What a derby weekend we just witnessed. We had 3 derbies on Sunday (somehow Chelsea and Fulham are considered a derby) but the real story was the spectacular North London Derby. Arsenal came into the match in great form, but Tottenham have enjoyed a sustained spot above them in the table the last two years. Enter Unai Emery and his incredibly disgusting hair. More on that later but Arsenal have turned a corner (maybe) and claimed North London as their own for the time being. Liverpool and Everton tried as hard as they could to play a more boring game then when City entered Anfield but Pickford slept with Origi’s wife and felt remorseful. After all it is the season for giving. Chelsea played wayyyy too early for me to watch but a 2-0 win against Fulham is well a 2-0 win against Fulham. Like a water bottle near Joe-Say let’s get slammed into this week’s recap of the greatest league in the world. Sorry about that MLS.
Arsenal 4 – Tottenham 2
This was such an enjoyable game for the neutral fan. Goals galore and some very nice ones at that from Arsenal. The Gunners started off hot and much like Pickford, Jan Vertonghen was in a giving mood. Jan was in good position with a free kick coming in to swat it out of the air. Bump set spike is his mantra and he promptly gave Arsenal a penalty. Pierre-Emrick Aubameyang slotted home easily and literally flipped the script for the game. As well all know Arsenal like to give leads up and did just that in quick succession. Dier nodded home a free kick from Eriksen for the first and Harry Kane gave them the lead from the penalty spot after Son was brought down by Holding. Quick points on both the goals: Leno should’ve easily had the first one, he looked like he threw back a couple Hofbraus as the ball approached him. Second point: I don’t think that should’ve been a penalty. Holding comes flying in for no reason but he barely grazes Son. Good on Son for going down but I think the intent was why it was called. Moving on. Arsenal owned the second half like a southie bar when Whitey Bulger was alive. Relentless attacking and a beauty from Aubmeyang leveled the score and it was all Gooners from there. Lacazette got the third off a dreadful mistake from Juan Foyth and Torerria put the nail in the coffin with his first goal in the Premier League.
Torreira makes it four and Arsenal are FLYING! pic.twitter.com/F3AwLMaKif
— NBC Sports Soccer (@NBCSportsSoccer) December 2, 2018
Juan Foyth is not good, glad I got that off my chest but what is Poch doing playing him in that game? He looked overwhelmed and the mistake leading to the 3rd goal is not something you want to see as a Spurs fan. If only Tottenham had a center back on the bench who is proven in the premier league….if only. On the flip side. Lucas Torrerira is a stud and is the player Arsenal have been missing. That celly after his goal was magnificent and I’m officially naming him the glue guy. Emery outclassed Poch in this one, as did the tough schedule the Spurs have been faced with in the last week. Still would be surprised if Arsenal finish above Tottenham but for this day the Gooners prevailed in style.
Liverpool 1 – Everton 0
This was such a tough game to watch. Everton had one really good chance with Alisson making a hell of a save and Gomez clearing it off the line. Mane missed chance after chance after chance after chance after chance to keep the game level, but the real story is the goal in the 96th. A free kick comes in and Van Dick slices a crazy volley that appears to be going out of play. Jordan Pickford and his thunder thighs watched the Tottenham game earlier and took inspiration form Jan Vertonghen. As the ball is about to hit the top of the net he reaches up and hit it back into play off the crossbar. Divock Origi was there to pounce and Liverpool somehow ended up with all 3 points.
What just happened?!
Origi scores a stoppage time goal and Klopp runs onto the pitch! pic.twitter.com/ZbmPWsBPSM
— NBC Sports Soccer (@NBCSportsSoccer) December 2, 2018
Klopp was so happy he ran his patented 4.2 40 to Alisson on the middle of the pitch. Will probably get fined for that but who cares he’s so fast he’ll probably outrun that fine. It was a catastrophic mistake from Pickford but before that Everton did what they had to do to nab a point at Anfield. Liverpool just look awful up top it should be a concern. Salah, Firmino and Mane do not look like the scintillating trio of last year but with Van Dick and Alisson in the back you can afford to not score this year. League low in goals conceded for the Reds, giving them a chance to maybe catch City by the end of the year. I don’t think it’ll happen but no sense in worrying about it now.
