After an international break of fifteen days, By the numbers it’s back. And to welcome us, club football served delicious food. Cristiano Ronaldo did the Cristiano Ronaldo stuff when he scored two to guide Juventus to a 2-0 win over Cagliari. Erling Haaland did Erling Haaland stuff when he scored four (!) To lead Borussia Dortmund to a comeback 5-2 win at Hertha Berlin. They are now just one point from the top after Bayern Munich drew 1-1 with Werder Bremen.
In the Premier League, a tactical masterclass from José Mourinho saw Tottenham Hotspur beat Manchester City 2-0 and top the table (for the day). Manchester United finally won this season at home, beating West Bromwich Albion 1-0 thanks to a Bruno Fernandes penalty, while Chelsea edged Newcastle United 2-0. Oh, and Real Madrid drew 1-1 with Villarreal and Atlético de Madrid beat Barcelona 1-0.
Here are the best stats from Saturday’s action:
Mourinho and Pep Guardiola fall back. But Mourinho has beaten Guardiola by two or more goals only three times: this Saturday night, in February 2020 (also 2-0), and in April 2010 in the UCL semifinals, when Inter Milan beat Guardiola’s Barcelona 3-1 in the first leg.
This was Manchester United’s first victory against West Brom at OId Trafford since 2015, five years ago. In the process, they also ended a six-game winless streak at home in the league (the club’s worst streak in PL’s history).
This was Mourinho’s seventh victory over Guardiola. Only Jurgen Klopp has more (nine). Tied for third with three wins each are Mauricio Pochettino, Arsene Wenger and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
According to SquawkaManchester United forwards have converted just 7.7% of all shots attempted in the league this season, the lowest conversion rate among all Premier League teams this season. Marcus Rashford has 10.5% (2 of 19), Anthony Martial and Mason Greenwood 0% (0 of 8 and 7 respectively) and Edinson Cavani 20% (1 of 5).
Harry Kane has provided nine assists in his nine Premier League games this season, more than any other player in the division. To put this in context, Kane had provided just eight assists in his previous three league seasons combined – that’s eight assists in 94 games.
Pep Guardiola has accumulated just 12 points in his first eight games this season, his lowest performance in his first eight league games throughout his coaching career.
This is the fourteenth time Manchester City have remained scoreless at PL with Guardiola. Three of those games have been against Tottenham, more than any other club.
Tottenham finished a day at the top of the PL table for the first time since August 2014. However, it is the first time they have finished the day at the top of the top flight in a campaign since January 1985, 35 years ago! !
Half of Bruno Fernandes’ PL goals for Manchester United have been penalties (7/14), the highest ratio of any player to score for the club in the competition.
This was Diego Simeone’s first league win against Barcelona as Atlético de Madrid coach. It took him only 18 games (W 1, D 6, L 11).
Sevilla FC rallied 1-2 against to beat Celta de Vigo 4-2. This was their third win in all competitions this season, more than any other team in the top 5 European leagues (tied with Bayer Leverkusen, Liverpool and Manchester United).
Barcelona have just 11 points after their first eight La Liga games, their worst record at this stage of the season since 1991/92. However, Johan Cruyff’s ‘dream team’ won the league that year.
This was Atlético de Madrid’s first league win over Barcelona without conceding a goal since February 2005, 15 years ago!
At the age of 16 and one day, Borussia Dortmund’s Yousouffa Moukoko became the youngest player to play in the Bundesliga. Moukoko broke Nuri Sahin’s previous record by exactly eleven months.
Moukoko replaced the scoring machine Haaland, who now has 10 goals in the Bundesliga this season (seven games played), one behind Robert Lewandowski in the race for the Golden Boot.
Across all competitions, Haaland now has 16 goal contributions (13 G, 3 A) this season, tied for third among all players in Europe’s top 5 leagues this season. Only Kane and Lewandowski have more.
Haaland has scored 23 goals in 22 appearances for Dortmund. This is the world of 20 years; we’re just living in it
A quiet night at the Wanda Metropolitano for Lionel Messi. Good night at the Juventus stadium for Cristiano Ronaldo.
Quite a surprising statistic. Messi has scored just one of his last 48 direct free throws for Barcelona in all competitions (vs. Osasuna last July).
This is the second time that Ronaldo has scored a double in the first half in Serie A (he also did it in December 2019 against Udinese).
Another day, another record on land Ronaldo. He is now the only Juventus player to have scored in each of his first five Serie A appearances in a season in the 3-point-a-win era (since 1994/95). He has 8 goals this season, tied with compatriot Zlatan Ibrahimovic at the top of Capocannoniere’s career.
Ronaldo has now scored 60 goals in Serie A since joining Juventus in 2018, more than any other player in the competition in that time frame. Of course.
(Statistics courtesy of ESPN’s Statistics and Information Group)