Eight talking points from the Premier League this weekend

From the big clash between league leaders Liverpool and Arsenal to pressure piling up for Steve Bruce, Heung-min Song returning for Spurs duty, Wolves playing in a gap of merely eight days and more - Sportstar gives you eight things to look out for ahead of the third gameweek.

Liverpool will certainly be favourites in the big clash - unbeaten in eight against Arsenal, its best such run since February 2000 - and Klopp has never lost to the Gunners.   -  Getty Images

1) Undefeated Liverpool, Arsenal face-off in big clash

As early Premier League leaders Liverpool and Arsenal face off at Anfield, the Gunners will look to close gap on the Reds.

Jurgen Klopp has never lost in seven previous Premier League meetings against Arsenal and his side has beaten the Gunners 4-0 and 5-1 at home in the past two seasons.

However, Unai Emery’s outfit is hoping that a busy summer in the transfer window will have significantly narrowed the 27-point gap between the sides last season.

2) City looking to recover from VAR heartbreak

After being limited to a 2-2 draw against Tottenham Hotspur following a VAR decision that cancelled out Gabriel Jesus' late strike, City will look to return to winning ways.

In Bournemouth, Pep Guardiola and Co. face strong contest as Eddie Howe's men have gathered four points so far — including a win against Aston Villa last week.

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Manchester City's Gabriel Jesus argues with match referee Michael Oliver after his stoppage-time goal was ruled out after the ball brushed Aymeric Laporte's arm before landing at Jesus's feet.   -  Getty Images

 

Bournemouth is known for its expansive attacking play at home, but The Cherries' record against Manchester City is dire having lost their eight league meetings with the defending Premier League champion.

City, which missed a number of chances against Spurs, will be expected to fare better on Sunday, which will also see the return of Oleksandr Zinchenko, who suffered a cramp against Spurs.

3) Solskjaer’s vision coming together?

On Saturday, Manchester United hosts Crystal Palace, which is winless in its last 12 away visits to Old Trafford.

Last gamewek, United paid the penalty for Paul Pogba’s miss from the spot in a 1-1 draw at Wolves on Monday, but following on from a 4-0 win over Chelsea on the opening weekend of the season, there have been plenty of encouraging signs that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s vision for a young, quick and hungry side is taking shape.

Aaron Wan-Bissaka — who will face his old side this weekend —, and Harry Maguire  have made an immediate impact in shoring up a leaky defence, while Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial have formed a dynamic partnership up front.

4) Son returns for high-spirited Spurs

 

After scrapping a draw against defending champion Manchester City, Tottenham Hotspur will be looking forward to a Super Sunday with star player Heung-min Son up for team selection against Newcastle.

Serving his two-match suspension his red card against Bournemouth in the penultimate game of last season, Son returns to the Spurs attack, which has managed three goals in his absence.

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Heung-min Son missed the first two games this season due to a suspension for his red card booking last season.   -  Getty Images

 

Ben Davies and Dele Alli have resumed training too but may not be rushed for the weekend.

Spurs has four points, which includes opening game victory against Aston Villa. However, new recruit Tanguy Ndombele has been ruled out of the clash due to a 'minor thigh injury'.

5) Pukki to pile pressure on Lampard?

Lampard was not handed an easy start to life as Chelsea boss with a trip to Old Trafford followed by Liverpool in the UEFA Super Cup and the visit of an ambitious Leicester City side to Stamford Bridge last weekend.

However, Lampard, who had just one year’s managerial experience at Derby prior to taking over his old club, needs a win at Norwich to ease the questioning of his tactics.

The former England international has been accused of being too gung-ho in his approach as both United and Leicester cut Chelsea open relentlessly on the counter-attack.

If Lampard cannot tailor his approach, Norwich has a striker in form ready to take advantage. Teemu Pukki has scored four times in his first two Premier League appearances, including a hat-trick against Newcastle last weekend.

6) Can fatigued Wolves step up for Burnley challenge?

Having travelled to Italy to face Torino in the Europa League playoff on Thursday, a fatigued Wolverhampton Wanderers team will be up against Sean Dyche's Burnley on Saturday.

Playing in a gap of three days, Nuno Espírito Santo's men will have to balance their Europe duties with the Premier League campaign.

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Wolves in action against Torino in the round one of Europa League playoff match.   -  Getty Images

 

Wolves haven't sealed a win so far, however they fought hard for a draw against big guns United.

With two points in pocket so far, Wolves face a tough challenge against Burnley, which looked drained after after the Europa League play-offs last summer.

7) Tension builds up for Bruce

Things are not looking good for new boss Steve Bruce. Newcastle United's campaign started off on a losing note, thanks to Arsenal star Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, which was followed by a 3-1 defeat at the hands of newly promoted Norwich City.

Bruce's arrival was not particularly welcomed by the fans, who continue to protest against club owner Mike Ashley and the management.

The tension off the field has begun to reflect in the performance as Bruce's ability is being now questioned, including criticism from ex-Newcastle player Michael Chopra, who claimed 'the circus continues' at Newcastle.

8) Sarr in contention for Watford debut

Club record signing Ismaila Sarr took part in full training for the first time on Tuesday and is in contention to start for the Hornets, who face will lock horns with West Ham United.

Returning from Africa Cup of Nations workload for Senegal, Sarr did not take part in the pre-season.

Sarr's introduction in the squad could bring hope to the Watford fans, who have seen the side fail to secure any points so far. An opening day loss to Brighton followed by a defeat to Everton keeps Watford at the bottom of the table.

 

(With inputs from PTI)

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