ENGLISH PREMIER LEAGUE ROUND UP WEEK 4

 In Gary Mabbutt Blog

SOUTHAMPTON 1 V 1 MANCHESTER UNITED

Manchester United are struggling to find and maintain any kind of form as Jannik Vestergaard’s towering header gave 10-man Southampton a point after another moment of magic from Manchester United new boy Daniel James looked to have put them on course for victory at St Mary’s.

James scored his third Premier League goal in four appearances with a fierce, rising right-foot drive after only 10 minutes, and the 21-year-old Wales attacker was the biggest threat for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side.

Saints, however, gained momentum in the second half as a disappointing United side grew increasingly sloppy, and Vestergaard capped a spell of pressure with the equaliser just before the hour.

Che Adams had blazed wide of an open goal and David de Gea had saved superbly from Danny Ings before the giant figure of Vestergaard rose to meet Kevin Danso’s fine cross.

It proved the high point of Danso’s afternoon as he was then sent off for a crude lunge at Scott McTominay when he was already on a yellow card, leaving referee Mike Dean with an easy decision. However, United could not take advantage and despite laying siege to Southampton’s goal in the closing stages, they were kept out as keeper Angus Gunn saved superbly from Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood, while both Jesse Lingaard and Ashley Young were just off target.

It leaves the Old Trafford side with only one win from four league games, the opening-day win against Chelsea being followed by draws here and at Wolves and that home defeat by Crystal Palace.

Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0RyFpoZO4rE

CHELSEA 2 V 2 SHEFFIELD UNITED

Sheffield United battled back from two goals down to snatch a point against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea was 2-0 up by half-time after striker Tammy Abraham struck twice, but Kurt Zouma’s late own goal ensured a draw following Callum Robinson’s strike in the first minute of the second half.

A spill by United keeper Dean Henderson when under pressure from Christian Pulisic gave Abraham the chance for his first and a mistake in the United defence allowed the Chelsea striker the opportunity for his second.

But the Blades pulled one back in the first minute of the second half when Robinson, who had missed from close range in the first half, scored his first since joining the club from Preston in the summer. Then Zouma’s own goal brought despair to the Chelsea fans, leaving them eighth in the table, one place below Sheffield United !!

Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1GRCqzy57hk

CRYSTAL PALACE 1 V 0 ASTON VILLA

This was not a classic game, Palace had looked to be heading for another home blank, despite Villa’s Trezeguet seeing red for a second bookable offence, a late challenge on Wilfried Zaha.

But with time running out, Ghanaian Ayew skipped his way past Tyrone Mings and Grealish before firing low beyond Tom Heaton.

It means Ayew has now scored in consecutive Premier League games, having also struck in the win at Manchester United.

But it was another frustrating day for his Palace teammate Wilfried Zaha, who has now scored just once in his last 17 home league appearances, quite an amazing stat, given Zaha’s qualities.

Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6TlAQUQd4mc

LEICESTER CITY 3 V 1 BOURNEMOUTH

Jamie Vardy scored twice and made the other as an impressive Leicester maintained their unbeaten Premier League start by easing past Bournemouth at King Power Stadium, Brendan Rodgers side have won two and drawn two of their opening four games, showcasing their early ambitions of breaking into the top six at the end of the season with another excellent showing.

Vardy’s opener was simple, yet stunning. He latched on to Ben Chilwell’s punt into the left channel, took a touch before lobbing a perfectly-executed finish over Aaron Ramsdale, his hard work for Youri Tielemans’ goal for 2-1 epitomised his display, rolling the ball across the six-yard box for the Belgium international to tuck home from a yard out.

Bournemouth was lacklustre at best with Callum Wilson equalising for 1-1 with their only real chance of note.

This win takes Leicester to the third position, while Bournemouth drops to 15th.

Click here for the goals and Vardy’s quality lob – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wIGCil7b4OE

MANCHESTER CITY 4 V 0 BRIGHTON

Sergio Aguero hit two goals against Brighton, continuing his record of scoring in all four of his team’s Premier League games this season.

Aguero, who has scored with each of his last seven shots on target in the top flight, also provided the assist for substitute Bernardo Silva to score as the champions eased to victory.

Kevin de Bruyne had opened the scoring from close range with the Premier League’s quickest goal of the season just 68 seconds after kick-off before Aguero finished off a free-flowing move to double the lead.

He made it 3-0 with a sumptuous finish from the edge of the penalty area following half-time, then Silva completed the scoring with his second touch after replacing David Silva.

However, City lost French defender Aymeric Laporte to injury. The former Athletic Bilbao player was carried off on a stretcher after a collision with Adam Webster and was taken to hospital.

Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0rVgiIZP7k4

NEWCASTLE UNITED 1 V 1 WATFORD

Will Hughes early goal helped Watford secure their first Premier League point of the season with a battling draw at Newcastle.

