The opening weekend of the Premier League campaign has already produced a few surprise score lines.
Champions Chelsea were reduced to ten men and held to a 2-2 draw by Swansea on Saturday.
However the biggest shock of the opening weekend came at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday, where Arsenal were beaten 2-0 by London rivals West Ham.
Not only was the result a surprise at Stamford Bridge, but the overall performance from Garry Monk’s men was also.
They never looked out of the game, even having gone behind on two occasions they still looked like they could still take something home from their trip to the capital.
Ghana international Andre Ayew produced a good display on his Premier League debut. He scored the Swans equaliser showing superb composure and was generally lively throughout.
The former-Marseille star arrived in Wales on a free transfer and he looks like he could be one of the bargains of the summer. If Monk’s side can continue in a similar vein throughout the campaign then they could surprise a lot of teams.
The sending-off of Blues ‘keeper Thibaut Courtois just seven minutes into the second half no doubt helped the Swans, but to be fair they were already looking sharp and dangerous in attack, especially winger Jefferson Montero.
Chelsea looked slightly stale at times and it was definitely not he start to the campaign that Jose Mourinho’s men were looking to make. They will have to improve their performances if they are to retain their Premier League crown this season.
The only way to describe Arsenal’s 2-0 home defeat against London rivals West Ham was shocking. The Hammers were incisive and Arsenal’s only summer signing Petr Cech will want to forget his Gunners debut in a hurry, after being culpable for the Hammers first goal scored by Cheick Kouyate.
The Hammers doubled their lead just before the hour mark through Argentinian international Mauro Zarate. The Gunners looked flat going forward, a great contrast to some of the displays Arsene Wenger’s side produced in pre-season.
Wenger showed faith in France international striker Olivier Giroud, despite the fact that Theo Walcott has impressed in the position during pre-season and at the back end of last season. The striker’s opening day display will have Arsenal fans re-visiting the talk of the Gunners signing a new striker this summer.
West Ham have to be given credit for their good display in north London. Bilic was in a Premier League dugout for the first time and should take some credit for the win. The Croatian threw in 16-year-old Reece Oxford for his debut in a defensive midfield role and the move proved a shrewd one as the youngster impressed.
The Hammers have not won against the Gunners in eight years and this was a great way to start the new campaign and a great way for Bilic to start his career as a Premier League boss.
Premier League new boys Watford came within a few minutes of claiming a victory at Everton, but the Toffees snatched a late equaliser to rescue a 2-2 draw. The Hornets display definitely deserved a point at least and some would say they deserved all three.
The performance would not have come as a surprise to most Watford fans, as they played some fantastic football last season to win promotion. However it will have come as a surprise to many Premier League supporters.
Everton fans will be worried that their team again showed traits from last season against Quique Flores men. The defence were once again poor and the biggest concern is the fact that the Toffees build-up play was far too slow.
They passed for passing sake and the crowd started to become restless when the team went a goal down early on. Toffees boss Roberto Martinez does believe in passing the ball, but the passing has to have a purpose and much like much of last season the Toffees tempo and passing was just too slow.
One bright spot for the Toffees was the display of new signing Tom Cleverley. The much-maligned England international looked lively on his Toffees debut and will be looking to further impress this season.
Last season was a slightly mediocre one in the Premier League. This season has started on a very entertaining note and hopefully it bodes well for the rest of the campaign.
No doubt there will be more bumps in the road for the likes of Arsenal and Chelsea, but neither Arsene Wenger nor Jose Mourinho will be pressing the panic button just yet.
Will this season be more entertaining in the Premier League?
- Soccer News Like
- Be the first of your friends!