Premier League Saturday, Gameweek 1: Open Thread

As one World Soccer Talk reader remarked this week, today is like Christmas morning for soccer fans.

A brand-new Premier League season is upon us. If you’re like me, I just can’t wait to sit back and watch the matches and enjoy the commentary and the whole experience.

For viewers in the United States, the coverage begins at 7am ET. The complete TV schedule is here.

Before, during and after today’s matches, join the conversation in the comments section below with soccer fans from around the world. Feel free to post your rants or raves, or any questions you may have.

196 thoughts on “Premier League Saturday, Gameweek 1: Open Thread”

  1. Just coming in to say, Aljazeera got their usual in Keys and Gray with their guests today Kevin Keegan and David Platt. All games are shown live. Next month will be back in California, it would be a big step down. C’MON UNITED!!!

        1. Wow… Mideast has some great coverage!!!

          That being said I don’t want to diminish what NBC is doing in the USA… Finally a SERIOUS program giving quality perspective to the Premier League.


  2. Ten minutes in …Very impressed!

    Love the on site reporters update…

    Feels like we are there…like what Sky would do.

    Good stuff


  3. I’m just curious if any iOS users can get the stream on the app? The Golf Channel Stream is working fine but the football stream is frozen.

    1. I was trying to avoid being too sentimental….but I’m right with you, Gaffer.

      I had goosebumps during the opening piece. Can’t believe I’m actually watching a quality pre-match show.

  4. This analysis is MILES better than anything we had with Fox Soccer… Not jokey or comedic like what we had to endure with Fox… AWESOME start.. Rebecca is gold…

    NBC you are looking magic right now.. And we are only 30’minutes in


  5. 2 segments in and you’d think NBC had been covering the Premier League since its inception.

    As a DirecTV subscriber, I’m interested to see what time they crank up the “Extra Time” channels.
    In the guide it says straight up 10:00AM EDT.
    If anyone is recording these matches, I’d suggest adding 10 minutes to the start time, as the IMG feed always begins 7 minutes before the match.

    Also, with 3 commercial breaks in the first 25 minutes, I’m thinking I’ll be DVRing this from now on to get an extra 15 minutes sleep every Saturday!

    Thanks again, NBC, for your professional, non-condescending approach.

  6. Stoke fans are about to step off into the unknown. No TP as safety net. I’m more than ready. A “good result” today will simply be seeing the team play with positive energy and intent moving forward. A ball played out of the back will count as revolutionary. 😉

    I would like to have seen a new face or two up front, which may yet happen. However, I think the addition of Erik Pieters will be immensely helpful. We simply did not have a left back last year.

    A big season ahead for Stoke. Hopefully, more ups than downs. At least we won’t have to deal with TP doing his dreadful Paul McCartney imitation….Get back. Get back…..

  7. I could watch Rebecca Lowe all day long but unfortunately I have a tee time. DVR will be working overtime today.

    Great stuff so far by NBC.

  8. Great stuff from NBC so far. Keeping things simple and No gimmicks. Other than Robbie Earl being a little hard to understand because he talks so quickly at times this is a major step up for football coverage in the USA

    1. Agreed. Earle’s delivery seems a little rushed. But the substance is there. I think he’ll slow down over the coming weeks.

  9. That away shirt is truly atrocious.

    Apparently Mark Hughes wasn’t even born the last time Stoke won at Anfield. I guess Guy would have been in his mid 30s at least 😉

  10. Wow for the first time we actually see them walk out the tunnel, shake hands, no more ‘first fifteen minutes brought to you by geico’, we are actually soaking in the atmosphere, someone pinch me! is this Christmas??

  11. Watching it on BT Sport. Bet 365 are all over the advertising.

    There’s a good offer on over here with SkyBET, have £5 on an accumulator at odds of 5-1 or more and you get a £5 free bet every week. Very competitive, uncle Rupert gets my money this week.

