Saturday, 27 August 2011

Gunners down but not out

Arsenal are still without a win in the Premier League after losing 2-0 at home to Liverpool having once again been reduced to 10 men while Manchester City rallied to a 3-2 win at Bolton and 2 goals just before the break against Fulham at Molineux gave Wolves another 3 points. Newcastle were victorious by a single goal at neighbours Sunderland while Blacburn lost 3-1 at Aston Villa and Chelsea got the better of WBA 2-1 at the Bridge. The newcomers all picked up points with QPR’s 1-0 win at Everton the pick of the bunch while a last minute Kenwyne Jones goal for Stoke at Norwich denied the Canaries a win and Swansea entertained Wigan a goalless draw. On Monday Tottenham travelled to Manchester where they were beaten 3-0 by United.
In the German league among other matches Bayern Munich Hammered Hamburg 5-0 and Werder Bremen won a 5-3 thriller with 2 late goals at home to Freiburg.
Arsenal came from a goal down at Udinese to make it through to the group stage of the Champions League with a brilliant Szczęsny penalty save and 2 second-half goals and it was a clean sweep for English teams in the Europa League with Kenwyne Jones scoring twice for Stoke who disposed of Thun 4-1 at the Britannia Stadium and Birmingham easing 3-0 past their Portuguese guests Nacional. Fulham lost 1-0 at Dnipro progressed 3-1 on aggregate while a goalless draw at Tottenham was scant consolation for Hearts as the Londoners sat comfortably on their massive away win. Schalke were among the goals sinking HJK Helsinki 6-1 with Huntelaar netting 4 times and Metalist triumphed 4-0 at Sochaux while a last gasp goal for Legia Warsaw at Spartak Moscow saw the Polish team through 5-4 on aggregate.
The Super Cup between Barcelona and Porto on Friday was won 2-0 by the Spanish and European champions with goals from Messi and new signing Sesc Fabregas.

Friday, 19 August 2011

Slow Premier start

The Premier League brushed off its summer cobwebs amidst transfer speculations and started with some low-scoring matches. Only Bolton and Manchester City had their scoring boots on as Bolton gave new boys Queens Park Rangers a rude awakening subjecting the hapless Londoners a 4-0 lashing at Loftus road while on Monday evening Swansea City had their wings clipped 4-0 on their first Premier League outing with Sergio Aguero coming on to net a double on his home debut for Manchester City. In a controversial match at St James’ Park, Newcastle held ten-man Arsenal to a goalless draw while Chelsea drew 0-0 at Stoke and there were no golas between Fulham and Aston Villa. Suarez missed an early penalty at Anfield but scored for Liverpool only for Sebastian Larsson to earn Sunderland a point with a superb volley while newcomers Norwich City earned a point with a 1-1 draw at Wigan. Wolves came from a goal down to win 2-1 at Blackburn and Ashley Young scored the winner for Manchester United as the champions triumphed 2-1 at West Bromwich Albion. Everton’s match at Tottenham was postponed due to the recent riots.
An early goal at the Emirates gave Arsenal a slender lead to take to Udinese in the Champions League while in the Europa league Tottenham broke hearts down 5-0 in Scotland and Clint Dempsey scored twice as Fulham sent Dnipro back to Ukraine 3-0 losers. Birmingham drew 0-0 with Natcional in Portugal while Stoke were 1-0 winners against Thun in Switzerland.
In the Spanish Super Cup after a 2-2 draw at Real Madrid, and with the same result looking likely at the Camp Nou, Messi added to his earlier goal with the winner 2 minutes from time in a match that ended with 3 red cards for a mass brawl.