De Futebol Can Man U and Man Shitty keep up this pace for the entire season?

It sure looks like Man U and Man Shitty are heads above the rest of the EPL. It is too early to make any pronouncements.

Let’s see how the season shakes out first.

The Daily Mail is floating this story. “Five games in and it is only alphabetical order separating the two Manchester clubs, City and United, at the top of the Premier League title.

The much-anticipated showdown between Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho appears to have dawned at long last. After five assignments, the record is identical: four wins, one draw, sixteen goals scored, two conceded.

It is early days, of course, and Chelsea are within one victory of the two Manchester clubs while Tottenham also lie in wait but there is an unmistakable sense that the major players in the title race this season will come from the North West.

Here Sportsmail outlines the respective strengths and potential weaknesses of Guardiola’s City and Mourinho’s United…

The squads

Both sides are now blessed with a staggering depth of quality in attacking positions. The creative forces such as Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Kevin De Bruyne are glistening early on, while Romelu Lukaku and Sergio Aguero are punishing opponents in brutal fashion.

Guardiola was able to introduce Leroy Sane, Bernardo Silva and Ilkay Gundogan from the bench at Watford while Anthony Martial, Ander Herrera and Jesse Lingard influenced the flow of the game for Mourinho as United ran riot late on at Old Trafford.

The two teams take their opponents apart in different manners. City want complete dominance and on the days it all comes together, it is truly magnificent – perhaps the highest level of football we have seen in this league since Arsenal’s Invincibles.

United, meanwhile, are more pragmatic. They are prepared to bide their time before pulling away late on, as they have done against West Ham, Swansea, Leicester and again on Sunday against Everton.

The remaining question mark about City is whether their defence will hold out and if Nicolas Otamendi and John Stones can forge a strong partnership.

Vincent Kompany, sadly, is back on the treatment table. Over the past week, which has seen City score 15 and concede 0 in three games against Liverpool, Feyenoord and Watford, the pair have been strong, allowing City’s opponents a total of  five shots on target.

Yet many opponents will feel a vulnerability is there to be exposed, particularly in behind Otamendi. Some City fans may also be concerned by the dependence on Fernandinho, whose role in front of the back four is so essential to offer some semblance of balance to this top-heavy City side. Much will depend on Gundogan’s return, particularly as Yaya Toure appears to have a reduced role this season.

United’s concern will be in the left back position, where Mourinho has now trialled Daley Blind, Matteo Darmian and Ashley Young. All three have their own virtues but none appears capable of making the position their own. Luke Shaw is close to a return and Mourinho must hope he finally discovers a degree of consistency after a hellish period of injuries.

Upcoming fixtures

United will be hopeful of ending this period of fixtures top of the pile ahead of the international break. United travel to Southampton next week, who are finding goals hard to come by at their own ground, before hosting Roy Hodgson’s Crystal Palace.

City, for their part, have Palace at home next week before visiting Chelsea. Guardiola spoke on Saturday of his side having taken ‘forward steps’ at the start of this season but also insisted a visit to Stamford Bridge would prove the acid test of their credentials.

Title-winning experience

We know that Mourinho is the master of navigating a title race. It usually follows the pattern of a fast start and every time a Mourinho team has been top at Christmas, they have gone to win the title. It’s happened seven times.

Guardiola, of course, has lifted La Liga titles and the Bundesliga but the Premier League has its unique quirks late on in a season and Mourinho’s experience of three titles with Chelsea may help United over the line.

Seven United players have previously won a Premier League title compared to five at City but there is no shortage of domestic title winners abroad in either squad. Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s return will give United further high-pressure know-how.

What about the challengers?

Some caution is needed for both United and City. United were top of the league after three games last season but slumming it in sixth place by December.

City, meanwhile, won their first six but then only three of their next nine in the top-flight, including defeats by Chelsea, Leicester and Tottenham as teams came to terms with their way of playing.