      1. Very professional. They’ve got a host of time served presenters and pundits. Relatively professional but nothing we’re not used to in the UK when it comes to football broadcasting. I suppose it gets very difficult to reinvent the wheel.

      2. Ian Darke and Michael Owen are commentating on BT. The pre-game was okay, a different approach to how Sky would their pre-game but that’s to be expected from a new network.

        Although their first few minutes of live ground footage could have been better. As Ian said, there was a 1/2 screen Bet 365 ad which appeared as the teams walked out. Then unlike NBCSN, they started talking about the team line-ups half way through YNWA instead of airing it in full.

      1. I don’t understand why the play it over the tannoy, it’s much better when the crowd are allowed to belt it out alone.

    1. Can’t beat sir Ian…I was hoping NBC would utilize their commentators..

      Regardless.. We are in good hands


    2. I’ve got the BT audio on the hi-fi, and NBCSN broadcast on the HDTV.

      The breakup on Ian Darke and Steve McManaman is the only real drawback to NBC acquiring the Premier Legaue stateside right.

  12. Small criticism for NBC. The graphics are taking up the majority of the top left of the TV screen.

    …I can deal with it, so long as there are no huge pop-up ads which squeeze the picture size (yes, that was my first little dig at Fox).

    1. I’ve also noticed that the commentary seems a little loud. NBC could lower the commentators microphones a smidge and raise the crowd microphone.

      But I’m so happy with the coverage right now. Four and a half stars!

    2. From Twitter:

      Jarrett Bellini, CNN ‏@JarrettBellini:

      #BPLonNBC So far so good! But upper left score line is a bit busy. Could be slightly condensed. #NotThatYouAsked

    3. I was a bit surprised that NBCSN was not taking the graphics from the IMG/TWI feed, instead taking a clean feed and using NBC GFX. The only drawback was about 72 minutes in when Alan Parry reacted to a graphic element about shots taken that we didn’t see.

      That’s a minor problem in a whole lotta good that NBCSN has provided today.

      1. I noticed that too. I wish they could just find a way to cover the IMG scoreboard, but allow us to have all the other graphics.

  13. Great call by the linesman on the set piece.

    Speaking of excellent linesmen, does anyone know when Sian Massey is making her NBC debut?

  14. So refreshing to have the studio show focus on football rather than the “witty” byplay between the commentators. Wynalda seemed to think we tuned in to se his stupid antics.

    Terrific start for NBC.

  15. Remove the NBC Logo, remove the hashtag “#bplonnbc”, remove the “LIVE” logo, remove the stupid advertisement “worldsoccershop” box.

    They could put the NBC Logo on the bottom right and make it transparent so it doesn’t interfere with the match.

    Good job so far though.

    1. The thing that would be likely to happen is the World Soccer Shop box maybe being removed. NBC logo with the Twitter hashtag underneath is used for most of their properties (eg; NHL & MLS). The live bug IMO is there only for morning sports (eg; F1) so the audience doesn’t think it’s a repeat. That’s going from my experience watching various NBC Sports properties.

      1. FSC & ESPN were able to show all of the same info, advertising, and twitter nonsense without taking up as many pixels.

        1. I know, I’m just saying from what NBC Sports tends to do. They might however change a few things because of how they monitor this site

    2. I’m watching Sunderland/Fulham on Extra Time with the IMG/TWI GFX and flipping back and forth with Arsenal/Villa on NBCSN.

      As Jeff mentioned, NBCSN uses the extreme left of the screen to use the hashtag and the Live graphics. If anything, the box for the clock is too wide. It doesn’t need all that much space. That’s what’s pushing the ad box on the right of it too far into the middle of the screen.

      However, I’ve noticed during the Arsenal/Villa game that some of the ads are underneath the clock and score.

      Also, there may be a reason why the lower right corner isn’t used. It’s possible that that space is reserved for another reason.

