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Spurs Odyssey Reviews the Premier League Season
for 2022-23 - Matchday Three

Premier League Review – Matchday Three

Saturday 20th August, 2022

Spurs 1-0 Wolves (12.30)

Spurs v Wolves - 20th August, 2022

Tottenham have started the season unbeaten in their first three Premier League games (W2 D1) - it’s the first time they’ve done so in consecutive campaigns since 2004/05 and 2005/06.

Tottenham’s victory was Antonio Conte’s 70th in the Premier League (70/107 – 65%). Of managers to have recorded at least 70 victories in the competition, only Pep Guardiola has a better win percentage than the Italian (171/230 – 74%).

Despite the fact that Ivan Perisic was voted man of the match on the official site, I had to go for Harry Kane, bearing in mind the importance of the goal in terms of the game, and of course his personal landmarks. (250 club goals, and a record 185 in the Premier League for one club)

Crystal Palace 3-1 Aston Villa (15.00)

This was a first win for Palace, for whom Wilfried Zaha scored twice, and a second defeat for Steve Gerrard’s side. Palace had a fifth minute lead though after Tyrone Mings sent forward a long pass which was headed by Bailey to Watkins who scored with a low shot with ease. Zaha equalised only two minutes, taking on Edouard’s pass and running at the Villa defence (such as it was) before beating Martinez’s left hand with a left foot shot across goal. Schlupp thought he had given the home side a lead following a delayed free kick, but VAR found an offside in the build-up.

Bailey hit the bar with an early second half shot for Villa. Martinez saved a header by Guehi following a corner, but there had been a handball spotted by VAR, and Palace had a penalty. Zaha’s initial penalty kick was well saved by Martinez, but the Palace man scored from the parried ball. (58 mins) Substitute Mateta made it 3-1 in the 71st minute when he met an excellent Mitchel cross with a powerful and unstoppable shot.

Everton 1-1 Nottingham Forest(15.00)

Everton got their first point of the season, but they had to be thankful for their 88th minute equaliser after Forest had taken an 81st minute lead. Pickford made a two handed save from a decent shot by Williams in the first half, and he also had to be sharply down to save from Awoniyi. Henderson managed to save a Demarai Gray free kick with his legs.

Forest’s latest signing (Morgan Gibbs-White) came off the bench and announced his presence, creating the opportunity for another shot by Williams which whistled past Pickford’s right post. Pickford could only parry an 81st minute shot by Yates and Brennan Johnson picked up the rebound scoring convincingly inside the keeper’s left post. It was Johnson’s first Premier League goal. Forest defended a desperate penalty area scramble before Demarai Gray stayed onside and ran onto a long clearance by Pickford before beating Henderson with his well-placed right-footed shot. Everton even had a chance to win in added time when Gordon was allowed to advance with the ball by Worrall’s error. Henderson closed down the Everton man and saved.

Fulham 3-2 Brentford (15.00)

This was the first meeting of these two clubs in the top flight. Fulham had the lead in the first minute when Decordova-Reid snapped up the loose ball after Stansfield had hit the crossbar. The scorer had offered the chance to Stansfield in the first place, through a blocked shot, and Stansfield’s shot was also blocked and lifted up to the bar. Mitrovic also had a header saved from an early free kick, and when the half-cleared ball was returned to Fulham’s in-form striker, he hit the net, but was offside. Another Mitrovic shot from a corner at the Putney Bridge End was blocked, not that Henry knew too much about his intervention. From the resulting corner, new signing Palhinha headed powerfully home. (20 mins)

Brentford got one goal back a minute before the interval. This was also from a corner, taken from the right by Jensen and met at the near post by a powerful right-footed shot by Norgaard. Toney thought he had levelled the scores four minutes into the second half when he hammered in with his right foot, but that was chalked off by VAR. Raya made a good save, pushing a Pereira free kickover the bar, and he also saved well when Mitrovic tried to take advantage of poor play by Norgaard. Toney had a legitimate equaliser in the 71st minute. Wissa crossed low from the right of the box into the 6-yard area, where Toney finished off.

Raya made a great reaction save from an 82nd minute Mitrovic header, but the Fulham man hit a 90th minute winning header from a cross by Mbabu.

Leicester 1-2 Southampton (15.00)

Leicester’s problematical season continues, but this was a welcome first league win in 9 games for “The Saints”. Fofana and Tielemans had been left out of the home side, due to possible transfer events. At the age of 35, Jamie Vardy has a new two-year contract, but he failed to win a penalty in the second minute of this game. Bazunu was stretched to push away a Maddison free kick taken from the left wing, and Harvey Barnes put a chance wide after being gifted the ball late in the first half.

Maddison did score from a free kick in the 54th minute. His shot came from over 22 yards out towards the right edge of the area. Southampton’s goals came in the last quarter of the game. Firstly, after a long throw-in from the left, substitute Che Adams’ low shot could not be kept out by Justin, who did not suffer the blemish of an own goal against his name. (68 mins) Adams’ second goal followed a flourishing Southampton attack down the right channel. Walker-Peters passed back to Ward-Prowse, whose cross was hammered home with an excellent right-footed aerial kick.

