Nabil Fekir put in a stunning display to inspire Lyon to a brilliant 2-1 win over the English champions at the Etihad Stadium.
The French club had to withstand a few City half chances but went into the break 2-0 up.
Fekir’s strike put the visitors in complete control after Maxwell Cornet opened the scoring at the midway point in the first half.
Cornet drove his side ahead after Fabian Delph failed deal with Fekir’s initial cross.
Fekir then found the net brilliantly from 25 yards after Fernandinho uncharacteristically gave the ball away inside his own half.
City were lacklustre for the majority of the match, but did get back into the game when Bernardo Silva gave them a lifeline after being well picked out by substitute Leroy Sané, who had to settle for a place on the bench for the fifth time this season.
City are now the first English team to have lost four UEFA Champions League matches in a row after previously losing both legs of last season’s Quarter-Final to Liverpool as well as being beaten at home by Basel in the second leg of their last-16 tie.
To make things even worse for the Citizens, the other two clubs in Group F, Shakhtar Donetsk and Hoffenheim, drew 2-2 in one of the two early kick offs, meaning that, albeit with five games to play, City sit bottom of the group.
City were without Pep Guardiola on the sidelines as the Spaniard served the one-game ban he picked up in last season’s campaign, and they certainly missed his presence in the dugout. Assistant Mikel Arteta took over duties, but the former Arsenal man was powerless to prevent a sloppy and disappointing performance.
The hosts were clearly lacking dynamism down the wings, which was probably due to Benjamin Mendy being resigned to the substitute bench alongside Sané. In fact, apart from Bernardo Silva’s goal, Anthony Lopes had a relatively quiet evening, only being forced into saves by Gabriel Jesus and City’s top-scorer Sergio Agüero.
And so, City’s quest to replicate their domestic dominance in Europe has got off to the worst possible start; the Premier League champions being a shadow of the side that eclipsed all records to amass 100 points in last season’s campaign.
With a trip to Champions League newcomers TSG Hoffenheim on October 2nd next in line in European competition, Manchester City will know that they are in for another stern test and, if they fail like they did against Ligue 1’s second-best side from last term, they face the very real possibility of a group-stage exit for the first time in their history.