Arsenal revert to a successful formula, Mo Salah shows he’s priceless to Liverpool and Spurs share the goals around… 10 THINGS WE LEARNED from the Premier League this weekend

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Arsenal rounded off the Premier League weekend in style as Declan Rice and Gabriel Jesus’ late goals against Manchester United sealed a 3-1 win over their rivals at the Emirates.

The Gunners will head into the international break as one of four teams on 10 points, with Liverpool and Tottenham maintaining their unbeaten records with big wins over Aston Villa and Burnley.

West Ham maintained their strong start to the season by holding on to beat Luton, as champions Man City remained at the summit of the Premier League with victory over Fulham.

Nottingham Forest and Brighton earned superb wins over Chelsea and Newcastle, while Burnley and Luton will be licking their wounds as they head into the break without a point.  

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Here, Mail Sport looks at some of the key talking points from the Premier League weekend.

Arsenal's late victory over Manchester United provoked major celebrations at the Emirates

Arsenal’s late victory over Manchester United provoked major celebrations at the Emirates

Champions Manchester City head into the first international break top of the Premier League

Champions Manchester City head into the first international break top of the Premier League

Jurgen Klopp saw his Liverpool side continue their strong start by brushing aside Aston Villa

Jurgen Klopp saw his Liverpool side continue their strong start by brushing aside Aston Villa

Arsenal revert back to a successful formula

Mikel Arteta has raised eyebrows during the opening weeks of the season after tweaking a set-up that had turned the Gunners into title contenders last season.

Arteta had been asked ahead of the match against Man United whether he was tempted to revert back to a similar set-up.

‘I cannot do that. I have different players. I cannot do that. (Oleksandr) Zinchenko was injured, Granit (Xhaka) is not here, how can I do that?’ Arteta said.

Despite his comments, Arteta appeared to go back to his successful formula for the visit of the Red Devils.

Gabriel Magalhaes returned to partner William Saliba in the heart of the Gunners defence, with Ben White and Zinchenko restored at full back.

In midfield Declan Rice and the much scrutinised Kai Havertz slotted into the roles vacated by Thomas Partey and the departed Xhaka.

A big question is whether Arteta had planned to go back to basics against United anyway, or whether his hand had been forced by an injury to Partey.

It will be fascinating to see whether Arteta sticks with this set-up when the Premier League resumes after the international break.

Gabriel Magalhaes (left)was restored at centre back as Arsenal reverted to a familiar set-up

Gabriel Magalhaes (left)was restored at centre back as Arsenal reverted to a familiar set-up

Hojlund can provide Man United with a crucial focal point

Man United fans have been forced to wait to see their new £72m star as he recovered from an injury following his arrival from Atalanta this summer.

The lack of a focal point has been on display in the opening weeks of the season – with Marcus Rashford ineffective through the middle and Anthony Martial continuing to underwhelm.

Martial was hooked in the 67th minute at the Emirates, with Rasmus Hojlund coming on for his much anticipated debut.

Had Alejandro Garnacho not strayed marginally offside, the post-match analysis could easily have been about how Hojlund’s hold up play had proved pivotal in the build-up to a Man United winner.

Man United fans, however, must make do with the Dane’s brief display providing some cause for optimism in defeat.

As well as offering a physical presence, Hojlund demonstrated his pace when he raced through the centre to support a counter-attack led by Marcus Rashford, only for his team-mate to run into traffic in the final third.

It will be fascinating to see whether United’s need for a successful centre forward and the hefty £72m price tag will weigh on Hojlund’s shoulders in the months ahead.

Rasmus Hojlund (right) offered Man United a focal point up front as he made his debut

Rasmus Hojlund (right) offered Man United a focal point up front as he made his debut

Mo Salah is priceless to Liverpool amid £150m Saudi links

‘Mo Salah, Mo Salah running down the wing’ was the chant before kick-off at Anfield as Liverpool fans showered the Egyptian with adulation.

Liverpool supporters will hope their show of affection will contribute to Salah still being at the club this time after Saudi Arabia’s transfer window closes on September 7.

The 31-year-old remains heavily linked with a move to the Middle East, with Al-Ittihad having seen a £150m bid rejected on Friday. The Saudi Pro League club are prepared to pay £200million for the winger.

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp claimed he had no concerns about Salah’s focus ahead of the match against Aston Villa, amid the continued speculation around the star’s future.

Salah was typically at the heart of matters on the pitch, as Liverpool cruised to a 3-0 win over Aston Villa.