This offers hope for the chasing pack and Antonio Conte will remember that his side made a sluggish start last season before embarking on a storming run of form in the autumn months to pull clear of their rivals. Tottenham will also feel they can match the top three but must correct their Wembley anxiety.

Arsenal, however, do not appear equipped for a title race and it would be a surprise to see them level on points with City or United at any stage this season. Liverpool have not fixed the defensive issues that derailed last season and Everton’s aspirations of significant forward steps appear doomed already.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-4894762/Man-Utd-vs-Man-City-two-title-rivals-compare.html#ixzz4t8gHuG3H

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Let the war of words begin. Jose Mourinho is back at it again. This time with Ronald Koeman,

The Guardians Jamie Jackson wrote:” Ronald Koeman told José Mourinho to “get realistic” after the Manchester Unitedmanager claimed before his side’s 4-0 win that Everton should be aiming for a top-four finish “at least” having spent £140m in the summer transfer window.

Goals from Antonio Valencia on two minutes, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, on 83, Romelu Lukaku, on 89, and an Anthony Martial penalty in added time put United joint-top with Manchester City, both teams having 13 points and 16 goals with two conceded after five matches.

Koeman’s side have lost their last four matches in all competitions and are in the relegation zone. His frustration was evident when discussing Mourinho’s comments. “I read the United programme and my colleague told me about Everton spending £140m and so they need to go for the top four,” the Dutchman said. “If there’s anybody in this room and outside and sees this as something realistic for us, please comment. Be realistic. I’m not happy how we started the season, but please be a bit realistic about Everton. We need time, but it’s difficult in football.”

Mourinho had written: “We are up against a team that has spent £140m. Obviously we are playing a team that wants to at least secure a top-four position.”

Afterwards, the Portuguese said of his side’s win: “The performance was very good, especially in the first 30-35 minutes, it was probably our best performance of the season. We pressed them and they did not have a chance to get out, they did not have a shot, it was very impressive. I think if the result was two- or three-nil after 30 minutes I would say a clear reflection of fantastic football we played in the first 30-35 minutes. The second goal went in, then game over.”

Asked about City, who beat Watford 6-0 on Saturday, Mourinho said: “Today I didn’t think one single second about Man City. I thought about Tottenham, Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool. They didn’t win their matches and it was a chance for us to get two points like they got last week when we drew against Stoke. I was just thinking about them, not City. City won their game, they did their job.”

Regarding Paul Pogba and reports he may be out for 12 weeks because of his hamstring injury, Mourinho said: “I don’t know if it is 12 weeks or 12 days, honestly. Any comment, any views, any rumour, is totally wrong, because we do not know if it is 12 weeks or 12 days.

“The player was diagnosed initially after the match because of the conditions of the muscle and bleeding, was one more week to wait and see clearly in the scans and nobody in this club spoke about 12 days or 12 weeks. It’s a muscular injury in the hamstring but we have a normal procedure and wait a few more days. It’s completely nonsense information.”

https://www.theguardian.com/football/2017/sep/17/ronald-koeman-jose-mourinho-everton-manchester-united

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Chelsea and Arsenal tied nil-nil at Stamford Bridge. The Blues are parked in third place with ten points. My Gunners are buried in 12thplace with seven points.

Man U took apart Everton 4-0. The Red Devils and Man Shitty are tied on points with 13 and a goal difference a plus 14.

EPL Match Report in the Blues and Gunners draw:” Arsenal ended a five-match losing streak at Stamford Bridge as they drew 0-0 with 10-man Chelsea.

A goalless first half had a couple of big chances. Pedro was put through for the hosts but was denied by Petr Cech, while Aaron Ramsey hit a post for Arsenal, with Alexandre Lacazette skying the rebound.

There were fewer opportunities after the break despite the introductions of Alexis Sanchez and Eden Hazard.

Arsenal’s Shkodran Mustafi thought he had scored on 75 minutes, but was offside when heading in Granit Xhaka’s free-kick.

