What the fans say...

October 6, 2008
By Soccernet Correspondents
(Archive)

Manchester City 2-3 Liverpool

Wallace Poulter: Obviously missing the days of Sven, City did their best to channel their inner Swede against Liverpool, "First half good, second half not so good." The match turned I'm afraid on one decision, the straight red card for Pablo Zabaleta for a nasty two-footed challenge on Xabi Alonso. No complaints here for the decision and nice to see Hughes also take that approach rather than the moaning you normally hear from other Premier League managers. In a perverse way this is a "good" result for Hughes in the long term building of the club. Liverpool showed the killer instinct that champions need and Hughes will be able to point to this game. Don't get me wrong, three points would have been a whole lot better and the City team of the first half was well worth. Sometimes you have to take a positive from a negative. Roll on the UEFA Cup draw on Tuesday.

Kevin Brodie: Liverpool found themselves somehow two clear goals behind at the break. We actually didn't play that bad in the first half as Riera and Kuyt had the two best chances to score in the opening stages of play. City had barely come out of their own half when we found ourselves 1-0 after some sloppy defending. City were performing with a bit of confidence with Gerrard and Torres not involved in the match. Liverpool found themselves two down to a sweetly struck freekick. Torres pulled one back and City were on the ropes. A straight red card saw the tide firmly switch to the Reds and Torres glanced in our first goal from a corner since 1985. After Skirtel's horrific injury I thought it would finish 2-2 but Liverpool kept going forward. The tireless Kuyt scoring from close range after good work from another Rafa substitute, Yossi Benayoun. A fantastic Liverpool comeback was complete.

Blackburn Rovers 0-2 Manchester United

Alan Griffiths: Against United, Rovers were a shadow of the team that put a string of wins together in recent week. Whilst I didn't expect a Rovers win, I did expect the team to turn up and make some sort of effort. As it was United never got out of first gear and if they had then an embarrassing glut of goals would have been their reward. It was a poor performance by Rovers, there was no passion and no commitment, it was no wonder that fans were leaving in droves 15min before the end. As per the Arsenal game, a few weeks ago, Rovers gave United too much respect and instead of getting in their faces Rovers sat back like spectators watching the magic of Ronaldo, Giggs Rooney etc. whilst Santa Cruz was left isolated looking for scraps to feed off. Apart from a promising first 15min Rovers were not at the races and Ince's substitutions didn't help either in my opinion. Who would have though we were losing, when instead of adding to the forward line he brings on Andrews, meanwhile United add to their forward line bringing on Trevez.

Mark Payne: Blackburn are hard to quantify under Ince, one match they look great and the next they capitulate, so this was hard to call. They barely fought and I found that a little surprising. Berbatov played very well and the team is starting to click a little but I doubt any of us know the best 11 on any given day. I hate to say it but we really don't look 100% at the back at the moment. The great positive is that Rooney is scoring and that was important. The opportunities missed against Chelsea and Liverpool were big and we need to keep our eye on the ball now, behind is where we are and the work will be gruelling from here on in. I expect the attacking to get better, the signs are there, and the flapping at the back should clear itself up too but this run needs to continue. Incidentally, when was the last time Ewood Park was actually full?

Tottenham Hotspur 0-1 Hull City

Colin McCullough: It's been another bad week to be a Spurs fan. The disgusting abuse meted out to Sol Campell last weekend by a section of the travelling support was followed by an unconvincing performance in the UEFA Cup and then by defeat at the hands of a "tigerish" Hull City. Although Spurs struck the woodwork twice, worryingly the unlucky players were both defenders, Bale and Woodgate. Up front, Pavlyuchenko and his replacement Bent were both ineffective, while Fraizer Campbell made absolutely no impact against the side whom he helped to promotion last season. Thankfully, the international break means that Spurs now have an extra week to prepare before facing Stoke at the Britannia Stadium.

A brilliant first-half free-kick from Brazilian Geovanni did the damage to continue Hull's brilliant arrival in the top flight for the first time in their history. Hull's wonderful start has now taken them to third place in the league table but of more immediate relevance was Tottenham's third home league defeat of the season which left them stranded rock bottom of the Premier League with just two points and had Hull fans revelling in their misery.

West Ham United 1-3 Bolton Wanderers

Billy Blagg: This was an awful result against a mediocre Bolton side who notoriously travel poorly. However, the Hammers were outfought and given little time by Bolton who continued their good form against the home side, aided by a bad day at the office for the normally reliable Robert Green. Unfortunately, West Ham always seem to perform poorly against Bolton and they have an unerring ability to make Kevin Davies look like a world beater.

