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Summary

  1. Champions City have two wins from two games
  2. Substitute Aguero scores with his first touch
  3. Stevan Jovetic scores twice in first half
  4. New Reds signing Balotelli watched from stands

Live Reporting

By Gary Rose

All times stated are UK

Get involved

  1. Man City deal first blow

    It is very early days and this result is unlikely to define Liverpool's season, but they did not lose in the Premier League until the 21 September last year and, with an unbeaten Tottenham up next, they will certainly want to get back to winning sooner rather than later.

    Manchester City, meanwhile, appear ominously strong and looked as though they had another level to step up tonight. Could they be set for a strong defence of the Premier League crown? Time will tell.

    We will be back with live text commentary as usual on Saturday for the weekend's Premier League games so until then, goodbye.

  2. Join the debate at #bbcfootball

    Cam Geddes: Liverpool made to look distinctly average by a good Manchester City side tonight. More concerned about the injuries than the loss.

    Luke: Chelsea don't look so good now after beating two promoted sides with a struggle. City for the league.

  3. Manager reaction

    Man City 3-1 Liverpool

    Manuel Pellegrini

    Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini: "We worked the whole game and played a very good team. We worked without the ball for 95 minutes and with the ball we made enough danger to score three goals.

    "When you play against a strong team you have to concentrate and our concentration and intensity was good. It's so important to get six points from our first two games as it was a very difficult start for us."

    On Stevan Jovetic, Pellegrini adds: "He was very unlucky last season and he had so many injuries. It was very difficult for him to play two or three games in a row. He has been patient and worked very hard to come again. We bought him because he is a very good player, he had a good pre-season and I'm very happy for him - he deserves it."

  4. Manager reaction

    Man City 3-1 Liverpool

    More from Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers about new signing Mario Balotelli: "There is excitement with him coming in. I am certainly looking forward to working with him. He has that self belief and football arrogance on the field. Luis [Suarez] has gone, he was a wonderful talent but now we have to look to the future and hopefully Mario can contribute to what we are doing.

    "Mario knows his flaws and knows his faults but there is no better club for him. He has to fit into what we do here. Time will tell. Of course it was a risk, I won't sit here and say it wasn't. He is a big talent but he has to fit into our culture and hopefully that help him improve as a person and a player."

  5. Manager reaction

    Man City 3-1 Liverpool

    Brendan Rodegrs

    Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers: "Up until they scored we were the better side. We switched off just before half time and we gave away two poor goals really. They worked the ball well for the second one but the third was poor from our point of view. We just need to refocus and look to the weekend now.

    "We still have the core of our squad from last season but of course if you are coming from a different country and culture it will take a little time. I think Alberto Moreno showed flashes of his quality, he is not the finished article but that is something we are working on.

    "It is very early for this squad, as the season goes on we will get better and better."

  6. BreakingMan Utd agree Di Maria fee

    While their Premier League rivals have been busy on the pitch, Manchester United have been busy in the transfer market.

    A British record £59.7m deal has been agreed between Louis van Gaal's side and Real Madrid for Angel Di Maria.

    Real Madrid's Angel Di Maria
  7. Player reaction

    Man City 3-1 Liverpool

    Stevan Jovetic

    Stevan Jovetic, speaking to Sky Sports following his brace for Manchester City: "We played very well. Was this was my best moment in a Manchester City shirt? There haven't been so many beautiful ones until now because of my injuries last season, so yes.

    "I just want to do my best with these players to win another title. It is difficult to hold down a place in this team but it is up to me to do my best on the pitch, then the manager decides."

  8. Post update

    Rayo Vallecano 0-0 Atletico Madrid

    Spanish La Liga

    Defending champions Atletico Madrid have not clicked into gear yet as the second half at neighbours Rayo Vallecano restarts. But we have seen this before from Diego Simeone's side - Atletico regularly struggled to break down opponents last season before grinding out a narrow win.

    However, this new-look Atletico team wasted a couple of half-decent chances in the first half. Former Bayern Munich striker Mario Mandzukic - a reported £18m replacement for new Chelsea man Diego Costa - was the culprit.

    The second half has just kicked off - catch all the action here.

  9. Post update

    Man City 3-1 Liverpool

    Manchester City

    Four shots on target, three goals. It was not a relentless attack on Liverpool's goal but Manchester City took their chances when they got them.

  10. Post update

    Man City 3-1 Liverpool

    Robbie Savage

    BBC Radio 5 live

    "The positives for Liverpool? I thought Sterling made some good runs, Markovic made an impact when he came on and could light up the Premier League and Moreno, apart from the error for the first goal, did well."

  11. Text us on 81111

    From Sheelagh via text: "The really frightening thing is that wasn't even Manchester City's strongest side tonight. They look formidable again this season."

  12. Post update

    Man City 3-1 Liverpool

    BBC Radio 5 live

    Got something you want to get off your chest after that game? Who will make the bigger impact in the Premier League - Mario Balotelli or Angel Di Maria?

    BBC Radio 5 live want your thoughts so get in touch via text 85058 or call 0500909693.

  13. Post update

    Man City 3-1 Liverpool

    Liverpool
  14. Post update

    Man City 3-1 Liverpool

    Robbie Savage

    BBC Radio 5 live

    "I thought Liverpool edged the first half until the mistake by Moreno. It was the same problem for the second goal - Liverpool switched off. City then dominated, Demichelis and Jovetic were outstanding. A good day for City.

    "But Liverpool, despite spending £117m, aren't going to challenge for the title. Even though they are spending, they still haven't got a leader at the back - they need to get one. Overall, City just deserved it."

    Liverpool players look dejected after the final whistle
  15. Text us on 81111

    Saif via text: "Seems like Rodgers hasn't learned from Spurs. Rather then making 2 or 3 world class signings, he has gone off and bought too many inexperienced players, and of course Balotelli."

    Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers and Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini
  16. FULL-TIME

    Man City 3-1 Liverpool

    All over and Manchester City make a big statement of intent with a comfortable dismantling of Liverpool who, despite a strong start, ultimately did not threaten enough and were picked apart too easily in the second half.

    Manchester City goalkeeper Joe Hart greets Liverpool's Steven Gerrard
  17. Post update

    Man City 3-1 Liverpool

    Manchester City are swarming all over Liverpool at the moment and the whistle can't come soon enough for the away side, City have been a different class.

  18. Text us on 81111

    Adam via text: "Balotelli is not the answer for Rodgers. He has sold one liability to Barca and replaced him with a bigger one. At least Suarez was reliable on the pitch. This squad has gone backwards this summer after a great 2014."

  19. Post update

    Man City 3-1 Liverpool

    Alberto Moreno is the next Liverpool player to suffer an injury as he goes over on his ankle, just as five minutes of stoppage time is shown on the board. Can Manchester City take advantage of these Liverpool injuries and get another goal?

  20. Post update

    Man City 3-1 Liverpool

    Liverpool have to finish the game with 10 men as Glen Johnson limps off with an injury, the Reds having used all three substitutes. Martin Skrtel is also down injured but after a pause in play he is up and able to carry on.

  21. Post update

    Man City 3-1 Liverpool

    Robbie Savage

    BBC Radio 5 live

    "Why did Lambert not shoot? He can score goals! He tried to pass it and it all came to nothing."

  22. Post update

    Man City 3-1 Liverpool

    Liverpool are through again and should have a second goal. Rickie Lambert has a chance to shoot but, with only Joe Hart to beat, but opts to play a cross across goal and Vincent Kompany is in the way to slide the ball to safety.

  23. GOAL

    Man City 3-1 Liverpool - Pablo Zabaleta OG

    Hope for Liverpool as Rickie Lambert powers a header from close range at goal that Joe Hart does superbly to keep out, he pushes it against Pablo Zabaleta, though, who can only watch as it bounces off his knee and into the net under the attention of Lambert.

    Manchester City concede
  24. SUBSTITUTION

    Man City 3-0 Liverpool

    Changes for both sides as Rickie Lambert comes on for Daniel Sturridge for Liverpool, while Manchester City replace Stevan Jovetic - who goes off to a standing ovation from the home fans for his two goals - with Fernandinho.

    Sturridge
  25. Post update

    Robbie Savage

    BBC Radio 5 live

    "Demichelis has to keep his place in this City team despite the arrival of Eliaquim Mangala for £32m. He has been brilliant in the first two matches of this season - just as he was in the second half of the last one."

    Demichelis
  26. Post update

    Man City 3-0 Liverpool

    Liverpool have the ball midway inside the Manchester City half but you sense the home side are happy to let them have it. City look in complete control at the moment.

  27. Join the debate at #bbcfootball

    Ash: "People saying this game is lost because no Suarez? He wouldn't have played anyway and poor defending is the reason LFC are down."

    Paul Anthony Collins: "How can you spend £32m on 2 defenders and still be this shocking defensively. Liverpool are awful."

    Richard Morgan: "Liverpool are this season's Spurs - one game winner is worth far more than 7 new OK players bundled together in a short time."

  28. Post update

    Man City 3-0 Liverpool

    BBC Radio 5 live

    BBC Radio 5 live want to hear from you after full-time. Is signing Mario Balotelli a good move for Liverpool and will Angel Di Maria solve Manchester United's problems? Get in touch via text 85058 or call 0500909693.

  29. Text us on 81111

    Lisa via text: "The frightening thing about City is that you look like you have got them under control and they simply flick a switch, crank up the pace and score. Impressive!"

  30. SUBSTITUTION

    Man City 3-0 Liverpool

    Brendan Rodgers makes another change as Joe Allen is replaced by midfielder Emre Can, another summer signing for Liverpool. Just 15 minutes for him to make an impact.

    Liverpool players
  31. Post update

    Rayo Vallecano 0-0 Atletico Madrid

    Spanish La Liga

    So Real Madrid have done exactly what Barcelona did - win their opening La Liga fixture. Now it is the turn of defending champions Atletico Madrid to see if they can follow suit.The new-look Rojiblancos have made the short trip across the Spanish capital to Rayo Vallecano in a game which kicked off a short time ago.

    Atletico, who do not have inspirational boss Diego Simeone on the touchline after he was handed an eight-match ban, have started on the front foot but are yet to find a breakthrough. See if they can by following our match updates.

  32. Post update

    Man City 3-0 Liverpool

    Sergio Aguero had been on the pitch just 23 seconds before making his contribution. What an impact. There is usually little to separate these two sides but not this time, Manchester City are surely out of sight now.

  33. Text us on 81111

    Jenni via text: "Manchester City are slow starters from time-to-time, but once they get into their stride and they're in the mood like this they can blow teams away in a 10-15 minute spell of irresistible fluid, attacking football."

  34. Post update

    Robbie Savage

    BBC Radio 5 live

    "What a substitution! What Aguero needs is a run of games. He had injury problems last season and at the World Cup but if they can keep him fit what a title challenge it will be. Them and Chelsea are the two best teams for me. I know City are the champions but I still think Chelsea are the team to beat with what they have added."

    Sergio Aguero celebrates after scoring
  35. GOAL

    Man City 3-0 Liverpool - Sergio Aguero

    What a way to announce your arrival on the pitch! Seconds after replacing Edin Dzeko, Sergio Aguero times his run perfectly to get on the end of Jesus Navas's great ball and the striker slots home.

    Aguero
  36. SUBSTITUTION

    Man City 2-0 Liverpool

    Sergio Aguero comes on now for Edin Dzeko.

