Manchester City produced a sensational performance to comprehensively beat Barcelona 3-1 at the Etihad Stadium on Tuesday.
Lionel Messi had given Luis Enrique’s side the lead midway through the first half, but Ilkay Gundogan’s easy finish from Raheem Sterling’s good work levelled matters up six minutes before the break.
In the second half though, Pep Guardiola’s side took their performance up another level.
Firstly, Kevin De Bruyne scored a magnificent free-kick to give City the lead, before Gundogan’s second 16 minutes from time secured their best win in European competition.
Although there were several impressive performances from the men in blue, one player, who struggled in the early stages of his Manchester City career, has come in for particular praise.
Sterling made a big-money move to the Etihad last year, but was unable to replicate the form we saw at Liverpool for the Manchester side under Manuel Pellegrini.
However, he looks to be reborn under Guardiola and, although he was harshly booked for diving in the first half, the England international produced a performance full of pace and trickery, worthy of the standing ovation he received when substituted 20 minutes from the end.
Unsurprisingly, many on Twitter were delighted to see Sterling produce a performance we all know he is capable of against a top side…
Raheem Sterling had the game of his life tonight. A COMING OF AGE. #MCFC
— Lordy (@lordy159) November 1, 2016
Great performance @sterling7
Sterling's had a brilliant game, Barca's defence hasn't been able to cope with him
— Mr NBT! (@JoeNBT) November 1, 2016
While numerous supporters gave credit to Guardiola for believing in the winger, and giving him the confidence to do what he does best…
Raheem Sterling is at it this season!!! Pep effect? Always seems to have an abnormal effect on certain individual players! #MCFC
— Jord (@jordloftus) November 1, 2016
What on earth has Guardiola done to Raheem Sterling? He was better than ever seen him tonight. Positive but better decisions too.
— Ian Davis (@Iananities) November 1, 2016
I'm @sterling7 biggest critic but he looks mustard under pep.. What a player he's turning out to be
— Harry (@Harry_Buchanan) November 1, 2016
And some have rightly said that Sterling deserves more credit than he is receiving after an excellent start to the season at the Etihad…
Also, it's now November and Raheem Sterling has been fantastic in nearly every game so far this season. About time he got some credit for it
— John Lace (@johnlace1986) November 1, 2016
Raheem Sterling has been fantastic all season. Even when City have dropped point he's played well. Credit where it's due.
— THFC Review (@THFCreview) November 1, 2016