In Gary Mabbutt Blog



Pep Guardiola’s side came here on the back of convincing victories at Arsenal and at home to Huddersfield Town but was given a severe test by the team who won the Championship last season. In an eventful match, City hit the woodwork twice in the first half, first, through Sergio Aguero, and then when Wolves keeper Rui Patricio brilliantly turned Raheem Sterling’s rising 25-yard drive onto the bar. Wolves striker Raul Jimenez also had a goal ruled out for offside, Wolves took the lead in controversial fashion after 57 minutes when defender Willy Boly’s attempted diving header went in off his hand from Joao Moutinho’s free-kick, City had appeals for a penalty turned away by referee Martin Atkinson after Ruben Neves’ challenge on David Silva, but drew level in the 69th minute when Aymeric Laporte scored his first goal for the club, a towering header from Ilkay Gundogan’s free-kick.

Both sides had opportunities to win it in the closing stages, with City almost snatching three points when Aguero’s free-kick glanced off the bar with virtually the last kick of the game.

Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KaqVu2aB-0Y


Arsenal was unconvincing as they recorded their first win under Unai Emery with a victory over West Ham at Emirates Stadium.

The defensively frail hosts were caught out on the counter attack for the opener, West Ham captain Marko Arnautovic slotting low past Petr Cech after exchanging passes with the impressive Felipe Anderson, Arsenal equalised five minutes later, Nacho Monreal firing into an unguarded net after Bellerin’s cross deflected into his path off Alex Iwobi.

They then took the lead in fortuitous fashion on 70 minutes as Hammers debutant Issa Diop diverted Alexandre Lacazette’s volley across the area into his own net, Hector Bellerin then picked out an unmarked Danny Welbeck in added time and the substitute turned to lift his effort past Lukasz Fabianski to seal the three points.

Click here for the highlights – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nrtjQLSwSg0


In a compelling contest, in which both sides were reduced to 10 men, goals from Theo Walcott and Michael Keane, who was later taken to hospital following a stoppage-time collision with team-mate Idrissa Gueye, had put Everton in the driving seat.

However, the Cherries underlined their reputation as escapologists with Joshua King driving home a penalty and Nathan Ake tapping in an equaliser four minutes later. Walcott had raced clear to deliver the opening goal for Marco Silva’s team with an angled drive, having already seen Richarlison sent off for an attempted headbutt on Adam Smith. Keane then doubled their advantage, heading in from a corner, five minutes after Smith was dismissed for pulling Walcott back as he advanced on goal.

But King’s penalty, awarded for a foul by Leighton Baines on Callum Wilson, kick-started the comeback. Bournemouth maintained their unbeaten start to the campaign when Ake followed up Wilson’s header to prod in from close range.


Two teams who I believe will be relegation-threatened this season played out the bore draw of the week. The Terriers enjoyed Lion’s share of possession and had chances in the first hour, but were forced into a rearguard action to defend a point following Jonathan Hogg’s sending-off for a clash with Harry Arter.

After Hogg had been dismissed for thrusting his forehead toward Arter, his team came under heavy pressure.

Bluebirds captain Sean Morrison headed into the hoardings from six yards before substitute Bobby Reid’s glancing effort drifted narrowly wide as the breakthrough refused to arrive for the visitors, Laurent Depoitre could have stolen all three points at the end for Huddersfield, however, with Sol Bamba doing just enough to deny the Belgian a clear sight of goal at the end of a swift counter-attack. It could be a long season for both sets of supporters.


After an uninspiring first half at St Mary’s, defender Ryan Bertrand gave Saints the lead with a fierce left-footed strike from outside the area. The advantage stood only briefly as Demarai Gray equalised for the visitors, pouncing on a loose ball to fire home from close range.

But in the second minute of time added on, England defender Maguire wrapped his right foot around the ball from 25 yards out to beat goalkeeper Alex McCarthy. Southampton has won only once at home in the Premier League this year, but Hughes said: “The manner of the performance gives me hope for the rest of the season because we definitely deserved to get something out of today’s game.”

The victory was Leicester’s second in succession this season and boss Claude Puel left the south coast having beaten his former club at St Mary’s for the second time in a row.


Manager Jurgen Klopp said he still has “a lot of work to do” after Liverpool’s hard-fought 1-0 victory over Brighton sent them top of the Premier League. Mohamed Salah, who scored 32 league goals last season, scored with a clinical strike midway through the first half at Anfield.

“Nobody doubts we deserved the three points and that’s the important thing,” said Klopp.

Liverpool, the only Premier League side with a 100% record after three games, are two points clear of champions Manchester City, who drew 1-1 with Wolves earlier on Saturday.

