Best of the weekend
Rob Parrish casts his eye over the weekend Premier League action and picks out the high and lowlights.
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Last Updated: 12/09/11 8:23am
Game of the weekend: Bolton 0 Manchester United 5
It would be fair to say Manchester United are on something of a tear-up at the moment. After smashing eight past Arsenal in their last Premier League outing, the reigning champions did not allow the international break to halt their stride and dismantled Bolton with consummate ease at the Reebok Stadium. Wayne Rooney continued his stunning form with another hat-trick, while Javier Hernandez bagged a brace on his first start of the season. It's also worth noting that the Red Devils usually start slowly before hitting top form. Not this season.
Player of the weekend: Wayne Rooney
Wayne Rooney and Sergio Aguero both hit hat-tricks, but is the United striker who takes this award by virtue of the fact that it was his second in successive outings, and he is only the fourth player in the Premier League to achieve such a feat. The England international, who bagged a brace on international duty in Bulgaria, now has eight Premier League goals from just four outings this season. A toe-poked first from close range after Nani's dangerous cross was soon followed by a simple second after Phil Jones' excellent run and saved shot, with his treble completed after the break from another Nani cut-back.
Goal of the weekend: Sergio Aguero
To avoid accusations of bias from the blue half of Manchester, Sergio Aguero's third in the 3-0 success over Wigan at the Etihad Stadium earns our honour. The Argentina international has settled immediately into Premier League life following his arrival from Atletico Madrid and has already repaid a significant chunk of his hefty transfer fee. His hat-trick clincher owed much to the brilliance of David Silva, who somehow wriggled clear of three Wigan players in midfield before bisecting two more with a precision pass to release his team-mate. Aguero left Ali Al Habsi on his backside before rolling the ball calmly into the bottom corner. Sheer class. Honourable mentions must also go to Aston Villa's Stiliyan Petrov and Blackburn's Ruben Rochina.
Pass and skill of the weekend: Raul Meireles and Daniel Sturridge
Two for the price of one here, as Chelsea's second goal in their 2-1 victory over Sunderland at the Stadium of Light contained a pair of moments of magic. Raul Meireles' deadline day move from Liverpool to Chelsea caused almost as many raised eyebrows as his Travis Bickle haircut, but there is no doubt over the class of the Portugal international. The Blues new-boy caressed a 40-yard pass into the feet of Daniel Sturridge from inside his own half and the young striker, preferred in the starting XI to Fernando Torres, executed an audacious backheel into the bottom corner that bamboozled Simon Mignolet and Wes Brown and fully justified his inclusion ahead of the misfiring £50million man.
Gaffe of the weekend: Michel Vorm
After the good, the bad. It is harsh that Michel Vorm will take the blame for Swansea's defeat at Arsenal, particularly after his previously outstanding displays for the Welsh newcomers to England's top flight. However, football can be brutal, with the errors of goalkeepers generally ruthlessly exposed. After gathering the ball by the goalline some distance from his net, Vorm attempted to set his side on the attack with a quick throw. Sadly, he only succeeded in hitting the heels of the unwitting Angel Rangel, allowing Andrey Arshavin to fire the loose ball into the empty net and secure Arsenal's first three-point haul of the new term.
Controversy of the weekend: Stoke 1 Liverpool 0
Referee Mark Clattenburg can expect to have been issued with a pretty low rating by Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish in the wake of the Reds' narrow defeat by Stoke at the Britannia Stadium. The Scot felt his side were denied two penalties against the Potters, with the home side securing all three points after Jamie Carragher was ruled to have pulled down Jon Walters in the box, with the Stoke forward picking himself up to smash the ball home from the spot. Dalglish largely bit his tongue, but admitted he was 'frustrated' and found some of the decisions 'hard to take'. For what it's worth, I reckon Clattenburg got two out of the three penalty decisions right.