On 87 minutes, David Luiz received a straight red card for a high tackle on Sead Kolasinac but the Gunners could not make their man advantage count.

Chelsea stay third, three points off the top, while Arsenal are 12th.”

https://www.premierleague.com/match/22383

EPL Match Report on the Man U blow out win over the Toffees. “Three goals in the last 10 minutes helped Manchester United go level with Manchester City at the top of the Premier League with a 4-0 win over Everton.

United led through a spectacular strike by Antonio Valencia, from Nemanja Matic’s cross, after only four minutes.

Wayne Rooney, facing his former club, shot wide for Everton in the first half and was denied by David De Gea at the start of the second.

Everton’s resistance faded when Henrikh Mkhitaryan doubled the lead, converting Romelu Lukaku’s pass on 83 minutes.

Lukaku made up for a missed chance on 26 minutes with an 87th-minute effort from Jesse Lingard’s pass.

Anthony Martial converted a stoppage-time penalty after a handball by Morgan Schneiderlin.

United are level on 13 points with an identical goal difference to City. Everton are 18th. “

https://www.premierleague.com/match/22387

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Friday saw Bournemouth double up on Bright Hove and Albion 2-1.

The Cherries picked up their first win of the season.

Bournemouth has three points staying put in 19th place.

Southampton defeated Crystal Palace 1-0.

The Eagles have not scored at all this season.

Crystal Palace is in the whale dung position 20th place with zero points.

Man Shitty blew out Watford 6-0. Sergio Aquero led the way with the hat trick-27th, 31st and 81st minutes.

This was a brutal kick ass victory by Shitty at the Hornets house.

Man Shitty is atop the table for now with 13 points and a plus 14.

Man U entertains Everton later today at Old Trafford. The Red Devils are second with ten points and a plus 10.

Liverpool and Burnley tied one all.

Huddersfield and Leicester City tied one all.

Newcastle picked up their second win in a row a 2-1 win over Stoke City.

West Brom and West Ham tied nil-nil.

On tap for later today features the battle for London when Chelsea and Arsenal will duke it out at Stamford Bridge.  Man U-Everton is the other biggie of the day.

The Telegraphs Chris Bascombe on the Reds tie with Burnley. “ The question in the summer was how would Liverpool cope without Philippe Coutinho. It has evolved into how do they cope without Sadio Mane.

Another frustrating home draw, this time with Burnley, demonstrated how much the suspended African’s loss is felt.

Coutinho was back, searching for form as much as possession in a deep midfield role, but the consequences of Mane’s three-game ban have already impacted. The rotation system Klopp believes essential to success was sent spinning. He made seven changes to the side that faced Sevilla in the Champions League, but Scott Arfield put Sean Dyche’s side ahead in the first half, and despite Mohamed Salah’s immediate response Liverpool were unable to get past deputy keeper Nick Pope.

Liverpool were full of combinations and tricks, but often too far from goal. They largely worked Burnley’s deputy keeper Pope from distance, snapshots keeping the 25-year-old alert.

Burnley’s game plan was predictable. Long diagonal balls were aimed towards Chris Wood, who drifted to Liverpool’s right to challenge young full-back Trent Alexander-Arnold. From such a move the visitors took a 26th-minute lead, the striker directing his header towards Liverpool’s area where Arfield was unchallenged, stroking cleanly past Simon Mignolet.

Liverpool found an extra yard in response, equalising three minutes later. This time Dyche was rueing slack defending as a simple Emre Can pass picked out Salah. Naturally it was the Egyptian’s left foot slamming past Pope.

Salah was driving Liverpool forward from the right-hand side, even if his propensity to cut inside onto his favoured left foot is in danger of making him predictable. Knowing his intentions does not make it any easier stopping him.

Burnley offered little going forward, hoping another Liverpool error would earn them an unlikely win. They could have won it, Ben Mee’s header cleared off the line by Joel Matip, and then Mignolet saving from the resulting corner.

There were only nine minutes left then, although Liverpool sub Dominic Solanke came closest to a winner when he volleyed against the bar.