  37. SUBSTITUTION

    Man City 2-0 Liverpool

    Manchester City make their first change as David Silva is replaced by Jesus Navas.

  38. Post update

    Man City 2-0 Liverpool

    Joe Hart sticks out a glove to deny an angled drive by Daniel Sturridge. Liverpool, meanwhile, had brought on new signing Lazar Markovic for Phillipe Coutinho just before Vincent Kompany's fine tackle on Sturridge.

  39. Join the debate at #bbcfootball

    James Brandon: "So pleased for Jovetic. If he can stay injury free this year, he will definitely be pushing the 30 goals barrier."

    Ben Parks: "Moreno has had an absolute shocker tonight. Has Rodgers got the receipt?"

    Ohigho Musa: "Did Rodgers think the departure of Suarez would not affect the team? Looks like seven new players can't replace Suarez."

  40. Post update

    Man City 2-0 Liverpool

    Phil McNulty

    BBC Sport Chief Football Writer at Etihad Stadium

    "Manchester City fans suggesting - rather graphically - that Liverpool will win nothing with Mario Balotelli. He was, of course, a Premier League title and FA Cup winner with Manchester City."

  41. Post update

    Man City 2-0 Liverpool

    Alberto Moreno tears forward for Liverpool once again and into the box, but his pass into the middle is knocked behind by Fernando. Moments later, Vincent Kompany produces a superb tackle on Daniel Sturridge. Liverpool are not giving up on this just yet.

  42. CLOSE!

    Man City 2-0 Liverpool

    Almost a third for Stevan Jovetic as Liverpool fail to clear the ball inside the area and the Manchester City striker skips through but flicks his shot wide of the post.

  43. Post update

    Robbie Savage

    BBC Radio 5 live

    "What a fantastic team goal. They kept the ball for ages. Jovetic flicks it around the corner superbly in the build-up. He has been sensational in pre-season and deserves his place in the team. He is like a new signing for City. You can see City's confidence in the way they are now pressurising Liverpool much higher up the field."

    Steven Gerrard reacts
  44. GOAL

    Man City 2-0 Liverpool - Stevan Jovetic

    A truly beautiful goal, finished and created by Stevan Jovetic as his flick sends Samir Nasri clear on the right. Nasri then cuts the ball back across the area for Jovetic, who had continued his run, and the striker makes no mistake. Great work by Manchester City.

    Jovetic
  45. Post update

    Man City 1-0 Liverpool

    Liverpool attack again as Raheem Sterling pushes the ball beyond Fernando, who sticks out a leg and brings the Liverpool forward down.

    Free-kick to Liverpool 30 yards from goal, left of centre, which Steven Gerrard clips to Jordan Henderson, who breaks away from the wall but his cross is put behind for a corner, which Joe Hart claims.

  46. Post update

    Man City 1-0 Liverpool

    Manchester City then break forward with Edin Dzeko finding himself in acres of space but great recovery by Alberto Moreno as he races in to smash behind for a corner.

  47. DISALLOWED GOAL

    Man City 1-0 Liverpool

    Good, patient build-up in these early stages for Liverpool and they have the ball in the back of the net when Glen Johnson curls a cross into the area for Daniel Sturridge, who fires in but the striker had strayed offside and it does not count.

    Daniel Sturridge shoots to score but the goal was disallowed
  48. KICK-OFF

    Man City 1-0 Liverpool

    Liverpool get the second half under way. Manchester City have not lost a Premier League home match in which they took the lead in five years, can today's visitors do something about that stat?

  49. Post update

    BBC Radio 5 live

    Spain-based journalist Graham Hunter on Angel Di Maria as the Real Madrid winger edges closer towards a move to Manchester United: "United will get someone who will be a willing pupil for Louis van Gaal. I think they have bought very well.

    "It is not about money in Manchester United's case, they have got it. With Di Maria even if you added £20m it is very difficult to buy a player of his quality. I think he will become a rallying point for the players around him. He will never hide. This is an exceptional talent."

    Who do you think will make the bigger impact in the Premier League, Di Maria or Mario Balotelli?

    Let us know via #bbcfootball or text on 81111 (UK only)

  50. Post update

    Man City 1-0 Liverpool

    Steven Gerrard clenches his fist and punches the air while growling encouragement at his team-mates as the Liverpool players wander back out for the second half.

  51. FULL-TIME

    Real Madrid 2-0 Cordoba

    Spanish La Liga

    Three points for Real Madrid - but they were made to work hard for them. Cristiano Ronaldo's last-minute strike - a thunderous low effort from outside the box - eased some tension inside the Bernabeu after newly-promoted Cordoba rallied after the break. Plenty of pride for Cordoba boss Albert Ferrer, but it is the European champions who start their La Liga season with maximum points.

  52. Join the debate at #bbcfootball

    Adam Momoniat: "Bad start for Alberto Moreno. The Premier League is clearly quicker and more intense than he thought."

    Paul Gibbons: "Without Suarez, Liverpool looking a little toothless up front. No pun intended."

    Ryan Trezise: "City undeservedly lead at the break. Moreno's good work in the first 40 minutes undone by himself. LFC still right in this."

  53. Post update

    Man City 1-0 Liverpool

    Robbie Savage

    BBC Radio 5 live

    "Liverpool had looked a real threat, especially via Sterling, yet their final ball was poor. Moreno had looked good going forward but he switched off defensively and was punished. City were never in it until then. It just goes to show you cannot switch off in this league."

    Daniel Sturridge of Liverpool holds off Samir Nasri
  54. Half-time stats

    Man City 1-0 Liverpool

    Match stats

    Well I thought Liverpool had the better of the first half, but the half-time statistics suggest otherwise. Manchester City had more shots and saw more of the ball.

