This was another menacing, hungry and complete team effort from a Manchester City team constantly striving for new standards. This was another indication that Pep Guardiola's team retained their Premier League title in May. If they continue to score with this amazing odds – three per game in the league – they will comfortably surpass the 106 goals of last season.
However, this was never a competition. It's becoming the norm when teams arrive in Etihad with fear, and that's a pity.
So Southampton has to accept part of the blame for this mismatch. The city was excellent, partly because she wanted it so much, but also because the tame Southampton allowed it.
The city players celebrate with Raheem Sterling after his second goal extended their lead to 5-1 against Southampton
Sterling is celebrating Manchester City 4-1 against Southampton after their first afternoon, just before the break
In that sense, it was perhaps the fourth City Gate that hit just before the break and summed things up the most.
First, Sergio Aguero – 150 goals in the Premier League and counting after this game – showed more desire than Cedric Soares to steal the ball on the byline. Then, when Aguero's nimble flaw on Raheem Sterling was abused, Southampton defender and captain Ryan Bertrand had a clear shot.
But Bertrand had inexplicably turned his back on the ball, just as Cedric had when David Silva had beaten in the third goal almost half an hour earlier. It's an inexcusable football sin, but Southampton seemed happy to commit it.
So Sterling got far more comfortable than he ever could have, and Southampton was not embarrassed for the first or last time.
It will be a surprise if Guardiola's team does not defend their title. Liverpool has started impressively and improved. The problem is that City – 25 points ahead of Liverpool last time – has also improved.
PLAYER RATINGS, LEAGUE TABLE AND PLAY ZONE
MANCHESTER CITY: (4-3-3) Ederson 5.5; Walker 6, Stones 6 (Kompany 67 minutes 6), Laporte 6, Mendy 5.5; B Silva 7.5, Fernandinho 7 (Delph 78 min 6), D Silva 7.5 (Foden 71 min 6); Sterling 8.5, Aguero 8, reasonable 7.5.
Subs not used: Muric, Danilo, Mahrez, Jesus.
Gates: Hoedt above 6, Aguero 12, Silva 18, Sterling 45, 67
Manager: Pep Guardiola 8
SOUTHAMPTON: (4-5-1) McCarthy 5.5; Cedric 4,5, Stephens 5, Hoedt 4,5, Bertrand 4,5; Long 5, Ward Prowse 5 (Obafemi 72 minutes 6) Lemina 6, Hojbjerg 6, Redmond 5.5 (Elyounoussi 72 minutes 6); Inch 6 (Armstrong 81 minutes) 6.
Subs not used: Gunn, Yoshida, Vestergaard, Austin.
Gate: Ings (Stift) 29
Manager: Mark Hughes 4.5
Referee: Lee Mason 6.5
MAN OF THE GAME: Raheem Sterling
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Aguero scored in the 12th minute of the match when City got off to an excellent start in the Etihad stadium
Aguero celebrates with his City teammates as Pep Guardiola's team dominate against Southampton
City players celebrate after Sterling travel to the Premier League standings with a 1: 4 strike
The city team is now so deep that it can catch the loss of a player like Kevin de Bruyne. It sounds strange, but they did not miss the Belgian here. Sterling was the best player in the game with Aguero not far behind.
It was all embarrassing for Southampton manager Mark Hughes, and not only because he used to work for City. This kind of defensive representation would annoy any manager.
The goals of the first half of the city were simple, far too easy. The first was created by an astute pass from Silva in Cedric. As Leroy Sane crossed the ball, Wesley Hoedt pushed the ball high into his own net, under pressure from a group of blue shirts that had descended upon him like flies.
There was not too much blame for it. This can happen to the best teams.
However, it quickly became clear that Southampton did not have the appetite or the resources necessary to properly defend it, and if you exude a sense of weakness or vulnerability to City, they tear you apart like pack dogs.
Midfielder David Silva celebrates after scoring, taking the City's lead 18 minutes into the game
Silva, who captained the team, helped City to a comfortable win over Southampton
Silva jumped for joy as City scored another victory to claim the Premier League title
Sterling congratulates teammate Bernardo Silva, who beat City Etihad 4-1 in Southampton
Leroy Sane, who hit the post before, shows great prudence to score City's sixth goal in the closing stages of the game
Sane celebrates with Sterling as the City players enjoy their sweeping victory over Southampton
Sterling went into the penalty area on 12 minutes and, after waiting for challenges that had not come, went to Aguero, who scored from close range.
Then, six minutes later, Cedric turned to Silva's back as a cross came off Sane's head and fell to the Spaniard at the other post. Perhaps the Portuguese defender hoped that Silva would not have the ability to beat a falling ball with such precision. Maybe he did not want a ball on his face.
Anyway, Silva hit the net and with only 18 minutes the game was effectively over.
Some bad goalkeepers from Citys Ederson gave Southampton a penalty for half an hour, which Ings won and converted. The first goal City had conceded in the league since September 1 came out of the blue.
Southampton had a bad start after defender Wesley Hoedt scored an own goal after good work by Leroy Sane
Southampton striker Danny Ings receives a penalty for being fouled by city goalkeeper Ederson
The city was irritated, but not anymore, and at half-time there were four, a dotted line that did not please them a bit.
It was clear that there would be more destinations for City if they wanted them, and they had clearly done so. It's an impressive appetite for this team and you could see it on every touch, every tackle and every sprint on the ball.
Ederson made some decent saves, both of Ings, as Southampton tried to get away with it, but then Sane hit a post with a left footed shot, before Sterling put in a fine team goal 67 minutes into the match, a deep shot from close range To drive posts.
Sterling then rolled a pass at the last minute on Sane's way and with a jerk of the left foot of the German the walkover was completed. Sterling has been involved in 40 Premier League goals since the start of last season, a total of 24 own and 16 assists.
The English player will have afternoons when he has to work harder.
Ings showed impressive modesty as he defeated Ederson from the penalty area as Southampton temporarily reduced the deficit
Aymeric Laporte (center-back) battles Southampton's Longampton striker
City manager Pep Guardiola will be delighted with the impressive performance of his team
Guardiola took the opportunity to win the talented youngster Phil Foden in the second half for City
Southampton coach Mark Hughes watched as his team lost to a heavy loss to City
Southampton defender Hoedt, who scored an own goal, is down after the full-time whistles