After 13 weeks of no league action, the Premier League returned with a bang this weekend, as managers got to grips with their squads following the decision to shut transfer window before season began.
Defending champions, Manchester City entered this season as title favourites and got off to a flier after clinching a 2-0 win at Arsenal, who were beginning life after Arsene Wenger as Unai Emery took charge of his first home match.
Kyle Walker nearly had City ahead after eight minutes but Petr Cech saved his shot, only for Benjamin Mendy to set up Raheem Sterling’s blast six minutes later, giving City an early lead.
By half time, City could of been out of sight if Riyad Mahrez’s free kick was tucked home by Aymeric Laporte, after Cech spilled his save only for the Frenchman to put his effort wide.
Arsenal then showed improvement but were undone midway through second half when Mendy played a 1-2 with Sterling down the left, before finding Bernardo Silva in space to fire in City’s second and wrap up the three points.
Liverpool who are expected to challenge the Citizens for the title, meanwhile ran riot in a 4-0 home win over West Ham in Manuel Pellegrini’s first game as the Hammers’ new manager.
Mohamed Salah tapped in the opener from Andrew Robertson’s cross in 19th minute, before Sadio Mane netted a double either side of half time.
The Senegalese’s first came from a tap in despite looking offside when Robertson crossed to James Milner at back post, for the ex England international to head it down for Mane to put home and gift the Reds a 2-0 lead at break.Embed from Getty Images
Mane’s second came from a clever Roberto Firmino pass through two West Ham players. and the win was wrapped up when sub, Daniel Sturridge flicked in at back post from Milner’s corner kick.
Elsewhere, newly promoted Cardiff, Fulham and Wolves all experienced different fortunes in their first matches back in England’s top flight.
The former pair were beaten 2-0 by Bournemouth and Crystal Palace respectively, whilst Wolves battled to a 2-2 draw with Everton.
Summer signing, Richarlison had put the Toffees ahead before Phil Jagielka saw red for a controversial challenge on Diogo Jota, allowing Ruben Neves to level from a free kick just before half time.Embed from Getty Images
Everton again then reclaimed the lead after Richarlison bent a beauty into bottom right after playing a 1-2 with Cenk Tosun. Wolves however found a late equaliser in 80th minute, after Raul Jimenez headed home Neves’ cross
Maurizio Sarri made a winning start as Chelsea‘s new manager after the Blues eased to a comfortable 3-0 away win over Huddersfield, with goals coming from; N’Golo Kante, Jorginho and Pedro.
Tottenham Hotspur took a 2-1 away victory over Newcastle United in a repeat of last season’s opening fixture, whilst Roberto Pereyra helped Watford to a 2-0 victory over Brighton.
Finally, Southampton held Burnley to a 0-0 draw whilst Manchester United beat Leicester 2-1 in this season’s opening match.