    3. Hey, how about everyone shuts up about the advertisements, because that’s what is necessary to justify NBC devoting this much effort to the coverage. Everyone seems to forget that all of this costs money. Fox does everything on the cheap. We had lots of ads and crappy coverage. NBC has GREAT coverage. All the games for free and live. No extra apps to buy or websites to sign up for. Shut up and enjoy the games. If you are so bothered about the upper right corner of your TV having logos on it, you’re absolutely doing it wrong.

  16. I notice that the sound is a little off commentary seems a milli second in advance of picture.

    I am TWC Los Angeles area and still no Extra time channel here :(

    1. Yes, the audio is ever so slightly ahead of the video. Most noticeable on shots where the commentator announces the save before the save is actually made.

  17. Ya NBC is getting it done arnt they. Like someone mentioned before the only thing I miss is Darkie and Macca but Ill get over that. NBC is finally giving American EPL coverage that is top class, well done.

    I also noticed the commentary seems just a second in advance of the picture.

  18. Not a bad performance from Cam for stoke in the first half. put it far post to Crouch every time. Love watching our US boys in the premier league!

    1. I want to see Shea get a chance once he’s over his injury. The first half is no different in terms of effort and performance as under Pulis, we’re still desperately lacking any creativity to take some pressure off.

      Sturridge looks well, I hope he stays fit. 10 years ago he’d have had 150+ games and 75+games under his belt. Stifling talent like that with money is the reason for England’s ineptitude on the international stage. He was banking with Coutts before he’d even started in the first team for Man City, tells you everything that’s wrong with football.

  19. Just downloading the BT Sport App from Google Pay to see whether it’s any use on my phone. Could be a bonus when pubbing it on a Saturday afternoon.

      1. Here’s one then, give me a better goalkeeping line up than Begovic, Sorenson and Butland. Is there one out there?

          1. The one and only, you’ll want him after De Gea drops another howler. I owe you a bottle of Whisky however. See if The Gaffer can sort out contact detaiuls and I’ll sort you out.

            See if the Gaff

      1. Ian
        All the way with Billy very lucky to nick it over the Rovers last week.after last years nightmare a 3/0 start would be great.Lets Go REDS!

  20. Ya as for the game. Liverpool looked good for most of the first half. Passing well and controlling the game for most of the half. They just couldn’t finish there chances and there were some decent ones to be had. I know Sturridge finally had a nice finish but man there going to need Suarez and his goals this season.

    Stoke looked like they could have grabbed one at the end of the first half. I think Liverpool are going to need another goal if they want 3 today. Liverpool’s D looks solid for the most part but here and there you can see cracks where Stoke could sneak one one in for the tie.

  21. Not the worst result in the world given the chances Liverpool had. Stoke look no different to how they did under Pulis to me, they need to spend some money up front.

    Liverpool looked composed but they weren’t up against much, I’d say that top 6 would be a success for them this season.

    Begovic MOM for Stoke, Mignolet shows some good form too.

    BT Sport crashed second half so I made do with text commentary. It doesn’t cost me anything but whatever the problem they need to sort it sharpish.

  22. Exactly why Liverpool will be midtable again. Can’t kill off games against weak opposition and many teams will take advantage of that.

    1. I would expect those who don’t like Liverpool to say that. However, over the past couple of years Liverpool wouldn’t have gotten this result. Stoke is a particularly tough match up for Liverpool’s style of play and the types of players it fields. Stoke also have retained their identity and are very physical and well organized. It will be difficult for a lot of clubs to get a full three points against them.

      Begovic was incredible. If not for him, this one would have been over early in Liverpool’s favor.

      In the end it’s three points, and that’s all that matters.

  23. Excellent first game of the season. Stoke are going play differently after all. Great for the neutrals.

    The late drama with the penalty was all we needed to get the season off to a flying start.

    Liverpool are top of the table. Who would have thought it :-) . At least for a couple of hours.

    Kudos to NBC for finally allowing us on this side of the pond to feel wat the EPL is all about.

    1. F#*k the neutrals, I’ll take whatever’s served up so long as we finish 17th.

      Football isn’t played for the neutrals anyway!

