Premier League Week 1 - What did we learn?
Football: An interesting start to the new Premier League season.
So what did we learn from the opening weekend of the Premier League? A few major talking points....
Manchester United : It looks as if their Summer transfer business will pay dividends. The inexplicable decision to let Matic go to to a major title rival might come back to haunt Michael Emenalo. He looked at home in the Utd midfield and will let Pogba get further forward and do some real damage this season. That showed in their 4-0 demolition of West Ham. Lukaku will surely score a boat-load of goals this year based on his performance also. They played with a bit of a swagger, something that has been missing in recent seasons, Utd fans happy for a change.
Spurs : Despite the media outcry over a lack of signings, it looks to be a case of 'if it ain't broke, don't fix it' for Pochettino. An assured win, albeit helped by Jonjo Shelvey, showed that Spurs are going to be very hard to beat, assuming their Wembley jitters don't get to them too much. In Kyle Walker-Peters it looks as if they may have found an able backup to Kieran Trippier, as his man of the match performance highlighted.
Chelsea : The clouds appear to be gathering over Stanford Bridge. They have a tough series of games ahead and no one saw that shock defeat at home to Burnley coming. The continuing drama surrounding Diego Costa needs to be nipped in the bud. He seems to have a rather short memory in terms of being 'treated like a criminal'.... it wasn't that long ago that he was angling for a move away mid-season. Not sure Conte has ever quite forgiven him for that. They now have 2 suspensions to go along with a few injuries, how they handle the rest of this month will be crucial to the rest of their season. Having said all that, Moses will bring balance back and Morata looked class... Not all doom and gloom but a strange vibe considering they are reigning champions. Maybe this has something to do with it?
Arsenal : A good win at home in the end, but defensive frailties remain. Kolasinac and Lacazette looked right at home however, which will encourage Wenger. Less so the continuing speculation regarding Alexis Sanchez, who you can't believe is really going to be that chuffed playing in the Europa League when there are plenty of high paying, and high performing suitors floating around.
Liverpool : Hard to tell from their 3-3 draw with Watford whether they are going to improve or stay at a similar level to last season. Coutinho looks like he will go, having been left out of their Champions League qualifying squad for their match against Hoffenheim. Probably a case of watch this space for now.
Manchester City : A solid away win at Brighton won't tell us a huge amount but its clear they are going to be right up there. Some £200m spent so far and maybe Sanchez still to come? The fact that they kept a clean sheet, Aguero was on target and the full backs seemed to fit in well will please Guardiola. When the entire squad is fit and firing they should be able to deal with the demands of all competitions and stay competitive in all of them.
Huddersfield : A quite amazing start from them; Wagner likes the pressing game and it appears his players are fit enough to do it. Crystal Palace looked like a team wrestling with a lot of new ideas, which no doubt Frank de Boer will have. The previous incumbent of the job had them set up a certain way, and no doubt it will take time for De Boer to undo that work, and really begin his own.
Highlights for next weekend include Spurs versus a depleted Chelsea at Wembley and Man City hosting a good looking Everton outfit, who may well have added Gylfi Sigurdsson by the time they play on the evening of Monday 21st.