Premier League: From Manchester City's dominance to Arsenal's woes, 5 talking points from Gameweek 8

London: Chelsea came unstuck as Crystal Palace finally found the scoring touch, while Arsenal were exposed in a shocking loss at Watford.

Manchester City ran riot against Stoke, but Manchester United took the safety-first approach at Liverpool.

Here are five things we learned from the Premier League this weekend:

Mourinho cannot change his spots

Manchester United coach Jose Mourinho reacts on the sidelines during the English Premier League soccer match between Liverpool and Manchester United at Anfield, Liverpool, England, Saturday, Oct. 14, 2017. (AP Photo/Rui Vieira)

Manchester United coach Jose Mourinho reacts on the sidelines during the English Premier League soccer match between Liverpool and Manchester United at Anfield, Liverpool. AP

With his side flying high at home and abroad, Manchester United's trip to a fragile Liverpool seemed to represent an opportunity for Jose Mourinho to mastermind a statement victory that would send out a resounding message about the strength of United's title challenge.

This being Mourinho, he saw things differently, setting his side out to sit deep and defend and coming away with a point after a 0-0 draw that was every bit as forgettable as the previous goalless stalemate between the teams at Anfield last year.

United have matched their record points tally after eight games of a season in the Premier League era, but with Manchester City destroying Stoke City 7-2 to move two points clear at the top of the table, they have lost the initiative in the title race.

Eriksen ends Wembley woe

Christian Eriksen finally ended Tottenham's Wembley jinx as the Danish midfielder sealed a 1-0 win over Bournemouth on Saturday.

Tottenham had struggled badly at the English national stadium in recent years and their temporary move there while White Hart Lane is being rebuilt was turning in a nightmare after they failed to win their first three league games there.

Aside from a Champions League win over Borussia Dortmund, Wembley has been a house of horrors for Tottenham, who were unbeaten at home in the league at White Hart Lane last season.


Eriksen's 47th-minute winner gave them some home comfort at last and the north Londoners will hope it's more than a brief respite.

Fragile Arsenal exposed again

Arsenal's German midfielder Mesut Ozil (C) reacts at the final whistle during the English Premier League football match between Watford and Arsenal at Vicarage Road Stadium in Watford, north of London on October 14, 2017. Watford won 2-1. / AFP PHOTO / Glyn KIRK / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or 'live' services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications. /

Arsenal's German midfielder Mesut Ozil (C) reacts at the final whistle during the Premier League match between Watford and Arsenal. AFP

Arsene Wenger raged at the "scandalous" penalty decision that sparked Arsenal's shock 2-1 defeat against Watford, but Hornets striker Troy Deeney had a more convincing answer to the Gunners' woes.

Beaten for the first time in eight games in all competitions after Tom Cleverley's stoppage-time strike, Arsenal once again looked painfully fragile when Watford began to test them physically in the second half at Vicarage Road.

So, while Wenger felt Richarlison's theatrical fall under Hector Bellerin's challenge shouldn't have led to the penalty that Deeney converted for Watford's equaliser, it was the goalscorer's suggestion that Arsenal lack fight that rang true.

"I'm not going to be the one to tell Mr Wenger about himself, but there's a reason why they lost and it wasn't because of one penalty. I'll have to watch what I say. It's (having) a bit of cojones, a bit of nuts," Deeney crowed.


Palace know where the goal is after all

Crystal Palace were getting used to breaking unwanted records left, right and centre.

Pointless and scoreless after seven games, Chelsea would not have been their ideal opponents. But in the shock of the season so far, the champions were beaten 2-1 at Selhurst Park, courtesy of a Cesar Azpilicueta own goal and a Wilfried Zaha winner.

Suddenly, their situation does not appear quite so perilous, they are still rock bottom of the Premier League but are not far from safety and the clubs immediately above them are not setting the world alight.

Manager Roy Hodgson has previously saved Fulham when they looked doomed to relegation in 2008, taking nine points from his final three games.

Could his team have started their great escape?

Man City may be even better than we thought

(FILES) This file photo taken on September 13, 2017 shows Manchester City's English defender John Stones (2R) celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal during the UEFA Champions League Group F football match between Feyenoord Rotterdam and Manchester City at the Feyenoord Stadium in Rotterdam, on September 13, 2017. Manchester City and Napoli are the two most prolific teams in Europe's five major leagues, making the October 17 Champions League encounter at the Etihad Stadium a genuinely mouth-watering prospect. / AFP PHOTO / Emmanuel DUNAND

Pep Guardiola's Manchester City has been in tremendous form this season. They have become the first team since Everton in 1894-95 to score 29 goals in their first eight league games. AFP

Manchester City are frightening. Very frightening.

Pep Guardiola's team have caught the eye this season with some devastating attacking football, which reached a new high on Saturday in a 7-2 demolition of Stoke.

The visitors clawed their way back into the game from 3-0 down to trail by a single goal, but City merely shrugged and stepped up a gear, scoring another four in a spell of sumptuous football and that was without their main striker Sergio Aguero.

They are the first top-flight team to score 29 goals in their first eight league games of the season since Everton in 1894-95.

Some said Guardiola, trophy-less in his first season at City, could not successfully import his brand of possession-based football into the Premier League.

At the moment he's enjoying proving his critics wrong.

 


Published Date: Oct 16, 2017 10:45 am | Updated Date: Oct 16, 2017 10:48 am



Also See