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Is anybody going to challenge Manchester City for the title this season?

Arsenal and Liverpool have already proven themselves far too inconsistent and may even struggle to get into the top four. As they both play on Sunday we may get an idea if they have managed to improve on their recent form.

Arsenal appear to have the easier game as they are going to Goodison Park to play a totally out of form Everton, while Liverpool travel to White Hart Wembley to play Tottenham who, if they can ever work out how to play there, could be considered serious challengers themselves!

As we said, we shall see on Sunday.


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On Saturday City had a relatively routine win against Burnley although, at half-time, they only led 1-0 thanks to a Sergio Agüero penalty. It was a hotly disputed call and one which Sean Dyche, whilst admitting that City were worthy winners, thought that the referee got wrong, which certainly didn’t help his side.

As he said after the match,

The problem is at the moment, there is contact. But if I contact my kid in the garden I would be amazed if he got that high of the floor. It is amazing how high these players go. How the referee has seen it… I had to watch it four times to see contact.

“If that’s a penalty then I want one on Chris Wood last week. We just want parity.

Further goals in the second-half from Nicolas Otamendi and Leroy Sané were enough to see them comfortably past the winning post.

Whilst not at their best City still had far too much quality for their opponents and now sit five points clear at the top.


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United travelled to Huddersfield Town for a game they were expected to win comfortably. The problem was that they were absolutely pathetic and, because of the abject nature of their performance, they thoroughly deserved what they got, which was nothing.

Apart from a tame Lukaku effort in the first half, Huddersfield’s goalkeeper did not have a save to make until the 75th minute.

The 2-1 scoreline actually flattered United because they really didn’t deserve to score.

Huddersfield’s two goals both came from United errors and the bigger of the two, for the second goal, was made by Lindelof, who had come on for the injured Jones and who hasn’t looked comfortable since arriving from Benfica.

This United defence, which everybody seems to think is so good, was made up of two wingers playing at full back, and two central defenders who would struggle to get into a Championship team.

Better teams than Huddersfield would not have resorted to defending their lead because there were certainly more goals to be had against this United team and three or more goals would have been entirely possible.

Substitutions by Mourinho came and went and only Marcus Rashford made any difference at all as it was he who scored the goal.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan seems to sleep through games at present and being dropped to the bench hasn’t appeared to have awoken him. He came on and immediately went back to sleep.

This was a very poor performance and the major problem was that United never looked like creating anything, despite having the vast majority of the ball. The usual misplaced passes, easy losses of possession and sideways passing were all there as well but creatively there was nothing.

As has been said many times, it isn’t the amount of possession that is important, it is what you do with the ball while you have it that is important. United did nothing.

José Mourinho must be hoping that United can stay in touch with the leaders until January when he will hope to get Antoine Griezmann from Atlético Madrid because he definitely needs him.

At least he gave a frank and honest opinion after the match when he said,

The best team won. It’s simple. I have to give them credit. They had a different attitude, motivation and desire than we had.

Everyone at the stadium could feel in the first couple of minutes that one team was ready to give everything and the other was not ready for it. Maybe my players only realised at half-time.

It’s a shock and I am surprised. I have to analyse. I have some ideas, but this is not the moment for that. We say congratulations to the winners because they wanted it more than us.


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In the early game Chelsea were extremely fortunate to beat Watford at Stamford Bridge having gone 1-2 down.

Had Watford been more accurate with their headers they would have been winning by four goals to one.

As it was they missed a couple of excellent chances to extend their lead and Chelsea took full advantage. Goals from Batshuayi (2), who had replaced Álvaro Morata, and Azpilicueta added to the first half goal from Pedro and gave Chelsea, somewhat fortuitously, the points.

Marco Silva will have been disappointed not to at least leave with a draw and was certainly very dejected in his post-match interview. This is what he had to say,

It is a really unfair result. We didn’t create many chances in the first half, it is true, but we controlled the game and Chelsea started to play on the counter attack.

We played our game and in the second half for 40 minutes there was only one team playing on the pitch. After 2-1 we had clear chances to finish the match.”

So, at present, Manchester City can sleep easily without having to keep one eye on the challenging pack because, to continue with the corny metaphors, the continuing pack keep shooting themselves in the foot.

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Comments
  1. adepet says:

    blue is d colour

    Like

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