Football Article

Tottenham Send United Packing, City Held to a Draw

The third round of Premier League fixtures was again played across three days – Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

Saturday

Matters got underway on Saturday lunchtime as Champions Manchester City travelled to newly promoted Wolverhampton Wanderers and emerged with a 1 – 1 draw. It was a pulsating encounter which saw City strike the woodwork twice in quick succession in the first half, with the second opportunity seeing a save by Wolves goalkeeper Rui Patricio that was an early contender for save of the season. Wolves then took the lead 12 minutes into the second half in controversial fashion, when Willy Boly appeared to steer his header into the net with his arm. Aymeric Laporte headed a legitimate equaliser, and Sergio Aguero hit the bar in injury time, but City had to be content with a share of the points in the end.

Arsenal gained their first three points under new manager Unai Emery with a 3 – 1 home victory over West Ham United, but it was hardly a convincing display. It was actually West Ham who took the lead when Marko Arnautuvic drilled home a shot from the edge of the area, but Arsenal equalised soon afterwards when Nacho Monreal was on hand to score after good work on the right. Arsenal took the lead in fortuitous fashion when Issa Diop scored past his own keeper, though it was partly a mistake by him in the build-up that led to the goal, but it was only in injury time that substitute Danny Welbeck put the game beyond doubt.

Bournemouth and Everton drew 2 – 2, in a match which saw both teams reduced to ten men, and the home side battle back from two goals down. First to see red was Everton’s record signing, Richarlison, sent off for an attempted head butt. Despite being shorthanded though Everton took the lead with a fine solo goal, and then doubled their advantage when Michael Keane headed-in. The home side then lost a man of their own when Adam Smith was dismissed for pulling back Walcott, but Joshua King started the comeback with a penalty, and Nathan Ake then scored with a close range finish.

Huddersfield Town and Cardiff City saw out a goalless draw, which saw the game come to life when Huddersfield’s Jonathan Hogg was sent off after an hour of the match. That saw Cardiff take the ascendancy but they were unable to find a way through a packed defence, and both sides had to be content with a point apiece.

Leicester City came from behind to clinch victory 2 – 1 with a stoppage time winner away to Southampton. It was the home side that took the lead when full-back Ryan Bertrand hot a fine left-foot strike from outside the box, only for Demarai Gray to equalise almost immediately. Matters got worse for the home side when Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg picked-up a second yellow card for diving, and the ten men could not hold out, as England defender Harry Maguire scored with a low drive in injury time.

In the evening kick-off Liverpool maintained their 100% record with a narrow 1 – 0 home win against a dogged Brighton, with Mohamed Salah scoring the single goal with a neat side-foot finish just before half-time. The home side dominated possession but, unable to find a second goal, endured a nervy end to claim all three points.

Sunday

Watford made it three wins out of 3 by beating Crystal Palace 2 -1 at Vicarage Road. After a tense first-half , Watford took the lead when Argentine Roberto Pereyra scored his third goal of the season, and then doubled their advantage when Jose Holebas hit an intended cross which was misjudged by Palace keeper Mike Hennessey, and allowed to drift into the net. Wilfried Zaha pulled a goal back eight minutes later, but it was not enough as the Hertfordshire club held on to win.

Fulham recorded their first win back in the Premier League with a 4 -2 home win against Burnley. It was the home side who took the lead when Jean Michael Serri found the top corner with a 25-yard strike only for Burnley to equalise soon afterwards through Jeff Hendrick. Fulham then scored twice in quick succession through striker Aleksandr Mitrovic only for the away side to reduce the deficit before half-time due to James Tarkowski. Mitrovic missed a host of chances to complete his hat-trick in the second period, but Andre Schurle made the points safe with seven minutes to go.

Chelsea beat Newcastle United 2 – 1, to maintain their perfect start to the season, courtesy of a late own goal. Although Chelsea dominated possession, it took them until the 76th minute to take the lead when Eden Hazard converted a penalty. However, Newcastle equalised through substitute Joselu’s header and looked to have stolen a point, until Marcos Alonso’s shot took a deflection off DeAndre Yedlin to secure all three points for the West London side.

Monday

Tottenham Hotspur embarrassed Manchester United in front of their own fans on Monday evening, outclassing them to win 3 – 0. After a goalless first half, which saw Romelu Lukaku waste the best chance for the home team, skewing wide of an empty net from a tight angle, Spurs took the lead just after half-time, when Harry Kane headed home a Kieran Trippier corner. Three minutes later and it was two-nil, as Lucas Moura, running from deep, steered home a Christian Eriksen pass. Moura also got the third, racing away from the United defence to slot his shot past David de Gea. Spurs recorded their third successive win, whilst United, riven by problems on, and off the field, need to quickly turn matters round before the atmosphere at the club turns even sourer.

Rajeev mcallister
Sports Pundit staff writer

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