Marcus Rashford scored twice as Manchester United made the perfect start to their Premier League season by inflicting a 4-0 defeat on Frank Lampard in his first match in charge of Chelsea yesterday.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men were in need of a fast start to the campaign to erase memories of a terrible end to last season and got it, as Rashford’s early penalty and three goals in 16 second-half minutes from Anthony Martial, Rashford and debutant Daniel James had Old Trafford in raptures.
On the same day, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang fired Arsenal to a 1-0 win at Newcastle in their Premier League opener yesterday, providing hope of an improved run this season for Unai Emery’s side.
The Gunners finished last season in turmoil after blowing their bid for a top-four place with a disastrous spell in the final weeks.
Arsenal had a wretched away record last season, keeping just one clean sheet on their travels, so taking three points without conceding was the perfect way to turn over a new leaf.
Manchester City in high gear
Raheem Sterling scored a hat-trick as Manchester City launched the defence of their Premier League title in style on Saturday before Harry Kane scored two late goals to complete a dramatic comeback against Aston Villa.
Pep Guardiola’s City thumped West Ham 5-0 in the early kick-off but despite City’s devastating display, the use of the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) system for the first time in the Premier League proved the big talking point.
In the later match, Champions League finalists Spurs recovered from the shock of conceding an early goal to beat newly promoted Villa 3-1, with a goal for new signing Tanguy Ndombele and two in the last five minutes for Kane.
Elsewhere, there were big wins for Burnley and Brighton.
City, whose match at the London Stadium was interrupted by a series of reviews, had a goal ruled out for the tightest of offside calls against Sterling and Sergio Aguero was given the chance to retake a penalty by VAR after seeing his first attempt saved.
“Only what I wish is that VAR doesn’t make mistakes please,” said Guardiola, who felt that his side’s disallowed goal should have stood.
Liverpool’s 4-1 victory over Norwich on Friday sent the message to City that they are up for another titanic title battle after missing out by just one point last season.
But in a worrying sign for those trying to stop Guardiola’s men romping to a third straight league crown, City cruised to victory despite being far from their best before half-time.
The visitors led at the break thanks to Gabriel Jesus’s opener, but moved through the gears after the break as Sterling scored twice.
Aguero then denied the England international the chance to seal his hat-trick from the spot, before the 24-year-old eventually grabbed his third goal of the game in stoppage time.
“Perfect start? It terms of the result yes, in terms of the performance no,” said the ever-demanding Guardiola. “In the first-half we were sloppy with our passes.”
PREMIER LEAGUE RESULTS
Liverpool 4- 1 Norwich
West Ham 0-5 Man City
B’mouth 1-1 Sheffield Utd
Burnley 3- 0 Soton
Palace 0-0 Everton
Watford 0-3 Brighton
Tottenham 3-1 Aston Villa
Leicester 0-0 Wolves
Newcastle 0-1 Arsenal
Man Utd 4-0 Chelsea
Raheem Sterling Man City 3
Ashley Barnes Burnley 2
Harry Kane Tottenham 2
Marcus Rashford Man United 2