Willian proved with his debut performance against Fulham just why Arsenal were so keen to sign him from Chelsea, according to team-mate Rob Holding.

The Brazil international joined Arsenal on a three-year deal last month after his Chelsea contract expired and made a big impact in his first Premier League outing for the club.

He set up fellow debutant Gabriel and captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang for the Gunners' second and third goals at Craven Cottage after Alexandre Lacazette's early opener.

In doing so, Willian became the first player to assist two goals on his Premier League debut for Arsenal since Ray Parlour in August 1992 against Liverpool.

Holding was impressed by what he saw from the winger in Arsenal's opening day 3-0 win, while also reserving praise for fellow new recruit Gabriel, who made a difference at both ends.

"I know Willian from when we've played Chelsea," Holding told the Evening Standard. "I know he's got all the ability so it's nice to have him in your team.

"He proved [against Fulham] why we signed him and Gabriel was also solid as a rock. He won everything aerially and finished off with a nice goal as well."

Arsenal ended last season by winning the FA Cup and have picked up from where they left off, beating Liverpool in the Community Shield before their weekend triumph.

Holding played a full part in all three of those games and is hopeful of keeping that positive momentum going under first-team manager Mikel Arteta.

"To win with the clean sheet is always nice," he said. "We wanted to make a little bit of a statement in the first game of the season.

"The first one to kick us off. Other teams will have been watching and seen the result before they went in, so to get a good 3-0 win away from home is a good start.

"Finishing the season with a trophy and starting this one with the Community Shield win... we've got a load of confidence coming in and now we want to have a good run and go for it."

Next up for Arsenal is the visit of London rivals West Ham on Saturday.

Dele Alli should be approaching his peak years but the Tottenham midfielder appears to be in stark decline.

From his Spurs debut back in August 2015, the midfielder's trajectory was initially impressive as he quickly adapted to the big step up from MK Dons.

An England debut soon followed and the youngster apparently had the world at his feet.

Fast forward to the opening game of Spurs' 2020-21 Premier League campaign on Sunday, when Alli was hooked by Jose Mourinho at half-time of a limp 1-0 loss to Everton, and the outlook is markedly different.

Alli has stagnated, perhaps even regressed, with any hope that the new campaign would herald a fresh start quick to evaporate. 

So just how far below his high-water mark has the 24-year-old fallen? The Opta numbers tell the story...

GOALS HARDER TO COME BY

To underline just how well Alli transitioned from the third tier to the top flight, he scored 10 goals in his maiden Premier League season in 2015-16.

That jumped to a mightily impressive 18 in the following campaign, that haul coming at a rate of a goal every 169 minutes.

And yet in 2017-18 and 2018-19 combined, Alli managed just 14 goals, with the latter season yielding five at a rate of one every 367 minutes.

To his credit, Alli upped his game on that front last term, finding the back of the net eight times, or once every 231 minutes.

His attempts on target have followed a similar trend, peaking 1.3 per game in 2016-17 and bottoming out at 0.5 the next season.  

He squeezed in one shot at goal during his lacklustre 45-minute outing against the Toffees at the weekend.

NOT GETTING INVOLVED AT THE SHARP END

Alli was a tremendous creative force for his side for several years, his debut season at Spurs producing nine assists in the league to set the tone.

He built on that with seven the following season and 10 in 2017-18, only to retreat to abject mediocrity with returns of three and four in the next two campaigns.

Those numbers contribute to a clear back-slide in Alli's ability to create chances, which once seemed so easy for him.

In three consecutive seasons from the point of his first appearance for Spurs, Alli tallied 55, 52 and then 64 for the number of chances created.

In contrast, from the start of the 2018-19 season to the end of 2019-20, he laid on just 50 chances combined.

The chances-created-per-minute stat highlights the negative trend, with the 2015-16 figure coming in at a chance created every 45 minutes, declining to one laid on every 80 minutes by the most recently completed season.

