This weekend has been a good weekend for my football interests, both Liverpool and Plymouth Argyle won their respective games. The Reds won their first league game of the season by a narrow one goal margin while Plymouth won 1 – 3 after three straight defeats this season.
I’ll start with my home town team, Plymouth Argyle. The Pilgrims came back from two straight league defeats and a league cup defeat to beat Cheltenham Town 1 – 3 at the Abbey Business Stadium. The Pilgrims were 0 – 3 up by the half time break with goals from Marvin Morgan, Conor Hourihane and Romuald Boco. Morgan opening the scoring in the 18th minute netting Reuben Reid’s rebounded shot off the crossbar, Hourihane added the second on the 27th minute with a superb 22-yard strike and Boco mad it three in the 37th minute putting Argyle into a commanding lead!
Matt Richards did pull one back in the 72nd minute for Cheltenham but the home side never looked like getting anything from the game. Cheltenham manager Mark Yates going as far to say “Myself and the players owe an apology to the supporters for an inept last hour of the game”, a damning statement from the The Robins gaffer, of course I’d rather hear “Plymouth were the better team”.
This win moves the Pilgrims move out of the bottom two to 17th, just three points off sixth and a play-off place, I know it’s impossible for Argyle to move upto sixth place even with a win, but I feel batter about the season now that Argyle have three points on the board to kickstart the season!
Moving 2 1/2 hours up the motorway, Liverpool claimed their first opening day home win since 2001 defeating Stoke City 1 – 0 but have to thank new goalkeeper Simon Mignolet after saving Jonathan Walters’ spot kick in the 89th minute after Daniel Agger handled in the 18 yard box.
Daniel Sturridge scored the only goal of the game with a low drive off Jordan Henderson’s cross in the 37th minute but Liverpool wasted a lot of opportunities as was the case last season, Kolo Toure and Jordan Henderson both hit the woodwork during the match. So a 1 – 0 win is disappointing given how much better Liverpool were on the day, but also fortunate to take three points away!
I mean no disrespect to Stoke but a better team like Manchester United, City or Chelsea would have punished those missed goal scoring chances and almost certainly have put that penalty kick in the back of the net. The Red need to step up their game if they wish to challenge for the Champions League in 2014/15. That said, it was a win and a good foundation to build a great season from.