10 Things the Premiership taught us this week

1. Brendan Rodgers has a big, big job on his hands reviving Liverpool’s fortunes. A poor start to the season and a poor transfer window to boot. All is not well at Anfield.

2. Sunday afternoon saw the explosion of Arsenal fans across the country, no, not because they went and won 2-0 at Anfield, but because of events at the St Mary’s Stadium. A Van Persie hat-trick, completed in stoppage time is a painful reminder of what they’ve lost.

3. Credit to Steve Clarke who’s just led West Brom to their best ever Premier League start after beating Everton 2-0. Line him up as the next England manager!

4. Andy Carroll will fit into West Ham’s system perfectly, mark my words. Two assists on his debut before injury ruined his big day, but he’s perfectly suited to Sam Allardyce’s tactics. Not pretty, but certainly effective.

5. Wigan seem to have a few more Premier League goals in them this year, which must be pleasing for Roberto Martinez. Franco Di Santo has also scored five in his last eight games, impressive stuff for a striker at the DW Stadium.

6. Has AVB made the same mistakes at Spurs as he did with Chelsea? Clear out the deadwood too quickly and the balance of the squad alters dramatically. A draw with Norwich has ensured their worst start to a Premier League season for four years.

7. Steven Fletcher overpriced at £12 million? Not on that evidence. Nice little double to start your Sunderland career and end Swansea’s 100% record. Has Martin O’Neill done it again in the transfer market?

8. Hatem Ben Arfa really is a quality player. His brilliant goal earned the Toon Army a point and although Newcastle and Pardew may be struggling slightly at the moment, with the Frenchman in their ranks, they can always count on a few special moments.

9. Say what you like about Arsenal’s transfer policy, but Arsene Wenger might have pulled off an absolute masterstroke in signing Santi Cazorla. Once again at the heart of everything and marked the game against Liverpool with his first Gunners goal. Class act.

10. City may be unbeaten, but they really don’t look convincing at all. Clean sheets are hard to come by at the moment and Mancini doesn’t look happy with his lot, especially after the transfer window slammed shut. Champions League could be make or break.

Ten Things the Premier League taught us this week…

We bring you the ten things the Premier League taught us this week as round two gets underway:

1. Arsenal desperately need a goal scorer. Two 0-0 draws in a row isn’t exactly a crisis, but the murmurs of discontent are slowly starting to come to the surface again at the Emirates.

2. Their North London rivals aren’t faring too much better either. AVB needs to draw a line under the Luka Modric saga, invest in his Tottenham side and get their campaign underway.

3. Eden Hazard is proving those doubters wrong pretty quickly. Looked superb again against Newcastle and seems like he might be the man to get the best out of Fernando Torres as well.

4. Leaving Wayne Rooney on the bench was a big statement of intent from Sir Alex Ferguson. Now he’s injured, the talisman needs to work hard and prove he’s still number one at Old Trafford.

5. For such traditionally bad starters, David Moyes’s men seemed to have discovered a new brand of Weetabix. Sensational from the Toffees and in Marouane Fellaini, they have the star performer of the season so far.

6. Michael Laudrup’s boys are certainly raising a few eyebrows at the top of the Premier League. His brand of football is even more eye-catching than Brendan Rodgers.

7. Arise Raheem Sterling. Liverpool have unleashed their new superstar on the Premier League and to what effect! The hype surrounding the 17-year-old will be enormous now, but Rodgers needs to manage him effectively to help him develop.

8. Manchester City are seemingly incapable of playing out a boring game. The defence is at sixes and sevens and Mancini needs to strengthen his squad before the deadline shuts. Carlos Tevez looks back on his game though.

9. Wigan have made a bright start to the season and for once in their history, two of their strikers scored in the same game! Perhaps Martinez and his men could avoid the perennial ‘must win all our games in the last three months to survive’ routine this time around.

10. Norwich are looking likely candidates for the second syndrome award under Chris Hughton. Short on quality, this year could be a long haul for them.