A TOUCHY SUBJECT?

Diving into even the small details does not end up reflecting well on Alli, who is simply having fewer touches of the ball than he used to.

Again, his first season holds up well under scrutiny, Alli touching the ball on average 64 times per 90 minutes, but that dropped to 60 in 2019-20.

It may only be a small change, but a closer look throws up a more revealing fact about Alli's touches in the opposition penalty area.

He peaked on that front in 2017-18, when he managed the feat 163 times at an average of 4.9 per 90 minutes. That compares to 83 at an average of last season.

PASSING THE BUCK...

For a midfielder with 37 England caps, passing should be a key skill of Alli's, and one you would expect to improve over time.

However, the numbers are again somewhat disconcerting for Alli, who did initially set off in the right direction.

In 2015-16 he completed 822 passes (30 per 90 minutes) with an accuracy of 76 per cent, which climbed to an 80 per cent accuracy when he found team-mates with 825 passes at an impressive average of 41 per 90 minutes in 2018-19.

But he slumped on that front last term, back to 2015-16 levels, with the numbers only favourable at all if you concern yourselves with decimal places.

DRIBBLES THE SAVING GRACE!

Amid all the doom and gloom, there is one regard in which Alli has made quantifiable strides – dribbling.

At least, his dribbling success has improved (for the most part!). He used to attempt to run with the ball more often, with 4.4 dribbles per 90 minutes in 2016-17, which dropped to 3.4 last season.

But his success rate has climbed from 29 per cent in his first season, peaking at 45 in 2018-19 and settling at 40 last time out.

Lucien Favre is looking forward to Jadon Sancho continuing his development at Borussia Dortmund as he reaffirmed the Manchester United target is going nowhere.

Sancho has been linked with a move to United throughout the transfer window, which is open for three more weeks, after another impressive campaign last time out.

Dortmund sporting director Michael Zorc informed the Premier League side last month they have no chance of signing the attacker after their deadline of August 10 had passed.

United are reportedly still attempting to agree terms with the player and club, but Favre has made clear that Sancho is a key part of his plans for the upcoming campaign.

"We need him, no question. Everyone was happy he stayed," Favre told Swiss news agency Keystone-SDA. "We don't need to talk long about his qualities – they are enormous.

"He scores and sets up a lot of goals and can often make all the difference, but there are some details that Sancho needs to improve. That is quite normal for a 20-year-old."

Dortmund have another exciting young English talent in their ranks this season following the arrival of Jude Bellingham from Birmingham City in July.

Bellingham has settled in well with the Bundesliga side and Favre has high hopes for the versatile midfielder, who cost a reported €25m (£22.75m).

"Of course I'm looking forward to working with a player like him," he said. "I got to know him better during pre-season. I like how he handles the ball and how he can defend it.

"Jude possesses many tactical options and an amazing presence. He can play as a six or eight, plays good passes, seeks completion. 

"Various systems are possible with him. It's all very, very interesting."

Dortmund kick off their 2020-21 campaign on Monday with a trip to MSV Duisburg in the first round of the DFB-Pokal.

Eric Dier says Jose Mourinho was the biggest factor in his decision to sign a new deal at Tottenham and he is excited to prove himself as a centre-back under the Portuguese coach.

The England international agreed a four-year contract with Tottenham in July, ending speculation that he could leave the club after a six-year spell in north London.

Formerly a holding midfielder, he has featured prominently in the heart of defence since Mourinho replaced Mauricio Pochettino in November.

And the 26-year-old is grateful to have been given an opportunity to test himself in the position he believes gets the most out of his abilities.

"I had a health issue at the beginning of last season that I kept private and I had to have a little surgery, so I missed pre-season, so that obviously had a huge impact," he told GQ.

"I spoke to Pochettino then, as for many years we had spoken about me playing as a centre-back, and that was where I was going to gradually move to. 

