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Arsenal kick off new season with win

August 16, 2008 19:23 IST
Last Updated: August 16, 2008 22:44 IST

New signing Samir Nasri scored after four minutes to give Arsenal [Images] a 1-0 win over promoted West Bromwich Albion when they kicked off the new Premier League season at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday.

The 21-year-old French midfielder, signed from Olympique Marseille for 15.0 million pounds ($28.08 million) in the close-season, scored with a first-time right footed-shot after good approach work by Arsenal and a final cut-back pass from Denilson.

West Brom, back in the Premier League after two seasons in the championship (second division) were largely out-played in the north London [Images] sunshine and Arsenal dominated far more than the scoreline suggests.

In other matches, Bolton Wanderers were the biggest winners on the opening day of the new Premier League season, beating promoted Stoke City 3-1 at the Reebok Stadium with first half goals from Gretar Steinsson, Kevin Davies and Johan Elmander. Ricardo Fulkler scored in the last minute for Stoke.

Promoted Hull City marked their first match in the top division in their 104-year history with a 2-1 win over Fulham at the KC Stadium with goals from Geovanni and Caleb Folan giving them the points after Seol Ki-Hyeon put Fulham ahead after eight minutes.

David Wheater and former Spurs striker Mido, who came on as a late substitute, scored as Middlesbrough beat Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 at the Riverside Stadium after Wheater had what looked like a valid goal wrongly disallowed in the first half. Spurs scored when Robert Huth conceded an own goal minutes from time.

Dean Ashton scored twice in the opening 10 minutes for West Ham United to open a 2-0 lead against Wigan Athletic at Upton Park. Although Amr Zaki scored for Wigan early in the second half, West Ham held on for a 2-1 win.

Blackburn Rovers won an astonishing match 3-2 at Everton with the teams trading the lead before Andre Ooijer scored a last-minute winner for Rovers.

Sunderland were playing Liverpool in a late kickoff with three more matches scheduled for Sunday including champions Manchester United [Images] who play Newcastle United at Old Trafford on Sunday in their bid for a third successive title.

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