Ten Things we learnt from the Premier League this week…

The Premier League season is back with a bang thanks a cracking round of opening games (with Manchester United and Everton still to come). A couple of 5-0 routs made the opening Match of the Day an enjoyable experience, while Liverpool’s woes continue even under Brendan Rodgers. We recommence our ten things we’ve learnt to bring you the most important parts of this week’s action:

1. Different manager, same result. If you thought Liverpool were bad last season under Kenny Dalglish, then watch Brendan Rodgers’s first game in charge. It’s only early doors, but Kenny must be sat somewhere wondering what on earth he did wrong…

2. QPR’s defence looks less watertight than the Titanic’s hull with a great ruddy hole in it. Mark Hughes has some serious work to do, shipping five goals at home.

3. So Olivier Giroud and Lukas Podolski will replace Robin Van Persie adequately with their goals will they? Not on this evidence. It was same old Arsenal, 70% possession with no finishing touch. How RVP will be missed.

4. Michael Laudrup could have pulled out the best bargain of the summer in paying £2 million quid for Michu. Two fantastic goals added to a classy performance. Just shows you don’t have to spend big to find the right man.

5. Who needs Clint Dempsey? Fulham leave out their top scorer and manage to bag five anyway! Let him leave if he’s going to be a disruptive influence.

6. Alan Pardew, temper, temper! If that was a player, the whole world would be in uproar. In fact, Paolo Di Canio almost got shot for something similar years and years ago.

7. Expect to see plenty of 1-0 wins for West Ham this season. Nitty, gritty is exactly how Sam Allardyce likes it.

8. There’s going to be goals watching Manchester City. Defensively, they don’t look with it, but that frontline has an astonishing array of talents. And the whole club breathed a sigh of relief after learning Sergio Aguero is OK.

9. Eden Hazard made the perfect start to his Premier League career. Can’t ask for any more than two assists in six minutes. Need plenty more of them to justify that price tag.

10. Reading fans better hope Adam Federici has got his Premier League blunder out of the way for the year. Goalkeeping like that will definitely ruin the Royals’ chances of staying up this season.

Ten Things We Learnt from England vs. Belgium…

  1. Hope you’ve got cups of tea and night blankets ready for watching the Three Lions this summer. It’s going to be one almighty snoozefest.
  1. Defensively, England look superb. We have the best left back in the world, one of the best goalkeepers and the other three appear none too shabby either. Whether this will last from Glen Johnson, who knows…
  1. England really are going to miss Gareth Barry. (Can’t believe I’ve just written that!) Having him in there would free up Steven Gerrard who is spending too much time tackling back and protecting the back four with Scott Parker. Let him loose Roy!
  1. Andy Carroll or Danny Welbeck? Two months ago this would have been a ridiculous question, but Carroll looks in decent touch and for the style England are going to play, Carroll could suit the role down to the ground. Welbeck did his chances no harm either though, what a lovely finish!
  1. Why, oh why did Rooney have to kick someone in Montenegro? England are a completely different outfit with him on the field. Obviously. Let’s hope we’re still in with a chance when it comes to the Ukraine game.
  1. We need to utilise the wide men more. Whoever plays out there (except Stewart Downing) offers pace, width and the ability to frighten defenders, be it Oxlade-Chamberlain, Walcott or Young. Get them running at people.
  1. Ashley Young is key to England’s chances this summer. For a man fighting for a first team spot at Old Trafford, he’s been superb in the colours of his country. His link-up play with the midfield and strikers is spot on and he’s also our best chance of grabbing a goal.
  1. At least Hodgson has a set game plan that gives us a chance of winning games. That’s one step ahead of Capello in South Africa. We may criticise it now, but if it wins us the Euros, who’ll be complaining then!
  1. Just one thing though. We’re not bloody Greece. Stop talking about the bloody Greeks. We should be ashamed to compare ourselves to them as the ‘surprise package.’ Our odds are 16-1, not 150-1. And the competition is significantly stronger in 2012 than 2004.
  1. For the record, Eden Hazard is over-rated. That’s one seriously expensive ego Chelsea are buying. Have a worrying feeling this one may come back to bite them on the bum.

