After the midweek semi-shock of Man City losing to Newcastle and Liverpool drawing with Leicester, this weekend’s Premier League action was pretty dull. And pretty dull makes finding the funny football news a little more difficult than I would like, truth be known.
With leaders Liverpool surely beating West Ham United tonight, Manchester City had a chance on Sunday to get themselves back above Tottenham and put a little bit of pressure on King Kloppo’s men once more.
And, just like against Newcastle, City led Arsenal within a minute of kick-off when the Arsenal side chose not to take any of the opportunities just to clear the ball as far away as possible, instead opting to allow City a chance to set up Sergio Aguero for yet another strike. But, just like at Newcastle, City failed to keep a clean sheet. Laurent Koscielny’s equaliser was a throwback to the George Graham days with a near-post corner flicked on and then bundled in by the Frenchman.
There was no need for City to panic though. I mean, they were playing Arsenal and Arsenal had Mustafi in their backline. There was no way on earth that man was going to stop Aguero scoring again and so it was.
The weekend had got underway with Mauricio Pochettino’s Tottenham leaving it late to beat Newcastle. Heung-min Son was back from the Asian Cup and claimed to be very, very tired. He wasn’t that tired though, as he scored the winning goal; a goal that saw Spurs, momentarily, occupy second place in the Premier League.
It was a disappointing end to a good week for Rafa Benitez; beating Peppy G and finally breaking the club transfer record in signing Miguel Almiron. It’s just a shame he didn’t stick Almiron in goal as even he would have saved Son’s shot.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer continues to work miracles at Manchester United. Not only does he remain unbeaten thanks to Marcus Rashford’s early winner at Leicester City, but he managed to find a club daft enough to give them some money for Maurone Fellaini. Yet another reason to give the baby-faced assassin the job full time.
Maurizio Sarri insisted that he wanted to ‘see his football’ as Chelsea looked to bounce back from their 4-0 shellacking at Bournemouth. Sarri had admitted that Gonzalo Higuain wasn’t quite in optimum shape yet, but he didn’t seem to be too much of a lumbering carthorse against Huddersfield, scoring twice.
Eden Hazard, incredibly, looked like a world-class player once again when allowed to go back and play the role in which he is world-class. Funny that. But, credit where credit is due. Sarri is certain that N’Golo Kante can become the next Andres Iniesta in that midfield position and Kante’s assist for Higuain’s first ever Chelsea goal certainly suggests he is nearer Iniesta than Jordan Henderson in terms of midfield creation now.
Everton were so bad against Wolves that even a black cat invaded the pitch in protest. In fairness to the cat, he showed such a turn of pace and energy that Marco Silva must have been tempted to throw it a shirt and play it at left back instead of Leighton Baines. The cat was on the pitch for minutes and made more intelligent runs than most of the Everton side managed in 90.
Wolves won 3-1 and Silva’s tenure at Goodison Park must be hanging by a thread. What’s the betting he has gone by the time you actually read this?
Time is running out for Claudio Ranieri to save Fulham from relegation. They lost, again. This time Crystal Palace were the victors and it was certainly a day for their Belgian contingent. Nobody expects Christian Benteke to actually score, but he nearly did. And it was Benteke who forced the crazy decision that led to Palace’s penalty. Late in the game, new loan signing Michy Batshuayi came off the bench to set up the second. If Roy Hodgson can find his crowbar and get Benteke, Batshuayi, Wilf Zaha and Andros Townsend in the starting lineup, there aren’t going to be many teams down there with a better front line. Oh, in theory. And football isn’t played in theory.
Burnley rolled the years back to 2008 with a few minutes left against Southampton and started hitting it long to Peter Crouch. Yes, Peter Crouch! The big man is back in the Premier League following his transfer from Stoke and it was he that won the penalty that earned Burnley a point. Peter Crouch!
Bournemouth eased out of the way to let Cardiff City win on what was clearly an emotional day in Wales.
Brighton against Watford was all about Ben Foster which tells you that Brighton were disappointed to get a 0-0 draw and Watford were somewhat relieved.
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