The winger provided the pass to Darwin Nunez for Liverpool’s second goal, with the Uruguyan’s effort eventually finding the net via the post and the unfortunate Matty Cash.

Salah nearly found Nunez with another superb cross in the second half, while he was on hand to turn in the striker’s flick-on to seal victory and ensure his name led the headlines.

His importance to Liverpool was illustrated by Opta, who revealed that Salah is the first player to score or assist in 10 consecutive Premier League games since he last achieved the feat back in 2021.

Mo Salah was showered with adulation from the Liverpool fans amid links to Saudi Arabia

Mo Salah was showered with adulation from the Liverpool fans amid links to Saudi Arabia

Aston Villa’s away day blues 

Expectations have risen considerably for Unai Emery’s side after the Spaniard transformed the club’s fortunes last season, resulting in a late charge into the European spots.

Several pundits have suggested that Aston Villa could be considered dark horses to challenge for a spot in the top four this season.

Given that billing, it feels significant that Villa have come up dramatically short in two away trips to teams expected to be in the race for Champions League qualification.

Newcastle ruthlessly exploited Aston Villa’s high line in their 5-1 demolition in their opening match of the season and it was a similar story at Anfield.

Trent Alexander-Arnold in particular carved open the Aston Villa defence with raking passes forward, with the likes of Salah, Nunez and Luis Diaz racing in behind.

Emery’s high-line carries an element of risk or reward and, unfortunately for Villa, the risks have failed to pay off in some of their matches so far. 

A tweak might be needed on the road, with Aston Villa now having recorded just one win in their last seven away matches in the Premier League. Villa are also without a clean sheet in eight away games.

Unai Emery has seen his Aston Villa side exposed in matches at Newcastle and Aston Villa

Unai Emery has seen his Aston Villa side exposed in matches at Newcastle and Aston Villa

Brighton’s hat-trick hero Ferguson in fine company

Evan Ferguson has been compared to several former and current goalscoring greats following his hat-trick in Brighton’s 3-1 win over Newcastle.

Mail Sport’s Chris Sutton suggested Ferguson reminds him of Alan Shearer, while Gary Lineker claimed the forward has similarities to Erling Haaland.

Brighton boss Roberto de Zerbi offered Christian Vieri as a comparison to the Seagulls’ striking sensation.

‘Bobo Vieri was left-footed, Evan is right. But their characteristics are very close,’ De Zerbi said. ‘Bobo Vieri was a great player. He scored more than 200 goals. He worked the same areas as Evan.’

Ferguson, who turns 19 next month, is also in fine company when examining statistics following his treble against Newcastle.

He became just the third player to score a Premier League hat-trick when aged 18 or younger, after Chris Bart-Williams, Robbie Fowler and Michael Owen. Owen remarkably achieved the feat three times.

Opta also revealed that Ferguson is only the second non-English player to reach 10 involvements before turning 19, after Cesc Fabregas provided five goals and 10 assists at Arsenal.

Brighton star Evan Ferguson has been compared to goalscoring greats after his hat-trick

Brighton star Evan Ferguson has been compared to goalscoring greats after his hat-trick

Early doubts emerge over Newcastle’s transfer business

Eddie Howe’s side head into the international break with just three points from their opening four matches following the loss at Brighton.

Howe admitted post-match that Newcastle have to deal with the demands that come with the increased expectations around the club.

The Magpies were undoubtedly dealt a tough hand by the fixture computer with Aston Villa, Man City, Liverpool and Brighton making up their opening four matches, – but they have made a truly stuttering start.

At one stage of the match against Brighton, all four of their summer signings in the squad were on the bench at the same time.

Newcastle fans will rightly give Sandro Tonali, Harvey Barnes, Tino Livramento and Lewis Hall time to settle and become key parts of the team, as it would be foolish to judge them after such a small sample size.

However, some supporters may be looking enviously elsewhere after seeing how some of the players on Newcastle’s summer shortlist have settled elsewhere.

Szoboszlai, who Howe admitted was too expensive for the Magpies, has enjoyed a strong start to life at Liverpool.

Similarly James Maddison has emerged as the heartbeat to Tottenham’s new-look side under Ange Postecoglou, with the North London side given a free run to sign the midfielder after Newcastle opted against following up their interest.

Moussa Diaby had previously been linked with Newcastle but instead joined Aston Villa, where the French midfielder has made an eye catching start.