Burnley could not get a point away from home for most of last season. Now they have taken five away at Chelsea, Spurs and Liverpool.”

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/football/2017/09/16/liverpool-vs-burnley-premier-league-live-score-updates/

Spurs had chance to jump into third place with a win. Not so fast bucko. Spurs and Swansea City tied nil-nil. Tottenham is in fifth place with eight points a plus four.

There is a log jam with seven clubs at eight points.

Huddersfield sixth place, Burnley seventh place, Liverpool eight place. Southampton ninth place, West Brom tenth, and Watford eleventh place are separated by goal difference.

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West Ham scored two goals in a span of five minutes to send Huddersfield to their first EPL defeat of the season. Pedro Obiang 72nd minute and Andre Ayew 77th minute gave the Hammers the much needed “W” picking up their first win of the season.

The Terriers dropped to sixth place seven points.

West Ham stays put in the voice vai zone 18th place three points.

EPL Match Report:” West Ham United got their first points of the season and ended Huddersfield Town’s unbeaten start with a 2-0 win at London Stadium.

The Terriers looked like becoming the first promoted team in Premier League history to begin a season with four clean sheets, but Pedro Obiang and Andre Ayew both scored within the space of five minutes to break their hearts.

West Ham were on top in their first home match of the campaign but, after Chicharito had hit the bar in the first half, took until the 72nd minute to score. Ayew passed to Obiang, whose shot from distance deflected in off Zanka.

It quickly became 2-0 as substitute Ayew reacted quickest when Aaron Cresswell’s corner took a touch off Jose Fonte.

Tom Ince hit the bar for Huddersfield, who pushed late on, but West Ham stayed strong to give manager Slaven Bilic a perfect winning birthday present. “

https://www.premierleague.com/match/22381

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Burnley defeated Crystal Palace 1-0. The Clarets are now in seventh place with seven points.

There is a jog jam with five clubs at seven points-Spurs fifth place plus four, Huddersfield seven points plus four sixth place. The Terriers battle West Ham later today. Liverpool eight place plus-minus of zero. West Brom seventh points plus minus of zero.

Newcastle won their second match in a row with a 1-0 win over Swansea City. Toons are tenth with six points.

EPL Match Report on the Clarets win:” Chris Wood continued his flying start to his Burnley career with the only goal against a Crystal Palace side who rued missed chances at Turf Moor.

Wood’s second goal in as many matches came when he curled past onrushing goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey on three minutes after an underhit backpass by Lee Chung-yong.

But after he and Sam Vokes spurned chances, it was Palace who had the best opportunities as they pushed for a leveller.

In the second half Christian Benteke was superbly denied by Premier League debutant Nick Pope, who came on for injured Clarets No 1 Tom Heaton in the first period, before Scott Dann had an effort cleared off the line and headed wide from a few yards out.

But Burnley held on to move into the top seven, while Frank de Boer’s Eagles search for their first points of the season.”

https://www.premierleague.com/match/22374

EPL Match Report on Toons win:” Jamaal Lascelles was the hero at both ends as Newcastle United claimed a 1-0 victory at Swansea City.

The 23-year-old captain produced a stunning clearance on the goalline to stop Tammy Abraham’s effort on the hour mark and 16 minutes later he rose highest to powerfully head home Matt Ritchie’s corner.

Newcastle edged the opening period, goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski superbly saving Joselu’s header, although Swansea had a great opportunity to take the lead only for Alfie Mawson to put his header just wide.

Swansea responded in the second period with Tom Carroll and Luciano Narsingh forcing stops from Rob Elliot but the Magpies defender’s header proved decisive.

The Magpies are in 1th place after two wins in two matches, Swansea are in 15th place, four points off the bottom three.”

https://www.premierleague.com/match/22380

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Man Shitty took Liverpool to the woodshed. Shitty wins 5-0 over ten-man Liverpool. Man Shitty has ten points and a plus eight.

