Zonal Football's EPL Review

Match Day 1 EPL Review

The English Premier League is back for the 2021/2022 season and it was an eventful weekend for all fans. Fans were allowed to return to the stadium for the first time after COVID-19 hit the world and everyone was made to stay indoors for more than 15 months. It was a much-appreciated gesture that helped to create a more positive environment.

Brentford vs Arsenal

The season opener saw a newArteta’s Arsenal lost their opening match of the season, falling behind 2-0 to newly-promoted Brentford. Arsenal was without some of their star players, including Partey, Aubumeyang and Lacazette. while Saka came in after 59 minutes have been played.

Arsenal did Brentford’s hard work paid off as they scored twice with just 3 shots on target. Arsenal had 22 shots but failed to score with only 4 of those being on target. This result leaves Arsenal at 17th on the league table.

Manchester United vs Leeds United

Man United sits at the top of the league table after a 5-1 thrashing of Leeds. It was a show run by Paul Pogba and Bruno Fernandez with Pogba assisting 4 of the 5 goals while Bruno continued from where he stopped last season with a hat-trick.

Leeds started the game with key man Kelvin Phillips and his absence was felt as McTominay and Fred were at their best. New signing Varane was unveiled to the Old Trafford faithful while Sancho made his EPL debut for Daniel James.

Burnley vs Brighton

All Brighton needed to come out victorious against Sean Dyche’s Burnley at Turf Moor was 2 goals within 5 minutes. James Tarkowski had given Burnley the lead with an early goal after two minutes of play but Maupay cancelled his efforts in the 73rd minute before Allister gave Brighton the lead which later became the winner in the 78th minute.

Brighton was the better team as they enjoyed 64% of the ball. Based on chances created and shots taken, there wasn’t any difference between both teams.

Chelsea vs Crystal Palace

UCL winners kick-started their season with a 3-0 win over visitors, Crystal Palace. No Thiago Silva, no Zouma in defence, Tuchel went with Chalobah, Christesen and Rudiger: 3-man CBs. Chalobah making his EPL debut was able to find the back of the net.

New signing, Lukaku didn’t make the team and Havert was on the bench. Alonso had a wonderful game with Pulisic also impressing.

EPL review

Everton vs Southampton

Benitez and Everton started the EPL 2021/2022 season with a victory against visitors, Southampton. New signing Townsend impressed and got an assist for Richarlison’s equalizer. The 3-1 results mean Everton sits 4th on the league table after Matchday one.

Leicester vs Wolves

After losing their manager to Tottenham, Wolverhampton Wanderers visited King Power Stadium to start their EPL season. A lone goal from Vardy ensured the visitors questioned if their new coach can fill Nuno Espirito’s seat. Wolves created more chances in this game than Leicester but couldn’t send the ball into the net. A 1-0 win means Leicester have won Wolves with the same scoreline back to back.

Watford vs Aston Villa

Newly promoted Watford beat Aston Villa without Grealish in an eventful encounter that produced 5 goals at the Vicarage Road. Dennis, Sarr and Hernandez were on the scoresheet for Watford while new signing, Ings together with McGinn scored Aston Villa’s 2 goals.

The most interesting thing about this game is, Watford was playing a 4-3-3 formation with Cleverly, Naija’s Etebo and Kucka running the midfield. This is very uncommon for small teams and we will be having our eyes on them to see how far they will go with this system.

Norwich vs Liverpool

Mohamed Salah’s goal and 2 assists meant Liverpool left Carrow Road with 3 points. With Van Dijk and Matip back into the mix after missing last season due to injury, Liverpool kept a clean sheet on Matchday one. Salah made history too in this game as he became the first player to score in 5 consecutive opening fixtures of the season.

Newcastle vs West Ham

If you are looking for a defensive midfielder that scores lots of goals, look no further than Soucek. It was the Czech that gave Westham that lead after his team went down 2-1 to Newcastle. David Moyes’s men left St James Park with a 4-2 victory over Steve Bruce’s team.

Tottenham vs Manchester City

The North London team started the new season under former Wolves’ manager, Espirito. A lone goal from prolific South Korean Son was enough to handle Pep Guardiola’s Man City a defeat. Pep started the game without a recognized striker and that was paid with no goals after creating 3 big chances. This was a Spur team without super striker Harry Kane.

With new additions to teams and manager movements, the EPL 2021/2022 season is going to be interesting. Last season’s Champions, Man City will not have it easy if they fail to get a striker. After defeats to Chelsea in UCL last season, I believe most teams know how to play against them now without strikers.

Guardiola will have to return to the drawing board and think about his style and what he needs to get his team back on track.

After their win against Leeds, most fans are believing Ole is making progress. We will know if Ole is making progress once Pogba is injured. And for Klopp and his team, Liverpool is back. A full squad Liverpool is one team every side is scared of playing. I expect them to push for the EPL title this season.

For Chelsea and Arsenal, I see Tuchel cruising this season in the EPL and Arteta getting sacked before May(if the board is serious).

Brendan, Benitez, Espirito, Moyes and Marcelo are going to posed threats for EPL top 6 teams and I see Arsenal dropping at least 18 points against these teams this season.

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