Saturday’s EPL Results


Unfortunately due to terrible scheduling from the Premier League, 5 of the top 6 teams played at the same time last night, which meant I could only watch one of them play. The other member of the top 6 that didn’t play the early afternoon game was Manchester United who I was unable to stay awake for given they started at 4:30am Sydney time.

So my analysis of the games will be merely on extended highlights, as the only game I was able to see in its full was Arsenal Swansea.

So I’ll start with the under fire gunners.

It had been almost 2 weeks since Arsenal suffered the worst most humiliating defeat in their history but many thought the extra week break due to international qualifiers would benefit the North Londoners and help get them back on track. They were somewhat right. Arteta and Mertesacker were handed their debuts in the starting 11 and fitted into the side seamlessly. Mertesacker was extremely safe at the back and provided much needed aerial support for a team that is notoriously poor at defending those situations. Arteta was put in the role Jack Wilshere usually plays, and did it very well. He created a couple of good chances that were not converted and missed a chance himself, but the signs were encouraging and he should only improve. Benayoun played the final 20 minutes and was solid but did nothing worth writing home about.

The only goal of the game came off a very uncharacteristic mistake from Swansea’s Dutch keeper Vorm who made no communication with his defender, attempted to role the ball to him and it deflected into the path of Andrei Arshavin who finished from an incredibly tough angle and handed Arsenal a much needed victory. It will take some pressure off Wenger and his team but they are still a long way off where they want to be and the injuries to Wilshere and Vermaelen will continue to plague the team so it is important others step up in their place.

Meanwhile Manchester City continued it’s goal scoring form by smashing Wigan 3-0 at home. All three goals came from their record signing Sergio Aguero who continues to go from strength to strength. His initiation into the English game has gone so smoothly and he already has 5 goals to his name in just four Premier League appearances. Tevez had the captaincy stripped but was handed his first start. He was far from his best and offered a poor attempt at penalty that was easily saved. David Silva was at his playmaking best once again and Micah Richards continued to make an impact coming off the right flank. City became noticeably better when Samir Nasri checked in off the bench, but such is the situation at the club that players like Dzeko and Nasri may have to come on as substitutes on the odd occasion.

Chelsea were again far from convincing but managed to defeat a dangerous Sunderland side 2-1 at the Stadium of Light. Sunderland were rocked by the midweek loss of Asamoah Gyan to the United Arab Emirates, a move that shocked the fans and the manager, which certainly restricted their goal scoring opportunities. To make that even worse Nicklaus Bendtner was given the task of Sunderland’s primary goal threat, and as you may expect he did very, very little to show anything of the talent Arsenal first saw in him. Daniel Sturridge was given his first start of the season and mad a lasting impression, scoring a freakish back heel goal as Fernando Torres watched form the bench. Chelsea found a lot of space down the left through the brilliant combination play of Juan Mata and Ashley Cole. Mata too has fit in brilliantly since moving from the Spanish League and could be a difference maker for Chelsea this season.

Liverpool suffered a shock defeat to the always spirited Stoke City outfit who are looking to cement their place in the Europa League and become a permanent fixture in Europe’s second tier competition. Carragher gave away a silly penalty as Liverpool managed to waste several golden chances to equalise and win the game and paid the ultimate price. Jordan Henderson had a few open goal chances and managed to find a Stoke City defender every time. The usually accurate Luis Suarez too wasted several chances. Liverpool have been far from convincing and are no shoe ins to take Arsenal’s top 4 position.

Manchester United picked up from where they left off just under 2 weeks ago by putting 5 past a hapless Bolton. Rooney scored his second consecutive hat trick and Chicarito scored his first two goals of the season as the champions wiped Bolton off the park. Phil Jones was hugely impressive once again. In the only negative for United promising youngster Tom Cleverley was ruled out for at least a month with a broken foot. De Gea kept his name out of the headlines for the wrong reasons and collected an easy clean sheet.

In the other games Spurs beat Wolves 2-0 with Adebayor scoring on debut and Everton drew 2-2 in a highly entertaining game against Aston Villa at Goodison.