Erling Haaland stole the show at the Etihad as the defending Premier League champions powered to a comfortable victory.
The Norwegian striker bagged a first-half hat-trick - his second in two games - as Pep Guardiola's men picked up their fourth win of the season. Forest, on the other hand, fell to back-to-back defeats, with Cooper questioning his team's first-half performance.
Speaking after the match, the Forest boss told BT Sport: "They are an incredible team and you have to be more than perfect to succeed against them.
"But at the same time I thought we were naive with the goals we gave away in the first half. It made it an even tougher task than it was at the start. "We gave away soft goals. I asked the boys at half-time not to give up and stick together. We didn't give up, we kept going. "It's a massive learning as to how ruthless these teams at the top are. What we've got to do now is draw a line under it quickly, it won't define us."
How many tonight, Erling? pic.twitter.com/4OObnu751k
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) August 31, 2022
Next up for Forest is a home clash with Bournemouth, before facing Leeds and Fulham in a space of four days. The club have already made 18 summer additions during the summer transfer window, though they are expected to get one more deal over the line before the deadline. Wolves centre-back Willy Boly has been linked with the club, and the move is expected to be completed before the window shuts on Thursday.
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