What the opening Premiership weekend taught us:

(1): Football is beautiful again.

We are (joint) top of the league, we are....

It’s been an arduous summer, beset by diving players at World Cups, Dutch players attempting to kill their illustrious Spanish opposition in the final (which was a little dull), players returning to the front pages of newspapers before the back pages and Man City and Barcelona leading arrogant public pursuits of players regardless of the club they belong to.

But then along comes the opening weekend of the Premiership and all is forgiven. Blackpool are bottom of everyone’s predicted table outcome apart from a select few residents of the seaside town who choose instead to place ten pound notes on their team to win the league at 5,000-1.

And while the bookies aren’t about to slash those odds (particularly with a trip to the Emirates coming up on Saturday), a 4-0 away hammering of Wigan can’t help but put a smile on many a football fan’s face. Roberto Martinez is not laughing however because for every big winner there is a big loser. West Brom took a 6-0 pasting at reigning champions Chelsea but still won’t feel as dejected as Wigan fans this morning.

Drogba hits an opening day hat-trick

(2): Man City aren’t going to be cheered on by many, including the media.
So Harry Redknapp reckons Man City making the top-four is a long shot (and we’re only 90 minutes into the season). Based on Saturday’s performance he has a point, but is only indulging in a little added pressure on one of Spurs big rivals this season. Redknapp will probably be a little concerned that Spurs were unable to take maximum points against a team of individual stars playing together like a team lost in space.

Bellamy has been effectively sacked by the club due to his displeasure at the way he has been treated in the past few weeks. While TheFc100 sympathises with Bellamy, we are not surprised. Adebayor’s cameo at the en of the game will concern the Togo striker. With Balotelli set for a debut against Liverpool next week, where will he figure this season? Indeed where will any of the team figure this season? It’s a conundrum that Mancini probably can’t even solvehimself. This week will probably see the exits of players including Bellamy, Given, Robinho and Santa Cruz. Stephen Ireland may be playing for Man City reserves the way things are going.

Not that people seem too heartbroken to see a little early season suffering for the boys in blue. The media leapt all over Redknapp’s comments and were more than a little harsh in their reporting of the game on Saturday towards Man City. It’s going to be tough for Mancini’s millionaires to win many friends this year.

(3): It must only be crazy people who become referees:
Steve Bruce is rarely a man to talk ill of those dressed in black but….Ok, too farcical to continue with that line. Bruce feels that #fast-tracked’ referee Anthony Taylor had a nightmare on Saturday. He makes one good point: Would a referee with just four years experience be given the job of officiating Liverpool’s clash with Arsenal? Even Man Utd’s with Newcastle? Probably not. But Sunderland V Birmingham does seem like easy pickings. However his slightly biased view of Lee Cattermole being a demigod (He is in fact a fine player with a propensity towards kicking people) means that Taylor was doomed the moment he brandished red. Of a slightly more serious nature was the penalty Taylor awarded in favour of Sunderland for a foul committed by Stephen Carr outside the box. But Bruce failed to mention this in his post-match “I fancy getting an early fine from the FA” rant.

Special Mentions:

(1): Aston Villa. 3-0 winners, with Milner getting the third and sitting two points above the big, bad Man City already.

(2): Joe Cole. Anonymous for 45 minutes, page one material for the 46th minute. Whether he’s that kind of player doesn’t matter. He also may not be the kind of player Gerrard believes he is for footballing ability (Messi would probably have been a little more involved).


(3): England goalkeepers. Ok – Kirkland, Carson, Foster, Green – you conceded a lot of goals. But Joe Hart, you didn’t. Fair play.
(4): Putting Didier Drogba in your fantasy football team rather than Nicholas Anelka was a smart move. If you did it.
(5): Alex Ferguson: A little bit of a sour old man if you hate Utd, the best manager in history if you don’t. Ferguson’s comments about hacks predicting Utd would finish outside the top-four were deliciously arrogant and playful: “United not to be in the top four? You have to worry about what upbringing they had or what kind of porridge they’ve had.”

  1. August 17, 2010 at 11:37 pm

    nice read

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