"We had a really great conversation: I said, 'I think it’s my best position, I think I can develop into something very, very good there. But it has to be now, otherwise I think I have to find another solution.' 

"We talked for about two hours and he was really happy that I'd come to him and I had made that decision in my own mind. 

"And he said, 'okay, you've missed pre-season, so you'll have one now, don't worry if you’re not playing for a couple of months, we'll get you physically in the right place.' 

"So I was completely calm about the situation. And the last couple of games before he left, I played at centre-back.

"And so when the new manager came in I started that dialogue again with Mourinho and for me that was the biggest part of wanting to stay at Tottenham and sign the new deal - it was purely footballing. 

"I was really happy that Mourinho would give me the opportunity to play centre-back again and to prove myself there. I'm really excited."

Mourinho was appointed by chairman Daniel Levy with the intention of winning silverware and Dier, an EFL Cup and Champions League runner-up during his time at Spurs, is confident about his side's prospects this season.

"There's no doubt in my mind that with Mourinho, in every competition we play, he's gonna be playing to win it, you know? And that's all you can ask for really," he said. 

"We are extremely motivated to right a lot of wrongs from last season. We start with a clean slate with the manager, zero points and all the competitions and we start afresh. 

"So I think there's lots of things to be excited about. And a lot of work needs to go into now getting us in the right place to try and be competitive on every front.

Sporting CP academy product Dier was seen holding talks with Mourinho in Portuguese during an episode of Amazon Prime documentary 'All or Nothing'.

However, despite the documentary dominating conversation over the past couple of weeks, Dier insists he has no plans to tune in anytime soon.

"I haven't watched any of it," he said. "I actually spoke to [basketball player] Steve Kerr a couple of days ago about it, because obviously he was in The Last Dance [the Netflix documentary about the record-breaking Chicago Bulls season]. 

"I said to him: 'You know, looking back on an incredible season and winning and everything you did, that must be a lot more enjoyable than what it would be like for me!'

"I don't really enjoy watching myself back anyway. So I don't think I will watch it. But maybe, you know, in 20 years' time or something, it could be nice to look back on, even though it wasn't the season we wanted."

Dier played the full 90 minutes of Tottenham's 1-0 loss to Everton in their opening Premier League game of the season on Sunday.

The Premier League returned last weekend in enthralling fashion.

From a seven-goal spectacle at Anfield to another London derby win for Arsenal, there was excitement to behold almost everywhere you looked (unless you were looking for Harry Kane in the Everton penalty area, where he touched the ball twice).

We saw Mohamed Salah set a new Premier League record, a rotten moment for Virgil van Dijk and a lousy start to life back in the big time for the three promoted clubs - although they do have a reason not to be too worried.

By now, you're probably wondering why Steven Fletcher was in the headline. Fear not, dear reader: like a Premier League referee spotting that mysterious VAR screen on the touchline, you'll soon see there's a reason for everything.

Read on for some of the quirkiest facts from the first weekend of the 2020-21 season...

KEEP THE FAITH, NEW BOYS

Leeds United lost 4-3 to champions Liverpool in an absolute belter at Anfield, while Fulham and West Brom each suffered rather more one-sided 3-0 defeats to Arsenal and Leicester City.

Those results mean this is the first season since 2013-14 in which the three promoted sides all lost their opening Premier League matches.

There's no need to fret just yet, though. Of those teams seven years ago - Crystal Palace, Hull City and Cardiff City - only Cardiff were relegated at the end of the season. Palace finished as high as 11th.

In case you wondered, no season has ever seen all three promoted sides win on matchday one in the Premier League.

 

PEN-FEST

Salah and Jamie Vardy each scored two penalties over a weekend featuring just five games. There was only one instance of a player scoring twice from the spot in a single match in last season's 380 Premier League games (Troy Deeney against Newcastle United).

In total, 54 players have scored two penalties in a match in Premier League history; nobody has ever managed three.

