Manchester City’s Ilkay Gundogan celebrates scoring their first goal against Bournemouth at the Etihad Stadium, Manchester August 13, 2022. — Reuters pic
Sunday, 14 Aug 2022 4:45 AM MYT
LONDON, Aug 14 — Two games into the new Premier League season, champions Manchester City raised the bar even higher when they crushed promoted Bournemouth 4-0 on Saturday to maintain their fast start.
A few hours later, however, neighbours Manchester United plumbed new depths when they suffered a 4-0 drubbing at Brentford to sit at the bottom of the table for the first time since 1992.
United conceded four times in the opening 35 minutes and new manager Erik ten Hag afterwards apologised to the fans.
Arsenal joined City on six points as former City striker Gabriel Jesus struck twice in a 4-2 win over Leicester City.
Leeds United looked on course for a second successive win but squandered a two-goal lead to draw 2-2 with Southampton — one of three draws on a sultry Saturday afternoon.
City, bidding for a fifth Premier League title in six seasons, cruised to an opening win at West Ham United and were equally dominant against Bournemouth.
They wasted no time getting into their stride in the sunshine as Norway striker Erling Haaland marked his home debut with an assist for Ilkay Gundogan’s opener after 19 minutes.
City cut loose and scored a sumptuous second goal 12 minutes later when Kevin De Bruyne curled a fine strike into the net with the outside of his foot.
Phil Foden added another before halftime from De Bruyne’s assist and it was just a matter of how many more the hosts would help themselves to. In the end they managed only one more courtesy of Jefferson Lerma’s own goal but they spent most of the second half on cruise control.
United were shambolic in the day’s late kickoff in west London — going behind after 10 minutes when David De Gea allowed a weak shot by Josh Dasilva to slip past him.
Things got worse for United eight minutes later when De Gea played the ball out to former Brentford player Christian Eriksen who was caught in possession and Mathias Jensen slotted home.
United’s defence then failed to deal with a corner and Ben Mee glanced in a close-range header before Bryan Mbeumo scored number four after a superb counter-attack.
Ten Hag made three substitutions at halftime, with Raphael Varane, Tyrell Malacia and Scott McTominay coming on, but despite a slight improvement United offered little fight.
“It was a really poor performance,” a stunned ten Hag told MUTV. “For Man United it’s not possible to concede four goals in 35 minutes. I feel very sorry for the fans. We have to demand higher standards.” The arrival of Jesus has created quite a buzz at Arsenal and the Brazilian marked his home debut with a virtuoso display with two goals and two assists against Leicester.
A delightful chip gave his side the lead in the 23rd minute and he made it 2-0 with a header at the far post.
Leicester twice clawed themselves back to within a goal of the hosts thanks to an own goal by William Saliba, who like Jesus was making his home debut, and James Maddison.
But Arsenal were always a step ahead with Jesus setting up Granit Xhaka and Gabriel Martinelli scoring immediately after Leicester’s replies.
Leeds looked set for an away win at Southampton with Rodrigo’s brace putting them in control by the hour mark.
But goals by Kyle Walker-Peters and Joe Aribo earned Southampton their first point of the campaign.
Everton suffered a second successive defeat as they went down 2-1 at Aston Villa, for whom Danny Ings and substitute Emiliano Buendia were both on target.
Fulham, who drew with Liverpool in their first game back in the top flight, missed the chance to earn their first win when Aleksander Mitrovic had a second-half penalty saved by Jose Sa in a 0-0 draw at Wolverhampton Wanderers.
Brighton & Hove Albion against Newcastle United also ended scoreless.
Chelsea host Tottenham Hotspur in Sunday’s big game. — Reuters