  24. Liverpool’s match all the way. No complaints from me.

    However, I am encouraged by Stoke’s performance. Fewer hoofed balls, more play from the back, real intent to score, not just hang on. More corners, crosses and shots in one match than we had in 2 or 3 combined last season. You can see what Hughes is trying to do and the players seem willing.

    Having said that, we obviously don’t have enough skilled players to keep possession for extended periods of time, though I thought Pennant looked sharp in limited time.

    Next week with Palace at home should give us a better picture of what we can expect in the long run.

    Onward and upwards. Rome wasn’t built in a day. :-)

    1. Well draw a sh!tload like he did with Fulham I’m sure. I remember getting berated by a Fulham fan on here when I pointed out they were in danger of drawing their way to relegation.

  25. DirecTV’s overflow channels all went live between 10 and 5 minutes before the games started. They may have been slow in announcing their plans which made me nervous but DirecTV customers have nothing to complain about.

    And, when pretty much the only thing that NBC could have done better is shrink the size of their graphics we are all being treated very well. First class, all round!

  26. On DirecTV the extra time channels have a largish EPL time and score bug in the top right corner and a Extra Time logo in the top left.

  27. I see that the Premier League no longer plays the ‘My Saturday Self’ official Premier League song as the teams shake hands and line-up.

  28. Stoke’s 9-0-1 turned out ineffective, though they should have had two goals, missed Huth opportunity and the missed PK. Liverpool deserved the win. Stoke doesn’t look any different.

    1. “Stoke doesn’t look any different.”

      Have you already forgotten last year? 😉

      Their totals of Shots 11(6), Corners 6 and Crosses 8 are far superior to the usual dross they served up last season. Also, the number of balls played out of the back was very un-Stoke-like. I think that shows a clear change in intention and effort.

      Still nothing like graceful or skilled, but last year those totals would have read 2(0), 0, 3 and every clearance would have been a 3/4 of the pitch hoof.

      First match, new system? I’m good. :-)

  29. On Comcast (Xfinity) in Boston, the overflow games are available on VOD. Go to Xfinity On-Demand, select Sports, select Premier League, select Live Matches, and the matches are there. Watching Sunderland-Fulham now — let’s see it Jozy!

    1. Unfortunately, as rej4sl comments below, it’s not totally bug-free yet. You can only watch from the beginning, with no FFWD or Pause, therefore you can’t catch up to live. More importantly, just before half (it might have been when the live match went to half), I lost the feed, it dumped me back to the VOD menu, and it forgot that I had watched 43+ minutes already. So now if I want to watch the 2nd half on TV, I have to start over from the beginning. Gonna watch on PC instead :).

    1. I know there has been much debate on the issue of score flashes, but given that there aren’t as many replays as before is it that big of a deal?

        1. You have the ability to watch any game you want live! Only truly sick people feel the need to watch all 10 matches in a weekend. Watch it like you would other sports. If you want to keep another game up to see something (like I did with Jozy’s debut for Sunderland), do it.

          1. I’m a fan of Stoke and Liverpool… so it’d be hard to watch two games concurrently.

            I very much doubt I’m a rare minority in the “no spoiler” score line debate.

  30. A quick word about the app. It seemed to take a while to start, early on its been working fine. It’s between 45 seconds and a minute behind the TV but switching between games works seamlessly. I know there are issues with the android app, but on iOS all is well.

  31. Unless I’m missing something .. Online does not have a full screen version of the app…no Apple TV application either

    Except that we are gold..


  32. I got Gunners vs Villa going on the flat screen with nbcsports. I got Sunderland v Fulham on the laptop with Live extra.
    Nice bit of a Saturday morning. I could get used to this couldn’t I

  33. This is intriguing – our Premier League Extra time arrived 35 minutes late – as I called Xfinity when it was not on at 9.

    The games are delayed now so when you start it you can’t fast forward to watch it live. It is totally strange all controls are disabled.

    They have all 4 games on demand though. 3 are working but the Cardiff feed is screwed up.

