The top-flight class of Manchester City and Sergio Aguero eventually told as Brighton and Hove Albion's Premier League bow ended in a 2-0 defeat.
Chris Hughton's men held firm in the face of near incessant attacking from the pre-season title favourites, but a late strike from Aguero and Lewis Dunk's own-goal sealed victory for City.
Pep Guardiola paired Gabriel Jesus and Aguero in attack, with new arrivals Kyle Walker and Danilo providing support from the flanks in a 3-5-2 system.
City dominated possession and territory, but the extra defender perhaps took something out of their attack and Mat Ryan's stunning save from the Brazilian was City's sole clear-cut opportunity of a goalless first half.
Jesus also saw two goals disallowed as wave after wave of City attacks broke up on Brighton's back line, until Dale Stephens' error opened up space for a merciless counter-attack and City's opening goal and Dunk's unfortunate intervention settled the match as a contest.
Having overseen the first trophyless campaign of his coaching career last term, Guardiola cut a frustrated figure for much of the game, but Chelsea's defeat to Burnley and Liverpool drawing at Watford earlier in the day paint this below-par victory in much kinder light.
The party atmosphere at the Amex Stadium never suffered, though Brighton registered just a single shot in an opening half that saw one of the entertainers of last season's Championship season display a steelier side.
There were 21 players in Brighton's half as early as the third minute and Aguero lashed fresh air from Walker's cut-back early on, before Kevin De Bruyne's set-piece sighter gave Ryan a comfortable first Premier League stop.
De Bruyne's probing almost paid off in the 27th minute when a measured ball over Brighton's defence was bundled in by Jesus, but referee Michael Olivier spotted the Brazilian's hand making the crucial final touch and the goal was ruled out.
City were soon back in their stride, though, and only a razor-sharp Ryan save denied Jesus' planted header before the off-balance Brazil striker thrashed the rebound against the post.
Brighton counter-attacks regularly broke up against City's three-man defence, but the half-time whistle was greeted with loud cheers regardless after 45 minutes of stiff resistance.
Jesus saw another goal chalked off shortly after the restart, with David Silva straying fractionally offside on the end of a stunning Fernandinho pass and Aguero spurned a one-on-one opening under pressure from Dunk as City resumed their dominance of the contest.
Brighton's first spell of concerted pressure followed and Shane Duffy's shot after a corner-kick melee was deflected wide before Ederson made a hash of the following delivery and Davy Propper drilled narrowly off-target.
But the hosts were delivered a lesson in the Premier League's ruthlessness with 20 minutes to go as City finally went ahead.
Stephens lost possession on halfway and City raced through an unset defence with De Bruyne finding Silva, whose instant pass into Aguero allowed the master marksman to take a touch and finish.
Five minutes later, Dunk thundered a header past Ryan in challenging Jesus to put the result to bed, but the centre-back's place on the scoresheet was unjust after a fine display.
7 - Lewis Dunk is the 7th player to score an own goal on their Premier League debut. Slam.— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) August 12, 2017
Key Opta stats:
- Manchester City have won each of their last seven opening day contests in the Premier League, the best current run in the competition.
- Brighton have won just one of their last six opening fixtures to a league season (D1 L4).
- Sergio Aguero has now scored against 30 of the 31 sides he has faced in the Premier League (only failing to score against Bolton Wanderers).
- Since his Premier League debut in August 2010, David Silva has provided 65 assists in the competition, 14 more than any other player (Wayne Rooney next on 51).
- Goalkeeper Mat Ryan attempted more passes than any outfield Brighton player in this match (27).
