by Ifreke Inyang
After the second round of English Premier League games, both Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspurs have scored three times with a total of three points. The argument at this point, will be that we have not even begun the marathon and the league ends in May, but in a season where some have flown off the blocks, these are worrying signs.
In the 2011/2012 campaign, Arsenal finished in third place, while Spurs came fourth, missing out on Champions League qualification because of Chelsea’s exploits. The Manchester clubs finished in the first two positions. A lot of pundits and observers of the English game, already predicted that it will be more of the same this new season. But things have changed in the last few days.
First of all, Robin van Persie, has moved to Manchester United. As if it was not enough that Arsenal have finished below Sir Alex Ferguson’s men for seasons on end now, their top scorer for last season has gone over and strengthened them. A breakdown of the statistics given above, will show that the Gunners have actually not found the back of the net since the Dutchman packed his bags. And although Arsene Wenger’s men now have some stability at the back and a different kind of resilience, the lack of firepower upfront is a big problem.
On the other side of North London, Luka Modriç departure to Real Madrid, has been confirmed this morning. The Croatian, without any doubt, has been the mastermind of everything fluid and creative at White Hart Lane for the past seasons. And his absence in their first two league games was glaring. There has been no penetration and no direction in their play and they almost lost at home to West Brom over the weekend.
Across London, Eden Hazard has exploded on the scene and Chelsea have nine points from their three games. The Manchester clubs are also ahead on the log. It is too early in the season to call, but the earlier Wenger and Villas-Boas began to sort out their issues, the better for their respective teams.