Only four players have suffered the ignominy of missing two spot-kicks in a single game: Mark Draper against Newcastle in August 1994, Juan Pablo Angel against Fulham in February 2005, Darren Bent versus Tottenham in April 2010, and Saido Berahino against Watford in April 2016.

 

VAN DIJK CHASING STONES 'RECORD'

Van Dijk's generous but perplexing decision to cushion the ball down and set up Patrick Bamford to score means he has now made two errors leading directly to goals in his past four league games. He only committed one such mistake in his first 154 Premier League appearances.

Since his Southampton debut on September 12, 2015, 13 outfield players have made more errors leading to goals in the Premier League than Van Dijk. He is in esteemed company on three, alongside the likes of Sol Bamba, Erik Pieters and, yes, David Luiz (and two above Harry Maguire).

He has some way to go to reach the top of this particular chart, though. Since Van Dijk's debut in the competition, John Stones and Granit Xhaka lead the way on six errors leading to goals.

 

FULHAM'S CAPITAL PUNISHMENT

Fulham were soundly beaten 3-0 by Arsenal on Saturday, stretching their run in Premier League London derbies to 11 defeats in a row (they lost 10 in 2018-19). That's the worst record in history.

In the all-time top-flight London derbies table (yes, that one), Fulham sit on 126 defeats and 41 wins from 223 matches. That's as many victories as Crystal Palace, nine behind Wimbledon, and 19 fewer than Queens Park Rangers.

Top of that particular table is Arsenal, unsurprisingly, who have won 324 of their 691 capital clashes. Chelsea are next on 256 wins - just two above Tottenham.

Bottom of the pile are Leyton Orient, with two wins from eight games. So, Fulham fans - it could be worse.

 

STEVEN FLETCHER, LOSING IN STYLE

Salah's hat-trick inspired Liverpool's win over Leeds and saw him claim another slice of Premier League history.

The Egypt star has now been on the winning side in each of the past 35 league games in which he has scored, which is a record in the competition, one more than the previous best held by Wayne Rooney for Manchester United from September 2008 to February 2011.

As the old adage has it, goals win football games - unless your name is Steven Fletcher. The Scotland striker boasts the unenviable record of having scored in 10 consecutive matches for Wolves in 2011-12 without ever being on the winning side.

Manchester United may have to wait until Jurgen Klopp and Pep Guardiola leave Liverpool and Manchester City respectively before they win another Premier League title, according to Gary Neville.

Not since legendary manager Alex Ferguson's final campaign at Old Trafford in 2012-13 have United lifted the top-flight crown, finishing in the top two just once since then.

Despite an upturn in form in the second half of last season, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side ended 33 points behind dominant champions Liverpool and 15 points adrift of runners-up City.

Klopp ended Liverpool's 30-year wait to finish top of the pile in English football, coming on the back of successive triumphs for City under Guardiola, including a record points haul in 2017-18.

Former United full-back Neville is confident United will add a record-extending 21st title to their list of honours, but only once there has been a changing of the guard at the Etihad Stadium and Anfield.

"The one thing I can guarantee you is that United will win again," he told The Mirror.

"That might not be this year or next year, but it will be amazing when they win again, and the longer it builds up, the greater the actual feeling is when you do it.

"I'm not sitting here, as a United fan, thinking, 'We must win the league this year'. Yes, we'd like to, but you know when it's your time and it's not yet.

"It will be, maybe, when Klopp and Guardiola leave Liverpool and City - hopefully in the next couple of years!

"That will be the chance, as they're two outstanding managers who have built really good teams, but they'll leave in the next one, two or three years.

"That will be the point when United can come back in and capitalise - I'm sure Chelsea are thinking that way as well.”

Neville has been critical of United's transfer business during the close season, having only brought in midfielder Donny van de Beek from Ajax so far.

United have been strongly linked with Borussia Dortmund's Jadon Sancho all window, but Neville suggested four more signings are needed if his old club are to challenge for the title this term.

