Premier League review: Short-fused Joey Barton and error-prone De Gea
Giles Lucas hands out awards to those who caught the eye from the opening weekend of the Premier League
Capitulation of the weekend – Queens Park Rangers
King of the Championship, now pawn of the Premier League. Following their 4-0 battering by Bolton, QPR find themselves at the foot of the top-flight table.
Shot down by goals from Gary Cahill, Ivan Klasnic, Fabrice Muamba and shot in their own foot by Danny Gabbidon’s own-goal at Loftus Road, the Hoops will be contemplating an exacting campaign.
“It’s a cruel league,” withered Rangers manager Neil Warnock. “We need to learn quickly.”
Scrap of the weekend – Joey Barton
Barton’s latest scrap on Saturday pulverized his already-poor reputation.
He may have been stamped on by Arsenal’s Alex Song during Newcastle’s goalless draw, but he went down far too easily when in dispute with Gervinho, who was eventually sent off, while the angry Magpie remained on the field.
Barton may have lasted the full 90 minutes but his complaints continued to find an outlet, via Twitter.
“I train all summer to have him cheat us out of hard earned point. Its not on. Diving should be 3 game ban. Respect the game,” barked Barton.
“Imagine if id of stamped on Song, all the numptys would be out calling for a public execution. What cos its on me its alright? #hypocrites.”
Atonement of the weekend – Luis Suarez
Although Sunderland leveled Luis Suarez’s goal for Liverpool, the striker will have felt relieved that he’d found the score-sheet at all after missing a penalty.
Suarez was tripped by Kieran Richardson before he blazed his spot-kick over, but the chance for atonement was not far away.
The Uruguayan shrugged off the disappointment to nod in a 12th-minute opener from Charlie Adam’s cross.
Sebastian Larsson struck a superb volley to earn Sunderland a point and pierce the hosts’ hopes of an opening day win, but Suarez must have been ever slightly satisfied.
Error of the weekend – David De Gea
The 20-year-old will doubtless come good at Manchester United, but Saturday’s showing at the Hawthorns left onlookers feeling skeptical about De Gea’s ability.
The fledgling goalkeeper let in Shane Long’s savable shot for West Brom’s equaliser. United went on to prevail 2-1 but De Gea’s confidence levels must be at it’s nadir.
“Welcome to English football,” said his manager, Sir Alex Ferguson. “It’s a learning process [for him].”
Surprising stat of the weekend – Chelsea draw
A goalless draw at Stoke meant Chelsea failed to win their opening top-flight game for the first time in the Roman Abramovich era.
The last time they drew was in 2001, 1-1 with Newcastle. Not a stat Andre Villas-Boas would have had in mind.Tagged in: joey barton
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