Premier League roundup: Man City dominant, Liverpool held by Burnley

Henry Bushnell
Sergio Aguero scores one of his three goals against Watford. (Getty)

Of the two Premier League title contenders kicking off at 3 p.m. local time on Saturday afternoon, there was little doubt which had the more difficult fixture. Manchester City traveled to fourth-place Watford to test the legitimacy of the Hornets’ strong start under Marco Silva. Liverpool, meanwhile, welcomed Burnley to Anfield.

It was the Reds who should have cruised. But it was the Citizens who did. Liverpool, meanwhile, dropped two points, fell six off City’s Premier League-leading pace, and looked second-rate compared to Pep Guardiola’s irrepressible front five.

City was aided early on by a linesman’s flag that twice remained glued to his shorts. Sergio Aguero’s opener and Gabriel Jesus’ third probably should have been disallowed for offside. But any complaints were rendered irrelevant by wave after wave of City attacks. The visitors were 3-0 up at halftime, and equaled that impressive output after the break.

We’ll begin this week’s roundup by allowing our eyes to feast on City’s brilliance.

Watford 0-6 Manchester City

Six-goal margins are often harsh on the losing side. This one wasn’t. City was rampant. Aguero completed his hat trick late on. David Silva and Kevin De Bruyne, the midfield providers, were excellent. It’s almost inarguable that City has the most potent offense in the Premier League.

Aguero got City’s first two:

He then slid in Jesus for the third:

Nicolas Otamendi popped up in the box to head home a fourth:

Aguero claimed the match ball in the 81st minute, and Raheem Sterling won and converted a penalty in the 89th to top off the rout.

Liverpool 1-1 Burnley

Burnley has now scored three goals since a shock victory over Chelsea on the season’s opening day. The first came at the end of a long ball-header-pass-pass sequence that went the length of the field in stoppage time against Tottenham. The second came via an intercepted back-pass against Crystal Palace. The third was … this:

Mohamed Salah needed just three minutes to cancel out Scott Arfield’s opener, but Liverpool labored for a second goal over the game’s final hour.

Liverpool had over 70 percent possession and 35 shots. But Burnley, opportunistic as ever, got its goal and funneled many of those shots to positions outside the penalty area.

Philippe Coutinho, on his Premier League return, took a good number of those shots. The Brazilian was far from at his best. Liverpool, though, had countless opportunities:


In the 86th minute, the Reds cried out for a penalty. Seconds later, Dominic Solanke hit the crossbar with a volley. The ball just wouldn’t go in for Jurgen Klopp’s men. And it did once for Burnley, which turned out to be enough.

Newcastle 2-1 Stoke

After losing three in a row to open the season, including a League Cup defeat to Nottingham Forest, Rafa Benitez and Newcastle have staged a miniature turnaround. It’s now three wins on the trot for the Toon, who took an early lead through Christian Atsu’s first Premier League goal:

Xherdan Shaqiri leveled the game at one with a customary long-range strike after the break:

But center back Jamaal Lascelles stepped into the role of Magpie savior for the second time in seven days with a second headed winner in seven days:

USMNT defender DeAndre Yedlin made his debut this season for Newcastle as well after returning from injury.

For the second time this season, Newcastle absolutely bullied a fellow mid-table side at home:


Huddersfield 1-1 Leicester City

Leicester has had a difficult start to the season, largely fueled by a difficult run of early fixtures. So it was crucial to come away from a trip to Huddersfield with at least a point.

The Foxes were on edge after Laurent Depoitre put the home side ahead early in the second half:

But Jamie Vardy equalized from the spot after Andy King was fouled on the fringes of the penalty area, and Leicester escaped with a result:

West Brom 0-0 West Ham

Of course.

Crystal Palace 0-1 Southampton

The approach and process were different for Crystal Palace. The result was the same. Palace, playing its first game under new boss Roy Hodgson, became the first team ever in the English top flight to go five games to start a campaign without a point or a goal.

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Henry Bushnell covers soccer – the U.S. national teams, the Premier League, and much, much more – for FC Yahoo and Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Question? Comment? Email him at henrydbushnell@gmail.com or follow him on Twitter @HenryBushnell.