Bits & Pieces Including: A Draw For A Stubborn Old Man, The Two Sunday Derbies And Noel Gallagher

Posted: December 11, 2017 in Arsenal, Chelsea, European Football, Football, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Opinion, Premier League
Tags: , , , ,

Salmon

The early game on Sunday morning took place on the south coast of England.

Judging by the assortment of winter clothing on display, it was quite a cold one. This did not auger well for the two games to follow as, up in the frozen and often ignored wastelands of the north west it is frequently a few degrees colder than down in the pampered south.

What would Lukaku have to wear to stay warm? How about Sterling? Would he survive in just his football kit, thermal long-johns, scarf and gloves? What about Roberto Firmino? Surely it would be too cold for him to come out to play! Only Gylfi Sigurdsson would be sweating in this climate of ours!

At least the respective benches didn’t follow the example set by Michy Batshuayi of Chelsea and pass round a hot-water bottle as though it were a hip-flask!

But we digress, so back down south we go.

Southampton_Augsburg_044

Despite the cold Arsenal managed to get burnt within the first two minutes of their game at Southampton when Per Mertesacker gave the ball away and Charlie Austin scored the opener.

The visitors then proceeded to display their usual mix of huffing and puffing, interspersed with great movement but with little or, in this case, no end product and half-time arrived with The Saints one up.

The second half was much like the first but without the early goal although, in fairness, Southampton did have opportunities to put this game well beyond the reach of Arsenal, but failed to take them and, as is usually the case when this happens, Olivier Giroud scored a very late equaliser.

The next game was the Merseyside derby which promised, thanks to Everton’s new-found form, to be more interesting than it might have been a few short weeks ago.

Liverpool’s team selection was more interesting because of the players left out rather than those included, with Firmino and Coutinho both on the bench.

If Everton needed any encouragement before kick-off this would surely have provided it!

So after that boost for the Everton confidence obviously the first half was all Liverpool but with no clear-cut chances. This was how it was until the 42nd minute when one of Chelsea’s rejects, Mo Salah, scored a sweetly struck goal from the corner of the area. 1-0 at half-time.

Everton, in truth, were woeful.

Now they just needed to come out of their shell and score a couple of goals in the second half, simple.

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Unfortunately, the game continued in the same vein as it had been played in the first half with Liverpool hogging possession. But, as is often the case, failure to take any of their chances eventually came back to bite them as had been the case with Southampton in the earlier game.

In the 76th minute, Lovren conceded a stupid penalty which Rooney converted for, believe it or not, his first ever goal in a Merseyside derby.

So another game ended 1-1.

In the day’s final game Manchester United played Manchester City at Old Trafford. The first half was a very tight-knit affair with City having the majority of the possession mainly thanks to United and their inability to keep it.

Marcos-Rojo

Rojo was particularly effective at booting the ball straight back to them rather than looking for a simple pass to one of his own players.

City took the lead when David Silva scored from six yards out but the lead only lasted about five minutes before Marcus Rashford scored from six yards out. Both goals could have been prevented by better defending..

So the first half ended all-square but City had created by far the most chances.

It didn’t take long before yet another defensive mistake gifted another goal to City and, at this stage, United would have been happy to take a point from the game.

When two teams with dodgy defences such as these meet, it is invariably the one with the best attack which wins. Today, United’s attack was non-existent and City could have scored three or four. They made do with just the two which was enough to win the game 2-1.

Noel Gallagher, invited by Sky to give his expert and unbiased opinion of the game, thought that City were excellent and United weren’t. He was right.

On this evidence Manchester City will win the title without any problem. Also on this evidence, Manchester United may very well struggle to finish in the top four.

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Comments
  1. RedMe says:

    Lukaku at the moment is costing the team in every department. He maybe convinced JM that he was the striker we needed he is obviously better talking than playing football. That is only a £100 millions mistake.

    Like

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