Five classic opening day Premier League matches from years gone by
Nick Murphy | 8 August 2018
Remember these high-scoring affairs?
The new Premier League season gets underway this weekend with a selection of mouth-watering clashes.
Manchester United host Leicester City on Friday night, before Wolverhampton Wanderers take on Everton, Liverpool face West Ham United and Arsenal play Manchester City across the weekend.
The Coral News Team can’t wait for those encounters. But how will they match up to opening games past? We’ve looked through five of the best from the past six seasons.
Chelsea 2-3 Burnley, 2017-18
Burnley went into this clash at Stamford Bridge 12 months ago having won just one away game during the entirety of the 2016-17 season. Chelsea entered as the reigning champions and 1/4 shots to win the match.
But the script was well and truly flipped, as a brace from Sam Vokes and Stephen Ward’s angled drive sent the Clarets into a 3-0 half-time lead. The Blues, down to ten men at this point, responded through Alvaro Morata and David Luiz in the second-half. Sean Dyche’s men held on to secure a famous opening day victory as Gary Cahill was also sent off late on for the hosts.
Arsenal 4-3 Leicester City, 2017-18
Opening matches are rarely dull at the Emirates Stadium. And so it proved once again under the lights, as Arsenal edge a pulsating encounter 4-3 against the recent Premier League champions.
Alexandre Lacazette put the Gunners ahead after two minutes but they quickly fell behind to goals from Shinji Okazaki and Jamie Vardy. Danny Welbeck restored parity just before half-time, only for Vardy to head home from a corner on 56 minutes to make it 3-2.
Arsene Wenger’s men pushed forward during the closing stages and got their reward in the final 10 minutes. Aaron Ramsey made it 3-3 before Olivier Giroud rose highest to power home a header off the underside of the bar and break Foxes hearts.
Watford 3-3 Liverpool, 2017-18
Goals rained at Vicarage Road last year as Watford salvaged a 3-3 draw in injury time through Miguel Britos. The Hornets had gone 2-1 up in the contest with goals from Stefano Okaka and Abdoulaye Doucoure either side of Sadio Mane’s leveller.
The second-half was Liverpool’s, as Roberto Firmino tucked home a penalty and Mohamed Salah bundled home his first Premier League goal to make it 3-2. That’s how it stayed until deep into injury time, when Simon Mignolet parried Richarlison’s strike into the path of Britos who struck for a share of the spoils.
Arsenal 3-4 Liverpool, 2016-17
Calum Chambers, Rob Holding and Alberto Moreno were all in the firing line as Arsenal and Liverpool shared seven goals in a humdinger on the opening day.
The Gunners broke the deadlock early on through Theo Walcott but were pegged bag on the stroke of half-time by Philippe Coutinho’s stunning free-kick. The Brazilian helped himself to another after Adam Lallana had made it 2-1 before Sadio Mane danced round the Arsenal defence for Liverpool’s third in seven minutes and their fourth overall.
The North Londoners pulled two goals back through Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Calum Chambers, but it wasn’t enough as the pressure continued to mount on manager Arsene Wenger.
Queens Park Rangers 0-5 Swansea City, 2012-13
Michu marked his debut season in the Premier League with an opening day brace as Swansea City put big-spending Queens Park Rangers to the sword at Loftus Road.
The £2m signing from Rayo Vallecano struck the first two goals in the contest before a Nathan Dyer double and Scott Sinclair’s tidy finish wrapped up a remarkable 5-0 opening day win.
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