Liverpool has seven points.

Gabriel Jesus led the way with the daily double 45th minute plus six and the 53rd minute.

Leroy Sane had a daily double tambem 77th minute and 90th minute plus one

Sergio Aquero started off the hit parade in the 24th minute.

Danny Welbeck led my Gunners with the daily double in 6th and 50th minutes to a resounding 3-0 win over lowly Bournemouth.

The win gives the guys six points.  This is good enough for ninth place in the table.

EPL Match Report:” Arsenal returned to winning ways with a 3-0 win over AFC Bournemouth.

After two defeats in a row, Arsenal got off to a great start when Danny Welbeck bundled home Sead Kolasinac’s cross.

Welbeck was involved in the second, setting up Alexandre Lacazette to curl home in the 27th minute.

Moments after Jermain Defoe hit a post with a header, Arsenal got their third after the break.

Aaron Ramsey set free Welbeck on the left and he finished into the far corner.

Arsenal played the last 10 minutes with 10 men after Francis Coquelin, one of three substitutes, went off injured, but apart from Petr Cech tipping over a Lys Mousset header, AFC Bournemouth rarely threatened to score a second goal this season.”

https://www.premierleague.com/match/22372

Brighton and Hove Albion picked up their first EPL win with a 3-1 win over West Brom.

Tottenham shut out Everton 3-0.

The Spurs are in fifth place with seven points for now.

Huddersfield could jump ahead of Tottenham with a win Monday night over West Ham.

Chelsea defeated Leicester City 2-1. The Blues are in third place with nine points for now. This will depend on how the Terriers do on Monday night against the Hammers.

Watford blew out Southampton 2-0.

The Hornets sit in fourth place with eight points for now.

Man U and Stoke City in a wild shoot out tied two all. Man U keeps the top spot on goal difference with a plus 10.

Both the Red Devils and Shitty have ten points. Man Shitty is a plus eight.

EPL Match Report:” Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting scored twice as Stoke City ended Manchester United’s 100% start to the season.

The summer signing broke the deadlock on 43 minutes at the bet365 Stadium, converting Mame Biram Diouf’s cross for the first goal United had conceded in 2017/18.

But Marcus Rashford immediately equalised, deflecting in Paul Pogba’s header.

After the break, Romelu Lukaku made it 2-1 with his fourth goal of the campaign, following up after Jack Butland had saved his first shot.

It was Stoke’s turn to reply. Moments after David De Gea’s heroics had denied Jese, Choupo-Moting headed in Xherdan Shaqiri’s cross.

Butland’s stoppage-time save from Kurt Zouma’s header kept United to a point that put them back top on goal difference. Stoke climb to 10th.”

https://www.premierleague.com/match/22379

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The guys are back at later today. The big match. The one that has a ton riding on it. Man Shitty-Liverpool will take place at Shitty’s house.

Shitty is in fourth place seven points.

The Reds are in second place with seven points.

Liverpool is a plus five while Shitty is a plus three.

Man U is top dog with nine points and a plus ten.

The Red Devils will take on Stoke City at the Potters house.

The rest of today’s action looks like this: Arsenal-Bournemouth, Brighton and Hove Albion, Everton- Tottenham, Leicester City- Chelsea, and Southampton-Watford.

Sunday has Burnley-Crystal Palace and Swansea City-Newcastle.

Monday night has West Ham-Huddersfield.

Arsenal is in a world of hurt. The guys are in 16th place with three points. This is the Gunners worst start in years.

Man U is in the catbird seat with ten points. Liverpool is second with seven points. Huddersfield is third with seven points. Man Shitty is fourth with seven points.

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Man U showed that this team has a shot a being very good. The Red Devils put this puppy away in the second half with two goals winning 2-0 over Leicester City.

The Telegraphs Luke Edwards wrote:” It is always worth remembering that if August proves to be your best month of the season, it is safe to assume it will have been a disappointing one by the time May arrives, but Manchester United could not have done any more than this.

