Read Mail Sport’s blog covering all four 3pm Premier League kick-offs from Saturday August 12, including Brighton and Hove Albion and Luton Town.
Thank you for joining our coverage today. Keep an eye across the Mail Sport website for all the reaction from today’s games, and join us again tomorrow for more matches, and more action, and more transfers. I hope you can enjoy your Saturday. Thanks again. Goodbye.
And finally, here’s the match report from Bramall Lane as Premier League football returned to Sheffield. United were resilient, but Crystal Palace were better, and they got the goal they needed to bring Roy Hodgson a birthday week victory.
Everton had the lion’s share of the chances – but came unstuck in front of goal. All it took was one chance for Fulham, and they’re heading back to West London with the three points. Read the on-the-whistle match report here.
Jarrod Bowen put West Ham ahead in their first competitive game since European glory, but Bournemouth were keen to put on a good showing for their first home game under the new boss, and it finished all square on the South Coast. Read the match report below.
Luton Town were given a rude welcome to the Premier League, with Brighton scoring four times to keep Roberto De Zerbi’s camp happy. Here’s the match report from the AmEx.
And the Premier League isn’t done yet! There’s an evening kick-off too, which sees Newcastle United and Aston Villa square up in north-east England.
Mail Sport’s Tum Balogun has you covered for all this evening’s action. What does the top flight have in store next?
Everton will definitely feel they should have got something from their game. Is Marco Silva satisfied he made the right choice sticking with Fulham, rather than going to Saudi Arabia? A win’s a win, I guess. The same thought will apply to Roy Hodgson, I’m sure.
West Ham and Bournemouth were very close in the table last season – one place and one point between them – so maybe it’s not a surprise that they finished all square.
Tough lessons for Luton Town and Sheffield United – but they will have the opportunity to improve as the season goes on.
For three very narrow scorelines, that felt very… chaotic. Even Luton kept it close until they ran out of power in the final moments.
Lots for every club to digest as they look ahead to the remaining 37 fixtures. How many will regret not taking their opportunities this time around?
And Sheffield United make it three defeats for all the promoted sides this weekend. Roy Hodgson can celebrate his birthday three days after the fact by knowing they have a win and a clean sheet on the board – they can build from that.
Everton have so many chances – and Fulham come away with the win. Massive three points for Marco Silva’s side.
A comfortable win for Brighton in the end – although Luton Town did get their first Premier League goal in their competition debut. Many more winnable games for the Hatters to come – but not at the AmEx.
The equaliser for the Cherries means that honours are even at the Vitality Stadium.
That settles it, and it’s a fourth for Brighton.
Luton put in a strong shift, but they just couldn’t handle De Zerbi’s side. Ferguson is able to dispatch from close range.
Into five minutes of stoppage time at Bramall Lane – can Sheffield United find an equaliser?
90′: Fulham’s Mitrovic shoots, but the effort is blocked. VAR confirms James Tarkowski did not use his hand, despite protestations from the visitors at Goodison Park.
Then Tarkowski went down the other end, and saw his header go just wide of the post. Very close for Everton – but nothing doing. Time running out for the Toffees to equalise.
89′: Should be 4-1 to Brighton, but Pascal Gross’s shot is comfortably saved from inside the box. Luton looking done – can De Zerbi’s side add any more?
89′: The woodwork at work again! West Ham’s Lucas Paqueta, the star they don’t want to sell to Man City for £70m, hit a low shot from just inside the penalty area, and it hit the post and ricocheted out. Still 1-1 at the Vitality.
Just as it looks like game on, Brighton restore their two-goal cushion. Simon Adingra has surely sealed it for the Seagulls with five minutes of regulation time remaining. He was in the right place to volley home the third goal for the hosts – and the Hatters are knocked once more.
Adingra only came off the bench for his debut a few moments ago… surely too soon for Chelsea to make a bid yet???
It’s all square at the Vitality – and it’s Solanke who gets it for the Cherries.
There’s a loose ball which Solanke is the first to react to, and his control puts him in the right place to put the Cherries level.
Game on, as well.
Luton Town’s first Premier League goal comes from the penalty spot!
