Premier League: Chelsea, Liverpool maintain perfect starts to season

  • 16/09/2018

Liverpool have beaten Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 at Wembley on Sunday (NZ time) to post a fifth consecutive win at the start of the season for the first time since 1990-91.

However, it is Chelsea who sits atop the Premier League as they also maintain their perfect start after Eden Hazard scored a hat-trick in the 4-1 win over Cardiff City, allowing them to edge past Liverpool on goal difference at the top of the standings.

It is the first time in 110 years that two top-tier English teams have won their opening five games - and it would have been three had Watford beaten Manchester United, but the Hornets surrendered their 100 percent record after losing 2-1 in Saturday's late kick-off.   

Liverpool's goals came from Georginio Wijnaldum - his first away from home in the Premier League - and Roberto Firmino, who went off with an eye injury but later confirmed it was not serious.

Such was the visitors' dominance, they could have scored half a dozen times, with Mo Salah twice going close and Tottenham's defence always looking vulnerable until Erik Lamela's late strike gave them hope of an unlikely point.

Liverpool held their nerve and look nothing like the team who Spurs ripped apart 4-1 last season.   

Liverpool boss Jurgan Klopp.
Liverpool boss Jurgan Klopp. Photo credit: Getty Images

"We have to show progress," said Juergen Klopp, who said the performance was Liverpool's best of the season.   

"It was maybe our best against Tottenham in all the years I've been here. But only five per cent less and we would have lost. I don't think Tottenham played bad. We were that good it was difficult for Tottenham."   

At Stamford Bridge, Chelsea ran out comfortable winners despite conceding a 16th- minute Sol Bamba opener.   

That was the cue for Hazard to take charge, scoring on 37, 44 and 80 minutes, the last goal coming from the penalty spot. Willian added their fourth late on to ensure Chelsea's goal difference is marginally better than Liverpool's at the top.   

Champions Manchester City remain two points off the pace after a routine 3-0 win over Fulham, who fell behind on two minutes to Leroy Sane and never looked capable of forcing their way back into the game. David Silva and Raheem Sterling also netted.  

Romelu Lukaku.
Romelu Lukaku. Photo credit: AAP

United hit Watford with a one-two halfway through the first half with goals from Romelu Lukaku and Chris Smalling, whose left-foot volley would have done any forward proud.

Although Watford set up a tense finish with a goal from Andre Gray, United, who had Nemanja Matic sent off late on, held on to allow manager Jose Mourinho another chance to salute the fans at the final whistle.   

Bournemouth sprang the surprise of the day, beating Leicester City 4-2. It was a performance to back up manager Eddie Howe's pre-match assertion that his side, who have won three of their first five games, have closed the gap on the division's top teams.   

Arsenal provided further signs that they have put their jittery start behind them by winning 2-1 at Newcastle United, who now have just one point from five games.   

In the day's other game, Roy Hodgson celebrated the first anniversary of his appointment as Crystal Palace manager with a Wilfried Zaha scoring in a 1-0 win at Huddersfield Town.