United, Tottenham make winning starts

August 14, 2017
Manchester United's Romelu Lukaku celebrates scoring his side's second goal of the game with Manchester United's Paul Pogba (top) and Manchester United's Nemanja Matic (right) during the English Premier League match between Manchester United and West Ham United at Old Trafford yesterday. (AP Photo)

MANCHESTER, England (AP):

Two summer signings costing $150 million inspired Manchester United to an easy victory in its opening Premier League match of the season.

Tottenham hasn't spent a penny in the transfer market this summer, but still got off to a winning start.

Romelu Lukaku scored twice and Nemanja Matic ran the game from central midfield as United beat West Ham 4-0 in an ominous performance at Old Trafford.

United signed Lukaku for £75 million (US$97 million) in July and the Belgium striker has already scored on his competitive debut a consolation against Real Madrid in the UEFA Super Cup and now on his Premier League debut.

 

IMPACT OF LUKAKU

 

The nature of his goals highlighted the impact Lukaku could have. The first came when he ran on to a through-ball following a quick break and slotted a finish in off the post in the 33rd, and the second was a header from a free kick in the 52nd.

Matic, meanwhile, was authoritative on his league debut for United following his recent departure from Chelsea, which looks increasingly like an ill-judged decision from the champions. He created the first goal by dispossessing West Ham's Pedro Obiang and sparking the break, and proved to be an impenetrable shield in front of United's back four.

He could be one of the signings of the summer at £40 million (US$53 million).

Anthony Martial and Paul Pogba scored in the final three minutes of normal time to leave United top of the early standings.

Earlier, Tottenham beat 10-man Newcastle 2-0 away, thanks to goals by Dele Alli and Ben Davies, with last season's runner-up only pulling clear at St James' Park after Jonjo Shelvey's 48th-minute red card.

Spurs are the only team in the Premier League not to make a signing this summer, but they are still looking likely title contenders, alongside United.

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