Brighton’s Lewis Dunk is judged to have handled in the box – and VAR agrees, in a decision that will be viewed time and again by the analysts this weekend. Carlton Morris is the man who stepped up to the 12-yard spot, and scored the goal that will go down in history for the Hatters.
80′: Sheffield United go close to squaring things up at home to Crystal Palace. Traore squares the ball to Osula, but he hits the woodwork with a first-time strike.
What is it with the woodwork today? So many chances just missing the target…
Everton dominated proceedings… and now have about 15 minutes plus stoppages to get something out of the game. Football is brutal.
Everton have been positive, and looking for the goal – so of course it’s Fulham who break the deadlock! Bobby Decordova-Reid comes off the bench, and puts the visitors in front at Goodison Park from close range. It’s Fulham’s first shot on target – and it’s a gut punch to the Toffees.
Palace think they go two-nil up, but it’s offside.
71′: Tough break for Luton’s Tom Lockyer, captaining his side in the Premier League. He fouls Joao Pedro in the box, and he steps straight back up again to dispatch the penalty. 2-0 lead for Brighton now. And it’s a debut goal for Joao Pedro!
67′: Everton should take the lead at Goodison Park, but Fulham get lucky with the woodwork. Iwobi forces a great save from Leno, and then Patterson hit the post with the rebound. Who will take the advantage in the north-west?
67′: Bournemouth almost equalise at home to West Ham! But it’s not to be. Ryan Christie unleashes a fierce shot from the left hand side, but it hits the bar and goes over.
66′: Brighton call for a penalty, but Danny Welbeck is wiped out by his own team-mate.
It follows another opportunity for the Seagulls, with Solly March firing a shot which Luton goalkeeper Thomas Kaminski is forced to save.
63′: Mitrovic comes on, but within moments he’s injured his ankle, and looks to be coming straight off again. A tough break for the Serbian, who was Fulham’s top scorer last season.
With rumours of a move to Saudi Arabia, is that his last involvement for Fulham?
62′: At the Vitality Stadium, Patrick Kluivert’s son Justin has come off the bench for Bournemouth, making his debut after joining the Cherries this summer. Can he turn things around for his new club?
62′: Fulham come close to taking the advantage. Raul Jimenez hits a great volley which beats Jordan Pickford, but it comes off the inside of the post and comes out.
It’s his last involvement in his competitive debut for the West London side. Mitrovic is on.
59′: Crystal Palace look to double their advantage in Sheffield, but Eberechi Eze’s free kick 30 yards out is unable to clear the Blades’ wall.
56′: Bournemouth have a good chance to level against West Ham, but don’t take it. Max Aarons plays Dominic Solanke into space, and while the angle is tight, he still forces Alphonse Areola into a save.
55′: At the AmEx, Pascal Gross hits a low free-kick which hits the outside of the near post. Brighton so close to doubling their advantage – and making Luton’s task even tougher.
Both promoted sides have fallen behind now. Jordan Ayew gets forward for Crystal Palace, before playing the ball across the goal for Odsonne Edouard to convert. Eagles in front.
A stunner from Mr Dani Dyer.
Pablo Fornals is in the right place to set it up, and Bowen makes a clinical, curling finish with his left boot from the edge of the box, which Bournemouth can do nothing about. First blood to the Hammers.
49′: Bournemouth have a great opportunity, with Aaron’s cross falling to Brooks, who forces the West Ham keeper into a save to deny his fierce volley.
Will Iraola’s side score on his competitive debut?
47′: Brighton started on the front foot again, with two further chances, but they’ve yet to extend their lead.
Matches getting back underway…
What changes have we got in store for the second halves?
Brighton have had a number of chances, but only one has materialised, and that’s Solly March’s header.
Luton Town were always in for a tricky ride at the AmEx – but they’ve done well to hold Roberto De Zerbi’s side to just one goal in the first half. Does that change after the restart?
44′: Brighton’s Mitoma is booked for kicking the ball away. Those new rules enforced at the AmEx too.
42′: Danny Welbeck has another opportunity to score for Brighton, but his shot is blocked. Luton doing well to hold this to 1-0 now, with half-time looming.
41′: David Brooks has a decent effort for Bournemouth, but his low shot is saved by Hammers keeper Areola.
