soccer

United stumbles again, Arsenal keeps flying

9 Comments

Manchester United's disappointing start to the Premier League season continued on Saturday as the champions were held to a 1-1 draw at home to high-flying Southampton.

United's teenage winger Adnan Januzaj celebrated his new five-year contract by creating the game's opening goal in the 26th minute with a superb through ball for Wayne Rooney.

The England striker's shot was blocked by Southampton goalkeeper Artur Boruc, but Robin van Persie was on hand to sweep the rebound home.

Both Rooney and Van Persie hit the woodwork thereafter, but the hosts were prevented from recording consecutive victories for the first time in the league this season when a header by Southampton defender Dejan Lovren flicked into the net off team-mate Adam Lallana from an 89th-minute corner.

"We had the opportunities to go 2-0 up. They had been knocking on the door, but I thought we would see it out," said United manager David Moyes.

"But if you don't defend a corner well enough, there's always a chance they will score."

The draw left United in eighth place, eight points adrift of leaders Arsenal.

Having seen Liverpool temporarily take claim of first place earlier in the day, Arsenal returned to the summit with a 4-1 win at home to Norwich City.

Jack Wilshere scored his second goal in two games to give Arsenal an 18th-minute lead, volleying home from Olivier Giroud's flick following a dizzying exchange of passes involving Santi Cazorla.

Mesut Ozil scored his first league goal for the club with a header from a Giroud cross in the 58th minute and although Norwich midfielder Jonathan Howson replied for the visitors, Aaron Ramsey came off the bench to make sure of victory before Ozil added a fourth.

"A few weeks ago we lost our first home game here (against Aston Villa) and it was a difficult time, but we responded well and since then we have been consistent," said Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger.

"I like the solidarity in the team. Of course we have quality, but it's how much we maintain that and sustain that that will decide our future."

Arsenal lead the standings by two points from Chelsea, who leapfrogged Liverpool into second place after coming from behind to win 4-1 at home to Cardiff City.

Jordon Mutch gave the promoted side a shock 10th-minute lead by lifting the ball over goalkeeper Petr Cech after Chelsea defender David Luiz inexplicably allowed a pass from team-mate Ramires to run past him.

Jose Mourinho's side equalised in the 33rd minute with an unusual goal that saw Eden Hazard sweep the ball home from close range after Samuel Eto'o had stolen possession from Cardiff goalkeeper David Marshall as he bounced the ball.

Eto'o completed the comeback in the 66th minute, and although Mourinho was sent to the stands for dissent, Oscar and Hazard both found the net in the closing stages.

Cardiff manager Malky Mackay described referee Anthony Taylor's decision to allow Chelsea's opening goal to stand as "a horrendous error".

Manchester City stole into the top four, three points behind Arsenal, after winning 3-1 at West Ham United in the late game.

Sergio Aguero struck either side of half-time at Upton Park and then teed up a delightful late goal for David Silva after Ricardo Vaz Te had replied for West Ham with an overhead bicycle kick.

Liverpool twice came from behind to earn a 2-2 draw at 10-man Newcastle United.

Visiting captain Steven Gerrard claimed his 100th league goal from the penalty spot shortly before half-time, cancelling out Yohan Cabaye's long-range opener, after Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa was sent off for a last-man foul on Luis Suarez.

The 10-man hosts restored their lead through 22-year-old substitute Paul Dummett, only for Daniel Sturridge to head home a second Liverpool equaliser from Suarez's 72nd-minute cross.

"It's never easy when you're playing against 10 men, but I thought some of our play was outstanding today. We had to show character twice, coming from behind," said Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers.

Gus Poyet's tenure as manager of bottom club Sunderland began in lamentable fashion as his side crashed 4-0 at Swansea City.

All the goals came in the last 33 minutes, with Jonathan De Guzman, Wilfried Bony, from the penalty spot, and Chico Flores netting after recalled Sunderland full-back Phil Bardsley opened the floodgates by putting through his own goal.

Steven Pienaar scored within seconds of coming on to earn Everton a 2-1 victory at home to Hull City, while West Bromwich Albion were held to a 0-0 draw at Stoke City.

© (C) 2013 AFP

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

9 Comments
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Ozil the best player in the Premiership. Given the choice between him and Bale, I'd take Ozil any day. My bet on Moyes being fired before the end of the season still might pay for my Christmas shopping.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

United! LOL!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

“We had the opportunities to go 2-0 up. They had been knocking on the door, but I thought we would see it out,” said United manager David Moyes.

See it out? How about going for the second goal instead of settling in to defend a single goal lead? That may be the Everton way but it's certainly not the United way David and it's high time you realized that.

“But if you don’t defend a corner well enough, there’s always a chance they will score.”

That's precisely why you don't make meaningless (and the totally wrong) substitutions too late in the second half. Giggs (god bless him) on for Nani when you've only up by a goal and when Nani's playing just fine? May as well just tell your opponents that you're not interested in scoring any more goals the rest of the match. And how did if feel to be without Rooney on the pitch when you're desperate for a winning goal in extra time? Hope you didn't thing Smalling was going to save the day for you...

Come on Moyes. Fill the shoes Sir Alex left you and play the side you were handed the way they should be played.

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Come on Moyes. Fill the shoes Sir Alex left you and play the side you were handed the way they should be played.

LOL! Feel the pain!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Moyes, man, the honeymoon's over.

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Honeymoon? The bride has found the groom doesn't measure up.

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How long until the Man Utd glory hunters switch teams? Will probably be Arsenal if they keep winning, ROFL!

Mind you hardly any of their fans on this site have even been to England let alone Manchester, lol!

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

As a manc born and bred l am finding the start to the season very depressing . It appears that Mr Moyes has yet to adjust his thinking from Everton (11 points from 8 games thats nearly a third of the way to safety) to Uniteds we dont loose or dropping points against teams of that calibre . Still we have had a good run although he will have real problems if as seems unlikely we fail to qualify for Europe .Oh and Falseflagsteve l have no intention of abandoning my team we had bad times in the 70's and came through them and will do so again .

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@toby2663

Good for you but i am talking about the "fans" not supporters who follow teams for a taste of glory. Whatever happened to those Newcastle and Blackburn "fans" from the 90's?

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

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