Watford stun Wolves with rapid double

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  • Capoue, Pereyra score for Watford
  • First defeat since August for Wolves
  • Watford’s first PL win in five

Watford beat Wolverhampton Wanderers 2-0 at Molinuex on Saturday, with the Hornets riding a quickfire first half double to victory.

Ettiene Capoue and Roberto Pereyra each scored in the space of 58 seconds to led Watford to victory, while Wolves tasted defeat for the first time since August.

With the win Watford now have 16 points on the season as they jump ahead of Wolves who have 15 points on the board.

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After a slow start the game exploded into life with two goals in a minute for the visitors.

First, Capoue drilled home a low effort to put the Hornets ahead as the first chance of the game resulted in a goal.

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Less than a minute later it was 2-0 as Watford won the ball back from the kick off, ran down the left and then Peryera finished superbly as he lofted the ball over Rui Patricio and in.

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In the second half Wolves huffed and puffed and they created some good openings to get back into the game.

Helder Costa missed a sitter, while Willy Boly and Ivan Cavaleiro went close.

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But Watford’s 58 second blitz in the first half did the damage.

Sterling leads England to 3-2 Nations League win over Spain

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Raheem Sterling has heard the criticism that he can’t finish chances, and he has responded. On the field, that is.

Behind a double from Sterling, England toppled Spain 3-2 with a vicious counter-attack that juxtaposed Spain’s sleepy, wasteful attack on Monday in Sevilla. The match marked the first time that Spain has ever conceded three or more goals in a competitive home match.

The Manchester City winger was the first on the scoresheet just 18 minutes in as England flowed forward on a counter-attack and with the two-on-three break, Marcus Rashford delivered a beautiful feed to Sterling who blasted his effort past a statue-like David De Gea. The break was actually started way back with Jordan Pickford, who touched past a charging defender and delivered an absolute bullet of a pass to Harry Kane just before the midfield stripe.

Spain dominated possession throughout the match, but they suffered from similar ills as this summer’s World Cup, unable to produce enough dangerous moments and embarrassing failures at the back. England, on the other hand, was happy to sit back and pick its spots on the break, and they were clinical when given the chance.

Marco Asensio skied a shot over the bar in the 18th minute, and Spain would rue its wastefulness as England would double its lead on the half-hour mark. Rashford was the one to finish it off on the counter this time, taking a pinpoint feed from Kane and volleying the bouncing ball into the back of the net after leaking behind the defense and beating Jonny to the spot.

Sterling would grab England’s third before halftime as England would display a bit of venomous half-court play. Kieran Trippier did the heavy lifting with a brilliant chip over the Spanish back line, finding Kane who had snuck behind Sergio Ramos and slid to meet the ball, tapping in front of net for Sterling who finished from the doorstep with ease.

Spain held a whopping 77% of the possession in the first half, but could only muster two shots on target out of 10 total efforts. In the second half, the pressure would finally pay off as the white-hot Paco Alcacer picked up a consolation on a corner in the 58th minute, heading in the goal on his first touch after coming off the bench to replace Iago Aspas. Alcacer has become an ultimate super-sub this season, scoring 10 goals for club and country in just 277 total minutes.

The home fans were livid when a penalty was not given as Jordan Pickford grappled with Rodrigo before completing a tackle in the 63rd minute, but only a corner was given. Spain pushed harder as the second half wore on, and Alcacer came close to a second with five minutes left as he struck a shot against his own man.

Spain bagged a second in the 97th minute with literally the final kick of the match, as Marco Asencio crashed a shot against the bar, and while Nathan Chalobah on his England debut cleared momentarily, it was sent back in by Dani Ceballos to the head of a diving Sergio Ramos. There was no more time for an equalizer, however, as the referee brought the game to an end even before the ensuing kickoff.

The competitive home loss is the first for Spain in 15 years, and it means England moves ahead of Spain to the top of Nations League League A Group 4 by a one-point margin.

Premier League leaders through eight matches

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The sample size remains relatively small, but the Premier League season is closing in on its quarter-point and we’re able to get a decent perspective on whose hot starts are becoming solid seasons.

The international break is a good time to analyze the early season numbers, so let’s run through WhoScored.com and a number of other sites to see who’s shining in England (and Wales, though we don’t expect to see a lot of Bluebirds).

[ MORE: Hazard would play for Mourinho again ]

Let’s start with team stuff. Obviously, Man City, Chelsea, and Liverpool all boast league-best 6W-2D records, while Newcastle and Cardiff are league-worst 2D-6L.

City has scored the most goals (21), while its tied with Liverpool for fewest allowed in league play (3). Huddersfield Town and Cardiff (4) have scored the fewest, and Fulham has allowed the most (21).

City also has the most possession (65.3 percent), shots per game (21.8), and pass accuracy (89.9 percent). Worst possessors? Newcastle. Worst passers? Cardiff. Fewest shots? Newcastle.

Now, the fun stuff. Let’s praise individuals in a sport with 22 players on the field most of the time.

It will come as no surprise that this season is all about Eden.