Bournemouth 0-3 Arsenal (17.30)

Arsenal are top of the league with three wins from three games. It’s the first time they’ve done that since 2004. The first goal followed good approach play by Jesus, a pass to Martinelli, whose shot was parried by Travers and fell to Odegaard who scored in the fifth minute. Odegaard is Arsenal’s latest club captain.

Odegaard had a second goal in only the 11th minute. Saka and Ben White attacked the right flank, and Jesus offered the final pass for Odegaard’s shot. This was despite Bournemouth playing a line of five at the back.

Saliba put the game beyond the reach of an ineffective Bournemouth side in the 54th minute. After receiving Xhaka’s pass from left of the area, Saliba curled a left foot shot into the far corner. It was the first club goal for the 21-year-old French centre-back. Gabriel Jesus had a goal chalked off for offside.

Sunday 21st August,2022

Leeds 3-0 Chelsea (14.00)

Whenever this fixture is played, memories of the infamous 1970 FA Cup Final are aired. Tetchy Thomas Tuchel claimed his side was the best of the two involved, but his team had been beaten 3-0 and one of his recent signings was irresponsibly sent off.

Conor Gallagher started for Chelsea, due to last week’s injury to Kante. Sterling put an early shot wide, before Koulibaly got his first booking for a foul on Aaronson. Sterling did get a shot on target but had been offside. Leeds captain Rodrigo hit a shot just wide across goal at one end, before Meslier made a save from a shot by Mount.

Leeds had a 33rd minute lead after Mendy made a hash of trying to play out and gifted the ball to Aaronson who took the present and planted the ball in the net. The second goal came four minutes later from a well-worked free kick taken by Harrison and nodded in by Rodrigo. Rodrigo has scored in each of Leeds’ first three games and has four to his name already.

Meslier made good second half saves from Gallagher (who had been offside anyway) and James, but Leeds had a third goal in the 69th minute following a cross from the left and a touch by Rodrigo to Harrison who delivered the left foot goal. Koulibaly’s second yellow was for an stupid and blatant foul on substitute Gelhardt as he broke forward and threatened the Leeds goal.

West Ham 0-2 Brighton (14.00)

West Ham have played three, lost three and scored none. Their goal of the month award is tough so far, although they do have two games to play, one of which is against Spurs. Brighton scored with their only two shots on target. New signing Thilo Kehrer made his West Ham debut at centre-back. Graham Potter was fielding the same starting eleven for the third successive game.

Kehrer was booked when he fouled Danny Welbeck on the line of the penalty area and Anthony Taylor’s award of a penalty was supported by VAR. Mac Allister converted the kick in the 22nd minute. West Ham’s first effort on target came in the second half when Sanchez saved comfortably from Fornals. Trossard scored the second goal after 66 minutes following a good Brighton advance through the middle with Gross making the final pass. Sanchez did have to make a good flying save late in the game from Soucek’s header. The Brighton keeper repeated the trick from the resulting corner.

Newcastle 3-3 Manchester City (16.30)

This was such an exciting game and a great spectacle for those who viewed proceedings. Having gone down to an early City goal, which looked as if it presaged a standard City win, Newcastle came back with vigour and skill taking a 3-1 lead, only to see City claw their way back to level terms. Former Spurs man Kieran Trippier, who started his football life with City was captain and made the headlines with a spectacular free kick goal, and a sending-off decision which was reversed, perhaps controversially. Bernardo Silva, reported to be unhappy at City, was to play a strong part for his team.

Silva firstly had the assist with a ball to Gundogan who scored with ease in only the fifth minute at the Gallowgate End. Nick Pope had conceded his first goal with Newcastle, but he saved well from Foden with his legs, although Foden had Haaland available inside. Almiron lifted a good chance over the target after 17 minutes after good play by Newcastle. Almiron did manage to equalise in the 28th minute when he dived forward to meet a cross by Saint-Maximin. There was some delay for a VAR review, but Almiron had just stayed onside, and the ball actually went in off his thigh as he dived for the ball.

Callum Wilson scored an excellent goal in the 39th minute after Saint-Maximin had beaten Stones and delivered a pass to Wilson, who nudged the ball forward before firing into the net.

Haaland hit the foot of Pope’s left post early in the second half with a right foot shot, but Newcastle had a free kick 22 yards out after Stones unfairly halted Saint-Maximin in full flow. Trippier hit a wonderful free kick with his right foot and the ball hit Ederson’s top right corner. (54 mins)

City got one goal back on the hour after two successive corners. De Bruyne lifted a fine cross to the back post, where Haaland scored after Rodri’s touch from close range. Pope advanced to save well from Haaland’s feet a couple of minutes later. Bernardo Silva scored the equalising goal in the 64th minute collecting a glorious threaded pass in the middle of the Newcastle area with a well-timed run.