"That's out of the question for me, if you ask me today, with the squads that they've got," he said.

"If United were to sign two outstanding forwards, an amazing centre-back and a fantastic left-back in the next three weeks, then maybe."

Leicester City's Timothy Castagne says he decided to leave Atalanta after being left out of the Champions League quarter-final against Paris Saint-Germain.

The Belgium international scored on his debut for Leicester in Sunday's 3-0 Premier League win at West Brom.

He joined Brendan Rodgers' side on a five-year deal after impressing during three seasons with Atalanta, with his versatility as a wing-back capable of playing on either flank helping him to stand out.

However, Castagne says part of the reason he chose to move clubs was because he wanted a more regular playing position.

When he was omitted from the starting line-up for the 2-1 loss to PSG, coming on as a substitute with just eight minutes of normal time remaining, he knew the time was right to leave Bergamo.

"I could have renewed the contract," he told La Gazzetta dello Sport.

"The decision came after the game against PSG. The technical situation weighed on me. I'd been tried in the starting XI all week, and the night [of the game] I was left out. Honestly, it was a surprise.

"I needed to play regularly in the same role: once, I was on the right, then on the left, then on the bench. It wasn't exactly the best."

Castagne also suggested he would have preferred a more forthright relationship with Atalanta head coach Gian Piero Gasperini.

"Technically and tactically, he is among the absolute elite, but there wasn't a great relationship on a human level - not because of any particular problem between us," he said.

"He has his own way of doing things. For example, if you're left out, it would be important to have an explanation from the coach. But that's okay: this made me stronger mentally."

Real Madrid have made no secret of their admiration for Paris Saint-Germain's Kylian Mbappe.

Mbappe himself has flirted with the possibility of working with fellow Frenchman Zinedine Zidane at the Santiago Bernabeu.

A blockbuster transfer could be getting closer…

 

TOP STORY – MADRID WAITING FOR MBAPPE

Real Madrid are prepared to target Kylian Mbappe next year as the Paris Saint-Germain forward wants to leave the Ligue 1 champions, according to reports in Spain.

Mbappe has reportedly told PSG he wants to depart the French capital at the end of the 2020-21 season.

Monday's editions of Marca and Diario AS are dominated by Mbappe, with the front pages saying Madrid are waiting to pounce for the France star in 2021.

 

ROUND-UP

- The Telegraph claims Manchester United have shown an interest in Inter's Ivan Perisic as the Red Devils struggle to negotiate a deal with Borussia Dortmund for Jadon Sancho. Perisic spent last season on loan at Bayern Munich.

Tottenham have set their sights on Southampton striker Danny Ings, says Football London. Spurs are desperate to bolster their attacking stocks, though it will be tough to prise the former Liverpool man to London.

- Sportitalia claims Roma have agreed personal terms with Napoli forward Arkadiusz Milik, who has also been linked with Tottenham and Juventus. Milik's possible arrival in Rome could see Edin Dzeko leave for Serie A champions Juve.

Milan are confident of signing Federico Chiesa from Fiorentina, reports La Gazzetta dello Sport. Milan's faith is based on the likely exit of Lucas Paqueta and Chiesa's dropping price tag.

- Mundo Deportivo says Liverpool star Georginio Wijnaldum is set to stay at Anfield despite interest from LaLiga champions Barcelona. Ronald Koeman's Barca could now rival Liverpool for Bayern's Thiago Alcantara, who has also been linked with United.

Roma are struggling to reach a deal with United for defender Chris Smalling, claims Calciomercato. Roma had hoped to sign the former loanee by the weekend, but the Italian club are now turning to Torino centre-back Armando Izzo as a possible alternative.

- Madrid defender Sergio Reguilon prefers another loan move to Sevilla rather than a United transfer, according to Diario AS. Despite United's interest, Reguilon wants to remain in Spain as he eyes a possible return to the Santiago Bernabeu at the end of 2020-21.