  55. Post update

    Man City 1-0 Liverpool

    Phil McNulty

    BBC Sport Chief Football Writer

    "Neither of Liverpool's new boys Dejan Lovren or Alberto Moreno covered themselves in glory for Stevan Jovetic's goal - and it will be a huge source of frustration to manager Brendan Rodgers as they had been the better side up to that point. City, in contrast, will feel delighted to be ahead despite not being at their best."

    Jovetic
  56. Join the debate at #bbcfootball

    AKarim: New season, new players, same Defensive mistakes! after being so comfortable for most of the half.

    Kerry Peter Parvin: Expected a high scoring match today but i keep forgetting that Liverpool have no Suarez! Hopefully it will liven up in the 2nd!

  57. HALF-TIME

    Man City 1-0 Liverpool

    Yaya Toure scoops a shot high and wide as the half-time whistle is blown. Liverpool players look disappointed. They had plenty of possession and, on the balance of play, shaded the half but that Stevan Jovetic goal has them trailing at the break. Shame for Alberto Moreno, who had shown plenty of promise going forward, but left wanting when needing to defend.

  58. Post update

    Man City 1-0 Liverpool

    Mario Balotelli is evidently keen to beat the queues for a half-time pie and bovril as he wanders up the steps and into the concourse, giving one glance back to the pitch as he does so. Wonder what he thought of that goal? One minute of added time.

  59. Post update

    Robbie Savage

    BBC Radio 5 live

    "A defensive error from Moreno. He was on his heels. He didn't expect the ball. Jovetic nipped in. You don't have time in the Premier League - you might get it in La Liga, but not here! Don't let it bounce, just clear it! It has taken a mistake to let City in. One person switches off and in this league it is costly."

    Jovetic
  60. GOAL

    Man City 1-0 Liverpool - Stevan Jovetic

    Oh dear Liverpool! For 40 minutes they have produced such a disciplined defensive performance but one mistake has cost them. A ball into the box is weakly nodded away by Dejan Lovren, Alberto Moreno is too slow to react to the loose ball and Stevan Jovetic steals in to smash home from close range.

    Jovetic
  61. Text us on 81111

    Adam via text: "What a classy little player Coutinho is. A bargain price as well if memory serves."

  62. Post update

    Man City 0-0 Liverpool

    Liverpool have seven players forward as they push the Manchester City defence back but Raheem Sterling's ball into the area for Philippe Coutinho is too close to Joe Hart and he scoops up the ball.

  63. CLOSE!

    Man City 0-0 Liverpool

    Good chance for Liverpool as Daniel Sturridge's quick feet get the better of Vincent Kompany inside the area, creating an opening for himself which allows him to drive a thunderous effort towards the near post where Joe Hart thumps the ball away.

    Liverpool impressively switch from pushing players forward for attacks and then getting back again to defend, but can they keep that up all game?

  64. Post update

    Real Madrid 1-0 Cordoba

    Spanish La Liga

    Carlo Ancelotti

    Big let off for Real Madrid. Newly-promoted Cordoba, who were outclassed in the first half, have improved considerably after the break and briefly think they have hauled themselves level.

    Substitute Xisco - the striker who had a spectacularly bad spell at Newcastle a few seasons ago - silences the noisy Bernabeu crowd for a few seconds by tapping in a rebound. But he turns to see the linesman's flag rightly raised for offside. Little over 15 minutes to go and you can follow the action here.

  65. YELLOW CARD

    Man City 0-0 Liverpool

    Yaya Toure goes in the referee's book for a foul on Philippe Coutinho and from the free-kick Liverpool attack as Jordan Henderson breaks through the City defence, but his clipped ball back into the danger zone is headed away.

  66. Join the debate at #bbcfootball

    John Pierce: "Coutinho much too easily pushed out of the game when Liverpool aren't dominant on possession, home specialist."

    Andrew Soar: "Yaya is quiet thus far. Has he been denied cake again?"

    Dom Gilchrist: "Moreno looking like a good physical player. Sterling looking confident. Couts is a dynamo. #LFC"

    Man City v Liverpool
  67. Post update

    Man City 0-0 Liverpool

    Liverpool lose the ball midway inside their own half and Yaya Toure capitalises, picking up the ball and powering forward before curling a ball across the grass for Edin Dzeko, but Martin Skrtel is there to cut the pass out.

  68. Post update

    Man City 0-0 Liverpool

    Phil McNulty

    BBC Sport Chief Football Writer at Etihad Stadium

    "Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers will be pretty satisfied with his team's start. Raheem Sterling's pace and trickery has been an early threat while new left-back Alberto Moreno has shown plenty of attacking ambition. Manchester City have not really got going yet."

  69. Post update

    Robbie Savage

    BBC Radio 5 live

    "Neither side have fully got going yet but Liverpool's work rate is forcing Manchester City into mistakes - their three in midfield are getting the better of City's pair. It's going to be hard for City to break this Liverpool team down - and when they break with Sterling, Sturridge and Coutinho they do so with real speed."

    Man City v Liverpool
  70. Post update

    Man City 0-0 Liverpool

    Alberto Moreno again fires in a teasing low cross and Martin Demichelis is taking no chances, swinging out a boot and the ball loops behind for a corner, which comes to nothing.

  71. Join the debate at #bbcfootball

    Kevin: "#Raheem Sterling leaves me short of breath!"

    Colin Reardon: "Both teams looking to go forward every time - unlike #MUFC who went sideways or backwards yesterday!"

  72. Post update

    Man City 0-0 Liverpool

    Good pace from debutant Alberto Moreno as he breaks down the left for Liverpool before delivering a low ball into the box. It is stabbed away and Moreno is fouled as he attempts to bring the high clearance down. The subsequent free-kick is confidently punched away from the heads of lurking City players by Joe Hart.