Trippier was initially sent off by referee Jarred Gillet for a knee-high challenge on De Bruyne. However, after viewing the monitor, this was deemed not to have been a dangerous challenge. The red card became yellow.

The game lost some momentum in the latter stages, but it had offered plenty of entertainment and excitement.

Monday 22nd August, 2022

Manchester United 2-1 Liverpool (20.00)

This is, of course, one of the biggest fixtures on the football calendar. There was even more focus as the game had fallen so early, and both teams were looking for their first win. United were looking for their first point, and only West Ham's defeat yesterday was keeping them off the bottom.

30-year-old Brazilian midfielder Casemiro was at Old Trafford. He has said an emotional farewell to Real Madrid, and he was presented to the crowd before the game.

The team news was interesting. Club captain Harry Maguire was dropped, as was Ronaldo. Fred and Luke Shaw were also benched, with Eriksen playing beside McTominay. For Liverpool, Firmino replaced the suspended Nunez. Joey Gomez was next to Van Dijk.

United had won only one of the last 12 league meetings and last season lost 9-0 on aggregate to Liverpool.

It was noticeable that United were putting more physicality into the game. They almost took an early lead after Fernandes quickly hooked a McTominay pass into the path of Elanga, whose shot rebounded off the foot of the post. The lead did come in the 16th minute after some slick and speedy passing which gave Sancho the time to pick his spot, planting a shot to the right of Alisson. Elanga made the final pass from the left side of the box.

Diaz had Liverpool's first shot after running left to right across the outside of the box, shooting wide after taking a wall pass from Elliott. Alexander-Arnold committed a second foul just outside the area, this time on Elanga. Eriksen's free kick needed a touch over the bar by Alisson.

Liverpool had more of the possession after the goal, without bothering De Gea. The closest they came to a goal was after a corner and a header by Milner, when Fernandes involuntarily crashed the ball towards his own goal and Martinez managed to clear. Martinez had asserted himself early in the game against Salah and was defending well.

Martial was seen warming up at half-time and he replaced Elanga. Salah skied a shot from an early corner, but United increased their lead in the 53rd minute when Rashford just stayed onside when taking Martial’s pass, running on to beat Alisson with a right-footed shot. Liverpool nearly got one back immediately, but De Gea saved from Diaz. Rashford went close again, trying to place a shot into Alisson’s left corner, but the keeper made a save.

Fabinho came on for Henderson and he at least had a header on target from a corner. Rashford had another chance after poor Liverpool defending but hit his shot just over the bar after 75 minutes. De Gea had to push away a Firmino effort from a short cross by Robertson before Salah put Liverpool back in the game when heading in a rebound from a blocked shot by substitute Fabio Carvalho. (81 minutes) Fernandes escaped a second booking for his protracted efforts to prevent a quick restart.

Martial was nearly through on goal after passing substitute Tsimikas but Alisson was out to smother his effort. United held onto a much-needed three points and climbed above Liverpool!

  
Fixtures & results - 20-22.08.22

Saturday 20th August, 2022

Spurs       1-0  Wolves    (12.30)
C. Palace   3-1  A.Villa   (15.00)
Everton     1-1  Nottm F'st(15.00)
Fulham      3-2  Brentford (15.00)
Leicester   1-2  S'hampton (15.00)
B'mouth     0-3  Arsenal   (17.30)

Sunday 21st August,2022

Leeds       3-0  Chelsea   (14.00)
West Ham    0-2  Brighton  (14.00)
Newcastle   3-3  Man City  (16.30)

Monday 22nd August, 2022

Man Utd     2-1  Liverpool (20.00)

            Premier League Table

               P  W  D  L   F-A   GD   Pts

 1. Arsenal    3  3  0  0   9-2    7    9 
 2. Man City   3  2  1  0   9-3    6    7
 3. Leeds      3  2  1  0   7-3    4    7
 4. Spurs      3  2  1  0   7-3    4    7 
==========================================
 5. Brighton   3  2  1  0   4-1    3    7 
==========================================
 6. Newcastle  3  1  2  0   5-3    2    5 
 7. Fulham     3  1  2  0   5-4    1    5 
 8. Brentford  3  1  1  1   8-5    3    4
 9. C. Palace  3  1  1  1   4-4    0    4
10. Nottm F    3  1  1  1   2-3   -1    4
11. S'hampton  3  1  1  1   5-7   -2    4
12. Chelsea    3  1  1  1   3-5   -2    4  
13. A. Villa   3  1  0  2   3-6   -3    3 
14. Man Utd    3  1  0  2   3-7   -4    3
15. B'mouth    3  1  0  2   2-7   -5    3 
16. Liverpool  3  0  2  1   4-5   -1    2 
17. Everton    3  0  1  2   2-4   -2    1  
=========================================
18. Wolves     3  0  1  2   1-3   -2    1 
19. Leicester  3  0  1  2   5-8   -3    1 
20. West Ham   3  0  0  3   0-5   -5    0   

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