Thanks to Van Persie, Alex Ferguson’s 1,000th EPL game ended with a dramatic comeback. The Man United striker missed a penalty, but still finished with a hat-trick as a gift for Sir Alex’s milestone match. Newly promoted club Southampton has showed admirable bravery and ambition so far this season. On the opening day, they visited Etihad Stadium as a dark horse and scored twice against last season’s champions. Last Sunday they dominated, leading for most of the game. The only difference was Robin Van Persie.
There is good news for Arsène Wenger – Arsenal minus Robin Van Persie managed to score at last. The Gunners beat Liverpool at Anfield Stadium, with both Podolski and Cazorla opening their goal-scoring accounts. French striker Giroud missed golden chances in his third consecutive game, but Wenger has kept his faith in Van Persie’s replacement.
Liverpool is still waiting for their first win of the new season. So far, they’ve only managed a draw and two losses in three games, to see them sitting at the wrong end of the league table. The closing day of the transfer window was a nightmare for Liverpool. Against Brendan Rodgers’ will, they let Andy Carroll go without getting a replacement. Now the Reds only have two senior strikers in Luis Suarez and Fabio Borini. If they don’t work out, Rodgers doesn’t have a plan B.
On the list of managers most likely to be sacked, Villas Boas is not far behind Rodgers. Tottenham Hotspur, like Liverpool, is yet to record a single win in the new season. They’ve let their opponents steal a goal in the dying minutes of two consecutive home games. In the other matches, Manchester City beat QPR without any fuss. Swansea’s winning streak ended with a draw against Sunderland. A season-ending injury darkened the game when Swansea defender Neil Taylor broke his ankle.
Over the next two weeks, World Cup qualifiers will take the place of the European leagues. When the players return to the EPL, under-fire managers like Rodgers and Villas Boas will pray they haven’t lost players as a result of injuries while the players were representing their countries.