Gunners edge Everton
Howard gets shutout as Man Utd wins opener vs. BoltonPosted: Saturday August 16, 2003 11:14 AM
Updated: Saturday August 16, 2003 2:33 PM
LONDON (AP) -- Ryan Giggs and Ruud van Nistelrooy made up for the departure of David Beckham while Tim Howard started with a shutout on Saturday as Manchester United began its defense of the Premier League title by crushing neighbor Bolton 4-0.
Giggs hit two including a stunning free kick, Van Nistelrooy scored for a record ninth game in a row and new Portuguese signing Cristiano Ronaldo made a standout debut as a substitute at Old Trafford.
Howard, an American goalkeeper signed from U.S. Major League Soccer’s MetroStars in the offseason, made an acrobatic, fingertip save from Lee Nolan with the score still at 0-0 midway through the first half. Other than having to field a difficult defensive header from teammate Mikael Silvestre, the American spent much of the time watching goals go in at the other end.
Meanwhile, it seems the arrival of Ronaldo from Sporting Lisbon is making up for the departure of Beckham to Real Madrid.
"It looks like the fans have a new hero," said Red Devils manager Alex Ferguson. "It was a marvelous debut, almost unbelievable. I felt his penetration could make a difference for us.
"We have to be careful with the boy," he said. "You must remember he is only 18. We are going to have to gauge when we use him."
Ferguson is happy to let Ronaldo play with the Portuguese squad against Kazakhstan in a friendly on Wednesday.
"It is a good thing he is going with Portugal," the Red Devils manager said. "He has the chance to talk with Luis Figo and Rui Costa in his own country and that experience will be invaluable when he comes back to us."
Ten-man Arsenal edged Everton 2-1 after Sol Campbell had been sent off in the first half with French stars Thierry Henry and Robert Pires both finding the net for last season's runner up.
But it was the second week in a row the Gunners had a player ejected. Last week it was striker Francis Jeffers in the Community Shield against Manchester United and the tally of red cards in just over six seasons under Arsene Wenger is 51.
There were mixed fortunes for the three promoted clubs.
Portsmouth returned the top flight with a 2-1 victory over Aston Villa but Wolves were crushed 5-1 at Blackburn. Leicester held a two goal lead against Southampton but the Saints hit back for a 2-2 tie.
Fulham edged Middlesbrough 3-2 with Japanese star Junichi Inamoto scoring one of the three.
Teddy Sheringham and Patrik Berger scored on their debuts as Portsmouth downed Villa at Fratton Park.
Having languished in English soccer's wilderness for all but one season since 1959, Pompey made an impressive return under Harry Redknapp who justified his choice of veteran signings.
England striker Sheringham, 37, netted in the 40th minute and Czech forward Berger, hired from Liverpool, added the second after a brilliant dribble inside the area in the 63rd minute.
Promoted as division one champion, Redknapp's team was cruising to victory until Gareth Barry replied six minutes from the end for Villa a minute after he was sent off for abusing a linesman.
As the debutants continued to impress, Australian star Brett Emerton was the star as Blackburn made Wolves' return after 19 years a painful one at Ewood Park.
Signed from Feyenoord, the Aussie scored and created lots of chances for Rovers with Andy Cole coming off the bench to net twice to add to strikes by debutant Lorenzo Amoruso and Andy Thompson.
Kevin Phillips, signed by Southampton only Thursday, began the fightback at Leicester's Walkers Stadium with his team 2-0 down. His strike partner, James Beattie, then hit the equalizer as Gordon Strachan's team canceled out Paul Dickov's penalty and Les Ferdinand's power header.
On the opening day of the Premier League campaign, Birmingham edged Tottenham 1-0 thanks to another debutant, David Dunn.
Kicking off 30 minutes earlier, the Blues were the first team to collect three points when Dunn fired home from the spot after Anthony Gardner had hauled down Robbie Savage.
Hired from Blackburn, the England international midfielder powered the penalty to the left of Spurs' American goalkeeper, Kasey Keller.
Expected to be one of the strugglers under young manager Chris Coleman, Fulham hit the target three times against 'Boro through Steve Marlet, Inamoto and Louis Saha. Boro had taken the lead through Argentina forward Carlos Marinelli and scored the final goal through Slovak striker Sziland Nemeth.
The biggest match of the weekend is on Sunday when big-spending Chelsea goes to Liverpool.
With billionaire Russian businessman Roman Abramovich now controlling Chelsea and wiping out some 90 million pounds (US$144 million) debts, Blues manager Claudio Ranieri has recruited eight new players at a cost of 75 million pounds (US$120 million).
