From Yohan Cabaye’s well-struck screamer to Patjim Kasami’s voluptuous volley with boatloads of brilliance in between, week eight in the Barclay’s English Premier League boasts a bevy of contenders for goal of the season.
All told, teams combined to net 34 times from Saturday to Monday with only Stoke City and West Brom playing to a scoreless draw at the Britannia.
Chelsea made a valiant comeback, Southampton scored late on to heap on pressure on David Moyes at Old Trafford, Liverpool and Newcastle gave neutrals an enthralling back-and-forth affair while Arsenal and Manchester City played the sort of stylish soccer that makes each club title contenders.
Nike and adidas players each accounted for 14 goals with the adidas Predator LZ TRX in Pride Blue/Running White/Orange took top honors with nine strikes.
PUMA players did well, too, with the increasingly popular and always stunning evoSPEED 1.2 in Blackberry Cordial/Fluo Orange/Fluo Pink accounting for five goals, including the Saints late equalizer and Sergio Aguero’s dominant double.
Players with unique cleats, custom versions of Nike’s Mercurial Vapor IX and Nike CTR360 Maestri III, an adidas Predator LZ throwback and yet-to-be-released adidas F50 adizero, all got on the score sheet, too.
Whether you’re a fan of first-class goals, rare shoes or both, week eight was one to savor.
Saturday, Oct. 19
Newcastle United 2 Liverpool 2, St. James’ Park
Yohan Cabaye, Newcastle United, 23rd minute, Nike CTR 360 Maestri III Volt/Black/Green Glow
Steven Gerard, Liverpool, 42nd minute penalty, adidas Nitrocharge 1.0 TRX Vivid Red/Running
Goal of the game: Yohan Cabaye’s bouncing cracker from distance The Frenchman opened the scoring on this occasion with a downtown belter out of nothing. Cabaye collected a Cheik Tiote roller at the halfway line, took four touches forward with his right before unleashing a strike from 35 yards that bounced in front of Reds goalkeeper Simon Mignolet and skidded into the far side net. Top class from Cabaye here, whose moment of brilliance outshone Steven Gerrard’s 100th Premier League goal for Liverpool and Paul Dummet’s debut strike.
Arsenal 4 Norwich 1, Emirates Stadium
Jack Wilshire, Arsenal, 18th minute, Nike CTR360 Maestri III Volt/Black/Green Glow
Mesut Ozil, Arsenal, 58th and 88rd minutes, adidas Predator LZ TRX Pride Blue/Running White/Orange
Jonathan Howson, Norwich, 70th minute, Nike CTR360 custom White/Blue NikeID
Aaron Ramsey, Arsenal, 83rd minute, adidas Predator LZ TRX Pride Blue/Running White/Orange
Goal of the game: Jack Wilshire’s exquisite team goal Breathtaking. Stunning. Magnificent. Sublime. Take your pick of superlatives and even the floweriest of them falls short of describing this move from Arsenal. Santi Cazorla brought the ball down the left flank and dropped it off to Wilshire, who played it to back to Cazorla. Then the one-touch wondrousness began.
Cazorla gave it to Olivier Giroud, who used the outside of his foot to find Wilshire, who touched it back to Giroud, who returned with another outside of the foot flick to Wilshire, darting behind the defense. The Englishman didn’t let the ball hit the ground and used his right to guide the ball home as Norwich players stood in awe. It was a goal that would make even Barcelona players envious.
On another day, Ramsey’s divine double-dummied finish, which drew comparisons to the legendary Zinedine Zidane, would have grabbed all the headlines.
Chelsea 4 Cardiff City 1, Stamford Bridge
Jordan Mutch, Cardiff, 10th minute, adidas Predator LZ TRX Pride Blue/Running White/Orange
Eden Hazard, Chelsea, 33rd and 82nd minutes, Nike Mercurial Vapor IX Electro Purple/Volt Black
Samuel Eto’o, Chelsea, 66th minute, PUMA evoSPEED 1.2 Blackberry Cordial/Fluo Orange/Fluo Pink
Oscar, Chelsea, 78th minute, adidas Predator LZ TRX Pride Blue/Running White/Orange
Goal of the game: Eto’o’s winner to break his duck The former Barcelona and Inter Milan trophy winner capped off a tremendous day when, after setting up Chelsea’s equalizer, he got his first goal for the Blues to take the lead. As Cardiff failed to fully clear it’s lines from a corner kick, Eto’o made a smart run along the back line, received Eden Hazard’s pass with his left before cutting inside and showing his striking guile with a bullet to beat David Marshall at his near post. Some thought he had lost his way collecting checks in the Russian Premier League, but Eto’o showed Saturday he still has plenty left in the tank.
The club’s top scorer, Oscar, came close second when he sealed the points with a swerver from distance off the underside of the bar.
