Chelsea, who finished third last season, beat Everton in their Premier League opener.
Sterling, who kept his place alongside Harry Kane in a rejigged attack, settled fans' nerves with an early headed goal, which ultimately proved decisive.
Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp counted on his starting line-up with the aim of securing a victory over the Cityzens to add cherry to the title's cake.
Manchester City defender Danilo has played down the row surrounding team mate Raheem Sterling's gun tattoo.
Raheem Sterling suffered from a racist verbal and physical attackaggression hours before Manchester City's 4-1 victory over Tottenham.
Raheem Sterling was hailed as a "special" player by his Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola.
Manchester City defeated West Ham United FC 3-0 in a friendly match in Icelandic capital Reykjavik in preparation for the new season.