It looked as though Newcastle's wait for a league win over City would stretch to 23 matches when Sergio Aguero gave the visitors the lead after only 24 seconds.
Find out how all of the action unfolded courtesy of Sports Mole's minute-by-minute updates below.
The visitors have the chance to pile the pressure on Liverpool in the title race this evening, while Newcastle are embroiled in a relegation battle, so this contest will have a big impact at either of the table.
There is plenty to look at before kickoff, so let's waste no time in checking on the team news...
SUBS: Woodman, Manquillo, Clark, Fernandez, Kenedy, Roberts, Murphy
SUBS: Muric, Gundogan, Bernardo, Mahrez, Otamendi, Jesus, Foden
Well, the headline news for City is that Sergio Aguero returns to the starting lineup after coming off the bench to score in the FA Cup at the weekend, and he will be bidding to continue his remarkable record against Newcastle this evening.
Indeed, the Argentine has netted 14 goals in 12 league games against the Magpies, which is more than any player has scored against an opponent for a single club in the competition's history.
Sterling's current tally of 99 goals involvements consists of 59 scored himself and a further 40 he has created for teammates in 212 such appearances.
Interestingly, there is once again no Benjamin Mendy in the squad, having suffered some injury backlash from his recent return to action against Burton Albion last week.
Walker scored the winner in the reverse fixture incidentally, while Laporte returns to the side after sitting out the FA Cup win over Burnley at the weekend.
Joselu had led the line initially against the Hornets, although he suffered a sprained ankle in that match and is expected to miss a few weeks through injury as a result.
It was Schar who proved to be Newcastle's deadliest attacker in their last league game, scoring twice including a fine solo effort for the first, but he is far more likely to be tested defensively by this Man City attack.
Those issues limit Benitez's options to a certain extent, meaning that he names the same starting XI today as he did in their last league outing against Cardiff.
Woodman, Manquillo, Fernandez, Clark, Murphy, Kenedy and Joselu are among the players to drop out of the team, although the injured Joselu is the only one not on the bench.
In doing so, owner Mike Ashley may hope to have also convinced Benitez to stay amid growing reports that the Spaniard may leave his post at the end of the campaign.
Ashley has been looking to sell the club for a while now, but he will be as aware as anyone that relegation would see the value of it plummet, and that remains a very real danger at the moment.
Victory could lift Newcastle as high as 14th, although there will not be too many supporters holding out much hope considering the contrasting records between these two sides, not to mention their dreadful past record against City.
Man City are the highest scorers in the league and incredibly have netted 28 games in their last six matches across all competitions. To put that into context, Newcastle have scored only 25 in their 27 outings across all competitions throughout the whole campaign.
That result ended a five-game winless run in the top flight, and they are now looking for back-to-back triumphs for the first time since November 26.
Worryingly, Newcastle have lost all eight of their league games this season against teams currently in the top six, although only two of those have been by more than a two-goal margin.
However, there is some cause for optimism tonight as the Magpies have won four of their last six home league games against teams starting the day in the top two, while Benitez has only lost one of his nine home league games against Man City.
City begin the day four points off leaders Liverpool, but in recent weeks they have had to play after the Reds, whereas this time around they have the chance to pile the pressure on Jurgen Klopp's side by cutting their lead down to one.
City could therefore close to within one point of Liverpool on a more permanent basis in the near future, and while the Reds would still have a game in hand, it could nonetheless give the champions a psychological boost to be that little bit closer.
City have won each of their last eight matches across all competitions, scoring 33 goals and conceding just twice in that time - including six successive clean sheets.
Indeed, not only are they the Premier League's leading scorers, but they have also found the back of the net more times than any other team in Europe's top five leagues.
The result kept Man City's hopes of the quadruple alive too, having hammered Burton Albion 10-0 over two legs to confirm their place in the EFL Cup final last week.
Indeed, the Spaniard has the chance to achieve another record tonight as he takes charge of his 100th Premier League game - should Man City win then Guardiola would surpass Jose Mourinho's record of 73 wins from his opening century of games in the division.
It is he highest such 100% defeat record in the league this season, and worryingly for them Man City have scored the opening goal of a game on a league-high 20 occasions this term.
I cannot see past a Man City win in this match, with Guardiola's side right back at their best at the moment and Newcastle struggling for results at home this season. It could be quite comfortable, too.
SPORTS MOLE SAYS: Newcastle 0-3 Man City
It is the Magpies' longest winless run and Man City's longest unbeaten streak against a particular top-flight opponent, and Newcastle have taken only three points from the 66 on offer in that time.
You have to go back to September 2005 for Newcastle's last league win over Man City, when Michael Owen scored the only goal of the game here at St James' Park.
The reverse fixture in September saw Walker score a 52nd-minute winner in a 2-1 triumph, while Man City's last visit here was also decided by the odd goal, scored by Sterling in December 2017.
NEWCASTLE STARTING XI: Dubravka; Yedlin, Schar, Lascelles, Lejeune, Ritchie; Perez, Hayden, Longstaff, Atsu; Rondon
MAN CITY STARTING XI: Ederson; Walker, Stones, Laporte, Danilo; De Bruyne, Fernandinho, Silva; Sterling, Aguero, Sane
Sterling advances down the right and floats a cross/shot towards the far post. Silva slips but bravely manages to get a stooping header onto the ball under pressure from Dubravka, knocking it inside for Aguero to apply an easy finish.
24 - Sergio Aguero's goal after 24 seconds was the fastest Manchester City have scored in a Premier League game since Jesus Navas scored after 13 seconds against Tottenham Hotspur in November 2013. Rapid. pic.twitter.com/bbMqk4cwAW— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) January 29, 2019
Man City have been the better team without being at their brilliant best, but as things stand they are all set to move to within one point of Liverpool at the top of the table.
The identities of both the team and player who scored were no surprise too, with Aguero making it 15 goals in just 13 Premier League appearances against Newcastle with a close-range finish after good work from David Silva.
Aguero put the ball in from De Bruyne's free kick, but the midfielder took his kick too early for the referee's liking and was shown a yellow card for his efforts.
Ayoze Perez dragged one presentable chance wide of the far post while Atsu has also see a strike deflected over the top, but so far they have been missing that crucial piece of quality going forward.
The result only looked to be going one way after Sergio Aguero scored the quickest goal of the campaign so far, but Salomon Rondon levelled things up against the run of play before Matt Ritchie drilled home the winner from the penalty spot.
Newcastle move five points clear of danger, while Man City remain four points adrift of Liverpool having now played a game more.
Thank you very much for joining Sports Mole for tonight's contest as Newcastle stun the champions to leave a huge dent in their title hopes, boosting their own chances of survival in the process. I will leave you with our match report, and be sure to stick around for reaction too.
From me, though, it is goodbye for now!