QPR and Swansea win first points of season

Aston Villa brush aside Blackburn, AVB gets first win with Chelsea and new boys QPR and Swansea are off the mark.

Vorm was Swansea’s hero ensuring his team collected their first point of Premier League campaign [GALLO/GETTY] 

New kids on the block QPR and Swansea put their first English Premier League points on the board on Saturday while Alex McLeish’s Aston Villa cruised to a 3-1 victory over Blackburn.

In the early kick-offs, Liverpool claimed their first win at Arsenal for 11 years with a 2-0 victory and Newcastle beat Sunderland 1-0 in the Tyne-Wear derby.

The late kick-off saw Chelsea come back from a goal behind to secure a 2-1 victory over West Brom.    

QPR piled on the misery for cash-strapped Everton as Tommy Smith’s goal clinched a 1-0 win at Goodison Park.

The build-up to QPR’s visit to Merseyside had been marred by an admission from Toffees chairman Bill Kenwright that Everton cannot borrow any more money from the bank and desperately need a new owner.

Everton boss David Moyes, whose only close-season signing was a free transfer, admitted on Friday that fans shouldn’t expect a top-10 finish and this lacklustre defeat – sealed by Smith’s first half strike – confirmed his worst fears.

While Everton face a dispiriting season, QPR are suddenly looking forward to a brighter future following the takeover this week by Malaysian tycoon Tony Fernandes.

Everton had been in control early on, with Jack Rodwell having an appeal for a penalty turned down after a challenge from Matthew Connolly.

Results and fixtures

Saturday August 20

 Sunderland 0-1 Newcastle
 Arsenal 0-2 Liverpool
 Aston Villa 3-1 Blackburn
 Everton 0-1 QPR
 Swansea 0-0 Wigan
 Chelsea 2-1 West Brom

Norwich v Stoke 
 Wolves v Fulham  
 Bolton v Man City

 Man Utd v Tottenham

However, Everton’s early dominance began to wane and from QPR’s first real spell of pressure they took the lead.

Phil Jagielka carelessly gave the ball away to Alejandro Faurlin and it was quickly transferred to Akos Buzsaky in the inside-left channel whose low cross perfectly picked out Smith.

Smith’s first touch took the ball out of his feet and with Jagielka out of position he coolly slotted his shot past Howard’s outstretched left hand and into the far corner of the net.

Swansea claimed their first Premier League point drawing 0-0 with Wigan managed by the Welsh side’s former boss Roberto Martinez.

The Swans, who were hosting the first ever Premier League match outside England, had keeper Michael Vorm to thank for their point as he saved a Ben Watson penalty in a match that the Welsh side dominated for the most part.

Vorm’s match saving moment came when he was equal to Watson’s spotkick in the 73rd minute after Jordi Gomez – the former Swans star having gone close to opening the scoring but hitting the post – was upended by Ashley Williams just after Victor Moses’s shot had come off the bar.

Wigan looked deflated after that and for the final 18 minutes Swansea resumed their attacks on the visitors goal but Ali Al Habsi was equal to everything they fired at him.

Alex McLeish got his first win as Aston Villa manager as the hosts crushed Blackburn Rovers 3-1 at Villa Park.

Playmaker Gabriel Agbonlahor got the Villains on their way with a classy 12th-minute goal before veteran forward Emile Heskey doubled the lead in the 25th.

              Agbonlahor put his name on the scoresheet as Villa dominated Blackburn [GALLO/GETTY]

Norway winger Morten Gamst Pedersen pulled one back for Rovers against the run of play but England striker Darren Bent sealed victory for Villa in the 67th minute.

Despite the acrimony over his pre-season switch from relegated city rivals Birmingham, McLeish was given a sustained warm reception when he walked across to the dugout.

Chelsea came from behind to beat West Bromwich Albion 2-1 in the lack kick-off, giving AVB his first win as manager.

Florent Malouda powered in the winner in the 83rd minute after latching onto Jose Bosingwa’s cross at Stamford Bridge.

Shane Long had taken just four minutes to put West Brom in front after dispossessing Alex and sidefooting past Hilario.

But Chelsea equalised in the 53rd when Nicolas Anelka cut inside and unleashed a shot that deflected off Jonas Olsson’ heel before landing in the far corner of the net.

Villas-Boas’ reign as Chelsea manager had started with a 0-0 draw at Stoke last weekend, leading to Malouda losing his place in the starting lineup.

But Long’s early opener for a team that has lost all 10 of their Premier League matches against Chelsea led to Malouda being brought on after just 35 minutes to replace Salomon Kalou. It turned out to be the right decision with Malouda immediately looking a threat and sealing victory seven minutes from time.

Despite impressive displays against Manchester United and Chelsea, West Brom have now lost both their opening matches.

Source : News Agencies


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