Once again, the EPL weekend provided plenty of interesting stories while still having my mouth watering for the Monday clash between Chelsea and Manchester United. Although Bale still plays for Spurs and Suarez is still unavailable for Liverpool, the Premier League always is enjoyable and makes sure that my TV and DVR get a serious workout.
Arsenal and the Gunner faithful will be thankful and give Wenger a slight reprieve after a 3-1 win over Fulham. Although many have Fulham bound for the relegation battle this season, Arsenal needed a win in the league if they had any hope of their fans getting behind their squad. If Lukas Podolski can score consistently and Santi Cazorla continues to impress, Arsenal may be able to weather their miserable transfer window.
The rest of Saturday’s entertainment seemed relatively devoid of goals, but many teams will be pleased with their result. Liverpool have now won 2 games in a row, and if they can take four points from their next two fixtures (Man U/Swansea) then they will be thinking that the top four is a definite possibility. However, they will need to score more than one goal per game to hope for their victories to continue. If Liverpool can look decent AND improve when Suarez finally comes back, watch out.
Several teams hoping to avoid the drop (Hull and Stoke) were able to secure three vital points. Although it is early in the season, both of these squads may be able to look back at these fixtures as their reason for remaining in the EPL if the avoid relegation. On the flip-side, many teams will be disappointed with only getting one point. Everton and Newcastle probably started the season with top ten aspirations, but they need to win against lower opposition in order to secure that type of finish. Everton will be especially disappointed in their performance as they were unable to score at all despite still having Fellaini and Baines in their ranks (for the time being).
Sunday’s action put a serious dent in my preseason predictions. Manchester City fell to newcomers Cardiff City in a 3-2 goal-fest where the normally unflappable Joe Hart will feel responsible for not keeping City’s title ambition on track. Although it is early in the season, teams like Chelsea and Manchester United only need a small slip-up from their competition in order to snag the title. Hull City will not be thanking Cardiff City as they are City’s next fixture, and the Citizens will be looking to rebound with a BIG win.
Tottenham also snagged their second win, but Andre Villas-Boas will be the most concerned manager of all the current undefeated teams. His team has not been able to score from the run-of-play, needing two penalties to secure two wins. With Bale rumored to be introduced in Madrid this week, Spurs will be hoping that they can find the back of the net without needing help from the penalty spot. On the flip-side, AVB will be glad that his defense have kept two clean sheets. I foresee the upcoming fixture against Arsenal giving us a better view of what Tottenham have to offer.
Make sure that you have your TV prepared and your DVR set-up before the upcoming weekend of fixtures. This EPL season has been set-up to be fantastic for anyone lucky enough to be viewing. Here’s to another great weekend of fixtures upcoming!