They include Juan Sebastian Veron from Manchester United, Geremi from Real Madrid, Damien Duff from Blackburn, Wayne Bridge from Southampton, Joe Cole and Glen Johnson from West Ham and, provided he gets a work permit, Romanian striker Adrian Mutu from Serie A club Parma.
Liverpool's one big buy was Harry Kewell from Leeds and the Merseyside club wants to make up for last season's 2-1 loss in the final game of the season when Chelsea edged Gerard Houllier's men for the fourth Champions League spot.
Sunday's other games are Charlton-Manchester City and Leeds-Newcastle.
Arsenal 2, Everton 1 (1-0)
Sol Campbell was sent off in the 25th minute after he brought down goalbound Thomas Gravesen. It was Arsenal's second ejection in a row and 51st in just over six seasons under Arsene Wenger. Now Campbell, who missed the last four games of last season through suspension and is under investigation for an incident at last week's Community Shield, faces another. Ten-man Arsenal went ahead through Thierry Henry's 35th minute penalty after the referee ruled that a lob by the Frenchman hit Alan Stubbs on the arm. Robert Pires made it 2-0 in the 58th minute. Everton 'keeper Richard Wright made saves from Henry and Patrick Vieira before Pires followed up to hit the second. Everton hit back when substitute Wayne Rooney found Tomasz Radzinski and the Canadian striker powered it home six minutes from the end. A minute later Chinese defender Li Tie was sent off for his second yellow card.
Birmingham 1, Tottenham 0 (1-0)
Hired from Blackburn, David Dunn scored the only goal of the game in the 36th minute from the penalty spot after Anthony Gardner had pulled down Robbie Savage. Christophe Dugarry hit the Spurs crossbar but also shot straight at Keller when he should have scored.
Blackburn 5, Wolves 1 (2-0)
Hired from Glasgow Rangers, Lorenzo Amoruso powered home a corner from Brett Emerton in the 17th minute. David Thompson swapped passes with Matt Jansen and fired a dipping shot past Wolves 'keeper Matt Murray to make it 2-0 in the 29th. Emerton added the third in the 52nd minute, hammering the ball home after Turkish star Tugay and Dwight Yorke had opened up the defense. Steffen Iversen replied for the Wolves in the 71st minute with a follow up after his head had hit the post. But Andy Cole came off the bench to score Blackburn's fourth and fifth each time from from Tugay's lay offs.
Fulham 3, Middlesbrough 2 (1-1)
Argentina forward Carlos Marinelli stole the ball from Fulham defender Martin Djetou and fired past Edwin van der Sar in the 10th minute. But the home side leveled when Steve Marlet collected a flick on by Louis Saha in the 18th minute. Junichi Inamoto, who had just missed a great chance from close range, fired home from 10 yards (meters) after Saha's set up in the 56th minute. It was 3-1 in the 70th when Steed Malbranque touched the ball to Saha to score on the opening day for the fourth season in a row. But Fulham had a nervous last nine minutes after Szilard Nemeth lobbed the ball over Van de Sar for Boro's second.
Leicester 2, Southampton 2 (2-0)
Paul Dickov fired the Foxes ahead from the penalty spot after Michael Svensson was harshly judged to have fouled Les Ferdinand. Veteran striker Ferdinand then outjumped two Saints defenders to head the Foxes further ahead in the 10th minute. The Saints were still two down with 14 minutes to go when second half substitute Kevin Phillips fired a 25-yard (meter) shot into the top corner. James Beattie then leveled the score after Phillips had hit the post.
Manchester United 4, Bolton 0 (1-0)
American goalkeeper Tim Howard made an acrobatic save to keep out a lob from Lee Nolan before the Red Devils took control at Old Trafford. Ryan Giggs scored with a spectacular 35th minute free kick into the top corner awarded for foul by Bruno N'Gotty on Ruud van Nistelrooy. Van Nistelrooy missed a penalty for the second week in a row, Jussi Jaaskelainen saving from the Dutchman. But Giggs added a second after substitute Cristiano Ronaldo had burst down the right and crossed. Scholes added the third from a dubiously offside Van Nistelrooy. And an unmarked Van Nistelrooy made it four when it powered the ball into the roof of the net from eight yards out three minutes from the end.
Portsmouth 2, Aston Villa 1
Teddy Sheringham fired home the rebound in the 40th minute after Yakubu Ayegbeni's shot had been blocked by 'keeper Thomas Sorensen. Patrik Berger dribbled past two defenders inside the area and prodded the ball past the advancing Sorensen for the second in the 63rd. Gareth Barry replied for Villa six minutes from the end from the penalty spot after Pompey's Boris Zivkovic was harshly judged to have halted his weaving run with a trip. A minute after scoring, Barry was sent off by referee Graham Barber after verbally abusing the linesman.