Premier League Week 1: United first leaders of the season

This first week of Premier League was indeed quite an exciting one, starting with Arsenal’s victory over Leicester at the Emirates, and closing with Pogba helping Manchester United up in first position, making them the first leaders of the 2017-18 Premier League season.


Arsenal’s comeback against Leicester City

Already discussed in our earlier news this week, Arsenal kicked off the Premier League campaign with a remarkable comeback against Leicester. On a day marking the debuts of Kelechi Iheanacho and Alexandre Lacazette for their respective teams, only the latter managed to score, though the spotlight was more directed towards Granit Xhaka and Olivier Giroud’s performance in the second half. Jamie Vardy’s brace did not go unnoticed as well, as it now puts him third in the race to the Premier League Golden Boot. Plenty of time for others to catch up.


Liverpool draws Watford in a six-goal thriller at Vicarage

Watford, strong of a multitude of different signings coming from all over the footballing world, hosted Liverpool at Vicarage as Saturday’s first Premier League fixture. And indeed, the game was as much of a thriller as that of the Gunners a day prior, with six goals being scored and with the lead in the game being disputed five times. Okaka’s opener at the eighth minute put the host in a strong position, but Sadio Mané’s equalizer near the half-hour mark put Liverpool back in the game. Doucouré would give the lead to Watford only three minutes later, but a second-half comeback was already on its way for Liverpool. At the 55-minute mark, Roberto Firmino netted an equalizing penalty, and would be keen on assisting Mohamed Salah for his first Premier League goal, only 2 minutes later, giving Liverpool the lead for the first time in the game. Despite being behind and being slightly dominated in the midfield, Watford would make the most of their final chance in the game – and three minutes into extra-time, a defensive shortcoming from Mignolet would allow Britos to save the day for Watford.

Huddersfield town start off with a bang, goalless draw at St. Mary’s

Although this Premier League matchday was rich in goals, this did not involve all teams being proficient in front of the net. Both pulling solid performances at the back, Swansea City and Southampton concluded their opening fixture with a 0-0 result, placing them respectively 12th and 11th at the end of the weekend. However, the real stars of the week would be the players of Huddersfield Town, victors of Crystal Palace by three goals away from home, with Danish keeper Jonas Lössl bagging a clean sheet for the newly promoted side. Indeed, thanks to a strong start in the game (with two goals from the 23rd to the 26th minute), Huddersfield would be in a comfortable position in the second half, and would even add another goal to their tally through Mounié’s brace. Final score 3-0, putting Huddersfield Town right behind Manchester United, at second.


Burnley defeat a nine-man Chelsea at Stamford Bridge

The main surprise of the week, came however from Burnley defeating the reigning champions away from home, thanks to a goals from Sam Vokes and Stephen Ward. The game was decided fairly early however, as Gary Cahill earned himself a sent-off at minute 14, which transformed Conte’s 3-4-3 into a compromising 3-5-1, leaving Michy Batshuayi as the lone strike force of the Blues and helped by now only Willian, playing a more central role in chance creation. Burnley however used their advantage to the best of their ability, as they left the pitch 30 minutes later with a staggering 3-0 advantage thanks to a double from Vokes and a goal from Stephen Ward. It would take more than half an hour and a fantastic entry from Alvaro Morata to finally go back in the game, as the latter earned himself his first Premier League goal only ten minutes after subbing in for Batshuayi. Fabregas would later on earn his second yellow card with ten minutes of regular time left on the clock, but this would not stop Morata (again) to assist David Luiz in the final minutes of the game. Despite a brilliant come back led by the former Real Madrid man, Chelsea would conclude the game with a home loss against Burnley.


Manchester United triumphs by four goals at Old Trafford

Despite all the critics aimed at their questionable transfer market expenditure, Manchester United proved all the critics wrong by winning their first game of the season by four goals, thanks to an amazing finishing demonstration from Romelu Lukaku and late goals from Anthony Martial and Paul Pogba. Key performances involved that of the Belgian target man, Anthony Martial’s ten-minute substitution (which involved the Frenchman both scoring and assisting on Pogba’s last-minute goal) but also Henrikh Mkhitaryan taking the lead in the race for player with most assists this season, being involved in the delivery for Lukaku’s second goal and Martial’s first. Final score at Old Trafford of four goals to none, putting the Reds in the leader spot for the first week of play – West Ham would sadly inherit of the last position for the time being.

Premier League Week 1 Results

Arsenal 4-3 Leicester City
Watford 3-3 Liverpool
Chelsea 2-3 Burnley
Crystal Palace 0-3 Huddersfield Town
Everton 1-0 Stoke City
Southampton Swansea City
West Brom 1-0 Bournemouth
Brighton & Hove 0-2 Manchester City
Newcastle 0-2 Tottenham
Manchester United 4-0 West Ham

Najib Guiti is the man behind the curtains, as well as the founder of the eponymous news website; he has written for various different news outlets in the British, American press and has had a successful career in football news reporting, mostly through his influence and presence on social media. He aims to integrate statistics in the sport whilst keeping his analysis focused on the non-quantifiable parts of the Game such as tactics and playing style.

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