Premier League Gameweek Three Round-Up: Arsenal Flying High, Man United Bounce Back as Liverpool & Chelsea Stutter
Now, three weeks into the Premier League season, it’s clearer to see how things are starting to pan out. Some teams are very much living up to the hype and are pushing onwards and upwards in the right direction, but others are showing signs of backward movement, and any Premier League betting action you may have placed on those teams may be looking precarious. Fortunately, there is still time for things to turn around.
Sure, the Premier League table after three games isn’t likely to be the way it appears come the end of May, sorry Arsenal fans, but it is an indication of where each of the twenty teams finds itself at this stage, and that will have managers, fans and pundits experiencing all sorts of mixed emotions.
Tottenham 1-0 Wolves
Antonio Conte’s side made heavy work of their win over Wolves, with Harry Kane scoring the game’s only goal midway through the second half. The same old issues continue to plague Bruno Lage’s side, namely, a lack of a prolific marksman to tuck away the chances that come their way.
Wolves had an astounding 20 shots at the Spurs goal, but only three were on target, and the club have just one goal and one point to show for their efforts after three games. Tottenham, on the other hand, are sitting pretty in the top four and have a squad that has the depth to challenge on multiple fronts.
Kane’s goal was his 250th for Tottenham and was the result of a well-placed header from an Ivan Perisic flick-on.
Crystal Palace 3-1 Aston Villa
Patrick Vieira has done a wonderful job at Selhurst Park and doesn’t get nearly enough credit for the work he’s put in. Wilfried Zaha once again played a key role as the Eagles came from a goal down to defeat Steven Gerrard’s Aston Villa.
Olly Watkins put the away side ahead after just five minutes, but Zaha levelled barely two minutes later and scored again on the hour, and sub Jean-Philippe Mateta made sure of the points a minute after coming on.
Everton 1-1 Nottingham Forest
Frank Lampard barely kept Everton in the top division last season, but things may prove even tighter this time around if their early season form is an indication of where the Toffees are heading.
Nottingham Forest enjoyed most of the possession and took the lead through Brennan Johnson with ten minutes left to play, but Demarai Gray scored in the 88th minute to spare Everton’s blushes.
The complete lack of a focal point for the Everton attack could prove fatal, and if Lampard fails to bring in a forward before the transfer window closes, then the season could be a long and arduous one for the Merseyside outfit.
Fulham 3-2 Brentford
Fulham came out on top after this marvellous five-goal thriller at Craven Cottage. Marco Silva’s side are having no issues finding the back of the net, and the home side were two goals to the good inside the first twenty minutes, with Bobby Decordova-Reid and Joao Paulhinha scoring for the newly-promoted side.
Brentford then went about their comeback with some aplomb, much as they had done away at Leicester City on the opening weekend, with Christian Norgaard and Ivan Toney making it two apiece going into the final minutes.
Then in stepped Aleksandar Mitrovic to head in a late winner to give the Cottagers all three points.
Leicester City 1-2 Southampton
Brendan Rodgers will be under no illusions as to the size of the problem at the King Power Stadium. The Foxes went ahead through James Maddison, who could be on his way to Newcastle United, but were unable to prevent Che Adams from netting twice to give the Saints a deserved win that leaves Leicester City firmly in the relegation mire.
If Rodgers fails to improve his squad by the end of the transfer window and possibly even loses the likes of Wesley Fofana, Youri Tielemans or the aforementioned Maddison, things may get a whole lot worse before they get any better.
Bournemouth 0-3 Arsenal
Mikel Arteta’s men made light work of a Bournemouth side that were incapable of holding back the Arsenal tide. From the first whistle, the North London side took the game to their hosts, and captain Martin Odegaard produced smart finishes to put the Gunners two goals to the good after just 11 minutes.
French centre-back William Saliba produced an inspired finish to put the away side 3-0 up and then comfortably closed out the game to make it three wins from three as Arsenal went to the top of the table with a 100% record that will leave their fans salivating.
Leeds United 3-0 Chelsea
Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea side were torn apart by a Leeds United team full of stamina and character, and the Blues were once again left with little in the way of cutting edge, subjecting the West London club to a first defeat of the season.
American international Brenden Aaronson took advantage of Edouard Mendy’s poor control to put Leeds United ahead after 30 minutes, and Rodrigo, with his fourth of the season, made it 2-0 four minutes later, and Chelsea were reeling.
Leeds United refused to take their collective feet off the gas, and Jack Harrison, who was magnificent all game, made it 3-0. Chelsea also saw new signing Kalidou Koulibaly sent off, and Tuchel will hope to make key signings before the summer transfer window slams shut.
West Ham 0-2 Brighton
David Moyes will be left wondering quite what’s happened to his effective West Ham side this season. The Scottish boss has seen his Hammers outfit complete two great campaigns where they secured European football, but the form they’ve displayed thus far in 2022/23 is far more like the form that welcomed the returning boss when he started his second spell at the East London club.
Goals from Alexis MacAllister and Leandro Trossard eased the Seagulls home, and Graham Potter’s side have now secured seven points from their opening three fixtures, which is no mean feat given those games included away trips to Old Trafford and now the London Stadium.
Newcastle United 3-3 Manchester City
There can be little doubt about the game of the weekend. Newcastle United and Manchester City have billionaire owners in common, and the two teams produced a glittering spectacle at St James’ Park.
The star of the show came in the form of livewire Allan Saint-Maximin who gave Pep Guardiola’s defence nightmares with his direct running, but that wasn’t apparent when City took an early lead through Ilkay Gundogan after just five minutes.
However, Eddie Howe’s side were not overawed, and they gave their title-holding opponents a real lesson in counter-attacking football as they responded with goals from Miguel Almiron, Callum Wilson and Kieran Trippier before Erling Haaland, and Bernardo Silva levelled things in a game that arguably the hosts deserved to win.
Manchester United 2-1 Liverpool
Perhaps the weekend’s biggest surprise saw Erik ten Hag’s side secure a first win of the season with a combative display that saw off an off-colour Liverpool side at Old Trafford. It took some courage for the Dutch boss to drop captain Harry Maguire and leave Cristiano Ronaldo on the bench, but his team selection proved spot on.
Jadon Sancho’s composed turn and finish put United ahead, and that came after Anthony Elanga had hit the post, so the lead was a deserved one. The heart and desire shown by the Man United players is something that has been missing from their locker for some time, and for this to occur in such an important encounter will certainly hold them in good stead.
Marcus Rashford raced through to receive an Anthony Martial pass and put the chance away to give United breathing space, which it turned out they needed as Mohamed Salah scrambled home a late consolation.
Ten Hag will be very pleased with the attitude shown by his team, and this type of result could well have a critical impact on Man United’s entire season. New signing Casemiro, brought in from Real Madrid, watched on from the sidelines.