Kai Havertz might be just 21 but Chelsea have acquired a special talent by bringing in the German from Bayer Leverkusen.

He looks set to make his Premier League debut at Brighton and Hove Albion on Monday evening, with head coach Frank Lampard expecting big things.

But what made Havertz such a golden boy of the Bundesliga, and why did Chelsea feel compelled to lavish a reported club-record fee to bring him to Stamford Bridge?

Can the player described by Lampard as being remarkably "humble and down to earth" impose a big footballing personality on the English game?

Using Opta data, we look in detail at his career so far, and the qualities he will add to the ambitious Blues.

So much, so young

Havertz made his Bundesliga debut at the age of 17 years, four months and four days, which at the time made him Leverkusen's youngest-ever player in the competition - a record broken by Florian Wirtz in May 2020.

He soon became their youngest Bundesliga scorer too, but Wirtz also swiped that record away in June.

What soon became clear at Leverkusen was that Havertz was mature enough to handle regular first-team football, and at 20 years, six months and three days, he became the youngest player in history to tot up 100 Bundesliga appearances.

Whose ton-up record did he beat? Only that of fellow Chelsea newcomer Timo Werner, by 16 days.

Could he be a slow starter?

Opta statistics show that 27 of Havertz's 36 goals in his Bundesliga career came in the second part of the season, with 11 of those goals (31 per cent) coming in the month of May.

Left-leaning away-day specialist

Havertz, often compared to former Chelsea and Leverkusen star Michael Ballack, produced some of his best form away from the BayArena during his Bundesliga days.

Certainly, in terms of goals, he was at his most productive on the road for Die Werkself.

Of the 46 goals he netted across all competitions for Leverkusen, 28 came in away games, with 16 scored at home and two netted at neutral grounds.

Predominantly a left-footed player, the emerging maestro netted 33 goals with his favoured foot, seven with his right, and added six headers, with showreels of his goals for Leverkusen demonstrating Havertz is both clinical and creative with his finishing.

But can he really fill the gap left by Willian?

Chelsea wanted to keep their Brazil winger but lost him to Arsenal. Not to worry; in Havertz they have landed a ready-made replacement who is 11 years younger than Willian and improving season by season.

Both have their own individual qualities and separate subtleties to their performances, but in the starkest terms Chelsea look to have landed an upgrade.

Havertz's 36 goals and 22 assists in 118 Bundesliga games for Leverkusen compares favourably with Willian's 37 goals and 33 assists in 234 Premier League outings with Chelsea.

The incoming Germany international edged it last season in terms of passing accuracy in the opposition half - 82.83 per cent to Willian's 80.91 per cent - and more touches in the oppositon penalty area - Havertz having 140 in 30 games and Willian 128 in 36 matches.

Willian can be shown to be a more successful dribbler, a player who won more duels and a more productive crosser of the ball.

But Chelsea have no doubts about the class of the young man who could drive their midfield forward for years to come.

As Lampard said last week: "He's a different player to what I was but, when it's an attacking midfielder that scores goals, obviously I certainly sit up and take notice."

Frank Lampard brushed off criticism from Jurgen Klopp over Chelsea's spending spree, saying he finds the comments "amusing" given Liverpool's own expensively-assembled squad.

Chelsea have spent to close to £200million on Kai Havertz, Timo Werner, Ben Chilwell, Hakim Ziyech, Malang Sarr and Thiago Silva in an attempt to close the gap on champions Liverpool.

By comparison, the Reds have so far brought in just Kostas Tsimikas from Olympiakos this transfer window, with Klopp stating on Thursday his side are "a different club" to their rivals as they are "not owned by countries or oligarchs".

However, Lampard suggested Liverpool would never have won a first league title in 30 years last time out had Klopp not been financially backed to bring in the likes of Virgil van Dijk, Alisson, Fabinho, Naby Keita and Mohamed Salah in previous windows.