The Hornets stay bottom of the table but a spirited performance at St James’ Park ended a run of three consecutive defeats at the start of the new campaign, In a game of few clear-cut chances, Hughes steered the opening goal into the bottom left corner from 10 yards after just 78 seconds following a deflected Tom Cleverley shot, Newcastle defender Fabian Schar equalised four minutes before the break, guiding a 10 yard left-foot shot past Ben Foster after the ball fell into his path from Isaac Hayden’s knockdown.

The point lifts Steve Bruce’s Newcastle up to 14th in the table going into the international break.

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

WEST HAM UNITED 2 V 0 NORWICH CITY

West Ham’s victory lifted them to fifth while Norwich suffered a third defeat in four league games and have now conceded more goals (10) than anyone else in the Premier League this season, despite going in 1-0 down at the break, Norwich fared well against an organised West Ham side, with Todd Cantwell coming closest to inspiring a quick equaliser.

After Max Aarons put a fine run into the box, beating several West Ham markers in the process, he delivered a chipped ball to Cantwell who headed over the bar from close range. Yarmolenko went on to double West Ham’s advantage as he found the net with a left-footed volley after Norwich failed to clear.

Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hZ2QdjEM9fI

BURNLEY 0 V 3 LIVERPOOL

Burnley, despite being under immense pressure, worked hard to deny Liverpool any early chances, until the 33rd minute when Trent Alexander Arnold’s seemingly intended cross to the far post brushed the back of Chris Wood and sailed over the head of the stranded Nick Pope in goal, another piece of misfortune occurred soon after the restart, when Burnley skipper Ben Mee blundered and gave the ball to Reds forward Firmino with a short pass; he then found Mane who fired low past Pope.

There were few chances after the break, but Liverpool converted the clearest of them when Firmino fired in from the edge of the area after he was teed up by Salah.

Liverpool goes into the international break with as many points and in the same position as the corresponding period last season.

Burnley, who have now won just two of their past 17 matches against Liverpool in all competitions, drop down to 11th in the table.

Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=55TMYTaNxnM

EVERTON 3 V 2 WOLVES

Richarlison opened the scoring for Everton in the fifth minute, converting from 16 yards, following a defensive miscommunication between Conor Coady and Rui Patricio, to spark a flurry of goals in the opening stages.

Romain Saiss pulled Wolves level from close range but Alex Iwobi converted Gylfi Sigurdsson’s cross to restore the Toffees lead before 12 minutes had passed. Wolves thought they had earned a point when Raul Jimenez bravely headed home in the 78th minute, but Richarlison showed his own aerial prowess two minutes later to rise above Willy Boly and give Everton all three points.

Boly capped his side’s disappointing day by being dismissed in the closing seconds after receiving a second booking for a foul on the impressive Richarlison.

With only four Premier League games played, Everton climb to fifth in the table, while Wolves remain 17th and without a league win.

Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g3Wv2gHy2k0

ARSENAL 2 V 2 SPURS

Arsenal staged a stirring comeback to earn a point in a chaotic, thrilling north London derby against Tottenham at Emirates Stadium.

Spurs looked to be in complete control when Christian Eriksen pounced to put them ahead in the 10th minute after Arsenal keeper Bernd Leno pushed out Erik Lamela’s shot.

Leno then saved superbly from Son Heung-min before the South Korean was senselessly hacked down in the area by Arsenal captain Granit Xhaka to allow Harry Kane to score his 10th goal in 11 derby games.

Arsenal started the revival when Alexandre Lacazette pulled one back on the stroke of half-time before they laid siege to Spurs’ goal after the break.

Spurs keeper Hugo Lloris saved superbly from Matteo Guendozi’s low shot and from substitute Dani Ceballos before Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang showed the poacher’s instinct to turn home the equaliser with 19 minutes remaining.

Kane struck the inside of the post and Sokratis had a goal ruled out for offside, Spurs also had strong penalty claims rejected when the pair clashed late on, but neither side could make the decisive breakthrough and this entertaining encounter ended with honours even.

The result lifts Arsenal to fifth in the Premier League with seven points from four games, while Tottenham head into September’s international break four places behind their rivals in ninth on five points.

Click here for the thrilling goals from the derby game – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s7vQu53z89M

In my predictions, I got six correct results, slightly better form than last week 🙂

Please see following my predictions for week 5

Liverpool 3 v 1 Newcastle

Brighton 2 v 1 Burnley

Manchester United 2 v 1 Leicester City

Sheffield United 2 v 1 Southampton

Tottenham 3 v 1 Crystal Palace

Wolves 2 v 1 Chelsea

Norwich 1 v 3 Manchester City

Bournemouth 1 v 2 Everton

Watford 1 v 2 Arsenal

Aston Villa 2 v 1 West Ham United

I had a nice trip out to Monaco last week, to represent Spurs at the Champions League draw.

It was a great evening sharing the red carpet with the likes of Lionel Messi, Christiano Ronaldo and Eric Cantona.

Spurs also got a decent draw in the league stages of the competition.

Have a good week,

Gary

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