Before we really get stuck-in to the weekend action, can anyone recall a more cringe-inducing Soccer Saturday debut than that of Troy Deeney?
Firstly, they shouldn’t have current players on there in the first place – in my humble opinion, especially ones that are clearly not ready or trained for the job. It’s one thing watching Paul Merson struggle and be unable to say someone’s name – but Deeney is the current captain of a Premier League side.
It takes a lot for me to start thinking, “bring back Kevin Nolan, even he wasn’t that bad….”
The weekend Premier League action got underway at Anfield where Newcastle’s Jetro Willems made a mockery of recent suggestions from Jurgen Klopp that Andrew Robertson is the best left-back in Europe. Yes, yes, Robbo is very good but can he trick his way inside on to his right then arrow one in top bins? Until I see evidence of that, I remain to be convinced.
The early goal didn’t exactly make Liverpool sit bolt-up-right in bed having been woken suddenly – it was more of a gentle nudge, push, prod to get them to eventually open their eyes and moan that they didn’t want to get up just yet. But, awaken they did and it’s now 14 straight Premier League wins in a row which is pretty impressive for a club who has never won this title.
Bobby Firmino’s assist was the talk of the game and reminds all of us Sunday park players the fine line between looking like a genius and having your manager scream “will you just keep it simple??” when it doesn’t quite come off.
Liverpool lead by five points after five games, the record margin at this early point in a season. I mean, it’s pretty much over – isn’t it?
Not according to Peppy G. I was asking a Norwich supporting mate of mine how one goes about beating City and he said “Farke knows” and I assumed he was as baffled as the rest of us – but now I know he was referring to Norwich boss Daniel Farke who, it turns out, does know how to beat Man City.
It was a very good day for Buendia as he robbed Nicolas Otamendi to create Norwich’s third for Teemu Pukki and, somehow, Norwich held on to stop City beating a promoted side for about the 50th time in a row.
As Pep said, Norwich were better in both boxes – even with Sergio Aguero scoring again meaning he is only the third player in Premier League history to score in the opening five matches for a club. It probably happened before 1992/93 as well but nobody can be bothered to check.
Guardiola was quick to congratulate Liverpool and their fans on lifting the Premier League trophy after a mere five outings and before the kids, back at school, can remember the name of their new teacher.
It’s starting to become clear why John Terry kept banging on about someone called Tammy when he was leaving Chelsea. Naturally, we assumed Tammy was a leggy blonde married to one of his teammates, but it turns out he was referring to the young striker – Abraham netted a hat-trick against Wolves, single-handedly looking to repay the faith put in the kids by Frank Lampard before the clocks go back.
And it’s not just Abraham, oh no. Fikayo Tomori curled one into the top corner from distance in a way that no centre-back should ever be able to do. Mason Mount, excellent again, finally has some competition for the class swot moniker and he might no longer be teacher’s pet after all.
There is the understandable talk about all three being included in England’s next squad in October – but what about Frank? Is he already making it clear that he is an England-manager-in-waiting and will England finally have to choose who is better between him and Steven Gerrard as they cannot both be picked when Southgate calls it a day?
Tottenham gaffer Mauricio Pochettino locked his players in the classroom for an hour during the week and made it clear things needed to improve – and, just like that, they did. Of course, it had nothing to do with the fact that none of them can leave until January now, so they may as well play well enough to be interesting to prospective buyers come the new year, and more to do with the fact that Crystal Palace must have thought they were playing at home given their performance. Four goals scored and none for Harry Kane, which doesn’t happen very often.
Can anyone spot the cunning difference at Old Trafford? Man United put in a performance that almost passed as one from a top-six side in the country, let alone the best club in the world, and there was one key component missing.
That’s right – Paul Pogba was injured meaning United defended as a unit, attacked as a group and scored their penalty. Considering the pre-match chat was about how Leicester had the better squad and manager, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer can feel quite smug today.
It’s fair to say a couple of years away from Watford hasn’t aged Quique Sanchez Florez particularly well. He also chose the wrong jumper for his return. However, one thing Quique will have noticed pretty quickly was that after two years away Arsenal are still completely the same.
The Gunners led 2-0 and were looking as comfortable as they could until they didn’t. It’s good to see David Luiz has righted all wrongs in that backline, eh?
Bournemouth vs Everton on TV definitely felt like one Sky “had to do” rather than actually wanted to but if proved to be moderately entertaining, if only to see Fabian Delph turn a free-kick into his own net – don’t forget, Delph is the signing of the summer in some Evertonian’s minds.
A stunning solo goal winner for Southampton’s Djenepo no doubt put him on Liverpool’s radar for next season and Graham Potter channelled his inner Tony Pulis by naming four centre-backs in Brighton’s 1-1 draw with Burnley.