|Valverde does ´not see any problem´ with Suarez´s sour substitution reaction|
|Hamilton dominates in Austin as title moves into view|
|Ignore the noise, says under-fire Ozil|
|It´s like playing against aliens - Inter´s Spalletti hails Napoli players after draw|
|PSG duo Alves and Lucas to miss Marseille clash|
|CAF Champions League Review: Wydad Casablanca book final berth|
|Saracens survive Ospreys scare, Clermont win marred by Lopez injury|
|Getting there - Murray posts positive update on comeback from injury|
|Napoli 0 Inter 0: Handanovic heroics put an end to Partenopei´s winning streak|
|Barcelona 2 Malaga 0: Controversial win sees hosts extend LaLiga lead|
|Kvyat set for showdown talks with Red Bull boss Marko|
|Weidenfeller to end Dortmund stay at end of season|
|Pellegrino wants patience from Southampton saviour Boufal|
|Sad day for democracy - Guardiola gives latest take on Catalan crisis|
|Heynckes awaiting news on Muller injury|
|It was a penalty - Silva hits back at Burnley boss Dyche|
|Hamburg 0 Bayern Munich 1: Tolisso sends Heynckes´ men joint-top|
|Southampton 1 West Brom 0: Boufal stunner ends Saints´ winless run|
|Appleton still happy in caretaker role after Leicester sink Swansea|
|Guardiola ready to dine out on Aguero record|
|All Blacks squad safe despite Wallabies defeat - Hansen|
|They should do a press conference to explain – Mourinho furious with Manchester United players|
|Bosz bemoans dropped points after Dortmund let two-goal lead slip|
|Montella calls for courage against Genoa|
|Championship Review: Wolves stay top as Terry scores for Villa|
|One of my proudest moments – Wagner revels in Manchester United win|
|Dimitrov sets up Del Potro final as London spot edges closer|
|Damage was done in the first half, admits Hughes|
|Garcia moves into pole position at Valderrama|
|Conte will ´never´ fear the Chelsea sack|
|Herrera questions Manchester United´s ´passion´|
|Benitez impressed by Newcastle´s perseverance after narrow win|
|Hope stands alone as Zimbabwe skittle Windies on day one|
|Monaco 2 Caen 0: Keita opens account as hosts get back on track|
|A bad team deserves punishment – Mourinho blasts Manchester United display|
|Zidane rejects tag of ´world´s best coach´|
|Stoke City 1 Bournemouth 2: Howe´s men pick up first away points|
|Manchester City 3 Burnley 0: Aguero levels record as Guardiola´s men stretch lead|
|Swansea City 1 Leicester City 2: Mahrez shines as Appleton enjoys winning start|
|Newcastle 1 Crystal Palace 0: Merino leaves it late to sink Eagles|
|Huddersfield Town 2 Manchester United 1: Mourinho´s men suffer first defeat as Lindelof error proves|
|Eintracht Frankfurt 2 Borussia Dortmund 2: Bosz´s men stunned by comeback|
|Sri Lanka´s T20 squad depleted amid safety concerns|
|Double delight for Germany as Goerges and Witthoeft lift WTA titles|
|Immobile, Strakosha pen Lazio extensions|
|Beaten Read credits clinical Wallabies|
|Conte hails Chelsea´s ´desire to fight´ for Watford comeback|
|Aguero becomes joint-top scorer in Manchester City history|
|Chelsea hero Batshuayi relieved to end ´difficult moment´ against Watford|
|Verratti admits he had doubts over PSG project|
|Cheika sets sights high after All Blacks win|
|Bartomeu offers assurances over Barcelona´s LaLiga status|
|AC Milan will sell ´top players´ if they miss the Champions League|
|Chelsea 4 Watford 2: Batshuayi, Azpilicueta spare champions´ blushes|
|Darren Fletcher makes 100th consecutive Prermier League appearance|
|Carrasco´s attitude not a problem, says Simeone|
|Allegri happy to win ugly at Udinese|
|Barcelona approve €897million budget following record revenue in 2016-17|
|Lineker´s Benzema criticism embarrassing - Zidane hails Madrid striker as ´the best´|
|Bayern Munich announce record €640m turnover|
|Gasly denied chance of Super Formula title by typhoon|
|Australia claim long-awaited win over All Blacks|
|A-League Review: Brillante completes comeback in thrilling Sydney derby|
|Bakayoko starts for Chelsea against Watford|
|Not many teams can stop us scoring – Smalling hits back after United criticism|
|Halep relishing world number one battle in Singapore|
|Bakayoko: I´m not Chelsea´s new Matic|
|Manchester United fan Werner still dreams of Premier League move|
|Tigers lose Tamim for rest of South Africa tour|
|Manchester City playing like Brazil, says Jesus|