Premier League Sunday, Gameweek 1: Open Thread

Photo by Free-ers

The first Sunday of the Premier League 2011-12 season is here and, not surprisingly, we see two heavyweights enter the ring. In the early kick-off we have Stoke City against Chelsea, live from the Britannia Stadium. You’ll definitely know that the Stoke fans will be up for this one especially since the Potters should have won the match late last season where they outplayed the Blues.

All eyes will be on a Chelsea squad managed by new manager Andre Villas-Boas who — thankfully — doesn’t have to come out of the gates in his first match and make a decision regarding whether to field Torres or Drogba. Torres is injured, so it’s an easy decision there.

In the second match of the day, West Bromwich Albion host Manchester United at The Hawthorns. As we saw last season, West Brom is no pushover especially if Peter Odemwingie passes a late fitness test to recover from an ankle injury. Even if Odemwingie doesn’t start, West Brom have enough firepower and creative midfielders to cause Manchester United a few nervous moments, at least.

For Manchester United, it’s a golden opportunity to cement an early advantage in the Premier League especially since Arsenal and Liverpool dropped points on the opening day of the season.

Before, during and after today’s games, be sure to use the comments thread below to post your questions, observations, rants and raves. Tell us what you think of FOX Soccer’s new show, Goals On Sunday which replaces Super Sunday +. How does Chelsea look under new manager Villas-Boas? Etcetera.

26 thoughts on “Premier League Sunday, Gameweek 1: Open Thread”

    1. Did we watch the same game? Lampard’s “dive” as you call it was a clear penalty that was not given. I’ve seen a lot of people talking about how he was going down before the contact, but that is acceptable to protect yourself from full impact with another player when you know contact is coming.

  1. Wow amazing Woodgate’s still on the pitch! Not an injury in sight, don’t wanna speak to soon but if he stays fit he’s a great player.

    1. My feed didn’t work as well as some back up links were blocked. Had to follow along with ESPN gamecast ticker tape.

  2. Well Stoke won a point by doing a decent job at keeping Chelsea from getting great opportunities on the net. Chelsea outplayed, but Stoke kept them goalless. Here’s hoping to a healthy season for Woodgate.

    Hopefully Etherington isn’t too hurt, but he didn’t look good while leaving the pitch.

    I’d say was a bit better than average from last season, but still encountered though Monet moments when I go from 2.4 Mbps to 250 Kbps on the stream.

  3. was the best I’ve seen it this morning for a Premier League game. No skipping, picture loss or any other issues even in Full Screen and displaying through the television.

  4. The Fox Soccer app kept crashing on me. You’d think with something so locked down as an iPad, this sort of thing wouldn’t happen. Had to keep clearing the cache, shutting down the app, and restarting. If Stoke/Chelsea was more exciting, I’d have been pissed at missing bits, but as it stood… meh.

  5. Just back from the match, picked this up off The Oatcake website:

    Gary Neville on Sky Super Sunday

    The britannia is as tough as it gets

    Going to stoke is absolutely the most difficult game, physical, great atmosphere always. The toughest away ground to go in the premier league year in year out.

    Always thought he was a lovely bloke!

    Chants of the day:

    Chelsea, Chelsea, Chelsea, Chelsea responded to with Looters, Looters, Looters, Looters!

    Town full of looters, you’re just a town full of looters.

    World class save from Begovic, happy with that point given our squad is paper thin. Disappointed we’re lagging behind Arsenal in the red and yellow card table, I’m sure the refs will help us catch up.

  6. Good ‘ole Stoke; I understand the low budget, fantastic atmosphere at the Britannia, but somebody ought to sue them for crimes against world football! God, they may well be playing back in the 1950s: kick and run, zero creativity…unwatchable!
    Chelsea were mediocre, could have should have scored. At least Torres looked hungry…I am sure Drogba is not happy coming on w/ 15 mins to play…
    Wellbeck is no United quality…as for De Gea…do you guys remember when SAF brought Taibi from Italy who was a fantastic keeper in his country but in 3 games for United made 2 ridiculous errors and was shipped back home? Methinks De Gea could follow suit…doesn’t command the penalty area, dodgy on shots from distance…and looks simply scared to be in goal.

      1. Ian:
        Interesting read, thank you for the link.
        I don’t agree that Mourinho’s anti-footballing tactics were “largely successful” against Barcelona in the champions league last season. As you recall, Barca went on to lift the trophey, not Real Mardid.
        Over the last 20 years or so, the teams that have had success in the world stage, whether it is the World Cup, European Championships, Copa America, Champions League, even recent Gold Cups have played “the right type” of football: Spain, Barcelona, Milan, Brazil, France, Italy, Mexico(?!)…even “boring boring Greece” were masterfully lined up by King Otto. Kick and run football has long been abandoned by the best. There’s a reason Sam Allardyce (sp?) is coaching in the Championship, and Wenger, despite his recent lack of tropheys, is a coach of Arsenal.
        Stoke’s style and players have their serious limitations. That style w/ these players can only get the team that far…I understand the “siege mentality” and that Stoke are not about making friends and pleasing the “snobs”. And I understand that for a small team like Stoke staying in the Premier League is a big accomplishment.
        I am simply entitled to my opinion, and I was shocked by what I saw this morning (not that I had any high expectations, considering that Woodgate was the team’s only serious purchase). Well, they did get the point against a strong Chelsea side, so, who am I to argue, I guess.

  7. After watching the United-W.Brom match I would say the Red Devils better forget that silliness of signing Sjneider and sign another defender! Or maybe a goal keeper? This kid De Gea cannot stop anything low and to his left. I see United at 2-1-1 after the first month, hopefully Evra is back next week cause they have a tough three weeks ahead of them.

    1. Lay off on De Gea already. He’s a 20 year old kid in a foreign country with a mediocre grasp of the language.
      Back in the days United signed a new keeper but his first season performance was forgettable at best. United stood by him anyway fully expecting he will come good. His name is Peter Schmeichel. Even van der Sar endured a few seasons of mediocrity before coming to United.

    1. I honestly don’t know what it will take for him to play. He’s better than Anelka and Kalou combined, and I would take him over Torres any day.

  8. Good to see Woodgate play the entire match. He played well and as a Spurs supporter I think we will be kicking ourselves.

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