in the 19th minute.
Xherdan Shaqiri equalised for Stoke with an impressive
strike, curling home after a penetrating run in the 57th minute.
But Newcastle captain Lascelles, who also bagged the winner
at Swansea City last weekend, earned the hosts' third successive victory with a
header from Matt Ritchie's 68th minute corner.
West Bromwich Albion midfielder Gareth Barry equalled the
Premier League appearance record in a 0-0 draw against West Ham at the
Barry, 36, is now level with Ryan Giggs' mark of 632 games,
having made his top-flight debut in 1998.