Newcastle have endured a stuttering start to the season amid a challenging fixture list

Newcastle have endured a stuttering start to the season amid a challenging fixture list

Spurs spread the goals around in the post Kane era

Questions were rightly raised about where Tottenham’s goals would come from after Harry Kane’s £100m move to Bayern Munich.

After all, the England captain had scored 42.9 per cent of Spurs goals in the Premier League last season, the higher proportion of his team’s goals than any other player.

The spectre of Kane looms less and less each week, with only Brighton having scored more goals than the 11 mustered by Postecoglou’s side in the opening four games – a haul matched by Man City.

Having relied on Kane for so long, Postecoglou insisted that Spurs needed to share the goals around the team and they are doing just that.

Spurs have already had six goalscorers in the Premier League this season, with Son Heung-min the latest to add his name to the scoresheet by netting a hat-trick against Burnley.

Cristian Romero and James Maddison have struck twice, with Pape Matar Sarr, Dejan Kulusevski and Emerson Royal also on target in the Premier League. Richarlison got his first of the season in the Carabao Cup penalty defeat at Fulham last week.

As if to further demonstrate the feeling of a new era at Spurs, all five of their goals at Burnley were scored by members of Postecoglou’s new leadership team of Son, Maddison and Romero.

James Maddison, Son Heung-Min and Cristian Romero (L-R) were all on target against Burnley

James Maddison, Son Heung-Min and Cristian Romero (L-R) were all on target against Burnley

West Ham have the number of promoted sides… 

David Moyes’ side drew the short straw in being the first team to visit Kenilworth Road in the Premier League, with the Friday night assignment looking a banana skin on paper.

Jarrod Bowen and Kurt Zouma ensured the Hammers backed up their impressive wins over Chelsea and Brighton by scoring in the 2-1 victory over Luton.

The Hammers did survive a late scare after Mads Andersen’s late goal, with the hosts also seeing a last-gasp penalty appeal turned down.

Victory over Luton meant West Ham have recorded their best start to a Premier League season in 24 years.

West Ham have also proved themselves adept at beating newly promoted sides, winning six in a row against sides to have come up from the Championship, their longest run in Premier League.

The run stretches back to the start of last season, when the Hammers were beaten in Nottingham Forest’s first home game back in the top flight.

A lesson learned one year on. 

David Moyes has led West Ham to six consecutive wins against newly promoted opposition

David Moyes has led West Ham to six consecutive wins against newly promoted opposition

But Everton struggle against the new boys 

While the Hammers continue to brush aside newly promoted opposition, the same cannot be said for Everton.

Heading into the weekend, the Premier League new boys were all seeking their first point of the campaign. Enter the Toffees, who drew 2-2 against Sheffield United.

Everton had won just one of their last 11 matches against newly promoted sides before their trip to Bramall Lane. 

The solitary win was a crucial one, with the 1-0 triumph against Bournemouth on the final day of last season keeping Everton in the Premier League.

Should Everton be dragged into another relegation scrap this season, which appears likely, the Burnley, Luton and Sheffield United appear their likely rivals at the bottom of table.

A significant improvement in their results against promoted sides could be crucial, with one win, five draws and six defeats in their last 12 against such opposition. And it could have been worse without Jordan Pickford’s late heroics.

Jordan Pickford produced crucial late saves to prevent Everton from losing to Sheffield United

Jordan Pickford produced crucial late saves to prevent Everton from losing to Sheffield United

Wolves’ super subs 

Wolves suffered a 3-2 defeat at Crystal Palace on Sunday, with the teams trading five goals in a dramatic second half.

Gary O’Neil’s side recorded a quirky statistic in the loss following Hwang Hee-chan’s goal, which had levelled matters at 1-1.

The South Korean’s strike meant Wolves became the first side to have their first three goals of a Premier League season scored by substitutes.

It followed Hwang’s previous effort against Brighton and Sasa Kalajdzic’s late winner against Everton.

Matheus Cunha’s consolation effort against Palace ensured Wolves cannot stretch that run further, but O’Neil will be impressed with the contribution from the bench so far.

Hwang Hee-Chan came off the bench to score for Wolves in their defeat at Crystal Palace

Hwang Hee-Chan came off the bench to score for Wolves in their defeat at Crystal Palace

IT’S ALL KICKING OFF! 

It’s All Kicking Off is an exciting new podcast from Mail Sport that promises a different take on Premier League football.

It is available on MailOnline, Mail+, YouTube, Apple Music and Spotify.



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