Asked about Klopp's comments ahead of the Blues' season opener at Brighton and Hove Albion on Monday, Lampard told reporters: "I found it slightly amusing because when you talk about the owners of clubs, I don't think it matters what line of business they come from.

"We are talking about some very rich owners in the Premier League. With Liverpool's story, I referenced it a lot last year. They've managed to get recruitment right to a really high level. 

"The reality is - other than maybe Leicester - most clubs that win the league in the modern day have recruited at quite a high level money-wise.

"You can go through the Liverpool players - Van Dijk, Alisson, Fabinho, Keita, Mane, Salah - incredible players that came at a very high price. Liverpool have done it over a period of time. 

"What we have done is come off the back of a ban and try to address the situation ourselves. It's par for the course. There's no point doing the maths.

Jose Mourinho reaffirmed his desire for a new Tottenham striker but insisted it was not the reason for Sunday's defeat to Everton as he was asked about the club's interest in Alexander Sorloth.

Spurs lost their Premier League opener 1-0 to Everton at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium as Dominic Calvert-Lewin headed the only goal in the 55th minute.

The reverse came days after Mourinho outlined the need for a new forward to compete with and complement Harry Kane.

Sorloth, the on-loan Trabzonspor man, is an option, according to the Turkish club's president Ahmet Agaoglu.

The Norway striker signed a temporary two-year deal with Trabzonspor last year after struggling at Crystal Palace but then scored 24 league goals in 2019-20 to attract the attention of Tottenham and RB Leipzig.

Agaoglu told Fanatik: "Sorloth wants to go. But there is no way that we will agree immediately for every player who wants to leave.

"We are meeting with Leipzig and Tottenham, ourselves and Crystal Palace. We are both entitled to this transfer, we will act in Trabzonspor's best interests."

Mourinho would not dispute the interest but was reluctant to discuss Sorloth.

"Well I'm not going to discuss Sorloth," he told reporters. "If the president of Trabzonspor said that, I'm not going to say that it's not true.

"I think Sortloth is a Trabzonspor player and it's not for me to speak about."

He added: "Do we need a striker? Yes. Was it because of that we lost the game? No. We didn't lose the game because we need a striker.

"We lost the game and the responsibility of that defeat is my responsibility."

Spurs will have to regroup quickly from the Everton loss as they face up to a packed schedule that could mean nine matches before the October international break.

As Mourinho and Tottenham dominate conversation with their documentary from last season airing on Amazon Prime, the coach is at least relieved he will no longer have to contend with such behind-the-scenes scrutiny over this stretch.

"My message is inside," he told BBC Sport. "I am so happy that there's no more Amazon, so things can stay inside between us. That's the way I like it."

Carlo Ancelotti is not concerned by new signing James Rodriguez's lack of pace and physicality, joking he would have signed sprinter Usain Bolt instead if that was a priority.

The Colombia playmaker impressed for Everton in Sunday's 1-0 win over Tottenham alongside fellow debutants Allan and Abdoulaye Doucoure.

James played five key passes, more than any other player on the field at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, and also topped the charts with four interceptions.

Asked after the game if he was worried James needs time to adapt to the pace of the Premier League, Ancelotti quipped eight-time Olympic gold medallist who dabbled with football in retirement would have been on his radar if that was the case.

"I am not worried about the physicality. If I was worried about that I would sign Usain Bolt, not James," he told Sky Sports.

"James is not the fastest player in the world but he has a lot of quality. We have to use him to show his quality. 

"He is not a winger, but he can come inside and receive the ball, he is very dangerous.

Jose Mourinho complained Tottenham's pressing was "lazy" against Everton as they suffered a 1-0 home defeat in their Premier League opener.

Dominic Calvert-Lewin headed the only goal of the game at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Sunday as Spurs struggled in their first match of the new season.

There were few chances at the other end after a pair of first-half Jordan Pickford saves, and Mourinho felt Tottenham made life too easy for their big-spending opponents.

