EFL Cup holders Manchester City have effectively confirmed their place in the final of the competition for a second season in a row courtesy of a 9-0 demolition of League One Burton Albion in the first leg of their semi-final this evening.
In what looked like a monumental mismatch from the moment the draw was made, City showed no mercy to their opponents and opened the scoring through Kevin De Bruyne within five minutes.
It took until the 30th minute for the hosts to add to that, but they scored seven times in the space of 40 minutes either side of half time with Gabriel Jesus helping himself to four of those, while Oleksandr Zinchenko, Phil Foden and Kyle Walker joined him on the scoresheet.
Riyad Mahrez then capped off the scoring seven minutes from time as Pep Guardiola equalled his biggest ever win as a manager, although they were unable to satisfy the crowd's demands for double figures in the closing stages.
Burton must now face the prospect of a second match against the champions of England in the return leg later this month, while City remain well on course to retain a trophy for the first time in the club's history.
Man City named a largely second-string side as expected, but their starting XI was still worth £530m compared to £1m for Burton as the gulf between the two sides was laid bare even before kickoff.
It was the visitors who registered the first shot on target after less than 10 seconds, though, with Lucas Akins advancing to within 20 yards of goal straight from the kickoff and drawing a routine stop from Arijanet Muric.
It did not take long for City to gain control of the contest, though, and the first goal already had an air of inevitability about it despite arriving after just five minutes.
David Silva was the creator when he whipped a pinpoint cross into the box for De Bruyne, who nodded past the keeper for a rare headed goal.
Burton fans will have been fearing a rout even at that stage, but they had a golden chance to stun a sparse Etihad crowd with an equaliser just seven minutes later, only for Marcus Harness - a hat-trick hero at the weekend - to fire off target when unmarked inside the area.
That was as good as it got for the League One outfit, although they will have been content with their position approaching the half-hour mark having prevented Man City from adding to their advantage and limited the hosts to off-target shots from Leroy Sane, Ilkay Gundogan and Jesus.
However, just as Burton might have been considering reaching half time with only a one-goal deficit, City took the game away from them with a flurry of three goals in the space of just seven minutes.
Jesus helped himself to the first two of those, opening his account for the evening right on the half-hour mark when he reacted quickest inside the area to nod a rebound home from close range after Sane had been thwarted by Bradley Collins.
The Brazilian's second came just four minutes later when Gundogan and Silva combined to leave him with a simple finish, although he took his time before passing the ball in off the inside of the post.
Burton's plight looked hopeless enough without Lady Luck also being on Man City's side, but their fourth was unintentional as Zinchenko mishit a cross and sent it looping over the keeper and into the top corner - effectively sealing City's place in the final after just 37 minutes of the 180-minute tie.
The visitors, to their credit, continued to throw men forward whenever such rare chances arose, and Muric was forced into another save before half time when Scott Fraser found space to shoot from a tight angle.
Any respite from the Man City attack was only brief, though, and it took a smart reaction save from Collins to prevent a fifth going in before half time when he turned Mahrez's inventive effort over the crossbar.
By that stage Burton were only looking for a consolation, and they once again had the first shooting chance of the half upon the restart when Fraser curled a decent effort narrowly over from the edge of the box.
Any damage limitation hopes were soon blown out of the water as City got back on the goal trail shortly before the hour mark, with Jesus rising highest in the area to plant a header from Mahrez's cross past the keeper, completing his hat-trick in the process.
Foden replaced De Bruyne in the aftermath of that goal, and he was on the scoresheet himself just three minutes after his introduction when he swept home a rebound having seen Jesus denied in a one-on-one with Collins.
Man City were opening up Burton at will and they should have had a seventh just after number six when this time Sane broke down the left channel before cutting the ball back for Silva, who uncharacteristically spooned a sitter over the crossbar with the goal gaping.
The hosts were only made to wait one more minute before goal seven did arrive, though, as Jesus took his personal tally up to four with a clever finish from close range after good work from Mahrez and Sane in the build-up.
Burton were powerless to resist the onslaught while Man City were in no mood to let up either, and Walker was the next to get in on the act with 20 minutes still remaining as he provided a first-time finish to Mahrez's cross.
Double figures seemed inevitable with so long remaining, and City had the chances to inflict such ignominy on their visitors when Silva saw a deflected strike clip the post and Mahrez was denied by a fine last-ditch block from Jake Buxton.
Burton's spirit rarely wavered, but they were simply outclassed by an enormous margin and the ninth goal came with seven minutes remaining as Mahrez poked a messy finish past Collins having initially missed his kick from Bernardo Silva's low delivery.
The relatively few home fans inside the Etihad roared their side on for a 10th and Nicolas Otamendi almost obliged when he rose to meet a corner, only to put his header too close to the keeper.
Burton did at least manage to prevent the scoreboard ticking to double figures, but it was still a chastening night for Nigel Clough's side despite the enormity of the task being apparent long before kickoff.
The 9-0 scoreline is the biggest winning margin in the semi-finals of an English cup competition and also means that City have now scored 16 goals without reply in their last two games.
Worryingly for Burton the two sides will meet again in a fortnight's time for the second leg, which is nothing more than a dead-rubber now following this incredibly one-sided contest.
MAN CITY (4-3-3): Muric; Walker (Danilo 74'), Otamendi, Garcia, Zinchenko; De Bruyne (Foden 58'), Gundogan, Silva; Mahrez, Jesus, Sane (Bernardo 66')
BURTON ALBION STARTING XI: Collins; Brayford, Buxton, Turner, Hutchinson; Harness, Fraser (Sbarra 79'), Wallace, Allen (Fox 66'), Akins; Boyce (Templeton 68')