Rolling Stone India Pitch: Norwich Stump Man City, Abraham Scores Hat-Trick and More
We also look ahead to this weekend’s clash between Chelsea and league leaders Liverpool
With the international break done and dusted, the Premier League returned this past weekend with plenty of thrills, goals and also upsets.
Matchday five kicked off at Anfield in a game that featured league leaders Liverpool take on Newcastle United. With the Tyneside club still getting used to new manager Steve Bruce, they took an unlikely lead from a smashing strike by Dutchman Jetro Willems. It wasn’t long though until Liverpool caught up with the pace of the game and managed to come back via a brace from Senegalese winger Sadio Mané before halftime.
Mané’s teammate Mohammed Salah added a third for Liverpool in the second half to seal the game. Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said after the match, “We had a tough job to do. We needed 25 minutes to really arrive in the game. They scored a wonderful goal and were a big threat always. And then we changed the rhythm and it was immediately much better. We could have scored more but it is all good. I am really happy.”
The likes of Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur racked up the goals for themselves in comprehensive 5-2 and 4-0 wins respectively. Chelsea’s Tammy Abraham has definitely found his scoring boots after a delightful hat-trick against Wolverhampton Wanderers which saw him go as joint top goalscorer with seven goals. As for Spurs, they put fellow London club Crystal Palace to bed quite early after netting thrice after only 20 minutes.
After winning the Premier League Player of the Month for August, Finnish striker Teemu Pukki’s newly promoted Norwich City hosted the champions Manchester City at Carrow Road. During the course of the game, Norwich showed exactly why they deserved to be playing in the Premier League as we saw them take a 2-0 lead inside the first half-hour of the match with goals from Kenny McLean and Todd Cantwell. Although Manchester City came back through a header from Sergio Aguero, guess who put Norwich in the driving seat after a defensive lapse from the champions. Yes, you guessed it, Pukki scored his sixth of the season.
The match ended 3-2 in favor of Norwich with a consolation goal from Rodrigo for the Manchester club. After pulling off the biggest upset of the weekend, Norwich manager Daniel Farke told BBC Sport, “Of course it is a special day for us and for the club, against one of the best teams in the world and when we have so many injuries. We had to be special in our plan for [Manchester] City because they are the best team in the world but we had setbacks too with our injuries. We deserve the win, we were exceptional.” He added, “Teemu [Pukki] was brilliant, not only because of his goals but for his work rate too. Teemu always thinks about the team first, which is why he deserves all of the praise.”
According to Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola, his team did not have the urgency in the final third. He said, “In football, you can’t always avoid mistakes. I don’t know how many shots we had or how many they had, but football is about goals and about what you do in the boxes.”
While we witnessed Arsenal pull off a superb comeback against Spurs to draw the North London derby two weeks ago, the Gunners visited Watford yesterday and showed us once again how sluggish they are in defense. Striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang gave Arsenal a 2-0 lead going into halftime. The Gunners seemed to have everything under control but two errors in the second half, a giveaway gift from a goal kick and a penalty allowed bottom of the league Watford to take a point from the game.
With wins from their opening two league games of the season, the Gunners are now winless following defeat at Liverpool and draws against Tottenham and Watford. Arsenal boss Unai Emery said, “We have young players, we are working to improve and they will gain experience from matches like today. We can grow up and learn with these mistakes.”
This coming weekend will see in-form Chelsea host league leaders Liverpool at Stamford Bridge. Klopp – who will be without the injured Divock Origi – is looking to make it six wins out of six. As for Chelsea manager Frank Lampard, he seems to have found a balance in his team among the likes of youngsters such as Abraham, Mason Mount, Fikayo Tomori and more. We’re hoping this game lives up to expectation as both teams are currently flying high.
Also, this weekend will see Leicester City host Spurs, Norwich travel to Burnley, West Ham United go up against Manchester United, Manchester City play Watford, Arsenal host Aston Villa and more.
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