Early days, perhaps, but heady ones all the same for Jose Mourinho’s side, who made it three wins out of three and who go into the international break sitting top of the table, looking down on all the other title contenders. Ten goals scored, none conceded, United have looked the best team in England up to this point.

This was not as eye-catching as the crushing victories over West Ham and Swansea, but that arguably makes it more significant. This was an important box to tick given their recent failings. Beating resolute, well organised teams with a limited game plan had proved too much, far too often last term.

Leicester made them work incredibly hard, defending superbly and when Kasper Schmeichel saved Romelu Lukaku’s penalty in the second half, it threatened to turn into another one of those exasperating days that sucked the life out of United’s Premier League challenge last season.

Yet, while Lukaku had a game he will want to forget quickly, Mourinho was able to send on Marcus Rashford as a substitute. Having won a corner, linking up well with Paul Pogba, the young England international was then in the right place to volley it in.

Relief and joy engulfed Old Trafford. Leicester’s spirits were broken and another substitute, Marouane Fellaini, added a second, deflecting in Jesse Lingard’s cross with his hip.

It brought a difficult game to a successful conclusion, although it is worth pointing out that United also won their opening three games last term, yet still contrived to finish well off the title pace in sixth place. This is a good start, but that is all it is.

“This is about the motivation of the team,” said Mourinho. “I’m really happy, not for me, but for the players. We had games like this last season which we didn’t win, but we didn’t play many matches last season with the same level of control as we had today.

“Leicester were very dangerous against Arsenal, I watched the game three times and they were. Were they dangerous against us? No.

“We kept playing, we kept creating, we kept getting corners. We are playing well but I’m not getting carried away, it’s just three games.”

United began with a brilliant attack, slicing through Leicester’s backline with sharp, precise passing, the ball eventually making its way to the feet of Henrikh Mkhitaryan, but his shot was well blocked by Harry Maguire.

It looked ominous for Leicester. Lukaku should have been on his toes to capitalise on a missed clearance, but he at least kept the danger alive and when Schmeichel could not hold on to his shot on the turn, Juan Mata tucked in the rebound only for an offside flag to be raised – a tight, but probably correct decision.

United had their foot on Leicester’s throats, Pogba almost steering a deep cross from Anthony Martial into the far corner, before Schmeichel was at full stretch to tip away a clever curling effort from Mata. Leicester were gasping for air and the game was not even half an hour old.

United continued to pepper the Leicester goal, but Schmeichel did not have too many saves to make. It was starting to become a concern. That is why they spent £75 m on Lukaku. United’s new No 9, though, was quiet, well-marked by Maguire and his centre-back colleague Wes Morgan.

Nevertheless, he was supposed to make a difference against packed defences like this, but his movement can be predictable, and when he did have chances in the second half, he did not take them.

Leicester finally made a mistake, Danny Simpson sticking out an arm to block a cross inside the area. Lukaku would not get a better chance to break the deadlock, but Schmeichel read which way he would put the penalty and made an excellent save.

Mourinho remained calm and sent on fresh legs, Rashford and Fellaini both making a difference as Leicester faded. “It was not an intelligent substitution, they are just good players,” added Mourinho modestly.

“We knew we would have to frustrate coming here and for large parts of the game we did that really well,” said Leicester manager Craig Shakespeare. “But we knew they would have a moment and they took it.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/football/2017/08/26/manchester-united-vs-leicester-city-premier-league-watch-live/

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Chelsea has won two in a row after dropping their opening match of the season with a resounding 2-0 win over Everton.

The Blues are now in 6th place with six points.

West Brom and Stoke City tied one all.

Tottenham and Burnley tied one all.

The biggie of the day saw Liverpool blow out Arsenal 4-0 at Anfield.

The Reds jumped to 7th place with seven points.

The Telegraphs Jason Burt wrote:” Liverpool were fantastic; Arsenal fantastical, an embarrassing shambles; a pale, grotesque shadow of the side they should be. They were swept aside by Liverpool’s attacking power and pace but added to their downfall with their own lack of organisation and determination. Once behind, it was over.