Everton 2 Hull City 1, Goodison Park
Kevin Mirallas, Everton, 8th minute, Nike Mercurial Vapor IX Volt/Black/Bright Citrus
Yannick Sagbo, Hull City, 30th minute, Nike Hypervenom Phantom Electro Purple/Volt/Black
Steven Pienaar, Everton, 57th minute, PUMA evoSPEED 1.2 Blackberry Cordial/Fluo Orange/Fluo Pink
Goal of the game: Steven Pienaar’s instant impact, classy winner Back home at Everton after a spell at Tottenham Hotspur, Steven Pienaar came off the bench to take the three points for the Toffees. Returning from a hamstring injury that sidelined him since August, the South African midfielder needed just 30 seconds to latch onto a ball dragged back from earlier goalscorer Kevin Mirallas and steer it home confidently with the inside of his right with his first touch of the match.
Manchester United 1 Southampton 1, Old Trafford
Robin Van Persie, Manchester United, 26th minute, adidas F50 adizero TRX Infrared/Running White/Black
Adam Lallana, Southampton, 89th minute, PUMA evoSPEED 1.2 Blackberry Cordial/Fluo Orange/Fluo Pink
Goal of the game: Lallana, Lovren’s link up to silence Old Trafford With Manchester United hitting the bar twice and Artur Boruc standing on his head in goal for Southampton, Lallana stepped up to steal a point for the Saints. The in-form English attacking midfielder, was screening off goalkeeper David De Gea from a corner kick when central defender Dejan Lovren’s header grazed off of his knee and flew through his legs into the back of the net. The point was massive for Southampton, off to a flying start in sixth place, two spots ahead of the Red Devils.
Swansea 4 Sunderland 0, Liberty Stadium
Phillip Bardsley, Sunderland, 57th minute own goal, adidas Predator LZ TRX Pride Blue/Running White/Orange
Jonathan De Guzman, Swansea, 58th minute, Nike CTR 360 Maestri III Volt/Black/Green Glow
Wilfried Bony, Swansea, 64th minute penalty, Nike Mercurial Vapor IX blackout custom
Steven Fletcher, Sunderland, 80th minute own goal, Umbro Geometra II White/Black/Vivid Blue
Goal of the game: Jonathan De Guzman’s Upper 90 effort Gus Poyet’s debut as Sunderland boss brought more of the same from Paolo Di Canio’s disappointing tenure as Swansea won the match comfortably with plenty of help from the Black Cats. One minute after Phil Bardsley put one in from the back of his leg, De Guzman didn’t need any assistance when he opened his right foot and hit a luscious, unstoppable curling shot from outside the area into the far right upper corner to double the Swans advantage.
Manchester City 3 West Ham 1, Upton Park
Sergio Aguero, Manchester City, 16th and 51st minutes, PUMA evoSPEED 1.2 Blackberry Cordial/Fluo Orange/Fluo Pink
Ricardo Vaz Te, West Ham, 58th minute, adidas F50 adizero TRX Infrared/Running White/Black
David Silva, Manchester City, 80th minute, adidas Predator LZ TRX Pride Blue/Running White/Orange
Goal of the game: David Silva’s cool finish to nail the Hammers Manchester City’s first league win away from Etihad Stadium in their all black jerseys came through Sergio Aguero and David Silva, each man providing the other a goal on this day. Silva’s goal to kill off the contest came from an Aguero backheel in the box with the Spaniard running onto the ball, touching to the left twice to slide past defender Winston Read and guide the Nike Incyte into the corner in expert fashion. Ricardo Vaz Te’s overhead kick in a losing effort also deserves a mention here.
Sunday, Oct. 20
Tottenham Hotspur 2 Aston Villa 0, Villa Park
Andros Townsend, Tottenham Hotspur, 31st minute, Nike Mercurial Vapor IX Volt/Black/Bright Citrus
Roberto Soldado, Tottenham Hotspur, 69th minute, adidas F50 adizero Enlightened Pack (to be released Tuesday and Wednesday and worn by UEFA Champions League adidas players)
Goal of the game: Townsend’s purple patch persistence When it’s going good, a simple cross becomes a game-winning goal. Fresh off earning his first two starts for England and becoming the difference making the Three Lions needed on the flank to qualify for 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil, Townsend continued his fine form with a dominant display against the Villans on Sunday.
His first half left-footed cross from the right wing missed the diving legs of Roberto Soldado and Lewis Holty but also evaded Aston Villa’s American goalkeeper Brad Guzan to find the net. Townsend, who signed a four-year extension with Spurs on Thursday, could have scored twice more as Guzan produced top-flight saves to deny the 22-year-old rising star. Monday, Oct. 21
Fulham 4 Crystal Palace 1, Selhurst Park
Adrian Mariappa, Crystal Palace, 7th minute, Nike Hypervenom Phantom Electro Purple/Volt/Black
Patjim Kasami, Fulham,19th minute, adidas Predator LZ TRX Pride Blue/Running White/Orange
Steve Sidwell, Fulham, 45th minute, adidas Predator LZ TRX Pride Blue/Running White/Orange
Dimitar Berbatov, Fulham, 50th minute, adidas Predator LZ Black/Orange (first generation)
Philippe Senderos, Fulham, 55th minute, Nike Tiempo Legend IV Light Bone/Volt/Black
Goal of the game: Patjim Kasami’s audacious volley
Kasami ensured a week full of wondergoals ended in style when he chested down a pass from the midway line on the edge of the right side of the box and hit sweetly with his right foot before the ball touched down. The shot, across his body, flew over goalkeeper Julian Speroni and dipped into the goal in style. Class.