LIVERPOOL, England — Daniel Sturridge scored Liverpool’s winner for the third consecutive Premier League game to secure a 1-0 win over rival Manchester United on Sunday, handing David Moyes his first defeat as manager of the champions.
The England striker flicked home a close-range header following a fourth-minute corner to maintain his red-hot form and his side’s perfect start to the season. Liverpool has won all three of its games 1-0 and Sturridge is providing the cutting edge in the continued absence of suspended Luis Suarez.
“I’m delighted with his application because he was nowhere near fit today,” Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers said. “But even at 70 percent, he’ll be as good, if not better, than a lot of Premier League strikers.”
The English league is only three weeks old, but it is still strange to see United not in the division’s top four.
After drawing 0-0 with Chelsea on Monday and then losing to Liverpool, the reigning champions have four points from a possible nine under new manager David Moyes.
Also on Sunday, Olivier Giroud settled the first north London derby of the season as Arsenal asserted its supremacy over Tottenham with a 1-0 victory despite months of lavish spending by its neighbor.
Giroud turned the ball into the net from Theo Walcott’s cross in the 23rd minute, showing that goals are the only currency that counts in the Premier League.
LA LIGA: In Barcelona, Spain, Cristiano Ronaldo helped Real Madrid roll to a 3-1 win over Athletic Bilbao hours before the Spanish club announced it had signed Gareth Bale to pair him with the Portugal forward to form a highly formidable attack.
Elsewhere, Atletico Madrid also stayed perfect through three rounds by winning 2-1 at Real Sociedad thanks to David Villa’s goal and assist for Jorge “Koke” Resurreccion to add a second.
Espanyol remained unbeaten after drawing 0-0 at home with the winless Real Betis, and Malaga drew 2-2 at Sevilla.
BUNDESLIGA: In Berlin, Henrikh Mkhitaryan scored twice for Borussia Dortmund to maintain its winning start to the German league season with a 2-1 win at Eintracht Frankfurt.
Stuttgart routed Hoffenheim 6-2 in Thomas Schneider’s first Bundesliga game in charge, with Vedad Ibisevic claiming a hat trick against his former club.
SERIE A: In Milan, substitute Adem Ljajic scored on his debut to help Roma to a 3-0 victory over newly-promoted Hellas Verona in the Italian league.
LIGUE 1: In Paris, Saint Etienne eased to a 2-1 home victory over Bordeaux on Sunday, continuing its impressive start to the French league season.