5 things we learnt from matchday 12

On this weekly column, we highlight five of the biggest lessons we learnt from matchday 12 of the English Premier League

 

1. Stoke City 1 Vs Chelsea 0: Diego Costa is failing Chelsea

Chelsea’s defeat to Stoke City was surprising to me considering Jose Mourinho’s men were at their best in the game.

Eden Hazard seems to be back to his usual self, running, sliding through challenges and being the main man. The midfielder pairing of Nemanja Matic and Ramires although still a suspect was also a solid one while the defence also held their own.

The only disappointment for Chelsea were goalkeeper Asmir Begovic and striker Diego Costa.

I talked about Begovic last week in this column and my opinion was that he has no business being at Chelsea if he cannot some certain types of saves. The goal he conceded against Stoke City included.

Costa is beginning to become Chelsea’s main problem and should be dropped till he learn his lessons. The best goal scoring chances for Chelsea came when Loic Remy was introduced. The French man did more in the few minutes he played that Costa. This is not taking Costa’s tantrums and antics into consideration. That was all he did in the game, fouling his opponent and trying to get into fights.

The striker needs to focus on goal scoring only or be dropped.

2. Manchester United 2 Vs West Brom 0: Van Gaal is getting the results

Much has been said about Manchester United’s style of play so far this season. Not attacking well, not scoring enough goals etc. But after matchday 12 the Red Devils on third in the English Premier League table and still in the mix.

They might be all people say they are, but Louis Van Gaal is getting the results. They were patient and slow with their build up but at least they got the results.

Whatever people think about Van Gaal’s tactics does not matter as far as he keeps winning games.

3. Aston Villa 0 Vs Manchester City 0: City’s Second string not good enough

Manchester City were held to a goalless draw by Aston Villa and it again highlighted what we all know about Manchester City.

Their second string are not good enough yet for them to win the title with injuries to their main stars.

David Silva and Sergio Aguero were still missing and City were toothless against Villa. Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling had an off day while injury force off Wilfried Bony.

Even before the injury, Bony was isolated upfront and was ineffective.

City need Aguero, Silva and all their first choice 11 fit to regain the title.

4. Arsenal 1 Vs Tottenham 1: Gunners show fight

Arsenal fans might be disappointed in not getting the three points against fierce rivals Tottenham, but in the context of how things went at the Emirate, a draw is a good result for the Gunners.

Despite playing more games than the Gunners-three in nine days- more than Arsenal-two in nine days- Tottenham were dominant all through the game-in the first half especially.

Even after deservedly taking the lead, Spurs were still on top of the game but Arsenal get my praise for snatching a draw.

With injuries ravaging the squad, Wenger was left with just his first 11 in the game. On the back of a 5-1 thrashing by Bayern Munich in midweek, the Gunners were shot in confidence so the Arsenal we know would have lost the game.

But they came back and snatched an equaliser. They could have gotten the winner if Olivier Giroud was more clinical.

The draw shows Arsenal have grown from last season, but they need luck with injuries to get any chance of winning the league.

5. Liverpool 1 Vs Crystal Palace 2: Klopp still new to EPL

Jurgen Klopp received his first loss as coach of Liverpool and it came in a surprise 2-1 loss to Crystal Palace at home.

I was surprised because on the back of the 3-1 victory away at Chelsea last week we expected Liverpool to be on the rise.

But Klopp and every one of us have been jolted back to reality that this is the EPL.

Klopp will need time to learn about this aggressive, less technical and fast paced league where so much tactics don’t really matter.

The most motivated side, no matter how bad they are usually win on the day in the EPL.

Klopp will gradually learn with time. Welcome Jurgen!

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