Controversy Rules Week Three While United Top The Table
The weekend oversaw the third week of the new Premier League season, the final round of fixtures before the maiden international break of the season.
Manchester United are now the only club with a 100 percent record after they beat Leicester City. Marcus Rashford and Marouane Fellaini each scored late goals to confirm a two-nil win, which follows successive four-nil victories against West Ham United and Swansea City.
The biggest shock of the weekend came at Anfield where Liverpool smashed Arsenal four-nil. The Gunners boss Arsene Wenger was already under pressure following last weekend’s defeat to Stoke City but found his side two-nil down at the break courtesy of goals from Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane. Mohamed Salah and Daniel Sturridge provided further gloss to the scoreline for the Reds in the second half, and the North Londoners’ quest to qualify for next season’s Champions League could already be reliant on their Europa League campaign.
Fellow North Londoners, Tottenham Hotspur, are also having a difficult start to the season. Chris Wood netted his first goal for Burnley in stoppage time at Wembley to deny the Lilywhites their first league victory at their temporary home. Dele Alli had given Spurs the lead but their surprisingly poor form at the national stadium continues.
Chelsea followed last weekend’s two-nil win against Spurs with a victory by the same score against Everton. Gylfi Sigurdsson made his Premier League debut in a Toffees shirt but was unable to prevent his side from falling to their first defeat of the season, as both Cesc Fabregas and Alvaro Morata scored for a Blues side still without the absent Diego Costa. The Spanish international is expected to complete a move to Atletico Madrid but won’t be registered until their transfer embargo expires in January, meaning he could complete a short-term loan deal elsewhere.
Elsewhere, Newcastle United recorded their first victory since promotion thanks to a three-nil win over struggling West Ham United. New Magpies signing Joselu scored his first goal for the Tyneside club, before Ciaran Clark and Aleksandar Mitrovic both scored in the second half. However, Mitrovic was lucky to stay on the pitch when he appeared to elbow Manuel Lanzini but the Serbian has since been charged with violent conduct and will rightfully serve a three match ban.
Meanwhile, there was late drama at Vitality Stadium where Manchester City beat AFC Bournemouth by two goals to one. The Cherries went ahead through Charlie Daniels’ stunning goal, the ball falling kindly for the left back at a tight angle and he fired across goal and into the top corner. Gabriel Jesus then netted his first goal of the season to equalise for Pep Guardiola’s side before half time.
The Citizens grabbed the winner in the seventh minute of second half injury time when Raheem Sterling’s deflected effort found the corner of the net. The ensuing celebrations saw Sterling sprint towards the away fans and he was pushed into the crowd by his team-mates. Referee Mike Dean showed a second yellow card to the England winger in the aftermath of the goal which seems harsh given the fact officials are told to use ‘common sense’ when dealing with goal celebrations.
Swansea City won for the first time this season against a Crystal Palace side finding life difficult under Frank de Boer. Tammy Abraham scored with the Swans’ first shot on target this campaign, before Jordan Ayew took advantage of mistakes by Martin Kelly and Wayne Hennessey to score a second.
Tony Pulis’ West Bromwich Albion earned a point against his former side Stoke City. Jay Rodriguez scored his first goal for the Baggies following his summer move from Southampton, before veteran striker Peter Crouch equalised for the Potters.
Finally, there were two goal-less draws over the weekend. Brighton and Hove Albion earned their first Premier League point thanks to a draw at Watford, who had Miguel Britos sent off for a shocking two-footed challenge on Anthony Knockaert. Meanwhile, Huddersfield Town’s good start to the season continued as they earned a point against Southampton.