Five talking points from the weekend’s Premier League matches

Author : Srihari

Moyes’s Manchester United Midfield remains a mystery

If you were to ask any Manchester United fan as to who has been the standout player so far, the answer would unanimously be Michael Carrick. But the problem for David Moyes has been the fact that, he has been unable to find him a suitable partner in crime. It is early days but David Moyes is yet to impart a clear identity on his side and his approach has been cautious to say the least. The need for a creative midfielder wasn’t addressed in the summer and it looks like it might yet come back to bite them.

Although there bids for Fàbregas and then Ander Herrera, they only managed to sign Marouane Fellaini, who has so far at least, turned out to be a poor man’s Carrick and doesn’t seem to be the player United were clamoring for. The injury to Cleverley and the continued absence of Anderson, means that the dynamism and industry is almost absent alongside the metronomic Carrick.  Whilst it will surely take Moyes some time to get his midfield sorted out, the current one looks bland and is severely lacking in ambition and invention.

Arsenal and Man City turn on the heat

Some of Arsenal’s attacking play in the game against Norwich City, was the stuff of dreams, especially Wilshere’s goal, which is sure to be replayed over and over again before the season ends. Whilst it is true that they have beaten just a single top half team, as the old cliché goes, you can only beat what is in front of you and Arsenal have certainly done that. The month ahead certainly looks challenging but you wouldn’t put it past this side to continue their attacking form and continue their confident start to the season.

Man City on the other hand showed that, when they are on song, with the amount of creativity at their disposal there aren’t too many better than them. With David Silva stealing the show with his sublime performance, City just hammered the Hammers. And the worrying thing for the rest of the league is the fact that, on the bench, City had over £125m-worth of players and a £15m signing Jesus Navas, not even making the squad. With such strength in depth, it should come as no surprise to anyone if they are up there fighting for the title, come the business end of the campaign.

Anthony Taylor and the Law 12 saga

When Samuel Eto’o nicked the ball off the Cardiff keeper and helped his side score, he sent millions of fans and pundits alike, scurrying across the FIFA rulebook, to see if that was legal. And after a lot of searching, it is fair to say that what he did wasn’t legal and the goal shouldn’t have stood, according to Law 12. The law clearly states that the goalkeeper cannot be touched when he is in control of the ball, which he clearly was, in that case, when he was bouncing it on the ground.

After the game, the referee Anthony Taylor told the Cardiff manager that he was aware of the rules and that he believed that David Marshall “dropped” the ball, when all evidence points to the contrary. Whilst it is easy to blame the referee in this case, in his defense, he was miles away from where the incident happened and the only thing he could have done, was consulted with his officials before making a call, which he didn’t do. Apart from that, this is certainly one incident which has made a lot of people aware of such a rule, which wasn’t the case before. And it should be treated as human error and nothing more than that.

Ashley would do well to keep the faith with Pardew

After a disappointing opening couple of games, Newcastle United are slowly but surely getting back on track. Although their form is inconsistent at best, the performance against Liverpool showed that they are on the right track. Mike Ashley would do well to stand by his word and let Pardew see out his long term contract.

Against Liverpool on Saturday, although his side played with just 10 men for 50 minutes, they managed to come out with a creditable 2-2 draw. And the fabulous form of Remy, the on-loan striker from QPR must surely please both Pardew and Ashley. The manager has certainly had a difficult past few months, as he has not only had to deal with the likes of Yohan Cabaye, Cheik Tioté and Hatem Ben Arfa, but also cope cleverly with the installation of Joe Kinnear as the director of football. With Newcastle finally starting to play some eye catching football, Mike Ashley would do well to keep the faith with Pardew and let him strut his stuff.

Will Sunderland stay rock bottom even with Poyet at the helm?

Sunderland fans would certainly have been hoping for an improvement of sorts with a new man at the helm. And a hammering at the hands of Swansea would have been the last thing that Poyet would have wanted in his first game in charge. The defeat showed that there is a lot of work to do and a few more of those will mean that they will be put in a hole, they can’t hope to come out of.


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