Blogs & Opinion

Darren's debuts

Martin Tyler - Martin Tyler Posted 29th August 2013 view comments

Tyler's Teaser

Every week, Martin will set you a question of his own to get your grey matter working.

LAST WEEK... he asked... name three players who played in the Premier League last season where the last two letters of their Christian name exactly match the first two letters of their surname. An example we gave was Ian Andrews.

Bent: scored against Arsenal

Bent: scored against Arsenal

The answers are: Romelu Lukaku, Demba Ba and Mikele Leigertwood

HERE IS THIS WEEK'S QUESTION...There are seven ever-present clubs in the Premier League: Chelsea and Man Utd plus Arsenal, Aston Villa, Everton, Liverpool and Tottenham. Name six players to have played a Premier League match for three of the ever-present clubs, including Chelsea Man Utd or both.

Send your questions to Martin

1: Email your posers to

2. Use the feedback form at the bottom of this page.

Martin's starting stats

I was at Old Trafford on Monday evening to see Manchester United's first Premier League home draw since the 4-4 against David Moyes' Everton in April 2012. Moyes is still waiting for his first win at Old Trafford, having not won in 11 Premier League visits with Everton and now his first game as Manchester United boss

Manchester United have played 118 games (all competitions) since their last 0-0 draw (away to Newcastle in April 2011) and the last 0-0 at home was 77 games ago against Arsenal in April 2009 when they needed a point to wint he title.

This was Rio Ferdinand's 300th Premier League game for Manchester United, Antonio Valencia's 150th United appearance (all competitions), Ashley Young's 300th league game and Ryan Giggs' 50th United appearance against Chelsea.

Streaky starts

Dear Martin. I noticed that Liverpool and Tottenham both won their opening games 1-0. Has a team ever opened the season with the same scoreline in three or more games in a row before or will Liverpool or Tottenham get a new record if they win 1-0 this weekend? Casey (Burton Albion fan)

MARTIN SAYS: Thanks to our friends at Opta, I can tell you that three sides have opened a Premier League season with the same scoreline in their first three games. The details are as follows:

ASTON VILLA (1992/93): Aston Villa's first three games in the Premier League - against Ipswich, Leeds and Southampton - all ended as 1-1 draws. What's even more remarkable is that Dalian Atkinson scored all three goals in those draws. Their fourth game was a 1-0 defeat to Everton.

SOUTHAMPTON (2001/02): The Saints opened the 2001/02 campaign with three consecutive 2-0 defeats against Leeds, Chelsea and Tottenham. They won their fourth game 1-0 against Bolton.

WEST BROM (2004/05): Like Aston Villa, West Brom have also opened a season with three straight 1-1 draws. That secured that result against Blackburn, Villa themselves and Tottenham before losing 2-1 to Everton in game four.

If you're looking for the longest streak of consecutive results of the same kind at ANY point in the season then you need to look at the Everton team of 2002/03 who won FIVE Premier League games in a row by a 1-0 scoreline in early 2002. They beat West Ham 1-0 on October 27 and then beat Leeds, Charlton, Blackburn and West Brom in November before losing 2-1 at Newcastle.

Of course, Tottenham won the last game of last season 1-0 as well - against Sunderland - so will equal their own Premier League record of four consecutive identical results. They drew 0-0 in four straight games in 2001 and 1-1 in four straight games in 2008.

Consecutive results of the same kind at any point in a Premier League season:

Date of final gameTeamForAgainstSeasonSuccessive results
18-Dec-95Nottingham Forest1119964
24-Mar-97Nottingham Forest1119974

London pride

Dear Martin. I heard that Arsenal won their 100th London derby in the Premier League when they beat Fulham on Saturday. I'd be interested to see how this compares to the other London clubs. Could you show us the "all-time" London League table. Christopher (Arsenal fan)

MARTIN SAYS: Thanks to the boffins at Opta, I can tell you that Arsenal have the best Premier League record in London derbies. Saturday's 3-1 win over Fulham saw them become the first side to win 100 Premier League London derbies and they've now taken 354 points from such games; that's 10 more than Chelsea and a surprising 109 points more than Sunday's opponents Tottenham. Arsenal have also scored the most goals in Premier League London derbies.

Spurs have drawn more London derbies than any other side, but have also conceded more goals (although they have obviously played far more games than the likes of Crystal Palace and QPR). We have detailed the all-time "London derby" Premier League table for you below:

West Ham158493574175247-72182
Crystal Palace43913213872-3440

Darren's dazzling debuts

Dear Martin. A big fan of your commentary and your weekly Tyler's Teasers. I have a question for you. Darren Bent scored on his Premier League debut for Fulham at the weekend, just as he did for Aston Villa. This got me wondering, which player has scored the most "debut goals" for different clubs? Lewis B (Aston Villa fan)

MARTIN SAYS: Darren Bent secured a Premier League first at the weekend by becoming the first player to score on his Premier League debut for FOUR different teams. He has scored on his first top-flight appearance for the following clubs:

CHARLTON ATHLETIC - Bent scored twice on his Premier League debut for Charlton in a 3-1 win at Sunderland in August 2005.

SUNDERLAND - He repeated the trick in a 1-0 win for Sunderland away at Bolton in August 2009.

