EPL Winners and Losers After Sunday's 2019 Week 2 Premier League Results

Gianni Verschueren@ReverschPassFeatured ColumnistAugust 18, 2019

Chelsea's head coach Frank Lampard stands by the bench after Leicester tied the game 1-1 during the English Premier League soccer match between Chelsea and Leicester City at Stamford Bridge stadium in London, Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)
Frank Augstein/Associated Press

Just two matches were played during Sunday's Week 2 Premier League action, with Leicester City earning a point away at Chelsea and Sheffield United bagging their first win of the season over Crystal Palace.

Mason Mount punished a blunder from Wilfred Ndidi early in the clash at Stamford Bridge, but the Nigerian redeemed himself with a powerful header. Further north, John Lundstram scored the only goal of the match.

Here are Sunday's results as well as winners and losers from both contests:

Sheffield United 1-0 Crystal Palace

Chelsea 1-1 Leicester City


Winner: Wilfred Ndidi

Ndidi took far too long on the ball after he received it just in front of his own box after seven minutes, and Mount pounced on his mistake to give the Blues an early lead.

The former Genk midfielder struggled further in the first half, but all was forgiven when he rose higher than Cesar Azpilicueta to tie things up.

The goal came on his 100th start for the Foxes:

Sky Sports Statto @SkySportsStatto

⚽️ Wilfred Ndidi marks his 100th start for Leicester with a goal - assisted by James Maddison, who has created more PL chances (103) since the start of last season than any player https://t.co/Zc4xBbp9k9

The 22-year-old was far from his best Sunday, but anytime you can redeem yourself with a goal that earns your side a point against a Premier League giant, you belong in the winners category.


Loser: Frank Lampard

Frank Lampard is now winless in his first three competitive matches in charge of Chelsea, and after a promising showing in midweek against European champions Liverpool, Sunday's contest threw up new question marks.

The Blues started well and dominated the first 20 minutes, but Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers made the necessary adjustments, and his team grew into the match. That earned the praise of sports writer Luis Miguel Echegaray:

Luis Miguel Echegaray @lmechegaray

Great game. After a strong first half from Chelsea, Leicester City grew in confidence and honestly, it probably felt it should have won the game after James Maddison's miss. Impressed with Brendan Rodgers and his side. Lampard has plenty more to work on.

Lampard must have noticed his team's struggles entering half-time, but whatever he said or did during the break had the opposite effect. The Foxes dominated early in the second half, and Lampard's substitutions did little to turn the tide.

Rodgers was easily the better in-game manager Sunday, and that's a major worry for the Blues this early in the season.


Winner: Sheffield United's Tactics

The Blades' unique tactical choice of using overlapping centre-backs has been one of the main talking points surrounding the club so far this season, and Sunday, sports writer Adam Hurrey waded into the discussion:

Adam Hurrey @FootballCliches

*does stepover, like a crane turning round* *wins throw-in* *earns standing ovation*

There's no denying the tactic has worked so far, however. Sheffield United have earned four points from their first two outings, conceding just a single goal so far, and completely shut down both Wilfried Zaha and Christian Benteke on Sunday.

Newly promoted clubs often have a tendency of converting to a more conservative approach, evidenced by Fulham's reluctance to play as attacking last season as they did the season before in the Championship. Sheffield United are sticking to their guns so far, however, and it has worked wonders through two weeks.


Loser: Wilfried Zaha

Crystal Palace were decisively second-best Sunday, rarely threatening the Sheffield United goal for 90 minutes.

Their only real danger came from Zaha, who made his first start of the season and looked disinterested for much of the contest. His chemistry with Benteke was almost non-existent:

Squawka Football @Squawka

Wilfried Zaha and Christian Benteke exchanged just one pass against Sheffield United. It could be a long season ahead for him. 😤 https://t.co/kvqU4w0ymt

According to Sky Sports, Zaha requested a transfer this summer, but no clubs came close to Palace's valuation. The 26-year-old will likely have to wait until at least January to get his desired move, but based on the first two weeks of the season, a mid-season exit seems unlikely.

The Eagles have looked among the worst sides in the English top flight so far, and if they're anywhere near a relegation battle in January, their asking price for their star forward will only increase. Whether Zaha sulks for months or plays the best football of his life won't matter much if Palace decide he won't be sold in mid-season at any cost.


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