Manchester United enjoyed their third 4-0 win of the season as they coasted to victory over Everton. Despite the score being 1-0 until the final seven minutes United never looked troubled. Antonio Valencia opened the scoring inside five minutes with a contender for goal of the season. It was then a measure performance until the final minutes when United added three more, including one from Romelu Lukaku against his former club. The only negative of the day from United’s perspective is that they are no longer top of the league, but at this stage of the season points are more important than position. Everton are enduring a poor start to the season with just four points from five games, scoring only twice in the league. They have played four of last seasons top six and will hope moral is not too low when the fixtures turn next week.
Manchester City ran riot at Vicarage Road for the second season in succession and hammered a Watford side who had impressed earlier in the season. It took 27 minutes for Sergio Aguero to open the scoring as his glancing header found the net following a free kick. Aguero then got his second a few minutes later as he tapped in following good work from Gabriel Jesus. The pair then switched roles for City’s third as Jesus scored in the 37th minute, although there was a hint of offside. Aguero completed his hat-trick for City’s fifth and the rout was completed after Raheem Sterling won and converted a penalty. City go top courtesy of goals scored and remain unbeaten. Watford had chances in this game and should have scored. It would not have changed the result but they will be disappointed to see them go begging. Their first defeat of the season sees Watford drop to 11th in the table.
Arsenal earned their first point away at Chelsea in six years with a resilient 0-0 draw at Stamford Bridge. This game saw a large change in the side following the last away game to a top four rival. The side defended better than in the 4-0 defeat at Anfield earlier in the season and showed great improvement since the international break. Arsenal had possibly the best chance to win the game as Aaron Ramsey’s effort hit the post and Lacazette was unable to turn in the rebound. David Luiz was dismissed late in for a high tackle but it was too late in the game for the away side to capitalise. Arsenal fell to 12th in spite of the point won but will look to continue improving in the coming weeks. Chelsea remain third but are now three points behind United and City.
Crystal Palace and Southampton had scored one league goal from open play between them before Saturday’s meeting. The 1-0 scoreline in favour of the away side may suggest a dull game but this was one packed with chances. Despite Palace setting a new Premier League record for not scoring they did everything but score in this game. Southampton took the lead inside 6 minutes as Steven Davis scored in his 200th game for the club. Both Christian Benteke and on-loan Chelsea midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek had the best chances for Palace but the Southampton defence was equal to them. Palace remain bottom and are at serious risk of being pointless after their first eight games, especially given the coming fixtures. Southampton move into the top half.
Newcastle United moves up to 4th following their third straight league win, this time at home to Stoke. The home side took the lead in the 19th minute as Stoke dithered in possession allowing Newcastle an opening for to score. Newcastle should have been much further ahead in this game as they passed up good chances either side of halftime. Joselu could have had a hat-trick against his former side but failed to take any of the opportunities. They were almost made to pay as Stoke equalised through a long-range strike. Newcastle didn’t let their heads drop however and Jamaal Lascelles headed the winner from a late corner. Stoke had chances after but none worthy of a goal and they fall to 13th.
Liverpool were left frustrated at home to Burnley as the sides drew 1-1 at Anfield despite having a number of golden chances. It was the away side who took the lead with their first opportunity after the Liverpool defence was beaten twice in the air, gifting an opening. The home side replied right away through Mo Salah, scoring his fifth of the season. Liverpool then peppered the Burnley goal with shots, most of which were from distance but none were able to find the net. Burnley remain in 7th and are unbeaten away from home so far this season. Liverpool sit just below in 8th and level on points.
Bournemouth got their first win of the season at the fifth time of asking as they beat Brighton 2-1 at home on Friday night. The away side had three golden opportunities to take the lead just after the break and took the lead in the 55th minute. It was shortly after that Jordan Ibe was introduced from the bench for the home side. Ibe was on hand to create both goals to turn the game, setting up the winner for Jermain Defoe. It was Defoe’s first of the season and first for Bournemouth since his loan spell in May 2001. Bournemouth remain in the bottom three but their season is now underway. Brighton are 16th and one of four sides with four points so far this season.
Huddersfield Town let a number of early openings go begging as they drew 1-1 with Leicester. It was a game which the home side will likely feel disappointed to not take all three points as they were the better in the first half. Then, just one minute after the break they took the lead. Huddersfield’s advantage lasted just three minutes, however, as a clumsy challenge in the box lead to a penalty which Jamie Vardy converted. Huddersfield then had a goal ruled out for offside, a decision which looked very tight from the replay. Neither side’s league position changes much following this result, Huddersfield remain 8th while Leicester climb a little to 15th.
Tottenham remain winless in the league at Wembley following their 0-0 draw with Swansea. The Saturday evening stalemate came livened up after halftime. Although there were few clear-cut chances in the first 45, Tottenham were in the ascendancy. Then after half time, they saw a number of excellent chances narrowly miss. Harry Kane saw one effort crash off the bar and another saved well as the game wore on. After a patchy start to the season, Tottenham remain in 5th but are now five points off the pace. This point sees Swansea move to 14th and they remain unbeaten on the road this season.
West Brom welcomed West Ham to the Hawthorns in what was the quietest game of the weekend in terms of chances. Scoring opportunities were few and far between and but for West Ham hitting the bar from near the halfway line there was little to entertain in the 0-0 draw. West Brom drop to 10th but are yet to lose at home this season. The point was enough to move West Ham out of the bottom three as they climb to 17th.
Another dominant display at home and goals coming from a number of sources is something which United fans have not seen in their side for some years. Four clean sheets from five games also is impressive and championships are built on a strong defence. Although no longer top, being in contention for when the games against the top teams come is what is vital.