English Premiership

SIX things learnt from Week 4

2014-09-16 09:58
Cesc Fabregas (AFP)
Cape Town - Chelsea are the run away leaders of the English Premiership and it looks like their rivals might not be able to catch them.

Read: EPL Team of Week Four

Here are six things to be learnt from Week 2:

1. City are not the same without Yaya Toure

Frank Lampard was back in the English Premiership on Saturday, albeit in a lighter shade of blue but his debut last just 45 minutes. He was off the pace and looked every bit of the 36 years of age he is.

Lampard was in the side to replace Ivorian Yaya Toure, who was left out after travelling back to England from playing in Ivory Coast’s AFCON 2015 qualifiers. Toure is simply irreplaceable and Manuel Pellegrini found this out on Saturday.

Arsenal’s Jack Wilshire was allowed time and space in midfield which allowed him to have a great afternoon at the Emirates and something that would not have happen if Toure was out on the field. Manchester City looked a different side without Toure and Arsenal capatilised on his absence.

Pellegrini will be well advised to reconsider leaving Toure out of such high profile games in the future.

2. United better but is LVG to blame for slow start

Manchester United fans were sent into mass hysteria after their side returned to winning ways against the dreadful QPR but is Louis van Gaal to blame for the side’s slow start to the league? I believe so! Why weren’t Daley Blind and Marcos Rojo signed up immediately after the World Cup ended?

It took United until deadline day to confirm these signings and there seems no acceptable reason for the delay. I understand that the Angel Di Maria and Falcao deals required more negotiation than normal but the Blind and Rojo deals should’ve been tied up without delay.

Blind was composed in midfield against the R’s while Rojo proved his worth in defence. Had this pair been available on matchday one then I’m sure United would not already be seven points adrift of Chelsea.

3. Liverpool need to avoid distractions

I’m not sure Liverpool’s shock loss to Aston Villa can be blamed entirely on Rodgers’ decision to leave Raheem Sterling out of the starting line-up against Villa. This decision was presumably made with Liverpool’s Champions League return in mind and trying to ensure the 19-year-old star stays fit for the grueling season.

Were Liverpool already thinking of Tuesday evening when Paul Lambert's men opened the scoring at Anfield?

Liverpool's performance was poor and they failed to produce any of the goal scoring threat that had seen them run riot against Spurs in Gameweek 3. Sterling is turning into one of the best players in the league and his spark was missing at Anfield. Liverpool certainly need to avoid silly loses like this one if they want to chase down that infamous 20th league title.

Rodgers will soon need to decide whether improbable European glory is worth putting potential domestic at risk.     

4. Chelsea are bordering on the sublime

Diego Costa and Cesc Fabregas are stealing the headlines but this Chelsea side is powerful in almost every position and Jose Mourinho has managed to get his team playing such a wonderful brand of football that is leaving commentators running out of new ways to complement the side.

Chelsea will be incredibly hard to beat this season with the likes of Matic, Ivanovic, Azpilicueta and Cahill all playing incredibly well but still coming nowhere near a headline such is the nature of Chelsea's attacking potency.

Chelsea are now 8/11 to win the English Premiership and it would take a very brave punter to bet against them in this form.

5. QPR are going down

Unless something distract happens, Queens Park Rangers will be going down (again) after the 38 games the the English Premiership season.

Harry Redknapp’s side were utterly dreadful against Manchester United, offering little in attack and allowing Manchester United ample time and space in the middle of the park. Instead of pressing, QPR sat deep and tried to defend in the final third of the park. Against the likes of Di Maria, Mata and Rooney, it was also going to be a case of when and not if United would score.

‘Arry has the players at his disposal to fight to stay in the league but that fighting spirit has been lacking so far this season. Unless there is immediate improvement then QPR fans best get ready for another season in the Championship.

6. Same old, same old Ben Foster

It’s not exactly something new learnt, in fact, if you’ve been watching the English Premiership for more than two weeks then you would’ve seen Ben Foster make some sort of incredible mistake. Foster allowed a tame shot from Everton's Kevin Miralles to slip under his body and gift the Toffees all three points.

Foster, who has eight England caps to his name, is probably one of the most unreliable goalkeepers in the English Premiership. It must be incredibly tough on Baggies fans to see him in the starting XI each week, knowing that a(nother) howler is just around the corner.

Enjoy Ben's lastest bunder:


What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Tuesday, 12 December 2017
Burnley v Stoke City, Turf Moor 21:45
Crystal Palace v Watford, Selhurst Park 22:00
Huddersfield Town v Chelsea, The John Smith's Stadium 22:00
Wednesday, 13 December 2017
Swansea City v Manchester City, Liberty Stadium 21:45
Newcastle United v Everton, St. James' Park 21:45
Southampton v Leicester City, St. Mary's Stadium 21:45
Liverpool v West Bromwich Albion, Anfield 22:00
West Ham United v Arsenal, London Stadium 22:00
Manchester United v AFC Bournemouth, Old Trafford 22:00
Tottenham Hotspur v Brighton & Hove Albion, Wembley Stadium 22:00
Saturday, 16 December 2017
Leicester City v Crystal Palace, King Power Stadium 14:30
Stoke City v West Ham United, Bet365 Stadium 17:00
Arsenal v Newcastle United, Emirates Stadium 17:00
Chelsea v Southampton, Stamford Bridge 17:00
Brighton & Hove Albion v Burnley, The American Express Community Stadium 17:00
Watford v Huddersfield Town, Vicarage Road Stadium 17:00
Manchester City v Tottenham Hotspur, Etihad Stadium 19:30
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team

Who will claim the Premier League title at the end of the 2017/18 season?

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


The 2017/18 Absa Premiership season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.