With the international break at the start of the month, we only saw three rounds of games in September, but the title race got closer, the champions continued to stutter and the struggles continued in the North East. Recap the action in the second of this season’s monthly reviews.
What We Can See From The Table
- Manchester City’s 100% start came to an end, and Pellegrini’s men were knocked off the top of the table by local rivals United.
- The Manchester clubs are joined in the top four by surprise packages West Ham and Arsenal, who rose from eighth and sixth respectively.
- Last season’s champions Chelsea only won one game in September and drop one place to 14th.
- Of the newly-promoted sides, it is 12th placed Norwich who are doing the best, one spot ahead of Watford.
- The bottom two remain Newcastle and Sunderland, both of whom are still winless, whilst Stoke move out at Aston Villa’s expense.
Player of the Month
Anthony Martial – Manchester United
When Manchester United signed Anthony Martial from Monaco on deadline day for £36 million (potentially rising to £58 million), many people were criticising him before he’d even played for the club, as the sum was so ridiculous for a 19 year old who hadn’t even got a senior cap for France. However in his first month in the Premier League, Martial has gone some way to prove those doubters wrong. He came off the bench on his debut against Liverpool to score in Thierry Henry style, instantly announcing himself to the Old Trafford faithful in a 3-1 win. He was rewarded with a start against Southampton, and once again made a great impression, scoring twice as United won 3-2 at St. Mary’s. Despite not scoring in the final game of the month, a 3-0 win over Sunderland, Martial still caught the eye and set up Wayne Rooney’s goal with a jinking run.
2nd – Jamie Vardy (Leicester City)
3rd – Dimitri Payet (West Ham United)
Manager of the Month
Louis van Gaal – Manchester United
Both awards are heading to Sir Matt Busby Way this month, as Louis van Gaal is given my manager’s accolade. He earns it by guiding United to three wins from three in September, meaning that the Red Devils top the table going into October ahead of August’s pace-setters Manchester City. Van Gaal welcomed David De Gea back into the fray after his transfer saga, as well as new signing Anthony Martial, who of course won my player of the month award. The Dutchman’s team scored three goals in all of their games against Liverpool, Southampton and finally Sunderland, which may have left Van Gaal re-thinking his previous statement that United wouldn’t be title contenders. They’re currently top of the table for the first time in over two years and sending out a message to the rest of the division that they are back in business.
2nd – Mauricio Pochettino
3rd – Roberto Martinez (Everton)
Goal of the Month
Matt Ritchie vs Sunderland
2nd – Christian Benteke vs Manchester United
3rd – Ramires vs Newcastle United
Game of the Month
Leicester City 3-2 Aston Villa
Leicester City produced a thrilling second-half comeback to recover from 2-0 down to beat Aston Villa and move second in the table. Jack Grealish curled in a deserved opener from 20 yards, his first goal, for a dominant Villa early on and Carles Gil swept in a second. Ritchie de Laet volleyed the hosts a lifeline and Jamie Vardy prodded Leicester level. Nathan Dyer scored the winner with a brave late header on his debut. The winger had only signed from Swansea on loan on deadline day but made himself an instant hero and left Villa with just one win from five matches. Read the full BBC report here.
2nd – West Bromwich Albion 2-3 Everton
3rd – Leicester City 2-5 Arsenal
Six games in and all the managers have so far kept their jobs, but Steve McClaren and Dick Advocaat, in charge of winless Newcastle and Sunderland respectively look the most in danger.
Games To Look Forward To In October
- Everton vs Liverpool (04/10)
- Arsenal vs Manchester United (04/10)
- Sunderland vs Newcastle (25/10)
- Manchester United vs Manchester City (25/10)
- Chelsea vs Liverpool (31/10)