  73. Post update

    Man City 0-0 Liverpool

    Simon Mignolet makes his first save of the game as he gets behind a swirling effort from City's Yaya Toure moments before Joe Hart palms away Phillipe Coutinho's corner towards the far post. Very open game at the moment, chances for both sides.

  74. Post update

    Action again goes from one end of the pitch to the other as Gael Clichy sends in a deep ball towards the far post where Pablo Zabaleta is left unmarked. Fortunately for Liverpool, the defender's volley sails over. Where was his marker?

  75. Post update

    Man City 0-0 Liverpool

    Poor from Steven Gerrard as he swings a free-kick from the right into the hands of Joe Hart after a foul on Raheem Sterling, whose pace is causing the Manchester City defence a couple of nervy moments.

    Gerrard
  76. Post update

    Robbie Savage

    BBC Radio 5 live

    "That was the kind of run you see from Schurrle for Chelsea. It was an excellent run from Sterling. He is going to cause Manchester City problems tonight - just as he did last season."

  77. Post update

    Man City 0-0 Liverpool

    There has been just one goal between these two sides in the last two encounters and this, so far, is a similarly tight affair. Half-a-chance for Liverpool as Steven Gerrard launches the ball from the half-way line to Raheem Sterling, whose shot on the turn dribbles wide.

  78. Post update

    Real Madrid 1-0 Cordoba

    Spanish La Liga

    Real Madrid needed half an hour to break down stubborn visitors Cordoba but are worthy of their slender lead through Karim Benzema's thumping header. Although Cordoba, who are playing their first Spanish top-flight match since 1972, wasted an golden opportunity to level seconds before the whistle. Striker Mike Havenaar headed past the post after beating a walkabout Iker Casillas to team-mate's Fausto Rossi corner. The visitors might not get better chance after the break.

    Follow the second half from the Bernabeu here.

  79. Post update

    Man City 0-0 Liverpool

    It is Manchester City's turn to break with pace as David Silva drives forward, he tries to feed a pass into the box for Stevan Jovetic, but Martin Skrtel gets across to stab the ball away. Edin Dzeko then pulls a shot wide from just outside the box.

    Jovetic
  80. Post update

    Man City 0-0 Liverpool

    Some good, patient build-up play by Manchester City in these early stages but they are finding themselves stifled in the final third by a well-marshalled Liverpool defence. Liverpool are clearly looking to catch the hosts on the counter and they break quickly through Daniel Sturridge, but his low ball into the area is pounced on by Joe Hart.

    Daniel Sturridge of Liverpool competes with Martin Demichelis
  81. Text us on 81111

    From Mark, Lancashire, via text: "A £16m "huge liability". A step backwards for LFC. Rodgers has certainly lit the "blue touch paper" with this signing!"

  82. Post update

    Robbie Savage

    BBC Radio 5 live

    "Set pieces will be interesting tonight. Skrtel loves to grab the shoulder - it happened a lot when he was defending set-pieces in the games last season. When are referees going to clamp down on this?"

  83. KICK-OFF

    Man City 0-0 Liverpool

    Young Manchester City fans hold a sign

    Manchester City gets things under way with the fans still in fine voice.

  84. Join the debate at #bbcfootball

    A Karim: "Shane Long for £12m is a gamble! Ballotelli for £16m is a bargain. #lfc have nothing to lose. Really excited by this."

    Hannah Stockton: "Balotelli may be volatile and unpredictable but he's a match winner. Plus at £16m he's cheap by modern football standards."

    Rian Hoskins: "Balotelli on form over a season could get 20 goals and can win Liverpool matches. The key is his relationship with Rodgers."

    Liverpool's new signing Mario Balotelli watches his new team
  85. Post update

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Superb atmosphere at the Etihad Stadium as Manchester City fans greet their 2013-14 title-winning players for the first time at home this season.

    Blue and white cards are held up along one side of the stadium but the photographers in attendance are not too fussed about it though, their cameras are pointed at the tunnel and the directors' box as they wait for a sight of Mario Balotelli.

    Etihad Stadium
  86. Post update

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Mario Balotelli is renewing acquaintances with the Manchester City players in the tunnel as they wait to head out, shaking hands with Pablo Zabaleta and a few others before heading off to the directors' box.

    A few familiar faces in there, with England boss Roy Hodgson braving the elements, as well as Burnley boss Sean Dyche. No game against either side on the horizon for the Clarets, so it seems Dyche just fancied popping over for a bit of Monday night football.

  87. Join the debate at #bbcfootball

    With the news that Angel Di Maria seems close to following Mario Balotelli with a move to the Premier League with Manchester United, who do you think will make the bigger impact? Di Maria or Balotelli?

    Let us know via #bbcfootball, text us on 81111 (UK only), or have your say on the BBC Sport Facebook and Google+ pages.

  88. Text us on 81111

    Join the debate at #bbcfootball

    From Jenni, Newtownards, via text: "Liverpool signing Mario Balotelli is a very bold and frankly brave move. He is undoubtedly a great striker on his day, capable of producing some world-class moments. But due to his volatile personality he doesn't produce those moment of brilliance on a consistent enough basis. Brendan Rodgers' man-management skills will certainly be put to the test this season."

  89. Follow the action on the go

    BBC Sport push alerts on mobiles

    Not long until kick off so just to remind you that you can get the goals as they go in from tonight's game and the final result as the referee blows his whistle straight to your mobile device.

    Push alerts within the BBC Sport app mean you can follow your team's games as they happen, wherever you are. The app is freely available from Google Play for Android devices, the App Store for iPhones, and the UK Amazon Kindle Fire Appstore.

  90. 'The team that defends better will win'

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini has been speaking to Sky Sports, discussing his team selection, which sees Sergio Aguero remain on the bench, despite scoring last Sunday against Newcastle.