A Liverpool win, given the recent history of this fixture, was predictable enough and the manner of it was also wholly familiar. They were too quick and aggressive and incisive for Arsenal to cope and therefore laid down their own marker as to what this season could hold. On this evidence there is only one side who could possibly be considered as potential title – or even top four – contenders. “We’re going to win the league,” sarcastically sang the Arsenal fans followed by “we are staying up”. It was that painful.

First-half goals by Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane ended it. A third from Mohamed Salah meant Liverpool turbo-charged front three all scored and there could have been double that for them while substitute Daniel Sturridge – being kept out of the side by that trio – added another.

It quickly became a case of Petr Cech against Liverpool and the goalkeeper, with so little protection, could not hold out. He produced one world-class save before Liverpool scored as he scrambled across goal to block Salah’s point blank shot after the winger met Emre Can’s inviting cross but it was a turkey shoot.

Goals came. On 17 minutes there was no pressure on the ball from Arsenal as Can found Joe Gomez, who had stayed onside, out on the right and he delivered his cross into the Arsenal six-yard area and between Rob Holding and Laurent Koscielny for Firmino to run through and steer his header past Cech who got fingers to it but could not keep it out. That was poor defending.

Then there was an even more damning indictment just before half-time as Arsenal lost the ball in the Liverpool penalty area. Pass, pass, pass, pass and then goal. The final pass came from Firmino who sent the ball out wide to Mane who easily cut across Holding – why did he show him inside? – and curled a superb right-footed shot into the far corner. It was his seventh goal in his last eight league matches and yet another against Arsenal.

Pre-match and the talk had been of team selection with Jurgen Klopp leaving goalkeeper Simon Mignolet out of his squad and Arsene Wenger, somehow, omitting both of his big summer signings from his starting XI – there was no Alexandre Lacazette nor Sead Kolasinac. So a team that finished fifth started without the players brought in to strength them? There was Alexis Sanchez, and he cut a forlorn figure as Liverpool continued to cut through Arsenal. Eventually he was subbed, looking even more forlorn.

Firmino slid the ball through to Jordan Henderson with Cech deciding he could not get there first. Henderson, who had started the move by stealing possession – inevitably from Mesut Ozil as he dawdled – then dinked the ball over Cech and past the far post. Cech was again called into action as Salah broke and cut back inside before shooting low with the goalkeeper pushing the ball out.

Before Liverpool scored there was a chance for Danny Welbeck but, as is his wont, he slipped while shooting and scooped the ball over the ball while Gomez threw himself to block a snap-shot from Holding from close to the penalty spot.

At half-time Wenger withdrew Aaron Ramsey for the more defensive-minded Francis Coquelin but was already too late for that as Liverpool went close again with Salah breaking down the right and proving far too quick for Nacho Monreal only for Cech to, once more, block. The rebound fell to Henderson who wanted it far more than Granit Xhaka – another indictment – but he fired over.

The Arsenal shambles continued. They had a corner, which was cleared, with Hector Bellerin the last Arsenal defender who inexplicably then waved a leg at it. Salah charged the ball and was away. Even from inside his own half there was no way he would be caught and he eased up to steady himself and then shoot low past Cech. It summed it up.

Finally on came Olivier Giroud and Lacazette for Arsenal and they combined for the latter to drag his shot wide but then Liverpool went close once more as Mane ran clear from Salah’s flick. Cech blocked his shot but the ball ran past him with Bellerin then diving to scramble it off the goal-line.

The fourth goal came. Again Arsenal were over-turned as they attacked and again there was no pressure – none whatsoever – on the ball as Can fed Salah who had time, space, and more time to weigh up a cross which he then sent arcing into the area for Sturridge to cushion a close-range header past the forlorn and forsaken Cech.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/football/2017/08/27/liverpool-vs-arsenal-premier-league-live-score-updates/