It has been another explosive week of football with Roy Hodgson winning his first game as Crystal Palace manager, Manchester City putting seven past Stoke – and much more!
Can anybody stop Manchester City?
It’s only mid October, but now Manchester City look a dead cert to be crowned champions in May. This may seem premature – but who realistically has the quality and the depth to keep up with them?
Guardiola went to extreme lengths to bolster his weak defence in the summer and subsequently look a much tighter outfit than previous years. There are weaknesses in this City side, but looking at their rivals – they are in another league.
Chelsea lack depth; Manchester United appear to conservative; Liverpool are a liability in defence and Tottenham Hotspur rely on Harry Kane too much to get them goals. We won’t even mention Arsenal.
Do Chelsea lack squad depth?
There is no denying that Chelsea are a frightening outfit – they won the title last year. And it may seem strange to say that they do not have good enough replacements given that they are current champions.
But at the weekend, they were without Morata and Kante – and did not look half the side they have been this season. They lost against, what have so far been, the whipping boys of the Premier League. Conte will probably look to add to his squad in January – but will it be too late?
Can Roy Hodgson keep Crystal Palace up?
After 8 excruciating games without a win, Palace finally got their first three points of the season. It wasn’t just against a mid-table side either – it was against the Champions, Chelsea. Palace had their talisman Wilfried Zaha back in the side, but were still playing without a recognised striker.
Roy’s CV speaks for itself – however after the national embarrassment last year in the Euros – is his reputation diminished and he isn’t what he once was. Or was it just a blip? Time will tell.
How high can Burnley finish?
It may seem a strange time to pose this question given that they drew 1-1 with West Ham – hardly a convincing result. However, they are 7th in the table and only two points off the top four. They have done it whilst playing against tough oppositions too. They beat Chelsea 3-2, drew to Spurs and Liverpool and beat Everton. It is early days, but the work-ethic that this Burnley team exudes is reminiscent of the Tony Pulis Stoke side when they got into Europe and to the FA Cup final.
What does the future hold for Burnley – and more importantly the future of Sean Dyche. If their successes continue will we see him land a top job or potentially become the England manager?
Player of the Weekend
Tammy Abraham, the Chelsea youth player on loan at Swansea, despite playing at a higher level – has continued his goalscoring form and looks a great prospect for the future. After scoring two goals at the weekend, he extended his goal tally to four. An average of 1 in 2. How pivotal of a role will he play in keeping Swansea in the Premier League?
Swansea have scored just 5 Premier League goals so far this season.
Tammy Abraham has scored 4 of them. 👏 pic.twitter.com/arzeEbtXdW
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) October 14, 2017
Tweet of the Weekend
This was Stoke’s response to being on the end of a 7-2 thrashing by Manchester City:
Kevin De Bruyne gets the @ManCity man of the match 👏
Sometimes, you have to hold your hand up and appreciate the opposition.
— Stoke City FC (@stokecity) October 14, 2017
Performance of the Weekend
— Bolton Wanderers FC (@OfficialBWFC) October 14, 2017
After showing signs of progression in previous games, Bolton have finally recorded their first win of the season. It took them 12 games, during this period they also went over 12 hours without a goal. It was looking bleak for Phil Parkinson’s team who were recently promoted – but the board kept faith in the manager and with Josh Vela and Sammy Ameobi back fit, Bolton looked a new team.
They scored two goals; had one cleared off the line; hit the post and recorded 18 shots and 10 corners despite only having 33% possession. Will this win spur them on and ultimately, do they have the quality to beat the drop? They certainly have the desire.