39′: Carlton Morris went close for Luton straight after Brighton’s opening goal – but then the hosts very nearly made it 2-0. Danny Welbeck stretches to divert Joao Pedro’s cross goalbound, but it hits the post and comes away.
35′: A West Ham corner is smashed away from the goalline by Bournemouth’s Philip Billing. Still goalless on the South Coast too.
36′: Everton score with Michael Keane sweeping home a loose ball. But it is ruled out for a foul on Fulham goalkeeper Bernd Leno. He tired to catch the ball, but a clash sent him tumbling to the ground, with Keane in the right place to capitalise. VAR backs the referees decision – still goalless at Goodison.
37′: Luton Town almost come straight back at the Seagulls, but it’s snuffed out.
Luton have defended so well, but it only takes one second, and the good teams will punish you. That’s exactly what’s happened at the AmEx. Solly March is in the right place to put Brighton ahead with a header.
33′: Neal Maupay has a golden opportunity for the Toffees – and he strikes it straight at Fulham’s Leno. Some positivity for Everton after a rocky couple of seasons – but they’ll need to get something on the board.
31′: West Ham captain Kurt Zouma almost makes a mess of a ball forward from Bournemouth, and it takes some last-ditch defending to stop the Cherries from taking the lead.
30′: Despite the disallowed goal, Crystal Palace have been controlling the game in Yorkshire. A tough task for Sheffield United on their return to the top-flight.
26′: Everton have had five chances, but only one has hit Leno’s target. Will they regret not scoring during this dominant opening 25 minutes of action?
24′ Jordan Ayew headed home the opener for Crystal Palace at Sheffield United… or so it seemed. He was quickly flagged offside, which curtailed his celebrations, and the check has confirmed he was – just.
Still goalless at Bramall Lane.
23′: It’s nearly Luton Town! A cross is met by Elijah Adebayo, but he is unable to convert under pressure from the resilient Brighton defence.
Halfway through the first halves in these four matches… who will break the deadlock first?
20′: Sheffield United’s William Osula has been booked for kicking the ball away. Those tough new PL rules coming into force right away.
20′: Everton’s Iwobi has a chance in space, but the time it takes to get the shot away gives Fulham the chance to get back and block.
Neal Maupay then tested Leno from range. Everton in the ascendancy.
Still goalless in all four matches so far…
17′: Eze bursts through for Crystal Palace, but the Sheffield United defence are able to get in the way and block.
15′: West Ham have a really good opportunity through Tomas Soucek, but it comes off the post, and bounces into Neto’s hands. A let off for Bournemouth.
13′: Bournemouth’s Dominic Solanke nicks the ball off Aguerd, who slipped, but winger David Brooks is only able to fire wide for the Cherries.
12′: Crystal Palace claim a penalty shout, with Eze bundled over in the box by Baldock. The referee waves it away, and the general consensus is that it’s good defending rather than a foul.
11′: Everton on the front foot, looking a lot more positive against Fulham, but they can turn that pressure into goals?
9′: Sheffield United have reacclimatised to the Premier League as well, buoyed by their home support.
9′: Joao Pedro has been causing problems for Luton Town, and Brighton should be ahead, but the error proved costly. Still goalless for the Hatters for the time being.
4′: Everton have had two great opportunities to try and take the advantage against Fulham, but they’ve amounted to nothing.
4′: West Ham are the brighter of the two sides at the Vitality Stadium…
It ended a lot closer to 3pm than anyone expected, but Arsenal have secured their three points, seeing off Nottingham Forest with a 2-1 win at the Emirates. More information on that game can be found below.
Can Crystal Palace give him the ultimate birthday present at Bramall Lane?
Luton Town are in their final moments of preparing to face Brighton, and joined together in a huddle during their warm-up. Their Premier League debut is just minutes away…
Eight teams are just ten minutes away from discovering just how good they are – or where they will need to strengthen if they want to achieve their goals for the forthcoming season.
Will any of these results spring a shock?
Raul Jimenez makes his debut after signing from Wolves, while Willian is also in the starting XI despite reports of a move to Saudi Arabia.
Aleksandar Mitrovic, Andreas Pereira and summer signing Calvin Bassey are among the substitutes available to Marco Silva at Goodison Park this afternoon.
