Barclays Premier League Review – September 2014

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Thanks to the international break at the beginning of the month, we again only saw three rounds Premier League games this month, and although some may not have been incredibly exciting, we saw some superb goals and world class players on show – mostly summer signings showing their worth. In fact the top three of my players of the month are all stars new to the Premier League. Read on to find out who they are and who I gave the other usual awards too…

The table on September 1st
The table on September 1st
The table on October 1st
The table on October 1st

What we can see from the table

  • Chelsea retained their place at the top of the table after picking up 7 points from a possible 9.
  • Southampton have moved up to second thanks to victories in all three fixtures last month.
  • Swansea, who started the season with three wins out of three in August, picked up just a point in September to drop to fifth.
  • The two Merseyside clubs are surprisingly lower down in the table, whilst Liverpool were one of eight clubs not to win a game last month.
  • Burnley are one of those clubs, and didn’t moved off the bottom throughout last month, and are now joined in the drop zone by QPR and Newcastle, whilst West Brom and Crystal Palace, who were in the drop zone at the start of the month are now up to 10th and 9th respectively.

Player of the Month

Angel di Maria – Manchester United

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We saw glimpses of what Angel di Maria when Manchester United visited Burnley at the end of the August, but the Argentine truly announced himself to the Premier League in September. Not only did he open his account with a fine strike in the 4-0 win over QPR and play a part in United’s other three efforts that day, he netted an early goal of the season contender at Leicester City with a stunning lofted finish which I chose as the second best goal last month and then impressed again in the victory over West Ham. Louis van Gaal spent big in his first summer at Old Trafford, but it appears that his most expensive signing at £59 million could be the most impressive, and help The Red Devils out when they are in trouble. Their two wins last month may not have been possible without him, whilst his absence at the King Power Stadium could have meant a more embarrassing defeat. With Wayne Rooney suspended for the next three games, Di Maria’s importance will become even more evident in October.

2nd – Diego Costa (Chelsea)

3rd – Graziano Pelle (Southampton)

Manager of the Month

Ronald Koeman – Southampton

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Many people tipped Southampton to struggle this season after a summer of mass departures and a change in manager, but the new man in the hot seat Ronald Koeman has surprised everyone and the Saints currently sit in second in the league after winning all three games in September. They began the month with a 4-0 home win over Newcastle United, in which summer signing Graziano Pelle, who Koeman signed from former club Feyenoord in the summer, scored two, and this thrashing was followed by handing Swansea City their first home defeat of the season with a 1-0 win at the Liberty Stadium, whilst their third victory to cap off the month came last weekend in a 2-1 home win against QPR. Next up for Koeman and his side, are Tottenham Hotspur managed by Mauricio Pochettino, who left the South Coast in the summer…

2nd – Jose Mourinho (Chelsea)

3rd – Neil Warnock (Crystal Palace)

Goal of the Month

Phil Jagielka vs Liverpool

2nd – Angel Di Maria vs Leicester City

3rd – Graziano Pelle vs Queens Park Rangers

Others worth mentioning

  • Jack Wilshere vs Manchester City
  • Enner Valencia vs Hull City
  • Morgan Schneiderlin vs Newcastle United
  • Nikica Jelavic vs Newcastle United
  • Mohamed Diame vs Newcastle United
  • Charlie Austin vs Southampton
  • Edin Dzeko vs Hull City

Game of the Month

Leicester City 5-3 Manchester United

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Leicester City fought back from 3-1 down to secure a stunning victory over a defensively frail Manchester United. United were on course for a win when a Robin van Persie header and a magical Angel Di Maria chip put them ahead. Leonardo Ulloa’s header reduced the deficit before Ander Herrera’s back heel extended United’s lead. But Leicester hit back through a David Nugent penalty and Esteban Cambiasso equalised before Jamie Vardy and an Ulloa penalty secured the win. Young defender Tyler Blackett was sent off for the visitors for the foul on Vardy which led to Ulloa’s late spot-kick, whilst Radamel Falcao’s first United start couldn’t prevent the loss. Read the full report here.

2nd – Newcastle United 2-2 Hull City

Read the full report here.

3rd – Arsenal 2-2 Manchester City

Read the full report here.

Managerial Sackings

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With it being early in the season, the fact that there are no managerial sackings is not a surprise, but the pressure is building on Alan Pardew at Newcastle United who only picked up one point last month, and he could well feature in this section next month.

Games to look out for in October

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  • Manchester United vs Everton (05/10)
  • Chelsea vs Arsenal (05/10)
  • Manchester City vs Tottenham (18/10)
  • Manchester United vs Chelsea (26/10)
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