'There's only one Pellegrini'

David Silva required only six minutes to head City in front and move the cool hand Luke, who is now his manager, into double fist-pumping mode. Hired, in part, as Roberto Mancini's antithesis, Pellegrini was in dreamland by 22 minutes as a slick passage was finished by Sergio Agüero's clever slide-rule strike beyond Tim Krul. While the second-half strikes of Yaya Touré and Samir Nasri were icing on a pretty rich cake, Pellegrini had said before kick-off: "My job now is to win trophies, take the team forward and make you all proud of our achievements. We have to hit the ground running and that starts tonight." On 38 minutes came the first rendition of "There's only one Pellegrini". Expect to hear this a lot.

City prove movers and shakers

A fluid 4-3-3 featuring the influence of the director of football, Txiki Begiristain, from his days at Barcelona was the approach trumpeted by City during the summer before the campaign. In fact whenever Pellegrini's band surged at Newcastle they presented an ever-morphing shape that could be a 4-2-2-2, 4-2-4 and 4-4-2, as well as 4-3-3, with the constants Touré and Fernandinho as the holding midfield pair and Agüero and Edin Dzeko in tandem in attack. The difficulty in pinning down the precise system is one illustration of the Pellegrini ethos. Another can be found in how Manchester City, when without the ball, put an urgent press on Alan Pardew's gang to win it back.

Newcastle affected by Cabaye affair

Before kick-off Pardew said of Arsenal's offer for the midfielder: "We want to focus on what's important for Newcastle and that's to get a result here. On the eve of a game we've had a bid for the player which we don't think is acceptable. The rights and wrongs of the bid, other people can make their opinion. I know what my opinion is." The manager's decision to drop the schemer backfired as they headed into the break losing 2-0 with Steven Taylor ensuring the plot was well and truly lost. As half-time neared, the defender aimed a weak swipe at Agüero that felled the forward and, whatever the argument about the blow's force, there was enough cause for Andre Marriner to show a straight red.

City rearguard take it easy

The Blues' four defeats and three wins in pre-season were less noteworthy than the 12 goals leaked in these seven warm-up outings as, due to the absence of the injured Matija Nastasic, Pellegrini sent out the expected back five of Joe Hart, Pablo Zabaleta, Vincent Kompany, Joleon Lescott and Gaël Clichy. These were the personnel who ended as City's championship-winning defence and their evening proved a useful tune-up for more difficult opponents as they peered at visitors who rarely threatened Hart's goal. These are very early days, of course, but in Kompany, say, there already appears a move up in sharpness and focus from last season's uneven campaign.

City have played the market best

At the close last summer's farrago of Roberto Mancini's panic purchase of four C-listers on deadline day was forgotten as Jesus Navas from Sevilla and Fernandinho from Shakhtar Donetsk offered convincing debuts in wide and central midfield, respectively. With Edin Dzeko keeping the impressive Alvaro 'the Beast of Vallecas' Negredo, also from Sevilla – the third new buy – from the XI and the fourth, Stevan Jovetic from Fiorentina, not in the match-day 18 due to a niggle, Manchester City's squad and prospects appear in rude health. From this heightened competition Pellegrini may also have pushed Dzeko to rediscover the form that moved the club to spend £27m on him.