City 3 – Bournemouth 1
The score line flatters City a bit here as this was a tough game throughout. Eddie Howe’s men proved to be a tough test and leveled the game right before half. City did get two in the second half because of the quality of Sterling and Sane but it was not as easy as this would suggest. Bournemouth play a similar style to Lyon who have owned City this year and it showed. They went right at City and the combo of Josh King and Callum Wilson almost paid off several times. Wilson did have a beautiful taken header for the equalizer and this team is a lot of fun to watch. They’re not scared of anyone and with a few more pieces could be a top half of the table mainstay. City looked lethargic in the first half with many changes from their mid-week draw to Lyon. Jesus is not very good at the moment, and Zinchenko at left back seems to be asking for trouble on the counter. His perfectly weighted pass set up the first goal, but he is nothing special defending and teams continue to take advantage of that. Bernardo made his way back into the lineup and what a special player he is. Always in the right place and his finishing is underrated. Sterling took control in the second half after his invisible first half and it’s just so damn hard to stop him once he gets going. No time to rest on their laurels at they take on struggling Watford on Tuesday, the winter season is upon us!
Chelsea 2- Fulham 0
Hand up I didn’t watch a second of this and also didn’t watch highlights. I’ve been sick and needed the beauty rest for my awful looking face. It’s a good win for Chelsea and the clean sheet is good to get at home after that debacle against Tottenham. Chelsea have a huge game against City on Saturday at Stamford Bridge that should tell us a lot about Sarri’s side going forward. I’m in the crowd of Sarri needing to play Kante in the deeper lying role currently occupied by Jorginho but those Italians have a tendency to be *Breaking News* stubborn. Kante is the best in the world at what he does don’t see a reason to take him out of there. Eden Hazard has been away on international duty for the last 2 months, oh wait he has been playing. Hmm. Doesn’t seem like it. I know he is supremely talented, but he needs to put it together for a full season for Chelsea to have any shot at the title. They won’t win it but with a striker in the January transfer window and Hazard returning to early season form, they might give Liverpool and City a run for their money.
United 2 – Southampton 2
United should petition to start every game down 2-0 in order to have the most amount of time to make their comeback. This was not a good showing, and United have some real problems to contend with. Lukaku did score but my man runs around in jeans with the touch of a rapist. He’s gotta figure out a way to look more athletic when he runs, and the goals will follow trust me. They did fight back after being down 2 early on but jesus how are you going down 2 to SOUTHAMPTON in the first place. Very good finishes for their goals but Southampton’s coach is Mark Hughes it shouldn’t be like that. Reports are that Mourinho called Pogba a “virus” infecting everyone after the game in the locker room. Wow, as many of you know a viral infection is one of the fastest and potent disease forms. It took 3 years for Mourinho’s virus to spread and Pogba did it in 2. Ed Woodward needs to blow the whole damn thing up and if he had any respect, he’d fire himself along with the rest of them. United are looking at a 6-8 place finish and my god that’s not it. I’m going to miss ripping on Mark Hughes but I’m sure he’s in a better place now.
Quick side bar: This is what United have to get back to. Fundamentals. It’s beautiful how simple this is made to look. Instead of rushing the pass with his weak foot he makes sure he has enough time to shift his weight, line up his knee with the player he wanted it to go to, and then calmly follow through with the ball going exactly where it needed to be. Pogba could never. Pavard’s pass was a bit of showboating, quite unnecessary if you were to ask me.
There you have it folks, keep growing the beautiful game in your friend group and maybe if we all try hard enough the USA will qualify for the World Cup in 2022. In Qatar. FIFA thought it would be a good idea to have the World Cup in Qatar. That is all you need to know about FIFA. Cheers!