    "We are working with Sergio in a mix of pre-season and games," says Pellegrini. "Last week he played 10 minutes, today he might play more and in the next game he might play even more. But it is very important for him to have a pre-season and he has just been working for 20 days.

    "Last season Liverpool were near us to win the title, but now it's a new season, a different season, and it's always important to start winning and being at the top of the table. Both teams have very good attacking players and score lots of goals. The team that defends better will win the game."

  91. Angel United's saviour?

    Man Utd

    A big day in the transfer market for Liverpool and it seems Manchester United could be about to follow suit. Real Madrid forward Angel Di Maria is due in Manchester tomorrow morning, possibly even this evening, to finalise his move to Old Trafford.

  92. Post update

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Phil McNulty

    BBC Sport Chief Football Writer at the Etihad Stadium

    "Liverpool give a debut to defender Alberto Moreno but there is a very positive look about the team manager Brendan Rodgers has picked. Lazar Markovic, the £20m summer signing from Benfica is on the bench and Rodgers is excited about the pace and verve he believes he will bring to Liverpool's attack.

    "Life after Luis Suarez has seen Liverpool bring in nine new signings and this meeting with the Premier League champions will provide a serious test of the transition."

  93. Post update

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Manchester City

    Gloomy, overcast and raining at the Etihad Stadium as the players head out for pre-match warm up. Those long, hot summer nights seem like a long time ago.

    Still, as long as there is plenty of action on the pitch, those fans who have braved the conditions won't care, and these games rarely lack in the entertainment stakes.

    A programme seller shows off the matchday edition
  94. 'He is a very bright boy'

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    More from Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers.

    On Mario Balotelli, Rodgers says: "He is a very bright boy and he knows this is his last chance. He's a really good guy and I'm excited to work with him. Mario is someone we can improve both as a footballer and as a person.

    "We're going to show him what we demand from our front players. He is super quick, strong and powerful, but he can improve his transition moment from losing the ball to getting it back."

    On Manchester City, Rodgers adds: "We respect the opponent and understand their quality, but for us it's about imposing our game. They're a very good side here, but we're looking to get on the ball and defend strongly."

  95. GOAL

    Real Madrid 1-0 Cordoba - Karim Benzema (30 mins)

    Spanish La Liga

    It has been coming. Real Madrid finally break the deadlock against a defence-minded Cordoba through France striker Karim Benzema. He rises highest inside a packed Cordoba penalty box to powerfully nod in Toni Kroos' corner. That could lead to a hatful for Carlo Ancelotti's side tonight....

  96. Post update

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Robbie Savage

    BBC Radio 5 live

    "I think Martin Demichelis proved a lot of people wrong last season. Under the steadying influence of Vincent Kompany he improved and he ended the season as one of City's best players. He - and City - must be wary of Liverpool's pace, they will have to play deeper than normal tonight."

  97. Lawro says

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    How has our man Lawro called this game then?

    "On paper, this game suits the Reds better than their home game against Southampton last week because they are set up to hit teams on the break," he says.

    "But, because this game is so early on in the season, I think it will be a much cagier affair than previous encounters. 1-1."

    Read the full prediction from football expert Mark Lawrenson here.

  98. Post update

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Ian Dennis

    BBC Radio 5 live

    "Only Barcelona have spent more than Liverpool this summer. Brendan Rodgers has spent £117m strengthening a team that finished second - are fans now expecting Liverpool to go on that one stage further and win the league?"

  99. Post update

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Liverpool

    You would expect how well full-backs Gael Clichy and Pablo Zabaleta handle Liverpool's attacking players will be key to determining whether Liverpool can sneak a win tonight.

    Even without Luis Suarez, an attacking three of Raheem Sterling, Daniel Sturridge and Philippe Coutinho is a frightening prospect for any side to have to handle.

  100. Post update

    Robbie Savage

    BBC Radio 5 live

    "I don't think Balotelli is a gamble, it is a no brainer - £16m for player who can score goals in England and for Italy. Can Brendan Rodgers handle him? Irrespective of that it is about Mario. Only he can help himself on the field. Brendan can't go home with him or out with him.

    "This could be his last chance in terms of a big club. I think Brendan will improve him on training ground. They need the bigger squad for the Champions League."

  101. 'This might be Mario's last chance'

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has been speaking about his new striker Mario Balotelli on Sky Sports.

    "I looked at the talent and he is a wonderful talent," says Rodgers. "We potentially will have the English number nine and the Italian number nine. Mario is at a stage in his career where this might be his last chance. He needs to settle down and show maturity, but I have worked with loads of players like that.

    "He has huge potential but he needs to come here and be consistent and if he can do that then we have one hell of a player.

    "I like to sit down and look in a player's eyes and see their honesty. I spent about three-and-a-half hours with him talking through Liverpool. This is a massive club and a different club. We have strong family values and behaviour is very important here. We believe we can improve his game and consistency in his game."

  102. Post update

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Mario Balotelli is in the house! The new Liverpool striker emerges from his car at the Etihad Stadium and flashes a smile to the gathered fans, who are chanting 'Mario, Mario'. Cracking bit of snood action as well.

    It is raining. Wonder if he missed that while he was sunning himself over in Milan?

    Mario Balotelli
  103. Join the debate at #bbcfootball

    Rian Hoskins: Thought Liverpool would keep it tight with Allen playing. Excited to see Moreno. Has potential to be a world class left back.

    Ethan Robinson: Every Liverpool fans' dream - seeing Demichelis in the starting eleven.

    Anthony Amodeo: Why does BR keep sticking w/ Johnson??? Always out of position and fooling no one as an attacker. Manquillo and Moreno, please!

  104. Eto'o set for Everton

    Everton

    Just seven days until the transfer window closes and the wheels of business keep on turning. Samuel Eto'o without a club since leaving Chelsea in then summer, appears set for a move to Everton, who are close to agreeing a two-year deal for the striker.