Goals: Eden Hazard, Chelsea (7)

Assists: Six players have four, with Benjamin Mendy of Man City doing it in the fewest amount of minutes (450).

Man of the Match awards: Hazard (5)

Key passes per game: David Silva, Man City (3.7)

Dribbles per game: Hazard (2.8)

Times fouled per game: James Maddison, Leicester City (3)

Average passes per game: Jorginho, Chelsea (106.6)

Crosses per game: Kieran Trippier, Spurs (2.6)

Tackles per game: Idrissa Gueye, Everton (5.3)

Interceptions per game: Etienne Capoue, Watford (3.4)

Clearances per game: Steve Cook, Bournemouth (7.9)

Blocks per game: James Tarkowski, Burnley (2)

Yellow cards: Jose Holebas, Watford (5)

Red cards: Wes Morgan, Leicester City (2)

Bournemouth ‘on fire’ as they surge up to fifth

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Bournemouth have 16 points on the board after eight games of the Premier League season.

At this stage last season they only had four points from a possible 24.

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Eddie Howe’s youngsters smashed 10-man Watford 4-0 on Saturday to secure back-to-back wins in the Premier League as they’ve won five of their opening eight games of the season. In a week where the club revealed they aren’t moving ahead with plans to move to a new stadium and instead stay at their 11,000 capacity home at the Vitality, at least their ambition on the pitch shows how far they can go.

Howe was delighted with the manner of the win at Watford and believes his team are capable of beating anyone, on their day.

“We are very pleased with the result. This is a tough place to come and Watford have been in good form. It wasn’t the perfect performance but we are happy,” Howe told Sky Sports. “We believe we are capable of beating anyone when we are on top of our game. It is good that I think there is room to improve. We like to stay in the background and as underdogs. We will go about our work in a controlled way.”

Speaking to BBC Sport after the game, Welsh youngster David Brooks (who has now scored in back-to-back games) detailed the key to Bournemouth’s incredible start.

“Hopefully I can continue this form but the main focus was three points and we got that. As an attacking player you want to create and score as many as you can. The boys are on fire,” Brooks said. “I came here to prove I was good enough for the Premier League and I hope I am doing that.”

Brooks, 21, is certainly making a big difference and alongside Callum Wilson and Josh King they tore Watford apart as Christian Kabasele was sent off in the first half and gave a penalty kick away. The combination of pace and slick passing has seen Bournemouth begin this season by surprising many, but Howe and his players don’t seem that surprised with their form.

Bournemouth’s fixture list has been kind to them, as the only top six team they’ve faced so far is Chelsea, but they’re making the most of their fine early season form. This is their best-ever start to a PL season in their fourth campaign in the top flight and it has set them up for a decent run of games coming up.

Next up they have a South Coast derby against Southampton after the international break, then they play Fulham, Manchester United and Newcastle before facing Arsenal.

So, we could well be talking about Bournemouth making a sustained challenge to finish in the top six and qualifying for Europe between now and December. On this form, they could be the Burnley of 2018-19.

Bournemouth hammer 10-man Watford

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  • Bournemouth’s biggest away win in Premier League
  • Kabasele sent off, gave away PK
  • Two goals from Josh King
  • Cherries up to fifth in table

Bournemouth beat 10-man Watford 4-0 at Vicarage Road on Saturday, as the Cherries secured their biggest-ever away win in the Premier League.

Two first half goals from Josh King and another from David Brooks made it 3-0, then Callum Wilson made it 4-0 after the break as Watford’s Christian Kabasele was sent off as he gave away a penalty kick.

With the win Bournemouth move up to fifth in the table and have 16 points as they jump above Watford who remain on 13 points.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ] 

After a lively start to the game, the first key moment arrived as a free kick into the box saw Watford’s Kabasele flatten Asmir Begovic and was booked for his troubles.

Moments later Begovic saved Will Hughes‘ volley after a goalmouth scramble as the hosts settled well but then Bournemouth struck on the counter to take the lead.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Josh King flew down the left flank moments after Watford called for a handball in the box, and he found Wilson in the box but his shot was well saved by Ben Foster. However, Brooks was on hand to calmly slot home to put the Cherries 1-0 up.

Craig Cathcart somehow headed wide when completely unmarked at a corner, as the Hornets pushed hard for an equalizer. Wilson was then guilty of missing a big chance at the other end as he headed wide with the goal gaping.

Kabasele then took down King in the box and was handed a second yellow card as King scored the penalty kick to give Bournemouth a 2-0 lead and leave Watford with 10 men. And it got worse for Watford as King nodded home Wilson’s cross right on half time to make it 3-0. Game over.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ] 

In the second half it was a case of damage limitation for Watford but they conceded again within two minutes of the restart.

A cross from the left from Ryan Fraser found Wilson and he finished at the second attempt after being left wide open. 4-0. Troy Deeney and Etienne Capoue then had a disagreement on a sorry afternoon for the Hornets.

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Bournemouth eased to victory in the latter stages as they threatened to score more on the break, but Howe’s side settled for four goals and a clean sheet as their fantastic start to the season continues.