The first game week of the Premier League restart is done. Boy, I am happy to have football fully back. I am totally used to having no fans in the crowd, and I do believe the crowd noise is indeed pretty good. However, I must say that some of the football on show was really, really awful. Particularly in the first half of games. That Everton vs Liverpool game was honestly dire. I'm not exaggerating when I say that could be the worst game of football I have ever watched in my life. I will try not to be too critical though, as they have just returned from a three month break and are evidently not up to gear yet. I do expect large improvement soon from every team. However, regardless of that, we have seen similar types of performances from Liverpool against teams who sit back and defend. At times they have struggled to break open defences and even the likes of Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah have been isolated. This is simply due to their midfield having 0 creativity. This is something they have to address otherwise they will continue to have similar problems. A midfield of Jordan Henderson, Fabinho and Georginio Wijnaldum possess no creativity. And that's why I think Jurgen Klopp was after Timo Werner. Klopp had the intentions of using Werner up front in certain games, then dropping Roberto Firmino into the number 10 role. That would instantly make a difference. But with Werner now a Chelsea player, that won't happen. But Klopp must address this problem in the summer, whether it is with a new number 9 or 10.
I thought Everton were good against their rivals. Carlo Ancelotti's tactics worked perfectly, as they kept Liverpool out for the whole game. Their plan to then attack Liverpool for the last 10 minutes very nearly paid off with Tom Davies hitting the post and Richarlison having a pair of chances. It's clear to see just how good of a manager Ancelotti is, and the Toffees will undoubtedly go places under him.
Another game, another illustration of just how awfully bad Arsenal are. The Gunners were beaten 2-1 by Brighton despite leading 1-0 with around 20 minutes to go. Honestly, I didn't think they were too bad in the first half, but their midfield is genuinely awful. Dani Ceballos is a lightweight player, Mateo Guendouzi is erratic despite being talented, while Bukayo Saka - although he is brilliant - can't carry the midfield on his own. As a result, despite all the possession, Arsenal were unable to really do anything with the ball. We know their problems defensively, as seen once more by the 2 Brighton goals, but boy is their midfield a major problem. Oh, how I miss the days of prime Mesut Ozil, Aaron Ramsey, Santi Cazorla, Tomas Rosicky and Jack Wilshere.
I still have huge faith in Mikel Arteta and he has to be backed financially. He has a shocking group of players. But I do think his in game substitutions have been a bit odd. Especially not bringing in Gabriel Martinelli for 2 games now. But besidew that, I fully back him and I'm sure there must be a reason for why he is doing this. It's not like their are a plethora of top players on the bench to bring on.
Bernd Leno suffered what looked like a serious injury after Neil Maupay was involved in an incident with the German. Look, I don't like what Maupay did, but this sort of thing happens ALL the time. Players do this all the time and lean into goalkeepers pretty much every game. I don't think it's nice and it's not at all necessary, but 99 times out of 100 an injury doesn't happen. Unfortunately, it did this time and Maupay for sure didn't intend to injure him, It's something that players do to physically impose themselves and try rattle their opponents, and perhaps it isn't nice or necessary, but it happens. It's hugely unfortunate, and I wish Leno all the best.
Spurs drew 1-1 at home to Manchester United, and to me, both managers' huge flaws were exposed. Once Spurs went 1-0 up. they parked the bus, sat back and defended for the rest of the game. That's not right at all with the attacking players they have on the pitch. But that's what Mourinho does nowadays. He's finished as a top level manager, and hasn't adapted with the times. His style of football is prehistoric and simply not good enough. On the other hand, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer proved yet again why he's also an average manager. The Norwegian cannot implement a style and is tactically poor. Spurs were there to be beaten but they themselves played so badly. Paul Pogba salvaged that draw for United, as he was simply magnificent when he came on in the 2nd half. He's so strong and powerful, and his technical ability in the middle of the park just leaves him heads and shoulders above anyone. It's a shame that we haven't seen this Pogba on a regular basis, because when he plays like this he is simply world, WORLD class. A very special player.
Manchester City thumped Burnley last night, but unfortunately not many people were talking about the result. A banner was flown above the stadium saying: 'White Lives Matter - Burnley'. Of course that had nothing to do with the club, and it was an idiot who did that. How thick do people have to be? Why are people like this? Black people are currently fighting for equality, and a racist idiot wants to do that? OF COURSE All Lives Matter, but right now black people are fighting for their lives. This is the priority. BLACK LIVES MATTER.
Phil Foden was impressive. It seems like he is finally going to get his shot, and he will be the replacement for David Silva next season. I'm going to be honest, I don't have too much to say on him. I've been impressed every time I have seen him. Technically he is superb. However, whenever he has got his chance, it has usually been against pretty weak teams. Not to say that he won't be good against bigger teams, but I don't want to jump onto the Foden bandwagon just yet. However, there are positive signs.
Adama Traore and Raul Jimenez linked up again as Wolves beat West Ham 2-0. Traore is a freak of nature and I am such a big fan of his. He is genuinely utterly unplayable, and no defender in the world can cope with him. Love watching him play.
Chelsea turned around a 1-0 deficit to beat Aston Villa 2-1. Christian Pulisic was instrumental off the bench as Olivier Giroud grabbed the winner. I'm quite surprised Pulisic doesn't start more game. Every time I have seen him, he has impressed me hugely. Not sure if there is a problem between manager and player, because he seems just too good to be on the bench.
I worry for Bournemouth, I Really do. Their performance against Crystal Place was so, so poor. There was nothing good to say about it. They're just such a feeble outfit and I do think relegation beckons for them. Honestly, I wouldn't mind if they get relegated. Not too be harsh, but they offer nothing that exciting to this league and Eddie Howe is incredibly overrated.
That's my post done for the day. I appreciate I haven't covered every game, but there's a lot to cover so I i just went through the key games. I'm not sure when I will be back next, either tomorrow or Thursday. I am very much looking forward to Spurs vs West Ham tonight. Massive game for both sides, and I do have a sneaky feeling that the Hammers may get a good result there. But anyway, have a good evening and see you next time.