Manchester City, inspired by the excellent Kevin De Bruyne, turned in another high-quality performance to sweep Southampton aside.
DeBruyne has nine assists from the first nine league games, an outstanding statistic which has been overshadowed by the remarkable scoring record of Erling Haaland, who was once again on the scoresheet with his 20th goal for City in all competitions, his 15th in the league.
City were on the offensive from the off and served notice of their intent when Haaland struck a post early on. It was, however, Joao Cancelo who broke the deadlock on the 20-minute mark, moving onto a Phil Foden pass to finish.
Foden continued his fine form in front of goal to put City two up after being played in by De Bruyne. The points were sealed at the start of the second half when Rodri’s cross found Riyad Mahrez who volleyed home. Haaland had been threatening to continue his incredible scoring run, narrowly failing to get on the end of a De Bruyne cross, and then forcing a brave stop from Gavin Bazunu. However, after 65 minutes a Cancelo cross found Haaland in the area and the Norwegian striker made it four for Pep Guardiola’s team.
Southampton, although outclassed, fought hard and defended with discipline, which will please their under-pressure manager Ralph Hasenhuttl.
City are the last unbeaten side in England’s top four divisions, but it is the manner and margin of their victories which will be of concern to their rivals.
A double from Bruno Guimaraes inspired Newcastle United to a convincing victory over Brentford. While Eddie Howe’s side played well and thoroughly deserved the three points, Brentford made a number of errors which contributed to their downfall. Newcastle started well with the in-form Miguel Almiron going close early on, however Brentford were physically strong and dangerous on the break. The visitors had the ball in the net after they pounced on an error and attacked with purpose but it was ruled out by VAR.
This seemed to serve as motivation for the Magpies and after 21 minutes a short corner was played to Kieran Trippier, excellent throughout, and his superb cross found Guimareas who guided his header into the corner. The lead was doubled seven minutes later, when an error from goalkeeper David Raya presented the ball to Callum Wilson who unselfishly squared to Jacob Murphy, whose pressing had forced the mistake, to claim his first goal of the season.
Brentford began the second period full of purpose and this led to Dan Burn handling in the box to give the visitors a penalty on 54 minutes. Ivan Toney, formerly of Newcastle, scored from the spot to put his side within touching distance. However, when United needed a lift, it was provided by Guimaraes. The Brazilian midfielder won the ball and drove forward before firing home from outside the box in the 56th minute. Aside from his two goals Guimaraes’ all-round game was excellent and he was given a standing ovation from a boisterous St James’ Park when substituted.
Another error from Brentford allowed Almiron to add a fourth, and a powerful run and cross down the left from substitute Joelinton saw Ethan Pinnock deflect the ball beyond his goalkeeper for a fifth. Newcastle, who hit four at Fulham last week, will be very satisfied with another big win.
A Bukayo Saka penalty settled a pulsating encounter at the Emirates Stadium and ensured Arsenal remain top of the Premier League.
The home side started at breakneck speed and got off to a perfect start when Martin Ødegaard played in Gabriel Martinelli who applied the finish Liverpool responded well and dragged themselves back into the game and deservedly levelled through Darwin Nunez who slid in to finish off Luis Diaz’s cross.
Arsenal however, broke away in first-half added time with Martinelli squaring for Saka to restore Mikel Arteta’s side’s lead. Liverpool equalised once again eight minutes after the interval when substitute Roberto Firmino, on for the injured Diaz, fired past Aaron Ramsdale.
With 14 minutes left Thiago Alcantara was penalised for a challenge on Gabriel Jesus and Saka confidently dispatched the spot-kick to give Arsenal the points. Liverpool were incensed with the decision, and were also aggrieved that they were not given a penalty themselves in the first-half when Gabriel handled.
For Arsenal, this was a major test of their title credentials,which they came through with flying colours. Twice Liverpool pegged them back and looked to be in the ascendency, but Arsenal had the character to come back and take the lead again on both occasions. Liverpool lacked fluency and looked brittle at the back. They struggled to get Mohamed Salah into the game and there is obviously a great deal of work for Jurgen Klopp and his coaching staff to do if they are to reach the standards of recent seasons.
Cristiano Ronaldo scored his 700th club goal, becoming the first player to reach this milestone, as Manchester United came from behind at Goodison Park to end Everton’s two-game winning run. Introduced as a first-half substitute for the injured Anthony Martial, Ronaldo sped onto his former Real Madrid teammate Casemiro’s through ball and drove home at the near-post.
Casemiro turned in an impressive performance, however, it is clear that he must get used to the demands of the Premier League. He created Ronaldo’s goal and, as he has consistently done throughout his career, did the simple things well, kept the ball moving and made life easier for his teammates. However, he was knocked off the ball on several occasions, one of which led to Alex Iwobi opening the scoring on five minutes with a curling effort from 25 yards.
Antony equalised ten minutes later after being sent through by Martial. Marcus Rashford then had a goal disallowed for handball eight minutes from time, which would have put the game to bed. And Everton almost grabbed a dramatic equaliser when David de Gea denied Amadou Onana and ensured that the points went to Manchester.
Kane strike sinks Brighton, Chelsea too good for Wolves
Harry Kane’s goal was enough to give Tottenham a one-nil win at Brighton, while Chelsea enjoyed a comfortable three-nil win at home to Wolves. Bournemouth came from behind to beat Leicester and there were wins for Crystal Palace over Leeds and West Ham over Fulham. In Monday evening’s game Nottingham Forest were held to a one-one draw at the City Ground by Aston Villa. The point saw Forest move off the bottom of the table.
Gunners stay top, Leicester return to bottom spot
Manchester City have rightly been praised for their form so far this season however, it is Arsenal who are top of the league. The Gunners have eight wins from nine, and have performed impressively this season. Sunday’s win over Liverpool showed that they have steel as well as style and suggests that they have re-emerged as genuine contenders. City remain unbeaten but have dropped points against Newcastle and Aston Villa. City are a point behind Arsenal and three ahead of third placed Tottenham. Chelsea complete the top four with 16 points from eight games. At the bottom Nottingham Forest’s draw with Aston Villa saw them go above Leicester City. Leicester have four points, Forest five and a third Midlands club, Wolves, complete the bottom three a further point ahead. Southampton sit one place above the relegation zone on seven points.
After another week of European fixtures the Premier League returns next weekend, with fixtures on Friday October 14, Saturday October 15 and Sunday October 16.
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