Unai Emery is Mr Fixit.
He can fix a squad, fix a defence, deliver a sequence.
If you can build a sequence, you will build a top team. Not always, but often enough.
Results give you belief and Arsenal fought hard to dig out the 1-1 draw against Liverpool, as they did in that 2-2 at Crystal Palace. Physically that was a very hard game, and so was this.
Lacazette’s equaliser was very good goal but I knew he could score from there because he’s so clever at reading bounces and angles.
Rob Holding defended very well and had also been impressive against Palace. He now looks like a proper player.
Although they don’t have much rhythm yet, the BBC’s Danny Murphy says, “The Arsenal team’s progress has been much quicker than I expected.”
Quite so. They were very energetic and competitive, really at it, aware of how important this game was. But having said all that, I don’t think Arsenal were ever close to beating Liverpool on Saturday, They scored a very good equaliser and deserved a point.
The team must have guessed that Tottenham would win at Wolves.But Spurs made hard work of winning it 3-2.
For me, a long-time football junkie, it was quite odd to watch two Premier League games on a Saturday night.
But Eric Lamela was on fire: fast, slick, confident and ambitious. He was a lot more productive than Salah or Mane or anybody in the Arsenal team. A friend, a Chelsea supporter, agreed. Neither of us had ever seen Lamela race around so aggressively.
He played out of his skin and scored the first goal and made the third. On the first goal, he was on the right flank, swerved inside, played a one-two with Son, and nutmegged the keeper.He was the best footballer I saw all weekend and he was sprinting almost as fast in the 92nd minute as he was in the first half.
Spurs are fourth despite being rather average lately. Their results have been better than their performances.
Dele Alli was rested before PSV Eindhoven at Wembley on Tuesday night and Mousa Dembele had to go off very early, with Son coming on
Spurs stuttered for 27 minutes and then Eric Lamela produced a that supercool finish.
By performing as he did, Lamela was trying to tell us something. And it’s taken me two days to figure out what it was. He was saying: I want to play against PSV!
When Trippier crossed tidily, Lucas Moura headed in for 2-0. The Brazilian realised he wasn’t going to have to jump for the ball that was flying towards him, so he just waited and then aimed his powerful header in for 0-2.
Game over in 29 minutes and 46 seconds, I thought. Not so!
Yes, Kane made it 0-3 in 61 minutes but the match wasn’t over yet.
Wolves produced a slick movie down the right flank and scored. But the flag went up. Replays showed the goal was onside.
Then young centreback Juan Foyth conceded two penalties on his debut, converted by Ruben Neves in 68 and Raul Jimenez in 79.
CONCLUSION: It’s still early in a very long season with a lot of highs and lows, many joys and disappointments.
The biggest news? That Unai Emery and Maurizio Sarri have now joined the elite managers in the EPL, coming from PSG and Napoli, two Champions League clubs.
Arsenal is different now. So is Chelsea.
I had backed BTS in the Arsenal game and Over 2.5 goals in he Chelsea-Crystal Palace game.
The club doctor had told Sarri not to use Eden Hazard for more than 30 minutes.
The score was 1-1 when Hazard and Kovacic came on for Willian and Barkley and Morata immediately scored his second goal and then Pedro wrapped it up at 3-1 and then Morata missed a one-on-one with keeper Hennessey that should have completed his hat-trick.
Of the London clubs, only Chelsea have ever won the Champions League.
Maybe Pochettino or Emery can change that.
But it won’t be in 2019.