Click here for the highlights – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y04Hpfgb83w


Watford maintained their perfect start to the Premier League season, to move behind Liverpool and level with Chelsea at the top of the table on goal difference. Roberto Pereyra scored his third goal in as many games with an exquisite curling effort, before Jose Holebas added a seemingly unintentional second from outside the area in a resurgent second-half display.

Watford had been fortunate to be level at the interval, veteran goalkeeper Ben Foster pulling off two reflex saves to deny Christian Benteke and James McArthur early on. Palace threatened in the opening exchanges despite their talisman Wilfried Zaha being the victim of a fierce tackle from Etienne Capoue, for which the Watford midfielder was fortunate to receive only a booking, Zaha did pull a goal back for the visitors late on, beating his marker to drill the ball through Foster’s legs, but Watford withstood the fightback to claim all three points.

Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3i3tZn9rKDg


Fulham won their first game of the season in convincing style, Aleksandar Mitrovic scored twice for the hosts as they recovered from losing their first two matches to leave their opponents without a league win this season, Jean Michael Seri, signed from Nice in July, gave Jokanovic’s men the perfect start by firing a wonderful 25-yard strike into the top-right corner of Joe Hart’s goal after just four minutes, Burnley drew level in the 10th minute as Jeff Hendrick converted at the second attempt after good work from Aaron Lennon down the right flank, but a cleverly worked corner allowed Mitrovic to head the home side back in front on 36 minutes, as Tom Cairney’s perfectly weighted cross from the edge of the area found the alert Serb.

Seeking another quick response, the Clarets were caught on the break two minutes later, as Mitrovic beat Stephen Ward in the air to glance beyond Hart, though the visitors were able to half their deficit before the break through James Tarkowski, Mitrovic missed numerous chances to complete his hat-trick in a much quieter second half and agonisingly struck the post before Schurrle converted the rebound to add Fulham’s fourth with seven minutes remaining.

Click here for the highlights – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NurSZp-63NU


Eden Hazard, on his first start this season for the Blues, netted from the penalty spot in the 76th minute before substitute Joselu levelled with a brilliant header at St James’ Park.

But, having been resolute in defence for the majority of the game, Newcastle failed to clear their lines and Marcos Alonso’s shot took a deflection off DeAndre Yedlin, to give Chelsea the three points, Chelsea dominated the game with 81% possession and Pedro, Cesar Azpilicueta and Alvaro Morata missed good chances. Antonio Rudiger rattled the crossbar in the 70th minute but Newcastle contained the pressure until Fabian Schar tripped Alonso in the box.

Chelsea’s third win in as many matches moved them level on points with Liverpool and Watford at the top of the table, while Rafael Benitez’s Newcastle has only one point.

Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eE4e97IlnMo


Tottenham maintained their 100% start to the Premier League season and increased the pressure on beleaguered Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho with an emphatic victory at Old Trafford, Mourinho was hoping United would bounce back from an abysmal display in defeat at Brighton, but Spurs ran out easy winners once Harry Kane and Lucas Moura struck twice in the space of two minutes early in the second half, United were left to rue Romelu Lukaku’s missed chance when he rounded Spurs keeper Hugo Lloris from Danny Rose’s backpass, but they ended well beaten to make this their worst start to a league season since 1992-93, Spurs were simply too good for United after the break and the contest was effectively over once Kane directed in a superb header for his first goal at Old Trafford after 50 minutes and Moura swiftly swept home Christian Eriksen’s perfect pass for the second.

The outstanding Moura raced clear to add the third six minutes from time to make it nine points from nine for Spurs. Mourinho was a dejected figure amid a sea of empty red seats at the final whistle, having lost two of his opening three Premier League games for the first time in his career. Counterpart Mauricio Pochettino, in contrast, was able to celebrate his first victory as Spurs manager at Old Trafford after four straight losses without scoring a goal.

Spurs sent out a very clear message to the rest of the Premier League that they are a force to be reckoned with.

Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HguNCVmr7uM

Quite a good week again for my predictions with four correct results and two spot-on correct scores.

Please see following my week 4 predictions:-

Leicester City 1 v 2 Liverpool

Brighton 3 v 1 Fulham

Chelsea 3 v 1 Bournemouth

Crystal Palace 2 v 1 Southampton

Everton 2 v 1 Huddersfield

West Ham United 2 v 1 Wolves

Manchester City 3 v 1 Newcastle

Cardiff 1 v 2 Arsenal

Burnley 1 v 2 Manchester United

Watford 1 v 3 Spurs

Have a good week,


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