Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Thoughts on today's Premier League action

I can't think up a better title than that... it's late, cut me some slack.


Burnley 1 - 0 Manchester United

Who the hell saw this coming? But then, it's early days and United haven't quite gelled yet. Seeing Burnley win their first home top-flight match in 33 years was wonderful... but to see them win it against last year's league champions? Fairy tail stuff!
At any rate, positives for United: Michael Owen was decent, he got himself into dangerous positions and was moving the ball around well, but needs to find his scoring touch. Also, the possession tells the story, United were dominant with 63% of the ball, but they just couldn't score (not to say they didn't have their chances, putting 9 shots on goal and missing another 9). Unfortunately, in losing Christiano Ronaldo, they seem to have lost that cutting-edge against teams they should be beating... no one really stepped up today and they really missed that lacquered up pansy.
For Burnley, they have easily the most courageous keeper I've ever seen in their great Dane, Brian Jensen, picking up the man of the match award. Their centre-backs were equally deserving of praise, throwing themselves in front of everything United could give them, and doing their best to get in the way. An inspiring effort from all 11 on the pitch.

Hull 1 - 5 Tottenham Hotspur

6 points from two games. It took Spurs 10 games to reach 6 points last year. Oh... and we're top of the table. I'm not taking a win over a decidedly crap Liverpool and Hull as a sign we'll win the championship, but it's rare you hear the Match Of The Day pundits declare (without laughing) "Tottenham for the title". I choked up a little when they said it, I'm not lying... in 21 years I've never heard that said seriously. Spurs were magnificent today, the passing, the movement, the Jermaine Defoe hat-trick... I'm really excited this year. It seems to be clicking.

Birmingham City 1 - 0 Portsmouth

David James will forever argue the penalty... but he shouldn't have been challenging for the ball in the first place, it was nowhere near the goal. I think the most significant question one can ask from this game is: why has he decided to make himself the most utterly ridiculous-looking footballer in the league (Cissé's in Greece now)? He really looks like some ridiculous 70s pornstar, getting into the habit of grabbing all kinds of stray balls (I'm sorry, this is a family-friendly blog... I couldn't resist though).

Liverpool 4 - 0 Stoke

This result should never have been in question... but last year both matches with Stoke ended with goalless draws... so I suppose Liverpool had reason to be wary (especially after their horrible start to the season at White Hart Lane). Glen Johnson, Liverpool's new right-back fresh from Pompey, might be the most inspired non-Spanish acquisition ever made by Rafa Benitez. In the attacking third of the pitch, he gives Liverpool so many new options, he was hands down their best player today (as he was against Spurs on Sunday).

1 comment:

Phil said...

Guardian minute-by-minute on Glen Johnson: "He has started extremely well as an attacking force, even if he does look like he needs sat-nav to find his own nipples every time an opposing forward plays a pass inside him"

Also, I am happy that Fabio Capello has realised that Jermain Defoe is only 28 in October and should be entering his prime. Tottenham will have the lad's best years and he's by miles the best striker at WHL. Perhaps Sir Alex signed the wrong dwarf this summer?