10 Things the Premiership taught us this week

  1. City won the title in ‘Fergie Time.’ Doesn’t irony have a lovely ring to it.
  1. Sergio Aguero was worth every penny of that £35 million. Composure personified.
  1. Arsenal have developed something of a backbone recently. Sealing their Champions League spot after the season they’ve had is a decent result.
  1.  Did anyone want to QPR to stay up over Bolton? The team that bought the title  beat the one that bought survival. Wanderers should keep hold of Owen Coyle though, he’s a decent manager.
  1. Everton and David Moyes, take a bow. Another seventh placed finish and this time above Liverpool. Fantastic stuff.
  1. Alex McLeish has to be the most hated manager in the Premier League. Villa were woeful again and only beat relegation by the skin of their teeth.
  1. Tottenham may have blown third spot recently, but they will be donning the Munich colours come the 19th of May. Squeaky bum time.
  1. Great finishes for both Paul Lambert and Brendan Rodgers. What they have both achieved this season is nothing short of sensational. Wonderful advert for promoted teams.
  1. James Morrison has developed into a quality footballer. Two assists for both West Brom goals underlines why he has become such an important figure at the Hawthorns.
  1. The best Premier League season ever? I think so…

10 Things the Premiership taught us this week

  1. Maybe Blackburn fans were right after all. Seven defeats in eight games for Steve Kean has seen his side lose their Premiership status. Interesting times ahead for the Venkys.
  1. Roberto Martinez is a miracle worker. Fact. That Wigan squad is atrocious on paper.
  1. Aston Villa are one lucky side. Releasing Emile Heskey is a start, but they need the youngsters to really stand up to be counted next year.
  1. Papiss Cisse’s magician status is officially confirmed. He proved against Manchester Cityhe can do the invisible act as well…
  1. Roberto Mancini’s tactics deserve some credit. When Nigel De Jong came on, no one could understand why. Two Yaya Toure goals later (playing in a more advanced position) and City are 90 minutes away from the title. Take a bow Roberto.
  1. United should have probably made the title race a bit closer. A cricket score was on offer against Swansea.
  1. Isn’t it funny how Liverpool are now behind Fulham as well…
  1. Djibril Cisse, red cards aside, was an inspired signing by Mark Hughes. His outstanding finishing may keep QPR up.
  1. Richard Dunne, class defender, prone to brain explosions. What on earth was that challenge all about. Add that to the ‘Richard Dunne – own goals, red cards and conceded penalties’ DVD that will be a bestseller when he retires.
  1. Arsenal are lucky Tottenham can’t take the pressure. Dropping points at home to Norwich isn’t good enough for Champions League contenders.

10 Things the Premiership taught us this week

  1. Maybe pressure affects Manchester United after all. Next week’s derby could now be very interesting. Game on.
  1. Roy Hodgson must be the happiest man in England this week, Anfield well and truly silenced by his return.
  1. Newcastle United? They can’t do it surely. Can they…?
  1. It’s been a sorry season for Wolves. I even feel bad for Terry Connor now.
  1. Since when could Everton score goals? 4 at Old Trafford? David Moyes really is working miracles.
  1. Steve Kean is still keeping his side in it. If Rovers stay up, some fans really do owe him an apology.
  1. Do we really want Redknapp as England manager? Standard Spurs run of form. 6th place beckons…
  1. Wayne Rooney or Robin Van Persie? The England man is racking up the goals at the business end of the season. Robin has just been named Player of the Year. The race is on for the Golden Boot.
  1. Theo Walcott is facing a race to be fit for Euro 2012 after suffering a hamstring injury. Rumours are unconfirmed that he pulled up in shock after actually finding a man with one of his crosses.
  1. Everyone keeps talking about Papiss Cisse, but what about Fulham’s Pavel Pogrebnyak? 6 goals in 8 games for the Russian frontman.