5 key battles to watch out for in 2022/23 Premier League Gameweek 3

Steven Gerrard got the better of Frank Lampard in Gameweek 2 while Ivan Toney was right to lick his lips against Lisandro Martinez.

But we must press on and the third round of fixtures is now approaching. Once again, 90min have picked out five key battles to watch out for this weekend.

David de Gea apologises to Man Utd's supporters after the 4-0 mauling at Brentford

David de Gea apologises to Man Utd’s supporters after the 4-0 mauling at Brentford / Catherine Ivill/GettyImages

The Players’ Player of the Year in 2021-22, immune through Ralf Rangnick’s less than successful spell at the club, has now caught a severe case of the Manchester Uniteds.

David de Gea apologised for his howler to concede the opening goal in the 4-0 defeat to Brentford, but more of a worry for Erik ten Hag will be the way in which his goalkeeper increased the pressure on the team through his lack of quality on the ball.

Mistakes can be brushed over, but clear barriers to progression can’t. Ten Hag wants to play out from the back and De Gea has to improve with the ball at this feet to enable that to happen. Liverpool will be testing that ability at any given opportunity at Old Trafford on Monday, when we may well see Ten Hag bend his philosophy to avoid further embarrassment for him, his goalkeeper and his team.

Gabriel Jesus warms up for Arsenal

Gabriel Jesus has hit the ground running / Julian Finney/GettyImages

Marcos Senesi joined Bourenmouth from Feyenoord earlier this month and looks set for his first start of the season against Arsenal, having made a brief debut from the bench in the 4-0 defeat to Manchester City.

Having missed out on the chance of facing Erling Haaland, who had already been replaced by the time Senesi entered the fray against City, he will get his first opportunity against a top Premier League striker on Saturday, as Gabriel Jesus looks to continue his excellent start for Arsenal.

Despite being annoyed at getting just the two goals and two assists against Leicester, Jesus is “smiling again” and opposition defenders aren’t. The Brazilian is the main man under Mikel Arteta and is thriving with the added responsibility.

It could be turn out to be a very tough Premier League initiation for Senesi, who won’t need further incentive, but has it as an Argentina international up against a Brazilian.

David Moyes greets Graham Potter

West Ham are yet to beat Brighton in 10 Premier League meetings / Julian Finney/GettyImages

If you were to create one of those word clouds about David Moyes and then Graham Potter, they may well turn out to be entirely antithetical. Based as much on their age as anything else, Moyes is seen as a gruff purveyor of utilitarian football while Potter is the philosophy-obsessed hipster pawing over xG.

It’s fun to have such different managers being successful in the Premier League, but they are probably far more liberal in their footballing ideologies than we’re led to, and want to, believe.

Even so, we’re happy to buy into the narrative. Moyes’ bullying brutes really need a result against Potter’s tippy-tappy tykes having lost their first two games of the season. We may well see £32m summer signing Gianluca Scamacca handed his first start as the Hammers also look to break their goal duck.

There’s also the small matter of Brighton being unbeaten in 10 Premier Leagues meetings against West Ham – quite the record.

Sven Botman on his Premier League debut for Newcastle

Sven Botman is tasked with shepherding Erling Haaland this weekend / Stu Forster/GettyImages

A third consecutive clean sheet in three for Newcastle this season will have to be incredibly hard-earned at St James’ Park on Sunday.

It will be a huge test of the progress the team have made under Eddie Howe as they welcome Manchester City. Everyone will have to buy in to a game plan which will presumably involve sitting and absorbing pressure and nobody will require more focus and quality than summer signing Sven Botman.

Erling Haaland already has two goals and an assist to his name and only once or twice have we seen him hit his incomparable, frankly terrifying, stride. He’s stronger, faster and better than most on an off day. Botman and Newcastle will have to be at their peak to stop him.

Brenden Aaronson sprints for the ball during Leeds' game at Southampton

Brenden Aaronson looks to be a classy addition for Leeds / Visionhaus/GettyImages

Jorginho ran the game for Chelsea on Sunday before his daft error led to Spurs’ opening goal. Given any sniff of control, the Italy international will take it and refuse to let go. He must be an incredibly frustrating player to come up against.

But he is also easy to get at. For all his quality on and indeed off the ball (he’s frequently in the right place at the right time), he can’t recover quickly when possession is lost and he hates people running at or around him.

Jesse Marsch’s instruction to Aaronson will surely be to shadow Jorginho, not give the midfielder the time or space to be metronomic and then look for that time and space himself when Leeds win the ball back. It’s perhaps Leeds’ best chance of getting anything out of the game.


READ:  Ten Hag introduces ‘negative football’ training at Man Utd – Sporting Life

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