Matthew Kilsby: Despite not managing to create a chance all afternoon, the Wanderers were actually worth the 3-1 win, which admittedly sounds a paradoxical thing to say. Gavin McCann was excellent in front of the back four (I never thought I would hear myself saying that) and Gardner and Samuel cause all sorts of problems for West Ham down the left. Indeed, it was a great performance all round. However, special thanks must go to West Ham for being totally and utterly inept in all areas of the pitch. Much appreciated.

West Bromwich Albion 1-0 Fulham

Dino Pasalic: Comment to follow...

Tom Wille: After finishing last season with three straight away wins, Fulham seemed to finally be over their longstanding problem of winning on the road. Unfortunately, that is not the case as the Cottagers have dropped their first three road matches of the 2008-2009 season. The last of which came at the Hawthorns. The Baggies outplayed the Cottagers in all facets of the game and fully deserved to take all three points from the match. The Cottagers were two steps behind and rarely did they show any fight on the pitch. That is not the kind of team that Roy Hodgson normally puts on the pitch. The Cottagers have a week off for international matches before taking on Sunderland at the Cottage in what will be a massive game for the Cottagers to get their season back on track.

Chelsea 2-0 Aston Villa

David Esposto Even with the absences of Didier Drogba, Deco, Ricardo Carvalho and Michael Essien, Chelsea are continuing to show that while they may be injury-hit, they are more than capable of obtaining successful results, and Saturday's clash was no different. Joe Cole and Nicolas Anelka provided the thrust as the Blues continued to show their dominance at home snatching the victory and keeping their unbeaten home record in check. Scolari deemed this win as his most satisfying yet, and rightfully so as yet another injury set the Portuguese boss back with Ashley Cole limping off. Once again Chelsea turned on the style and skill and everybody left Stamford Bridge delighted as the Blues once again reign atop the league.

Jerrad Peters: Aston Villa were issued a wake-up call at Stamford Bridge. With Chelsea very much in the mood, the visitors were given a one-way ticket back to reality. Villa were never really a part of the proceedings. Joe Cole and Florent Malouda terrorized Nicky Shorey and Luke Young while central defenders Martin Laursen and Curtis Davies appeared fearful of venturing out of the defensive third with the ball. As a result, Villa had very little possession – and Gareth Barry and Stilyan Petrov were rendered ineffective in the middle of the park. It was the classic story of men against boys. And if Villa intend to dislodge one of the top-four, they will have to make significant strides before back-to-back encounters with Arsenal and Manchester United in November.

Sunderland 1-1 Arsenal

Peter Osborne: Comment to follow...

David Young: The Arsenal revival after last weekend's defeat at the hands of Hull did not last long as the Gunners scraped a draw at Sunderland courtesy of Cesc Fabregas' last-gasp header. With the Blackcats playing ten behind the ball, Wenger's men had plenty of possession but lacked any real penetration. The manager played a perplexing formation with Robin Van Persie left out on the left and Samir Nasir on the bench. In a game where width would seem to have been required to pull apart the Sunderland defence, Arsenal looked very narrow throughout the match. Despite all Arsenal's territorial dominance, it was the home team who took the lead when some inept defending from Alex Song allowed Grant Leadbitter to line up a barnstorming shot. A point was slavaged when Cesc came to the rescue from a Robin Van Persie corner but this was yet another disappointing performance that sees the Gunners drop further behind the pace.

Portsmouth 2-1 Stoke City

Colin Roberts: Comment to follow...

Sean Kesluk It was nice to see Rory Delap back in action at the weekend, his booming throws providing yet another goal for the Red and White Army. But coming off of two straight losses was not the way Tony Pulis would have liked to see his squad go into the international break. Ricardo Fuller put in an industrious 90 minutes for Stoke, scoring himself the kind of scrappy goal I expect we'll see often enough this season, yet strike partner Dave Kitson has looked a shadow of his former self. The manager's brutally direct approach to football has produced some reasonable performances so far this term, but questions will start to arise concerning just how effectively it will bring in the top-flight points. At the very least the Potters can look forward to welcoming the imploding Spurs side to the Britannia in the campaign's first (I suspect of many) relegation battles.

Wigan Athletic 0-1 Middlesbrough

Liam O'Connor Comment to follow...

Daniel Gray: Comment to follow...

Everton 2-2 Newcastle United

Tony Burns: Comment to follow...

Rob Lee: Comment to follow...

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