    Hope next week it is better.

  34. Using live extra apps on samsung galaxy tab 2. App froze up a few times watching sun fulham game. Would force close, restart, and continue on. Feeds were good quality though and its quick to jump from game to game.

    Patiently waiting for dish to get overflow channels added….

  35. Sounds a tasty game at the City Ground jtm. My missus mate is covering it for Talksport, Simon Humphreys will see you right.

    Bournemouth doing well against Wigan too after that thumping last week.

  36. Comcast using On-Demand for the Extra Time games sucks. I thought it would be live instead when I just switched to the WBA game it started from the beginning. Wish they just used normal channels so I could hop between games.

    1. I was watching Sunderland fullham live and at half it restarted on its own to beginning. Can’t fast forward. Typical Comcast

    2. Yup stops you switching between games. If you go back to it you can resume where you left off. No functions to fast forward on it. I miss a normal channel.

      1. Android apps tend to be substandard.

        The IOS version worked flawlessly on my iPad.

        The reason I hold my nose and buy some apple products, at least I know what I’m paying for.

  37. Soundsa good goal for Norwich. Steven Whitaker running 3/4 the length of the pitch.

    Martinez, really knows how to organise a defence 😉

    Fulham away win at Sunderland? That’d be a rare occurance.


        Watch the free kick on this. The scorer of it is my brother in laws driver’s mate. He plays for Bargain Booze as a ringer, apparently he’s in his 50s and can still turn it on. Scored an overhead kick and 5 goals in their last match, a 7-1 win!

        There’s hope for you yet. Sound fella is Erik.

  38. The scores in the top right hand corner has forced me to pull out the cardboard again. As long as the commentators don’t yap out the scores like Ian Darke was ordered to do at ESPN, I can deal with it.

  39. Wigan and Bolton down to 10 men.

    Smokey’s Lions are getting beaten again, perhaps they ought to try rugby instead?

  40. Arsenal just got screwed with a real bad call. That looked to be a good challenge didn’t it.

    Down 2-1 to Villa now. The Gunners need to bring in help this summer. Giroud isnt going to cut it upfront by himself. Wenger really bottled this summers transfer business

  41. Dirty, dirty Arsenal.

    7 yellows and 1 red in this match.

    Looks like the oompa loompas are throwing their toys out. Wenger’s beautiful passing gnomes play the right way of course though so everything’s okay.

  42. Screwed again by Comcast/Xfinity. Feed cut out from Sunderland match, can’t get back to it live. Sounds like its a nationwide problem. All the other matches are the same, can’t watch live feed of the other Extra Time matches, just starts at the beginning. Complete joke.

    1. Bony played for Ivory Coast in a friendly against Mexico on Wednesday night (in the USA), so he’s still probably recovering from all the travel. Canas has been a bright spark though.

      1. He’s in my fantasy league team so I’m a bit gutted. Did you see Pratley get sent off?

        Liverpool didn’t need the crab to beat us today.

  43. COME ON FULHAM!!!!!! It usually takes at least three months to get an away win. Wasn’t pretty but got the job done, especially Hughes and Hangelend. I don’t think Sunderland realized Jozy was on their team until the 60th minute, and then they forgot again.

    Come on you Whites!!!

  44. How refreshing NBC, you’ve certainly done your homework. This is so like watching from the UK. Superb in studio arrangement.

    I hope the suits at poxy Fox are crying in their beer watching how it should be done.

  45. Sorry Potters fan, but this looks like a relegation season. Pulis at least made Stoke play good defense; Hughes has them half-arsing on offense/half-arsing on defense! They really looked terrible out there today.

    1. Well, we’ll see. I’ve posted their match numbers above. They’re much better than “normal” for Stoke. For me, that’s a positive.

  46. Congrats to TWC for getting Extra Time up, even though WHU v Cardiff was missing.

    If Stoke isn’t playing then I like being able to surf and pick what looks to be a hot match. If it goes cold, I can watch something else. For me, flashed scores are a help, not a problem, but I understand the misgivings of others.

