What the fans say...

September 3, 2008
By Soccernet Correspondents
(Archive)

Chelsea 1-1 Tottenham Hotspur

David Esposto With their undefeated start to the season on the line, Chelsea took on a new-and-not-so-much improved Tottenham Hotspur. A goal in the 27th minute by Juliano Belletti gave the home side the lead but Darren Bent equalized in the 45th minute and salvaged a draw for Tottenham. While chances did materialize, the Blues simply did not have any luck on their side. The game ended in a stalemate, as both teams shared the points, all in all the game went well, as Chelsea once again dominated possession but failed to grab all three points.

Colin McCullough: Although Spurs lie second from bottom of the Premier League, all in all it has been an encouraging few days for the club. Sunday's draw at Stamford Bridge was, statistically speaking, a very good result, at a ground where Spurs have not won since 1990. With Woodgate and King in commanding form, the team weathered everything that Chelsea threw at them. The Berbatov situation has finally - and predictably - been resolved, and three quality players have been added to the squad. Hopefully, Spurs can now look to put their shaky start behind them.

Arsenal 3-0 Newcastle United

David Young: Arsene Wenger called for a response following the defeat at Fulham and he certainly got it as Arsenal swept Newcastle aside. From the kick off, the Gunners showed energy and endeavour and dominated the match. The only real criticism of the performance was that more chances were not converted. In truth, the winning margin should have been greater and would have been had Shay Given not pulled off a couple of fine saves and Theo Walcott and Emmanuel Adebayor not squandered seemingly straight-forward opportunities. Still, it was a convincing return to form for the Gunners.

Rob Lee:This was without doubt awful. Yes, Arsenal were excellent, and yes, we had injuries, but it was still 11 professionals against 11 professionals out there and the players who did play should hold their heads in shame. We made things very easy for Arsenal with most of our team seemingly hungover, or thinking about what they would be getting for their tea. Shay Given being the only positive, pulling off some excellent saves throughout, but how often have we said that? New players needed URGENTLY.

West Ham United 4-1 Blackburn Rovers

Billy Blagg: Well, the 4-1 score line undoubtedly flattered the Hammers, as two goals came in injury time following some lengthy stoppages; however, generally the Hammers were sharper, looked more dangerous, were tidier in midfield and stronger at the back than Blackburn and, for my money at least, deserved the win.

Alan Griffiths: Statistics will show that Rovers lost 4-1 to West Ham on Saturday; the same statistics that show Rovers haven't won at Upton Park since 1994. What statistics don't show is how close the game was and how different the result would have been if there was a clear mandate regarding the offside rule. Whilst I appreciate that the officials have a difficult job, I would suggest that unless there is clear daylight between the attacker and the defender then the attacker should be given the benefit of doubt. Derbyshire's disallowed goal, clearly not off-side, would have made it 2-2 and I suspect West Ham's confidence would have been shattered, but then again if you can't put away a penalty do you really deserve a share of the points?

Middlesbrough 2-1 Stoke City

Daniel Gray: Boro were made to work hard against a spiky Stoke side but in the end the class divide told. The Potters were full of running and robust, to be kind, tackling until Faye was dismissed for a foul more clumsy than a drunk Frank Spencer on ice. This was one of those games we would have lost a year ago. Can we at last joyfully mourn 'typical Boro'?

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Bolton Wanderers 0-0 West Bromwich Albion

Matthew Kilsby: A poor game in quality but I think that both teams had enough chances to win the game, although Wanderers only ever looked likely from set-pieces. Credit to West Brom, however, for playing some decent stuff and creating some good chances. For us Wanderers, this season promises to be as painful to watch as your average Steve McClaren interview.

Dino Pasalic: The Baggies supporters must be wondering how Kevin Phillips would have faired so far in these last three Premier League matches. We could have possibly earned a point against the Toffees and snatched a win against Bolton, after all Phillips is sitting top of the goal scoring charts for Birmingham City after three games in the Championship with three goals already.

Aston Villa 0-0 Liverpool

Jerrad Peters: If Aston Villa had won, or even drawn, at Britannia Stadium last weekend, they could have entered the international break with some degree of certainty that a spot in the top-four was very much within their abilities. Liverpool were fortunate to leave Villa Park with a point on Sunday. The Reds created very little and were rather unconvincing in the attacking third. That said, Javier Mascherano was immense - smothering every attacking movement from the hosts. Had John Carew taken his chance on 35-minutes, the match would have produced a far more justified scoreline.

Rafael Benitez suffered a torrent of abuse and saw his Liverpool side miss out on the chance to go top of the Premier League after a goalless draw at Villa Park. Object of obsession: Rafa Benitez and Martin O'Neill look on at Gareth Barry.Aston Villa fans taunted the Reds boss with chants of 'There's only one Gareth Barry' after the collapse of the England midfielder's move to Liverpool, and some of the crowd aimed personal insults at the Reds manager.

Sunderland 0-3 Manchester City

Peter Osborne: Sunderland could hardly have made Shaun Wright-Phillips any more welcome as he sought to relaunch his career with Man City, the club where he first came to prominence. The england international scored twice to launch his second spell with the club in spectacular fashion and help seal a 3-0 win.

Wallace Poulter: Now that was interesting, bordering on fascinating. The return of SWP and the 3-0 victory over Sunderland will get all the ink but it was the makeup of the team that caught my attention. With Petrov injured and Kompany available Morecambe went with the standard 4-2-3-1 formation, but started Ireland on the left, SWP on the right and Johnson in Elano's spot allowing Kompany to slot next to Hamann. That was creative but SWP, Ireland and Johnson also appeared to have been given carte blanche to swap roles whenever they wanted. Throw in both Ireland and SWP tending to drift into the middle even when playing their 'correct' positions and that caused Keane's men no end of trouble.

Everton 0-3 Portsmouth

This match proved that Everton are still desperately short of numbers - manager David Moyes he has made three signings but none made the starting line-up - and we made just one change from the side which triumphed 2-1 at West Brom Albion last weekend.

Jermaine Defoe kick-started Portsmouth's season in style with a brilliant brace and a clever assist to clinch a 3-0 win and condemn Everton to a second successive Premier League home defeat. Harry Redknapp's men arrived on Merseyside having lost their previous six league encounters and having failed to score in each of those defeats in a dismal run stretching back to the end of last season.

Hull City 0-5 Wigan Athletic

Richard Haddock: Comment to follow...

Liam O'Connor Wigan Flew out of the blocks, and with an early goal from what must be described as a dangerous Kevin Kilbane corner (yes, I am pinching myself) Sam Ricketts put through his own net! Following this was some slight Hull pressure on the Wigan goal, but from their own corner Wigan broke in Arsenal style and when Valencia ran through on goal, you knew the end product would be a 2-0 scoreline. The second half saw Wigan finish off every chance they were given, firstly Zaki put Wigan 3-0 up from a Valencia cut back, then Heskey put an unbelievable fourth on the scoreboard after some woeful defending by Hull! The goal of the day, without doubt, was Zaki's second and Wigan's fifth, a thunderous drive saw the linesman flag raised and the referee point to the centre spot, the goal was rightly given! Phenomenal finishing by Wigan and awful defending by Hull meant Wigan rightly walked away with three points!

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