London: Manchester City ruined the start of the Unai Emery era at Arsenal as the champions signalled their intent to retain the Premier League title with a stylish 2-0 win on Sunday.
Pep Guardiola's side swept to the title last term with a record 100 points and they were quickly back in the groove at the Emirates Stadium.
Raheem Sterling opened the scoring with a clinical finish early in the first half and Bernardo Silva's thunderous strike capped a City success that served as a resounding warning to their title rivals.
No team has successfully defended the English title since Manchester United in 2008-09.
But on the evidence of this composed display, City have every chance of emulating their rivals' achievement.
Picking up where they left off last term, City had too much class for Arsenal and easily repelled the hosts' few dangerous moments.
City's excellence underlined the size of the task facing new Arsenal boss Emery as the Gunners begin life without Arsene Wenger.
Arsenal were playing a competitive match without Wenger in charge for the first time since September 1996.
Emery was hired to replace Wenger following the Frenchman's exit at the end of a dismal campaign which saw Arsenal labour to a sixth-place finish in the Premier League — 37 points behind City.
The Spaniard will need time to make his mark on a moribund club and, while Arsenal couldn't be faulted for effort against City, there was precious little quality about their play.
Guardiola insists his players are still "starving" for success and there is little doubt City's hunger for silverware remains strong.
The City boss started with Kevin De Bruyne and Leroy Sane on the bench as he recalled Sterling and gave a Premier League debut to Algeria winger Riyad Mahrez, whose move from Leicester was Guardiola's only major close-season signing.
Liverpool live up to title hype
Mohamed Salah opened his account for the new campaign as Liverpool backed up pre-season hype they can challenge champions Manchester City for the Premier League title by sweeping aside West Ham 4-0 at Anfield.
Sadio Mane scored twice and Daniel Sturridge added a late fourth in an impressive display by Jurgen Klopp's men as £65 million ($83 million) goalkeeper Alisson Becker kept a clean sheet on debut.
Liverpool haven't been crowned champions of England since 1989/90 and finished 25 points behind City last season.
But after reaching the Champions League final last season and spending more than anyone else in the Premier League in the off-season, there is palpable belief that near three-decade wait can come to an end in May.
Midfielder Naby Keita and Alisson were the only debutants to start from a reported £170 million summer splurge in the transfer market as Fabinho and Xherdan Shaqiri had to make do with a place on the bench.
However, there was little tinkering for Klopp to do up front after Salah, Mane and Roberto Firmino combined for 91 goals last season, and they again provided the firepower to outclass a sorry West Ham despite their own near ?100 million outlay on nine new players.
Salah and Mane's pain at international level was Liverpool's gain as early exits at the World Cup with Egypt and Senegal meant they could join the club's pre-season tour of the United States, unlike a host of Premier League stars who returned to training just last week after their exertions in Russia.