23/24 is here. 👀#EVEFUL pic.twitter.com/vfQYUbP8Vn
Dominic Calvert-Lewin misses out on the Fulham match with injury. Sean Dyche gives a debut to summer signing Ashley Young too.
Demarai Gray – linked to a move to Fulham – does not feature this afternoon.
Your Toffees for #PL matchday one! 👊#EVEFUL 🔵 pic.twitter.com/2hbvI6DdnT
Ex-Bournemouth midfielder Jefferson Lerma makes his debut for the Eagles in Yorkshire this afternoon. Sam Johnstone is in goal for Roy Hodgson’s side, with Vicente Guaita refusing to play for Crystal Palace in pre-season.
This afternoon's starting XI 🙌
Winger Benie Traore and forward William Osula make their first starts for Sheffield United as they welcome Crystal Palace to Bramall Lane.
Here's how United line up on the opening day vs @CPFC! ⚔️🦅 #SUFC 🔴 pic.twitter.com/qo8J3BtW28
David Moyes has named his West Ham side for the trip to Bournemouth, including Lucas Paqueta, despite Man City’s £70m bid to bring him up north before the window shuts. Kurt Zouma has been named as Hammers captain.
Your first starting XI of the @PremierLeague season ⚒️ pic.twitter.com/aSen0BcRe2
New signings Milos Kerkez and Max Aarons start in defence for Bournemouth today, as they look to dent West Ham’s front line at the Vitality Stadium. Home fans will be hoping to enjoy Andoni Iraola’s first game in charge for the Cherries.
Let's get 2023/24 started 👊 pic.twitter.com/VvWQoUquuf
And these are the 11 Hatters tasked with opening Luton Town’s account in the top-flight for the first time this century. They have five new signings in their starting XI.
Tom Lockyer returns to captain the side, having collapsed during the play-off final back in May.
Your Premier League Hatters. #BRILUT | #COYH pic.twitter.com/hegsAtGHTM
This is how Roberto De Zerbi’s team line up to face Luton Town today.
TEAM NEWS! 🚨 Here's our starting XI for today's @PremierLeague opener. 📝
📲 https://t.co/ShrO6GJHNU // #BHAFC 🔵⚪️ pic.twitter.com/tkfPpumFFj
Everton narrowly escaped the drop last season, for the second time in a row. So they’ll be feeling thankful there’s still Premier League football at Goodison Park this term – and now the challenge is to make sure they’re not duking it out near the bottom in May.
Sean Dyche’s side welcome Marco Silva’s Fulham, who had a decent mid-table finish in their first season back in the Premier League. Can they hold that form up – or even push higher? It all begins here…
The Vitality Stadium welcomes West Ham in their first competitive game since winning the Europa Conference League. David Moyes is still manager, but they’ve sold Declan Rice. Can they get their league form in gear this season, after last year’s rocky campaign on the domestic front?
Bournemouth finished 14th last season, just one point and one place behind the Hammers. Can they get the early advantage over the East London side this time around?
For Sheffield United, it’s only been a couple of years out of the top flight, but they’ll still be eagerly putting the Blades up against some of the best players in world football. They have a home opener against Crystal Palace, who have Roy Hodgson in charge still, following his work in steadying the ship at the end of last season.
It’s been a long old while since Luton Town were a top-flight club. It may even have been a surprise to them – their opening games will be on the road while they get their home stadium up to Premier League regulations.
They have a tough task ahead of them this afternoon. Brighton were one of the shining lights last season, and Roberto De Zerbi’s side will be hoping to go strong again this term, despite the sale of Alexis Mac Allister and the imminent sale of Moises Caicedo.
Can the Hatters pull off a great shock on their PL debut?
Yesterday, Manchester City got things going with a comfortable win at Burnley, and now Arsenal are two goals to the good at home to Nottingham Forest. You can follow Kieran Lynch’s live coverage of the latter of those below – owing to a delay with turnstiles at the Emirates, they’re 37 minutes in.
Hello! Welcome to Mail Sport’s coverage of the 3pm Premier League kick-offs. There are four matches going on this afternoon for us to keep you up to date with, including two clubs returning to the top flight.
Brighton vs Luton
Sheffield United vs Crystal Palace
Bournemouth vs West Ham
Everton vs Fulham
I’ll say the obvious, Luton Sheffield United and E…
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