August is one of my favorites months because that’s the month when the Barclay’s Premier league starts. It’s a time where men forget about their wives and kids forget about school, it’s a time where rivalries flare and friendships are forgotten. The transfer window is now closed and this is when the season really starts. Teams begin to gel together and managers begin to really understand how their teams play best. So far it has been a mixed bag of everything from upsets to comebacks, as we recap the first three weeks of the Barclay’s Premier League.
First we travel to defending champions Manchester United who have gotten off to a rocky start. A 4 – 1 win at Swansea city with Van Persie scoring two and Danny Welbeck scoring two as well, it seemed that the Red Devils were going to pick up where they left off, but a draw with Chelsea at home put a grain of doubt in the fans minds. Then the major blow came when Moyes’ men lost 0 – 1 to Liverpool at Anfield thanks to a Daniel Sturridge header in the fourth minute. United currently sit in an unorthodox seventh place. But with a whole season to turn things around, I’m sure that Manchester will return to glory once again.
After a very expensive summer, Manchester City are favorites to win the league this season, and it seemed that way after a 4 – 0 win at home over Newcastle with goals from David Silva, Sergio Aguero, Yaya Toure and Samir Nasri. But a 3 – 2 defeat to newcomers Cardiff City just might be the upset of the season. Goals from Edin Dzeko and Alvaro Negredo couldn’t help the citizens collect even a single point in Cardiff. But it was a different story with Hull city at the Etihad, with goals from Alvaro Negredo and Yaya Toure helping the sky blues collect all three points placing them third on the table.
Chelsea have had a reasonably busy summer and are off to a relatively good start, with a 2 – 0 win at home over Hull City thanks to goals from Oscar and Frank Lampard. Chelsea then versed an upbeat Aston Villa, and managed to collect all three points thanks to an own goal from Antonio Luna and a second half goal from Brianslav Ivanovic. But the party stopped there as they traveled to Old Trafford for a goal less draw against the red devils. Chelsea are one of the favorites to win the league and with the return of the ‘Chosen One’, Jose Mourinho, it just might be a possibility, but for now the blues are sitting in second place.
Arsenal have taken plenty of criticism over the summer for lack of signings, and the fans are furious with Wenger and it didn’t help when Aston Villa came back from behind to win 3 – 1 at the Emirates . A first half goal from Giroud wasn’t enough to stop Christian Benteke and Antonio Luna combing with a tally of three goals between them. With pressure reaching boiling point, a win at Fulham was a must otherwise heads would role. But thanks to Giroud and Podolski the Gunners won 3 – 1 and saved Wenger in the process from absolute humiliation. And it seemed that the new found form continued in the North London Derby against the big spending Spurs, and it was the Frenchmen Giroud who again scored the winning goal and collect all three points and cement fourth spot on the ladder.
Liverpool have learned from last year and cut loose ends and signed eight players in the process in order to improve on last season’s campaign where they finished seventh. Liverpool started the campaign at Anfield against Stoke city, and thanks to a Daniel Sturridge goal, Liverpool won 1 – 0, winning their first game of the season for five years and it didn’t stop there. Liverpool then traveled to Villa Park to verse Aston Villa and again it was a first half, Daniel Sturridge goal which made the difference with Liverpool making it two out of two. But the real test came when the red devils came to town, defending champions Manchester United were hunting for three points at Anfield, and yet again it was a Daniel Sturridge goal which secured Liverpool another three points and beating rivals Manchester United in the process and making it three from three and putting them at the top of the table.
Tottenham have gone all out this summer, by selling Bale and others, they have acquired some of the sports best young talents in Christian Eriksen and Eric Lamela to name a couple. So it was no surprise that they now are contenders for the title, if not this season then next season. But in order to contend you need to win games. And that was no problem when they versed Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park. Roberto Soldado scored a penalty in the second half to acquire all three points. It was Swansea City next at white hart lane. And yet another Roberto Soldado spot kick helped the Spurs gain all three points, showing the other clubs that Tottenham can survive without Gareth Bale. But the fairy tale start was ended by Arsenal during the derby at the Emirates going down to the Gunners 1 – 0 thanks to a Giroud’s 23rd minute goal. Spurs are currently sitting in sixth position.
Stoke City have been the surprise of the League so far, but signs weren’t promising when they lost the opener to Liverpool at Anfield, but with wins over Crystal Palace at home and another win at West ham, Stoke are currently sitting in fifth position above Arsenal and defending Champions Manchester United.
But let’s not get carried away, there is still 35 rounds to go and anything could happen, with new signings still settling in and managers figuring out their best XI, time will tell which team will lift the Barclay’s Premier League Cup come May 2014.