The term ‘Super Sunday’ is used by Sky Sports News for a Sunday when they have a couple of games on. Today, the games really matched up to the ‘Super’ tagline. A clash of the titans at Anfield, as Liverpool entertained Arsenal. Newly promoted Southampton took on Manchester United and in the other game, Newcastle took on Aston Villa. These three games contributed 9 goals, one super goal, one super turn-around and one super hat-trick.
The early kick off saw Arsenal travel to Liverpool with both teams looking for their first wins of the season. It was Arsenal who came away with all three points thanks to goals from new-boys, Lukas Podolski and Santi Cazorla. Although the two-new boys scored the goals, it was an old face that ran the game and received most of the praise. Injury-prone, Abou Diaby ran the midfield for Arsenal today and really pulled the strings. His technical ability has always been there but his fitness levels haven’t. Today he proved how influencial and key he could be to Arsenal, if he manages to stay fit.
Southampton have been very unlucky in the start of their premiership season. An unfortunate loss to Manchester City on the opening day of the season and then another loss to Wigan that followed. The games don’t get any easier though unfortunately for Nigel Adkins’ men and today his team hosted Manchester United. However, they took the lead thanks to Rickie Lambert when he headed home after just 16 minutes. That was soon cancelled out though thanks to £24m star signing, Robin Van Persie, volleyed Man United level. The teams went in level at half time. Most footballs fans would have expected Man United to go on and run the game after they pulled Southampton back, but that wasn’t the case. Southampton they regained the lead thanks to another header, but this time from Morgan Schneiderlin. A lapse of concentration from the Southampton defence then gave United a perfect opportunity to level from the penalty spot. New-man Robin Van Persie took the penalty and tried to pull off a very cheeky chip down the middle, however he was made to look a fool when the Southampton keeper pawed away his effort. However, the story wasn’t over there for Man United and Van Persie.
In the 87th minute, United won a corner which was whipped in by Nani and headed goalwards by Rio Ferdinand only for the post to deny him his first goal in four years, however the loose ball fell to Van Persie and he tapped home the equaliser from two yards out. The story STILL wasn’t over for Van Persie and United. Another corner, this time in the 92nd minute saw Van Persie un-marked and he made the Southampton defence pay by bulleting his header home to seal his hat-trick and seal an astonishing win for Man United.
The super goal of the day however came at St James Park and it came from their own little magician, Hatem Ben Arfa. After falling behind to a Ciaran Clark header in the 22nd minute, Hatem took it upon himself to level for Newcaslte and that is exactly what he did. Just before the 60th minute mark, he let rip with a 25-yard drive which rifled into the top corner which saw the game end 1-1.
So a hat-trick from Robin Van Persie, two goals for new boys, Lukas Podolski and Santi Cazorla and a wonder strike from Hatem Ben Arfa as well topped off a truly ‘Super’ Sunday.
Alex William Batt