Liverpool shuts out Spurs, Arsenal held to drawLONDON - Liverpool produced an irresistible performance to dismantle a toothless Tottenham Hotspur 3-0 and Arsenal was held 1-1 by Leicester City in the Premier League on Sunday.
Raheem Sterling, Steven Gerrard and Alberto Moreno were on target as Liverpool bounced back from defeat by champion Manchester City with a classy performance at White Hart Lane that ended Tottenham’s perfect start to the season.
Arsenal missed the chance to move up to third in the table after they were frustrated by a dogged performance from promoted Leicester.
Alexis Sanchez opened the scoring with his first Premier League goal, but Arsenal was pegged back within two minutes by Leicester’s record-signing Leonardo Ulloa.
Gabriel Agbonlahor and Andreas Weimann scored as third-placed Aston Villa maintained their unbeaten start to the campaign with a 2-1 victory over Hull City at Villa Park.
Liverpool handed a debut to enigmatic striker Mario Balotelli, who made amends for his wasteful finishing with an impressive and hardworking contribution.
Liverpool moved up to fifth in the table, level with Tottenham on six points.
“It was great link-up play by Daniel [Sturridge] and Jordan [Henderson]. The manager has been telling me to get inside the post and try to add to my goal tally and that’s what I’ve done,” Sterling told Sky Sports.
“Mario and Daniel up front is always a threat and I’ve got to try be in the box to get some goals.”
Balotelli nearly enjoyed a dream start inside three minutes, but his close-range header was parried by Tottenham goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.
Spurs had been joint league leaders after winning their opening two games without conceding a goal but were left reeling by Liverpool’s explosive start.
Sturridge and Henderson linked up well and the latter’s cross was steered in from an acute angle at the far post by Sterling in the eighth minute.
Tottenham took just one point from eight games against last season’s top four, conceding 27 goals and scoring two, and Sterling’s goal signaled the start of another forgettable day.
Liverpool started the second half with the same intent and Gerrard coolly converted a penalty after Joe Allen had been needlessly pulled back by Eric Dier.
Moreno added a third with a superb solo run and finish after he had dispossessed Andros Townsend on the halfway line.
Arsenal dominated for long spells but appeared to miss the presence of last season’s top scorer Oliver Giroud.
They sit seventh in the standings while Leicester, in 15th, remain winless but have performed well in their three games.
“I am happy because we have one point more and the team played well,” Ulloa told Sky Sports. “The cross was fantastic. I worked hard for that [goal] and I’m happy.”
The Gunners opened the scoring in the 20th minute through Sanchez.
Santi Cazorla opened up the Leicester defense with an audacious chip and Yaya Sanogo’s unconvincing effort fell to the Chile forward who fired home the loose ball.
Within two minutes the hosts had restored parity through Ulloa who scored his second goal in three games for Leicester with a bullet header.
“We could have lost the game in the end,” Arsenal Manager Arsene Wenger said. “Our game was not quick enough, not sharp enough, not simple enough. We had plenty of opportunities but didn’t look like we could finish the game off.”