"To be honest, I think the struggle started in the way we pressed... or, I would say, in the way we didn't press," he told Sky Sports.

"Our pressure up was very, very poor. I would say it was a lazy pressure. And when you have a lazy pressure, you don't press, you let opponents build from the back and they have players with incredible quality.

"When you let them play from the back, they are comfortable to have the ball."

Mourinho insisted he was not calling his players themselves "lazy", though, adding: "Lazy pressure up front. That's what I'm saying. That creates unbalanced situations for the rest of the team."

Dele Alli was substituted at half-time, a decision Mourinho explained was "tactical".

"They were playing only with one pivot," he said. "Allan was in that position, and [Andre] Gomes and [Abdoulaye] Doucoure were pressing high.

"There was lots of space behind this pressure, lots of space to play in the areas there. I needed another dynamic in there, which we also were not able to get in the second half."

However, Mourinho was unhappy with the officiating in the build-up to the Calvert-Lewin goal as Lucas Digne's free-kick was taken from a different position to where the foul was awarded.

"It's not an excuse for the result, it's not an excuse for the defeat, it's not an excuse for not a good performance," he said. "But with so many referees on the pitch and even on the line, to take a free-kick with a minimum of five metres distance, I find it incredible.

"Before the goal, I was already saying that to the referees. Five metres difference on the crossing situation makes a huge difference."

Victory was deserved for Everton, though, who are quickly looking up the Premier League table after finishing a disappointing 12th last term.

Abdoulaye Doucoure was among their three debutants and said at full-time: "In the club, everyone wants to go to Europe. It's the main goal this season.

"Of course, this is just the start, but it's a great win against a big team. We need to keep this way and, at the end, we're going to achieve what we want."

Dominic Calvert-Lewin nodded the only goal on Sunday as Jose Mourinho's second season at Tottenham started with a 1-0 home defeat to big-spending Everton.

Mourinho arrived at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium last November and guided a struggling Spurs side to sixth and a Europa League place, but improvement was anticipated heading into the new campaign.

Tottenham were outplayed by Everton, though, who gave debuts to James Rodriguez, Allan and Abdoulaye Doucoure and might have led long before Calvert-Lewin's brilliant 55th-minute header.

Mourinho's men could not muster a response and are already searching for answers at the start of a brutal stretch in which they could play as many as nine matches before the October international break.

Everton were gifted a huge chance to take the lead after 16 minutes as Ben Davies' wayward crossfield ball escaped Toby Alderweireld and the alert Richarlison pounced.

The Brazil forward rounded Hugo Lloris but, with the angle narrowing, ignored Calvert-Lewin in the centre and awkwardly hacked over a gaping goal.

Jordan Pickford twice came to the visitors' rescue with big stops, turning Dele Alli's shot over the top and blocking from Matt Doherty, while James curled a 20-yard effort wide.

Mourinho replaced Alli with Moussa Sissoko at half-time, but Tottenham trailed 10 minutes after the restart as Calvert-Lewin towered over Eric Dier with a superb header from Lucas Digne's free-kick.

Richarlison twice bent attempts beyond the right-hand post, yet the single goal proved enough as Spurs struggled at the other end in a concerning early loss.

Nuno Espirito Santo has committed his future to Wolves by extending his contract to 2023.

The Portuguese was appointed at Molineux in May 2017 and steered the club back to the Premier League at the first time of asking, with Wolves racking up an impressive 99 points as Championship winners.

Nuno has since steered Wolves to back-to-back seventh-place finishes in the top flight, while he also oversaw a run to the quarter-finals of the Europa League last term.

"I feel good. Ready for it. Looking forward to it. Working really hard for it, because it's a new cycle, no matter what you did before, it's about what's in front of us and this is what we think we should do," the head coach told Wolves' official website.

"Let's prepare well, let's challenge, do the way we do things, fight for it."

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