What an absolutely amazing weekend of football it was. All top 3 teams from last season failing to win their games and some really shocking results.
Game of the Week
Newcastle v Man City (3-3, prediction 0-3)
It was by far the best game of the third round. Howe got his tactics and team selection spot on and St James Park is going to be a very hard place for any team to visit this season. After giving away a really poor goal early in the game it could have been an absolute procession for City but Newcastle United showed character and spirit and fought back. At 3 1 it seemed game over for City and would have been so last season, but this season City have a new weapon in Haaland and he rose to the occasion when needed. In the end a draw was a fair result for both teams on the day but in the longer run City will see it as two points dropped and Newcastle will take a huge amount of confidence going forward after such a brilliant performance. MOTM Allan Saint-Maximin. Next week City are at home to Crystal Palace and should win that game 3-1. Newcastle go away to Wolves and despite their heroics against City, I expect them to get a 0-0 draw.
Man United v Liverpool (2-1, prediction 1-4)
One can already make a two hours long documentary on the ups and downs of this season only three games in. Where did that performance come from? Ten Haag established his credentials as a top manager by benching Maguire and Ronaldo and letting Rashford run miles up front. Sancho and Fernandes ran themselves in to the ground and Martinez was an absolute rock at the back. Having said that, it was less to do with United being immense and more to do with Liverpool being abject and bereft of ideas. The Liverpool midfield trio of Milner, Henderson and Elliot would struggle to start for a relegation zone team. Nunez is out for another two games and Liverpool is already missing Mane. Trent had one of the worst displays in a Liverpool shirt for years. All in all the midfield was an open chasm and United had a field day. Liverpool cannot wait to have their injured players back and get their season up and running. They will get some respite next week as they play Bournemouth at home and they are bound to cruise through 4-0. For United it’s Southampton away and it will be a different kind of test for them. I expect them to play a 1-1. MOTM Lisandro Martinez
Leeds v Chelsea (3-0, prediction 1-3)
Chelsea were all over the place and Leeds were rampant. Yorkshire is a hard place to come and play football historically for London teams but Chelsea were absolutely ripped apart by Leeds. Maybe Tuchel needs to introduce a rule that any Chelsea player passing the ball back to GK will be given a ten thousand pound fine. This has happened multiple times and causes problems to Chelsea. Their marking at the back was shocking and Leeds enjoyed the freedom of midfield a lot more than they should have. The front three for Chelsea are not firing and need changing. Chelsea could do with getting the Aubameyaang deal finalized as soon as. For Leeds, their newly acquired American duo is settling in well and Rodrigo is on fire. But this game has to be given to Harrison. He was everywhere and played exceptionally well. Next up: Leeds visit Brighton who are flying and are likely to beat Leeds 2-1. For Chelsea it’s a home game against out of form Leicester and Chelsea should be returning to winning ways 3-1. MOTM Jack harrison
Bournemouth V Arsenal (0-3, prediction 0-2)
With Liverpool, Spurs, Chelsea, United and City dropping points, Arsenal continue on their merry way of a 100 % run with 9 out of 9 points. Bournemouth set up to conceded less goals instead of competing and Arsenal made hay as sun shone. The remarkable thing so far is that they have not relied on Saka this season in any of their games and still managing to win easily. Bournemouth have had a horrid draw at the start of the season with City Arsenal Liverpool all in the first four games. I am sure Scott Parker would tell his team to forget about these games and compete in the ones they need to win to stay afloat. I don’t see Bournemouth staying up though. Next up they go to Anfield and will get hammered again 4-0. Arsenal host Fulham and with a dismal away record of Fulham and Arsenal’s superiority at home I can see Arsenal winning 3-1. MOTM Saliba
West Ham V Brighton (0-2, prediction 2-1)
David Moyes has a lot to worry about. Hammers are the only team in top 4 divisions of England who haven’t managed a single point thus far. Brighton are flying and Potter is probably the best English manager of modern times but even then you would expect West Ham to play a lot better and win home games against teams like Brighton. They failed to score and were beaten comprehensively. Already a top 6 finish looks impossible and if things don’t improve quickly Moyes might be the first managerial casualty of the season. Brighton host Leeds next and should win. West Ham are away to Villa who themselves are yet to click. I fear it will be a draw 1-1. MOTM Trossard
Crystal Palace v Aston Villa (3-1, prediction 1-1)
It’s very hard to comprehend what style of football Gerrard wants his team to play. The names on the team sheet look good but the performances are very disjointed. Crystal Palace on the other hand are improving by the day under Vieira and he is managing to get the best out of an average group of players. Palace went behind in the game but the result was never in doubt. If not for VAR the result will be even worse for Villa. Next up Palace has the immense task of visiting City and I cannot see them winning away to the champions. City to win 3-1. As for Villa they host West Ham who are yet to score this season but I see Villa conceding and it will be 1-1. MOTM ZAHA
Everton v Nottingham Forrest (1-1, prediction 3-0)
I expected Everton to get their first win against newly promoted Forrest but they don’t have a goal scorer in the team and am unsure where the goals are going to come from. They almost lost this one but managed to salvage a draw. Huge result for Forrest though and will do their confidence a lot of good. Everton go to Brentford next who are good at home and should beat Everton 2-0. Forrest host Spurs and will lose 1-0. MOTM Johnson
Fulham v Brentford (3-2, prediction 2-1)
If it wasn’t for City v Newcastle then this fixture would have been the game of the week. Fulham to go 2-0 up and then Brentford recovering to 2-2 just to be beaten in the last minutes by Mitrovic. Good pulsating game of football, and it cements the notion that both these teams should stay up this season.
Brentford host Everton next and should win 2-0 and Fulham go to Arsenal and should manage to score but will lose 3-1. MOTM Mitrovic
Leicester V Southampton (1-2, prediction 3-1)
There is something very wrong behind the scenes for Brendon Rogers and his team. Almost the whole of his midfield is looking away for offers from other superior teams. I feel Rogers will be well happy once the transfer window shuts. Another game where home advantage and a better looking team sheet was not good enough for Leicester and yet another defeat. For Southampton Ralph has managed to silence all the noise suggestive of his departure and loss of control over his dressing room. Southampton were early favorites for relegation but I cannot see them going down. Leicester go to Chelsea next and despite Chelsea’s woes they wont win at Stamford bridge. Chelsea to win 3-1. Southampton have the herculean task to keep Manchester United in check at Saint Mary’s but I expect them to park the bus and come away with a draw. MOTM Adams
Tottenham V Wolves (1-0, prediction 1-0)
It’s not an easy task to breach the stubborn defense of Wolverhampton Wanderers but Kane managed it. It was a dull game for the most part but a corner routine ensured all three points for Spurs. That’s what a manager like Conte brings to the party. You don’t play exceptionally well in every game but to grind results out and moving up in the table is the hallmark of champions. I see Spurs as a more potent threat to City than Liverpool. For Wolves the positive is that Jimenez is fit and back and should be scoring a few goals going forward. Next up Spurs are off to Forrest to probably play a similar game and win 1-0 again. Wolves host a confident Newcastle but should be able to shut up shop and manage a 0-0. MOTM Kane