GOOD WEEK / BAD WEEK IN THE EPL #1

Posted on: November 10th, 2014 | by Erika | No Comments

A slow start to the Barclays Premier League this weekend proved to be a false dawn with a handful of upsets across the fixture card. After all Saturday’s 3pm kick-offs were deadlocked at half-time, defeats for Arsenal, Spurs and a battling draw for Manchester City threw up talking points aplenty, but who were the big winners and losers?

GOOD WEEK

BURNLEY

Burnley SeanDyche

It’s not every week that a 1-0 home win against Hull will make this list, but for the occasion of Burnley’s first league win of the season, it’s the first on the list. Ashley Barnes was the hero, and his header just after the break was enough to do the business. Blessed with the face of a nightclub bouncer and the voice of velvet gravel, Sean Dyche could well be the division’s most likeable manager, and his relief at grabbing this famous victory was palpable. Who knows? This could be the springboard for a survival-inducing run.

MANCHESTER UNITED

Another largely unspectacular 1-0 win makes the list, this time at home to battling Crystal Palace. United coughed and spluttered their way to three points, but it was what went on around them that made this a weekend a gift Louis van Gaal’s side. A defeat for Liverpool and a plucky draw for Man City heaped even more misery on their two arch-rivals, whilst an Arsenal defeat and dropped points for Everton and Spurs means they have made gains on the other sides aiming for a fourth place finish. If that particular race goes down to the wire, then this weekend could well make all the difference.

ALAN PARDEW

Love him or hate him, there’s something really rather impressive about the way Alan Pardew has dragged his Newcastle team to a run of six games unbeaten in the Barclays Premier League. Throw in those cup victories against Manchester City and Crystal Palace, and the much-maligned manager is ambling towards messiah territory. Whether or not he can truly turn around the opinions of the Gallowgate faithful remains to be seen, but this 2-0 win at a resurgent West Brom takes him one step further to redemption.

 

BAD WEEK

BRENDAN RODGERS

Liverpool BrendanRodgers

Who would have thought that dropping Kolo Toure would cause such a stir? The frankly bizarre Madrid gamble failed to come off, and now Brendan Rodgers is facing his most challenging period as manager of Liverpool since he took over in 2012. Opinion on Merseyside is best described as divided as to the Northern Irishman’s selection policy, and his side’s lacklustre performance against Chelsea will do little to improve the mood. He wont get sacked yet, but this start is worse than the final seasons of pre-predecessors Evans, Houllier, Hodgson, Benitez and Dalglish. Watch this space.

ARSENAL

It was a case of ‘same old Arsenal’ this weekend as the Gunners fell to a 2-1 capitulation at Swansea. An Alexis Sanchez strike gave Arsene Wenger’s men the lead before a double salvo from Gylfi Sigurdsson and Bafetemi Gomis left Arsenal limp. The growling of the Arsenal support is rising up again, and after a horror show in surrendering a 3-0 lead against Anderlecht in the Champions League, this has been a bad, bad week for the North London club.

ASTON VILLAS’ STRIKERS

When a goalless draw at West Ham is your best result in a month, you’ve got problems. A point is an improvement for Villa, who were on a miserable run of six straight defeats, but the lack of a goal means that Paul Lambert’s side have scored only one goal in seven league games. Unless Christian Benteke and co start finding the net soon, Villa will continue to make their descent towards the Championship. Remember when John Carew claimed his old side could qualify for the Champions League? Me neither.

 

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