    Liverpool are understood to have been interested in the 33-year-old but the completion of their £16m move for Mario Balotelli left the way clear for Everton to hold talks with Eto'o.

    Reports in Italy claim he will undergo a medical on Tuesday before competing the transfer. Talks are ongoing but Everton could sign Eto'o in time for him to be in line for a debut against former boss Jose Mourinho at Goodison Park on Saturday evening.

  105. Post update

    Real Madrid 0-0 Cordoba

    Spanish La Liga

    Real Madrid's bid to win La Liga for the first time since 2011-12 is under way. And they have an early chance to open the scoring against newly-promoted Cordoba, who are bossed by ex-Barcelona and Chelsea right-back Albert Ferrer. Gareth Bale manages to wrestle the ball from Cristiano Ronaldo's grasp, only to spoon his 25-yard free-kick way over the crossbar. Think Ronaldo will be pulling rank at the next set-piece.....

  106. Post update

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Robbie Savage

    BBC Radio 5 live

    "It is very hard to make a call on how that game is going to go but l don't think Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers will take a cautious approach.

    "He believes in his attacking philosophy and he believes in his team, and I think he will go for it.

    "But for all the goals they scored last season, Liverpool's weakness last season was their defence - they conceded at least twice in 16 of their 38 Premier League games and, out of the top eight, only Tottenham (51) shipped more goals in total than the Reds (50)."

    Read more from Robbie Savage in his BBC Sport column.

  107. Post update

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Manchester City XI: Hart, Demichelis, Kompany, Zabaleta, Clichy, Fernando, Nasri, Y Toure, Silva, Jovetic, Dzeko. Subs: Caballero, Sagna, Kolarov, Milner, Fernandinho, Navas, Aguero.

    Liverpool XI: Mignolet, Johnson, Lovren, Skrtel, Moreno, Allen, Gerrard, Coutinho, Henderson, Sterling, Sturridge. Subs: Jones, K Toure, Lambert, Sakho, Manquillo, Can, Markovic.

  108. BREAKING TEAM NEWS

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Sergio Aguero is on the bench for Manchester City while Pablo Zabaleta returns to the side. On-loan midfielder Frank Lampard is not in the squad.

    Defender Alberto Moreno makes his debut for Liverpool.

  109. We go again

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Manchester City v Liverpool

    Seeing their side line up against Manchester City might be a tad painful for those Liverpool fans still hurting from missing out on a first Premier League trophy last season.

    The last time these two sides met in the league, in April, a Philippe Coutinho strike at Anfield gave Liverpool a 3-2 win - their eighth victory in succession - and tipped the title fight in their favour.

    However, four-and-a-half hours of football later, the Reds' title hopes had been shattered. Steven Gerrard's slip set Chelsea on the way to a 2-0 victory, disrupting Liverpool's momentum while Manchester City won their final four games to win the league.

    But a new season brings fresh hope. They go again.

  110. Post update

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Sergio Aguero

    Manchester City players are arriving at the Etihad Stadium, among them Sergio Aguero. Will the striker get his first start of the season today?

    Team news should be with us inside the next 10 minutes.

  111. Team news

    Real Madrid v Cordoba (19:00 BST)

    Spanish La Liga

    Cristiano Ronaldo and Sergio Ramos of Real Madrid

    Cristiano Ronaldo had been struggling with a back injury, but the world player of the year is - as expected - fit to start Real Madrid's opening La Liga fixture.

    Less expected is the news that veteran keeper Iker Casillas is chosen by boss Carlo Ancelotti, with new signing Keylor Navas on the bench. Ancelotti also starts £100m of new talent in the form of Colombia's World Cup top scorer James Rodriguez and the man who made World Cup winners Germany tick, Toni Kroos.

    But there is no place in the squad for Argentina winger Angel Di Maria, who is being courted by Manchester United. Sami Khedira, another player catching the eye of Premier League sides, starts on the bench after Ancelotti confirmed the Germany midfielder will stay at the Bernabeu this season.

    Real Madrid: Casillas, Arbeloa, Pepe, Ramos, Marcelo, Modric, Kroos, Rodriguez, Ronaldo, Benzema, Bale. Subs: Keylor Navas, Varane, Khedira, Xabi Alonso, Carvajal, Isco, Illaramendi.

  112. Post update

    Spanish La Liga

    Diego Simeone

    Atletico Madrid won their first La Liga since 1996 with a dramatic 1-1 draw at title rivals Barcelona on a thrilling final day of last season. But Los Rojiblancos will find it "very difficult" to stop Real Madrid or Barca regaining the Spanish title, claims boss Diego Simeone.

    Over the summer they have sold both striker Diego Costa, who scored 27 league goals last season, and left-back Filipe Luis to Chelsea, while goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois returned to the Premier League club after a two-year loan spell.

    Both Real and Barcelona have spent over £100m on new players this summer, leaving Simeone to admit that Atletico are "in a different league" to their rivals.

    "Over one or two games we all have a chance. Over a full year you need to do things extraordinarily well, at 110% like we did last year," says Simeone, who will not be in the dugout later after receiving a whopping eight-match touchline ban.

  113. On the Euro express

    Spanish La Liga

    Real Madrid's Gareth Bale and Luka Modric

    Let's leave England for a short while. We're going to pop across the Channel, weave through France, cross the Pyrenees and jump on the road leading to Madrid.

    That's because the Spanish capital is hosting two matches tonight as big-spending Real Madrid and defending champions Atletico Madrid both start their La Liga campaigns.

    Hours after Barcelona started their season with an almost-effortless 3-0 home win against Elche, eyes switch to the Bernabeu where Real host newly-promoted Cordoba (19:00 BST). Once the final whistle goes there, it is Atletico's turn. Diego Simeone's men cross Madrid to face Rayo Vallecano (21:00 BST).

