Friday, September 2, 2022

Match Week 5 Results: Arsenal Wins Its Fifth; Another Haaland Hat Trick In City Romp; Saints Hand Chelsea A Second Loss; Liverpool Leaves It Late To Edge Newcastle; Toothless Wolves Fall Into Relegation Zone; Red Devils Win Third Straight To Climb In Table

Erling Haaland is greatly enjoying his move to the Premier League. The former Borussia Dortmund striker delivered a second consecutive hat trick in Manchester City’s 6-0 demolition of Nottingham  Forest. Haaland becomes the quickest to score two hat tricks in a Premier League career. The striker’s nine goals in five matches notably exceeds the six tallies that Sergio Aguero achieved in his first five matches for the Citizens.

The frightening potential of the Manchester City attack was further demonstrated when Julian Alvarez delivered two goals in his first start for the Citizens. Despite their intimidating play, Manchester City remain second in the table.

Gabriel Jesus opened scoring and a Gabriel Martinelli goal closed out the match as the two Brazilians gave Arsenal a fifth consecutive victory and lone occupancy at the top of the Premier League table. The Gunners 2-1 victory over Aston Villa kept Arsenal two points ahead of Manchester City. Martinelli’s winning strike came less than three minutes after Aston Villa had knotted the match and demonstrated the resiliency of a young Arsenal side.

Aston Villa, meanwhile, lost for a fourth time this season. Manager Steven Gerrard has now lost as many matches as he has won since taking over Villa last year.

Tottenham Hotspur dropped points for a second time this season in a 1-1 draw at West Ham. Spurs benefitted from a first half West Ham own goal before the Hammers stuck back with a second half goal from Tomas Soucek. Spurs remain undefeated but are not scoring to the level their attacking personnel would seem to promise.

Liverpool scored in the 98th minute of play as the Reds defeated Newcastle 2-1. The goal by Fabio Carvahlo on Liverpool’s 13th corner kick of the match was controversial as it came in the eighth minute of an initially estimated five-minute stoppage time. The late drama resulted in Newcastle’s first loss of the season and overshadowed an impressive debut by the Magpies’ newly signed forward Alexander Isak who scored one goal and had a second score overruled on VAR review.

Chelsea’s lackluster start to the season continued with a 2-1 defeat to Southampton. Chelsea lost for a second time in the opening five matches of a league season for only the second time in 27 seasons. Raheem Sterling nicked his second goal of the season, but the Blues miss goal chances at an alarming rate. Kai Havertz continues to underwhelm as the club anxiously awaits the addition of newly signed Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to the line-up once the former Arsenal player recovers from a broken jaw. Chelsea fans are a bit unnerved by Aubameyang being assigned shirt number 9, a “cursed jersey” worn by unsuccessful Chelsea strikers ranging from Fernando Torres to Alvaro Morata to Romelu Lukaku. Hopefully, Aubameyang can break the curse and provided the missing goals at the heart of Chelsea’s attack. Southampton got a deserved result after showing steady improvement leading up to the Chelsea match. The Saints are undergoing a youth movement exemplified by Tuesday’s first Southampton goal being scored by 18-year-old Romeo Lavia, acquired from Manchester City.

The winning goal for the Saints was struck by the comparatively veteran Adam Armstrong. The 25-year-old Armstrong was acquired from Blackburn Rovers one year ago. Manager Ralph Hasenhuttl’s young Saints squad has responded well after a resounding opening weekend defeat to Spurs.

Manchester United rose to fifth in the table with a 1-0 win at Leicester. A second consecutive 1-0 victory was the Red Devils’ third consecutive win after their disastrous start to the season. Jordan Sancho delivered the winner, his second goal for United in his last three matches. The attack is still inconsistent, but the defense seems far more solid with the additions of current transfer signings Lisandro Martinez and Tyrell Malacia to the starting line-up alongside a now healthy Raphael Varane. Leicester is a sad situation right now with ownership not investing in the squad as the club battles financial difficulties. Promising young defender Wesley Fofana completed his move to Chelsea this week with the Foxes scrambling to replace him with the relatively inexpensive Wout Faes from Reims. Faes was the only outfield player added by Leicester this window, much to the consternation of Manager Brendan Rodgers who saw his squad lose a fourth consecutive match in a winless season.

Fulham rebounded from its first loss of the season to post a 2-1 victory over previously undefeated Brighton. The Cottagers’ magic man Aleksandar Mitrovic opened the scoring with his 100th goal for the club before an own goal by the Seagulls’ Lewis Dunk handed the three points to the Cottagers. Brighton lost for a first time this season.

Leeds grabbed a point at home versus Everton when Luis Sinisterra scored his first Premier League goal. The Colombian winger was procured by Leeds to help fill the void left by the departure of Rafinha to Barcelona and the former Feyenoord player is now fit after a preseason injury. Sinisterra statistically fared better in the Dutch Eredivisie than high priced Manchester United acquisition Antony. Only time will tell how each fares in the more physical Premier League but Sinisterra has now placed his early marker. Everton drew by a 1-1 score for a third consecutive match with Anthony Gordon providing the goal in each of the last two matches for the Toffees. The Everton defense with new center backs James Tarkowski and Conor Coady in front of England keeper Jordan Pickford is improved this season. Now the Toffees need some goals.

Crystal Palace star Wilfried Zaha was vocal in criticizing his club for being too defensive in a 1-1 draw with Brentford. Zaha claims the club lost its edge as it receded into a defensive shell after he scored the opening goal. Brentford substitute Yoane Wissa scored the equalizer in the 88th minute. An increasingly visible for the issue is Eagles is a lack of quality midfield depth. Luka Milivojevic, once an important player for the Eagles in his prime, is now being regularly caught out when substituted into matches as was the case on Tuesday. Brentford drew with a goal in the final 10 minutes of play for a second consecutive week.

The Wolverhampton attack reached a new low when the toothless Wolves were unable to score a goal against a Bournemouth defense which had conceded nine goals to Liverpool in its previous match. The goalless draw between the clubs enabled both to remain tied for the joint lowest number of goals scored in the league this season.

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