• Sun. Jun 23rd, 2024

Spurs shine while Man United suffer in Premier League

ByWill Duffield

Sep 28, 2023
Cropped portrait of Ange Postecoglou on a touchline

There is always a sense of anticipation and excitement when the Premier League returns from the international break, and fans were treated to a box office selection of matches over the course of the weekend.

This was no more apparent than in North London, where Tottenham Hotspur beat Sheffield United by two goals to one… yet the score doesn’t paint the full picture.

Ange Postecoglou’s side have been in imperious form, remaining unbeaten in their first four matches. They look like a transformed team under new management, but when Gustavo Hamer scored for the Blades in the 73rd minute, it looked as if an upset was on the cards. Postecoglou immediately made a change, bringing on Richarlison who transformed the game entirely. With what was their 15th corner of the game, the Brazilian made a darting run to the near post and headed the ball past Sheffield keeper Wes Foderingham. Then, in the tenth minute of extra time, Richarlison set up Dejan Kulusevski to fire in the winner.

The comeback epitomised Tottenham’s newly installed belief, spirit and mentality, with the victory making it their best start to a season in 57 years. Speaking to the BBC, Postecoglou said that it was a “brilliant reaction” to come from behind and that his team ultimately deserved to win given that they had 28 attempts on goal during the match. Tottenham fans will be feeling very excited about this year as they adopt a new style of football.

The same cannot be said for Manchester United, whose troubles continued when they suffered a crushing defeat at Old Trafford against an electric Brighton side. The team’s well-publicised problems occurring off the field seemed to transpire into United’s performance at the weekend, as they ultimately lacked any sort of spirit or willingness to win the game.

This was in direct contrast to Brighton, who were excellent all afternoon, and when former Manchester United striker Danny Welbeck scored first, it was all going wrong for Erik ten Hag’s side. Pascal Groß and João Pedro both scored well-worked goals to destroy any hopes of a United comeback in the second half, who were being humiliated in front of their home crowd. The fans did have something to cheer for when Hannibal Mejbri netted superbly from 25 yards, although some spectators had already left Old Trafford by this point. Ultimately, United were too narrow and allowed the Seagulls to manipulate the spaces on the wing, allowing them control of the game.

Brighton have now recorded four consecutive victories against United and move up to fifth in the table, demonstrating why they are a force to be reckoned with. It was certainly a weekend to forget for Manchester United, as they recorded their third defeat of the season which is their worst start to a campaign since 2014.

The Premier League certainly lived up to its expectations, and with the North London derby headlining next week’s fixtures, fans can expect to see another cracking display of entertainment.

Ange Postecoglou (cropped)” by Кирилл Венедиктов is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.