  47. Arsenal losing might be the best thing for them. Otherise Wenger might have stubbornly kept the cheque book closed. Now let’s see who Arsenal buy.

  48. Eng-er-land need to take Lambert to Brazil(assuming they make it) if only for the penalty shoot-outs – he’s never missed a penal!

  49. Great coverage by NBC…Rebrcca Lowe is a great facilitator.

    LMAO of at Farsenal… Great start to the BPL.

    It’s only one game…do it doesn’t really matter…however it is great to laugh at Farsenal.

    Lambert took 1 year to build a new youth driven team pretty much from scratch and go to the scumerates and win…wasn’t Wenger supposed to be doing that for the last 7 years?


    Let’s all laugh at Farsenal, Let’s all laugh at Farsenal lalalala lalalala


  50. The screen layout is fine, it’s at the top because that way it doesn’t obscure the pitch….the advertising over the clock…doesn’t bothered what do ever it far more graceful than anything I’ve seen so far.

    Great job NBC you can see the level of thought into this presentation is on a completely different level…really very well done.

    1. Yeah – spot of bother there. looks like they fixed it though. That sounded like Crocker on the world feed not Banyard as Rebecca said. Anyway Arlo’s on now

  51. I wonder if NBC would consider putting the pre game show from 12 to 12:30 on the main NBC network? It might make for a slightly better transition to the 12::30 game.

    I’m sure there will be lots of postmortems of the coverage today but for my money NBC should get at least 9 out of 10.

    1. I thought the same thing. The transition was awkward.

      And the audio being slightly ahead in the Liverpool match and this one needs to be addressed. I had that problem from time to time when I was watching on ESPN2.

      I’m sure they’re going to work out all the bugs. They’ve pretty much nailed everything else.

      1. If I recall ESPN had a few technical glitches when they first started airing the Saturday early game(back then Georgie Bingham was hosting from Connecticut)NBC might have to follow ESPN’s example and let the match announcers handle more of the pregame duties

    2. NBC couldn’t do the pre-game today because they had coverage of Bolt’s run at the World Athletic Championships before the EPL game. Although I agree about (where possible) having it on NBC not only for a smooth transition but it would also allow the studio team to review the mornings games for those only watching the NBC game for whatever reason

  52. So far it looks like reports of Manchester United’s imminent demise may be a little premature. 2-0 at half with them not even dominating the ball.

  53. Coverage is good, picture great, commentators good but in DTV I am getting no center channel sold and the audio is 1/2 second ahead of the visual so you can tell a shot missed before you see it. This is very annoying. It’s very subtle but I’ve seen it before.

    The Liverpool game commentator called Liverpool the most successful team in English football. That’s not true anymore is it?

  54. Great debut for NBC. I loved Rebecca Lowe. The Extra Time channels were fine and easy to access on AT&T Uverse. The matches on my iPhone and iPad also looked great. Congrats to AT&T for supporting NBC’s coverage. Everything worked as Chris said it would. My only complaint – a small one – was the over sized time and score box in the upper left corner. Hopefully NBC will reduce its size.

    All in all an excellent start. The production values, Arlo White, Lee Dixon, the in studio pundits, the pre-match show all met or exceeded my expectations. The choice of Rebecca Lowe to be the lead person for the Premier League in the U.S. was a brilliant piece of business by NBC.

  55. I don’t think Wenger needs to buy anyone…he’s great….Wenger should absolutely keep everything as is.

    Great to see Wilshire just take the game over when needed, he was incredible today, all that falling over and mouthing off tot the ref, these Farsenal fans have nailed it, he’s the Best player in the BPL.

    See how he carried the team like bale did, his goals today were far better….

    Wilshire for wait I mean prime minister… Not wait I mean… Wilshire for the Ballon D’or.

    Wilshire was not made to look ordinary by players who were in the championship 18 months ago. Wilshire and Cazorla are the best players in the BPL…easily…

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