Manchester teams’ woe a Premier League paradox

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Manchester teams’ woe a Premier League paradox

MANCHESTER - The two Manchester clubs lost and Arsenal opened a two-point lead with a win at Swansea on Saturday, extending the unpredictable start to the English Premier League.

Five months after capturing a 20th English league title, Manchester United (2-3-1) languished in 12th place in the 20-team standings after losing 2-1 at home to West Bromwich Albion in the latest setback to hit David Moyes’ troubled first season as manager.

Morgan Amalfitano scored in the 54th minute for the visitors, and Wayne Rooney tied the score on a free kick three minutes later. Saido Berahino put West Brom ahead for good in the 67th.

‘’I’m concerned after today’s result, but only because we didn’t play well,” said Moyes, whose team lost to City in last weekend’s Manchester derby. ‘’But there are a lot of games to go and I’ll try to put it right. It was a poor result and a poor performance. We never really got going. We had a lot of the ball in the first half, but we didn’t create any chances from it. They always looked a threat on the break, especially in the second half.”

Amid its worst six-game start since 1989, United slipped eight points behind Arsenal (5-1), which won 2-1 at Swansea on goals by Serge Gnabry in the 58th minute and Aaron Ramsey in the 62nd.

The only solace for United on an action-packed day was neighbor Manchester City (3-2-1) lost 3-2 at Aston Villa. City built a 2-1 lead when American goalkeeper Brad Guzan was beaten by Yaya Toure in the 45th and Edin Dzeko in the 56th around Karim El Ahmadi’s goal for Villa. The hosts then got goals from Leandro Bacuna in the 73rd and Andreas Weimann in the 75th.

Tottenham (4-1-1) is two points behind in second after drawing 1-1 at home against third-place Chelsea (3-1-2). Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho labelled Tottenham defender Jan Vertonghen’s behavior a “disgrace” and called for the Belgian to be suspended for his part in Fernando Torres’s sending-off during the two sides’ 1-1 draw in the Premier League on Saturday.

Vertonghen and Torres twice came together, in a lively game, with the Spaniard receiving yellow cards on both occasions.

Vertonghen’s role in the second incident, when the Belgian went down clutching his face following a seemingly innocuous aerial challenge, particularly aggravated Mourinho.

“The referee tried his best but some foreign players, when they come to England, still keep their culture and it’s a disgrace. To do that to a person from your same job, I think that’s a disgrace,” he told a news conference.

Gylfi Sigurdsson put Spurs ahead in the 19th, John Terry tied it in the 65th and the Blues’ Fernando Torres was ejected by referee Mike Dean in the 81st for his second yellow, given for an aerial collision with Jan Vertonghen.

Even promoted teams Cardiff and Hull are above United after six games. Cardiff won its first away match of the season, 2-1 at Fulham, and Hull edged West Ham 1-0. Another newcomer, Crystal Palace, lost 2-0 at fourth-place Southampton.

AP, Reuters

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