Ferguson excited by Powell potential

Sir Alex Ferguson believes he may have unearthed another gem in Nick Powell after the teenager scored on his Manchester United debut.

United came alive after a goalless first half in their Barclays Premier League encounter against Wigan at Old Trafford, with strikes from Paul Scholes – on his 700th appearance under Ferguson – Javier Hernandez, Alexander Buttner and substitute Powell sealing a comfortable 4-0 win after the interval.

And it was the cameo performance from former Crewe midfielder Powell, who came to Manchester over the summer, that had Ferguson purring after watching his side notch their third successive win following a season opening defeat at Everton.

“Nick Powell is going to be a really good player,” said Ferguson.

“He has a great temperament. He has two feet and is quick. He is a great striker of the ball.

“For an 18-year-old boy it has been a terrific day.”

Arsene Wenger knows there will be stiffer challenges to come after watching Arsenal hammer Southampton 6-1.

“We have two interesting weeks coming up because we play Man City, Chelsea and Montpellier in the Champions League,” said the Frenchman.

“We know much more about the team. There is a positive energy in this team – a desire to play, a desire to play well together and real team play so it is very exciting.”

The Gunners dominated proceedings on Saturday and had built a four-goal advantage over Saints inside the opening 37 minutes before going onto net twice more in the second half.

Gervinho’s brace alongside own goals from Jos Hooiveld and Nathaniel Clyne, a Lukas Podolski free-kick and Theo Walcott’s late effort did the damage at the Emirates Stadium, with Danny Fox’s goal for the visitors on the stroke of half-time proving to be scant consolation.

Chelsea boss Roberto Di Matteo insists he bears no grudges towards Fernando Torres, who appeared to take exception to be being substituted in the goalless draw at QPR.

“No player is happy when they come off, it’s not a problem. I just wanted to make a change,” said Di Matteo.

Manchester City boss Roberto Di Matteo was encouraged with the performances of Javi Garcia and Maicon, both of whom made their debuts in the 1-1 draw at Stoke.

Garcia marked his first City appearance by equalising with a free header in the 35th minute after Peter Crouch had given Stoke an early lead.

“I think that Garcia scored an important goal and he had another chance,” said Mancini.

“He played well. Like Maicon, it was the first game for them and I think both players did a good performance.

“They don’t know their team-mates yet and for a first game they did well.”

Brendan Rodgers was delighted with Liverpool’s performance in their 1-1 draw at Sunderland.

“The performance was outstanding, both our creativity and our movement, and there was a really good tempo and rhythm to our game,” said the Northern Irishman.

Sunderland had taken the lead through Steven Fletcher but Luiz Suarez’s 71st-minute equaliser denied the Black Cats victory at the Stadium of Light on a day when the 96 Reds fans who died at Hillsborough 23 years ago were poignantly remembered.

Martin Jol has laid down the gauntlet to Dimitar Berbatov after the frontman bagged a brace on his home debut as Fulham eased past the previously unbeaten West Brom, with Steve Sidwell adding a late third.

After losing top goalscorer Dempsey to Tottenham in the final hours of the transfer window, Jol is now hoping former Manchester United frontman Berbatov can become the club’s new talisman.

“I’m sure that if he is fit then he will do what Clint Dempsey did for us,” said Jol.

Aston Villa’s newcomer Christian Benteke added to Matthew Lowton’s first-half opener as Paul Lambert watched his side beat Swansea 2-0 while former club Norwich were held to a goalless draw against West Ham.

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