    Go here to follow the Real match, before heading to this page to see how Atletico do.

  114. Out of the frying pan into fire?

    Is Mario Balotelli a combustible bad influence, or the ideal anti-hero replacement for Luis Suarez?

    "In Suarez's place comes an international striker with a rich pedigree, a Premier League title, a worldwide profile - but a whole barrel-load of "buts" and baggage. This is Liverpool jumping out of the frying pan into the fire and more besides," writes BBC Sport chief football writer Phil McNulty.

    Read more of McNulty's view on Liverpool's signing of Balotelli here.

  115. Post update

    Phil McNulty

    BBC Sport Chief Football Writer at Etihad Stadium

    Etihad Stadium

    "Etihad Stadium plays host to the two teams who were still in contention for the title on the final day of last season. Manchester City pipped Liverpool and part of the latter's response after selling Luis Suarez has been to sign former City striker Mario Balotelli today.

    "He will be here tonight to watch his new team face his old team - with one hoping to deliver an early psychological blow."

  116. BBC coverage

    BBC Radio 5 live

    You can tune in to all the build-up to tonight's game and all the latest on Mario Balotelli's move to Liverpool from senior football reporter Ian Dennis and Robbie Savage from 19:00 BST on BBC Radio 5 live ahead of commentary from the game in full.

  117. Post update

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Mario Balotelli says the welcome he has received from Liverpool fans has surprised him, given that they were "not nice" to him when he played for Manchester City.

    "I didn't expect [the reaction from fans] because I've always been playing against Liverpool," he said. "Whenever I played against Liverpool, the fans weren't nice with me but that's normal - it's football! Now that I play for Liverpool, I can see the expectation in people. They're very happy and that makes me very happy at the same time."

    Balotelli will wear number 45 for Liverpool. One of the all-time great reasons for picking that number too - because four plus five equals nine, he says.

  118. Join the debate at #bbcfootball

    Al Mamun Russell: #LFC have the magic effect. Just look at Suarez's last season. Another phoenix will be born out of #Balotelli.

    Samir: Balotelli is definitely no Suarez, but whoever your are and whoever is in your squad already, every team needs a Ballotelli.

    Joshua Edwards: Sad day for LFC fans selling Suarez and getting Balotelli. Sold dumb and got dumber instead.

  119. Post update

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Daniel Sturridge

    While there is understandably plenty of focus on one former Manchester City player in the build-up to this game, it is another former Blue who could prove their tormentor tonight.

    Daniel Sturridge is the leading Premier League scorer in 2014 with 14 goals and he got himself off the mark for this season in Liverpool's 2-1 win against Southampton in their opening game.

    Will he continue to flourish without Luis Suarez alongside him? Only time will tell.

  120. Post update

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Mario Balotelli
  121. Plugging the hole

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    The biggest question mark regarding Liverpool going into this season is whether they can mount as strong a challenge for the title as last season without Luis Suarez.

    Nine players have been brought in over the summer, with the man most likely to be tasked with filling Suarez boots being Mario Balotelli.

    The Italy international, who scored 30 goals in 54 games for AC Milan after joining them from City in 2013, is with the Liverpool squad for tonight's game and will be in the dressing room before kick-off, as well as travelling with the squad afterwards.

  122. Post update

    Aston Villa goalkeeper Shay Given: Good luck Mario Balotelli great to see you back in the premier league . Watch out for some fireworks :-).

  123. "World class" Balotelli

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Mario Balotelli

    Mario Balotelli's antics on and off the pitch are well documented, but Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers is confident he can get the best out of the unpredictable striker.

    "I believe we have the infrastructure, culture and environment to get the best out of him and help him achieve his true potential," he told Liverpool's website. "We are a strong group here, committed to hard work and he will benefit from being around it.

    "He is a world-class talent and someone who, for such a young age, has vast experience of playing at the very highest level. He has scored goals in the Premier League, in Italy, in the Champions League and for his country at international level."

  124. Join the debate at #bbcfootball

    Delighted with the return of Mario Balotelli to the Premier League? Is he the right man to replace Luis Suarez, and can Brendan Rodgers get the best out of him?

    As ever, these live text commentaries are mightily enhanced by your musings, so let us know your thoughts on Liverpool's signing of Balotelli, as well as tonight's game. Will City and Liverpool be challenging for the title once again?

    Tweet us via #bbcfootball, text us on 81111 (UK only) or pop along to our BBC Sport Facebook and Google+ pages to have your say.

  125. Finally Mario makes his move

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Mario Balotelli

    The only way this match could have got any tastier, was if former Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli had been signed by Liverpool in time to face his former side.

    In the last hour, the Italy international completed his return to England's north west, leaving AC Milan for the Reds in a £16m deal.

    Oh Mario. It is good to have you back in the Premier League. Snood and giant glove hat sellers rejoice.

  126. Post update

    Man City v Liverpool (20:00 BST)

    Manchester City versus Liverpool. Premier League champions versus runners-up.

    With City unbeaten in seven home games and Liverpool having not lost an away game all year, there is little doubt this is all set-up to be a real humdinger of a contest.

    It may only be the second game of the season, but if the title battle proves to be anywhere near as close as last season, then three points tonight could well have a big say on matters at the business end of the season.

  127. Big moments, big games

    There was Manchester City's four-goal blitz of fierce rivals and defending champions Manchester United...

    Manchester City

    ....Raheem Sterling's disallowed goal against Manchester City...

    Raheem Sterling

    ...and, of course, Steven Gerrard's slip....

    Steven Gerrard

    Big moments, big games. Tonight, we have the first real heavyweight clash of the 2014-15 campaign.

    Who will deliver the first, maybe even crucial, blow in this season's title fight?