The Premier League is back with new faces to excite some supporters but it’s
the same-old results in a different season for others.
THE DUST has settled on the opening weekend of the Premier League and
emerging from the cloud is Jurgen’s Klopp’s grin and Pep Guardiola looking even
more like the town’s sheriff.
Manchester City’s dominance is dull so the other big clubs need to step up to the
plate this season and it seems Liverpool haven’t just approached the plate but have
brought some super sharp cutlery with them.
The last two times Chelsea have been slated before a ball has been kicked they’ve
gone and won the thing, while you can never write off a team packed with hundreds
of millions worth of talent like Manchester United even if their manager is a fun
And then there is Arsenal. New boss Unai Emery needed his first game in charge to
be against the champions like a moose needs a hat rack.
The Gunners lost 2-0 at home but Guardiola is in his third season of totally over-
hauling his club with unlimited funds, Emery is just starting his project without having
the same financial muscle.
So I have a message for Arsenal fans. Sometimes it's OK to lose your s*** because
if you keep all your s*** you'll be full of s*** and then you'll explode and there will be s*** everywhere. A s***storm. And nobody wants that.
Give the man a chance, stop moaning and sit back safe in the knowledge that
Tottenham are just entering the ‘what do you mean a stadium costs £1billion and we
have to pay it so won’t be buying anyone’ era. If anyone knows how it feels to pay for
bricks ‘n mortar rather than tricks ‘n Courtois it is Gooners since moving to the
Emirates in 2006.
Spurs were one of two big six sides not to play that well but crucially pick up all three
points with a narrow 2-1 win at Newcastle thanks to a Dele Alli double– the same
scoreline that Manchester United saw off Leicester.
Both did just enough and both had the opposition to thank – Tottenham for Kenedy’s
abysmal control and miss after being played in by Joselu’s beautiful ball and United
for Daniel Amartey’s brainfart in giving away a needless early penalty.
Paul Pogba stepped up to convert meaning he has scored in 11 Premier League
games and ended on the winning side in all of them – a joint-record he shares with
former Liverpool player Ryan Babel.
And there was a career first goal after 104 games for Southampton and United for a
man who shall be forever called Fluke Shaw after his hilariously bad but fortuitous
first touch and ‘was it a shot or was it a shanked cross’ finish.
In contrast Liverpool looked like a well-oiled machine as they trounced West Ham 4-
0 without getting out of second gear as Sadio Mane (2) and Mo Salah picked up
where they left off last season in the scoring stakes.
The ability to bring on Daniel Sturridge – who scored with his first touch – Xherdan
Shaqiri and Jordan Henderson shows a new depth to the Reds, which will be vital as
they battle for silverware.
Rival fans love cheap digs but Liverpool supporters learned long ago not to open
themselves up to the ‘it’s our year ridicule’ but Klopp’s blend of flamboyant style and
a new steely determination should excite those from the red half of Merseyside.
Naby Keita showed exactly why Klopp was willing to wait a year to land the Guinea
midfielder; James Milner was the perfect example of a player who has had a
summer’s rest; Virgil van Dijk was calmness personified and hell even Sturridge is fit
At the wrong end of the table I have Cardiff, Watford and Huddersfield to go down,
although I have a sneaking suspicion the Hornets might be my ‘Burnley’ from last
season’s whacko predictions, so I’ll have Southampton as my back-up bet!
JAMES ANDERSON made India collectively look so timid they wouldn’t bite a biscuit
as he helped England to a convincing victory.
The 36-year-old took 9-43 in the match — including his 100th Test wicket at Lord’s
— to rout the world’s No 1 team by an innings and 159 runs.
England have a 2-0 series lead going into Saturday’s third Test and will name an
AND finally former England manager Sam Allardyce, who lasted one game
remember, slammed Emery’s tactics of trying to play out from the back against City.
Fair enough the Gunners lost, but Emery is trying to drag his side into the modern
world not employ the ‘lump it up to the big guy’ ‘get it in the mixer’ style that walking-
cliché Allardyce always favoured.
And it’s not just that – being called ‘stupid’ by Big Sam is akin to being called fat and
ugly by Steve Bannon!