Everton 0 – 0 Wigan
Stoke 0 – 1 Blackpool
Newcastle 3 – 1 Liverpool
Bolton 2 – 1 Blackburn
Fulham 0 – 0 Sunderland
Aston Villa 2 – 1 West Brom
West Ham 1 – 3 Man City
Tottenham 1 – 1 Chelsea
Wolverhampton 1 – 0 Birmingham
Manchester United 1 – 0 Arsenal
Start of a new era – Alan Pardew starts with a win
In the presence of aggravated fans, Pardew reopened his Premiership journey after four years out of the top division. Mike Ashley, the controversial owner of the club, had insisted that Pardew will be shown respect with the results. Liverpool’s away trip was without their inspirational captain but with their star striker Fernando Torres, back after an injury. A fantastic goal from the captain Kevin Nolan gave Pardew the first taste of sweet goal-scoring in front of his home fans. A scrappy goal from Kuyt gave Hodgson’s men the much-needed license to get back into the game. However, habitual miscreant Joey Barton poked home Newcastle’s second and gave them the belief to go ahead and win this one. Scoring the tenth goal of this Premiership campaign – a left-leg scorcher from 25 yards out – Andy Carroll gave a safe two-goal cushion to the Magpies as they wrapped up the match and worsened Hodgson’s miseries.
10 Men Bolton beat Blackburn – 60 Seconds of Drama
Bolton, having gone down to 10 men, scored the first goal of the game against their former manager’s team. Mark Davies, after committing two cynical fouls, had already seen the dreaded color. Patrice Muamba handed Bolton the lead with some nifty footwork. In a span of 60 seconds, the game would turn on its head twice to bring Bolton back on the front. First, Blackburn would score the equalizer through Mame Biram Diouf, before Stuart Holden would race the length of the pitch , and latch on to Kevin Davies’ header, to score an absolute cracker of a goal, which earned Owen Coyle’s men a much deserved three points.
Match of the Weekend – Defending Champions are ‘almost’ back!
White Hart Lane was witness to some breathtaking football, as both teams ‘went for the kill’ from the start of the match. Chelsea, in the middle of the worst slump of the Abramovich era, had to show some ‘steel’ before they play even bigger games in the coming weeks. Bringing the home fans into raptures, Spurs opened the scoring through Pavlyuchenko, whose beautifully executed left-footed goal went beyond the reach of Petr Cech. Chelsea dominated the second half, keeping the ball to themselves and trying their best to frustrate the home team. Didier Drogba, a substitute in the second half, gave Chelsea the much-needed equalizer; he smashing the ball across the face of goal, and Gomes was unable to stop it; such was the ferocity of the hit. Chelsea got an amazing chance to get all points from the game, as they were awarded a penalty in the dying minutes of the match. Drogba stepped up but found his shot blocked by the Brazilian keeper, saving the day for Spurs as points were equally distributed.
City thrash Hammers – Yaya sizzles, yet Tevez wants to go home!
Manchester City romped home with all three points, with a stupendous display away from home against the struggling Hammers. The interchange of passes, the tactical game play, and the defending were absolutely spot-on for the traveling party, while Yaya Toure was in the peak of his form. The Ivorian opened the scoring for Citeh and forced another in the 73rd minute. He ‘bossed’ the midfield along with David Silva, as Gareth Barry and De Jong kept the opponent’s supplies to the minimum. Andy Johnson added a third to give City all three points, taking them close to the top of the table. Tomkins scored a consolation for the home side, who find themselves still at the bottom of the relegation zone.
Meanwhile, Carlos Tevez has slammed a transfer request after altercations with Mancini. It remains to be seen if City will let their star striker leave or retain him like the way Sir Alex kept Rooney at home.
The Sack Race – Hodgson or Grant? Wait! It’s Big Sam!
With another defeat away from home, it remains to be seen how long Roy Hodgson holds on to his esteemed chair at Anfield. Liverpool, a club with European ambitions won’t give the manager an entire season to prove his worth if they are struggling throughout the campaign. On the other hand, Avram Grant’s bad days continued, as his team submitted to the might of Manchester City. We are probably days away from seeing the former Chelsea man bid goodbye to Upton Park. From nowhere did we see it coming! Sam Allardyce got the sack from new owners at Ewood Park and is destined for Upton Park, to take away Grant’s job. A statement from the club was – “We have taken this decision as part of our wider plans and ambitions for the club. We would like to put on record our thanks to Mr Allardyce for his contribution to Blackburn Rovers Football Club”
Arsenal’s game not good enough for determined Red Devils
The big match of the week was the title-challenging clash between perennial rivals Arsenal and Manchester United. The travelling Gunners, with a lot of talk before the game, started the match with intent, keeping most of the possession. But with time, the home team took control of the game and gave no room to their opponents to maneuver anything that could trouble Van Der Sar. Samir Nasri stayed wide in the flanks for most of the game, while Arshavin looked determined to start with but fizzed out towards the end, lacking composure in the ‘final-third’. The defence looked quite solid for both teams, as clear chances were few and far between. A burst from the right by Nani culminated in a ‘supposedly’ intentional header from Ji Sung Park, which proved to be the deciding goal in this tightly-contested clash at Old Trafford.