The 2022/23 English Premier League season is just six weeks old, but it looks very different from last season when there was a gulf between the duo of Manchester City and Liverpool and the rest of the league.
On Saturday, both teams dropped points again. Liverpool were inches from claiming victory over Everton in the Merseyside derby, but Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford made three fantastic saves to keep his side in the game.
Darwin Nunez, on his return from suspension, almost scored with a volley in the second half that Pickford parried unto the crossbar before Luis Diaz, in the next phase of action, struck the inside of the left post.
Tom Davies also hit the post while Alisson produced two excellent stops to earn his side a point. First, he had to adjust quickly to tip away a deflected shot from Dwight McNeil and then saved point blank from Neal Maupay, though the Everton forward should have done better.
Over at Villa Park, Pep Guardiola’s prediction that Aston Villa would be more dangerous because of their lowly position in the league came to pass. Though Erling Haaland gave the Citizens the lead in the 50th minute of a lovely cross from Kevin De Bruyne, Leon Bailey equalised for Villa after good work from Jacob Ramsey.
At Stamford Bridge, Chelsea had to come from behind to beat West Ham 2-1 though the Hammers should be rightly miffed that Maxwell Cornet’s immediate riposte was chalked off for minimal contact on Eduoard Mendy by Jarrod Bowen in the 90th minute.
Michail Antonio gave David Moyes’ side the lead after a scramble from a corner in the 63rd minute. Ben Chilwell came on for Marc Cucurella in the 72nd minute and scored the equaliser four minutes after. Another substitute, Kai Havertz scored the winning goal on 88 minutes from a Chilwell cross.
In other matches, Tottenham continued their excellent start to the season with a 2-1 win over Fulham in which Pierre Hojbjerg and Harry Kane scored for Antonio Conte’s team while Aleksandar Mitrovic scored the consolation for the Cottagers in the 83rd minute. Wolves won their first league game at home since April with a hard-fought 1-0 win over Southampton.
Also in London, Brentford hammered Leeds United 5-2 with a hat trick from Ivan Toney. Leeds manager, Jesse Marsh, was red carded in the second half. Crystal Palace held Newcastle 0-0 and they will believe they were hard done again as Tyrick Mitchell’s own goal was cancelled because of a foul on him by Joseph Willock, who was pushed into the Palace defender.
Two matches are scheduled for Sunday. Manchester United host unblemished Arsenal while Brighton host winless Leicester City. Arsenal remain top of the table with 15 points while Leicester City are bottom with one point from their first five matches.
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