ASTON VILLA - Following his big-money move to Villa Park in January 2001, he scored again on his Premier League debut in a 1-0 home win over Manchester City.

FULHAM - And he set a record by coming off the bench for Fulham to score in Saturday's 3-1 home defeat to Arsenal.

Bent missed out on the chance to make it five clubs when he was at Tottenham. He did not score for them until his THIRD Premier League appearance.

Six other Premier League players have scored debut goals for three different sides. We have detailed those for you below:

PlayerPL debut goals
Darren Bent4Charlton AthleticSunderlandAston VillaFulham
Emmanuel Adebayor3ArsenalManchester CityTottenham
Djibril Cisse3LiverpoolSunderlandQPR
Stan Collymore3Nottingham ForestLiverpoolBradford City
Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink3LeedsChelseaMiddlesbrough
Teddy Sheringham3Nottingham Forest*PortsmouthWest Ham

*Was his Premier League debut for Forest, rather than his league debut.

Age concerns

Dear Martin. I noticed that Fulham had quite an old team on the field against Arsenal on Saturday and I noticed that if you include substitutes they used nine players aged 30 or older. I was wondering if this is a Premier League record? As someone who recently turned 30 myself it gives me hope that my dreams of playing Premier League football aren't over yet!! Marcus (Fulham fan)

MARTIN SAYS: You're absolutely right to say that Fulham used 9 thirty-somethings on Saturday. Those players are as follows:

Steve Sidwell
Fulham players aged 30+ v Arsenal on Saturday:
Dimitar Berbatov
Giorgos Karagounis
John Arne Riise
Aaron Hughes
Sascha Riether
Brede Hangeland
Scott Parker
Damien Duff

However, they have fallen short of the record as both Bolton Wanderers and Bradford City used 11 players (including subs) aged 30+ in Premier League matches in the early 2000's.

When Bolton played Derby in March 2002 they fielded 11 thirty-somethings; namely Gudni Bergsson, Michael Whitlow, Simon Charlton, Paul Warhurst, Bruno N'Gotty, Stig Tofting, Youri Djorkaeff, Rod Wallace, Per Frandsen, Nicky Southall and Fredi Bobic. The only players they used below the age of 30 were Juusi Jaaskalainen, Ricardo Gardner and Michael Ricketts.

When Bradford City lost 4-1 to Sunderland in December 2000 they also fielded 11 players aged 30+: Gary Walsh, Peter Atherton, Robert Molenaar, Wayne Jacobs, Jamie Lawrence, Peter Beagrie, Stuart McCall, Bill, McKinlay, Dean Windass, Ian Nolan and Ashley Ward. The only two starters below the age of 30 were Andy O'Brien and Benito Carbone.

Bradford City again fielded 11 thirty-somethings against Sunderland in January 2001 including nine players from the clash a month earlier - Gary Walsh, Peter Atherton, Robert Molenaar, Wayne Jacobs, Jamie Lawrence, Stuart McCall, Peter Beagrie, Ashley Ward and Dean Windass - plus Eoin Jess and Dean Saunders.

And when Bradford played Aston Villa a month later they again used 11 thirty-somethings; Gary Walsh, Peter Atherton, Robert Molenaar, Wayne Jacobs, Billy McKinlay, Stuart McCall, David Hopkin, Eoin Jess, Dean Saunders, Peter Beagrie and Ashley Ward.

However, we have never seen 11 players aged 30+ START a Premier League game for one side.

Teams with most players aged 30+ used in a Premier League games (including subs):

10/11/2010West HamWest Brom10
DateTeamOpponentPlayers aged 30+ used (incl. subs)
26/12/2000Bradford CitySunderland11
21/01/2001Bradford CitySunderland11
03/02/2001Bradford CityAston Villa11
16/12/2000Bradford CityNewcastle10
23/12/2000Bradford CityChelsea10
13/01/2001Bradford CityManchester United10
30/01/2001Bradford CityArsenal10
10/02/2001Bradford CitySouthampton10

Off the spot

Hi Martin. Walters, Lampard & Benteke all missed penalties on the opening weekend. Has this happened before, if so, then what is the record? Thanks, Scott Elston, Crediton, Devon

MARTIN SAYS: We saw three penalty failures (and indeed they were all saves, rather than misses - and statisticians will always record a penalty as a failure even if there is a goal from the follow-up, as in the case of Benteke) on the opening matchday of this year's Premier League, spread across the first two days. However, there have been two occasions in Premier League history when we've seen four penalty failures on a single DAY, never mind a matchday.

Back on Wednesday February 2, 2005 there were six penalties awarded in just five top-flight games, but only two were scored (Robbie Fowler for Man City against Newcastle and Robbie Blake for Birmingham against Southampton). Two of the failures came from Aston Villa striker Juan Pablo Angel in a 1-1 draw with Fulham, while Andy Cole missed a penalty for the home side in the same game. Elsewhere that night, Man City's Paul Dickov had a penalty saved by Chelsea's Petr Cech.

There were also four penalty failures on Saturday September 9, 2006 when eight games were played. Again, three failures came in one game between Sheffield United and Blackburn. Brad Friedel saved from David Unsworth and Rob Hulse after Paddy Kenny had saved from Lucas Neill. Elsewhere, Chelsea's Frank Lampard had a penalty saved by Charlton's Scott Carson.

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