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The Guts Awards - Premier League Week 4

Rejoice and embrace all! The return of the Premier League happened this weekend after the turgid and frankly unwanted international break. It was a welcome relief from the seemingly endless fortnight that blights us all at the beginning of September every year. Oh well, with a healthy Guts bonus sports everything look a little better now, doesn't it?


However, back to the cut and thrust of the season and as it turns out it was quite an eventful one with a few routine and also a few spanners thrown into the works of a few while there were great individual and team performances and some great goals.


Manchester United secured their first competitive win under new manager Louis van Gaal with the 4-0 demolition of Queens Park Rangers at Old Trafford. It was new signings galore as the Reds established the pattern of what van Gaal will hope is the precedent of what teams coming to Old Trafford will experience from now on. Angel di Maria showed his £59.7m worth of quality with a performance laced with pace, power and work ethic while Marcos Rojo, Daley Blind and Ander Herrera were all magnificent in ensuring the United defence remained solid and the attack was linked with every other facet of the team.


Daley Blind in particular was marked out for an impressive performance as his positioning and passing ability contributed to United enjoying 69% of possession. However, van Gaal will be quick to ensure that their feet remain firmly on the ground as QPR were frankly awful and offered nothing apart from a fluffed Matt Phillips chance that really should have ended up in the net.


Aston Villa produced a fine team defensive display to keep out a somewhat subdued Liverpool at Anfield, which has become quite a happy hunting ground for the Villans, the past couple of seasons. A Gabby Agbonlahor goal secured a 1-0 win and condemned Liverpool to their second defeat of the season. Arsenal and Manchester City battled out a 2-2 draw at the Emirates saw Alexis Sanchez and Jack Wilshere score brilliant goals in response to Sergio Aguero’s excellent breakaway goal.


Guts Awards


Hero Award: Nigel Pearson


Leicester City are fast becoming everyone’s second team this season and they’re producing the results when they need to.  They have entered the Premier League this season perhaps one of the favourites to be relegated at the end of the season but yet they have produced several good performances, securing a draw to Everton on the opening day after being behind while pushing Chelsea and Arsenal close securing a point against the latter and beating a Stoke City side at the Britannia Stadium, which is as we know a very difficult ground to win at. Essentially, they have proved they can pick up results when needed and they will hope they can continue to do that.


Villain Award: Newcastle


As a whole, that includes the manager, staff, players and the performance, Newcastle were frankly awful against Southampton and were deservedly hammered 4-0. Their performance was inept in every way; the defence were continually split with gaps all over place, allowing Southampton to win first and second balls and also pick the right pass to play forward. Pardew must now fear for his future as the fans turned on him at the weekend and there were numerous banners visible with the simple words of “PARDEW OUT”.


Team Award: Aston Villa


Villa produced a fine team display to win at Anfield and defeat Liverpool again. It was the fourth successive game at Anfield that Villa had managed to come away with a result with the record now standing at 2 wins and 2 draws. Liverpool were unusually limp but were without the injured Sturridge and Raheem Sterling who was left on the bench following his exploits for England on Monday. It was however a disappointing display from the Merseysiders and condemns them to their second defeat of the season after four games.


Goal Award: Alexis Sanchez


The award for the goal goes to Alexis Sanchez who managed to scoop a wonderful finish into the top corner after City had failed to clear their lines. It was perfectly executed and surely a sign of things to come from him?


Guts’ Gripe of the Weekend: TV Scheduling


What is the purpose of scheduling a 4pm kick-off when that is the only Premier League game on that day? There surely has to be some common sense here, what was the purpose of it being a 4pm instead of say 1.30pm? TV companies have too much power in modern football and this surely has to be kerbed in the future but as long as they keep increasing the broadcast deal amount, that will not happen. 


Categories: Premier League
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