American Exports: Howard helps Everton to 3rd place in EPL
AMSTERDAM – Several Americans clocked in across the pond on Saturday, with Tim Howard backstopping Everton up to third place in a 3-1 victory at Aston Villa.
The US No. 1 needed only a single save to post his first Villa Park win as a Toffee. Everton have started the EPL campaign with two straight wins for the first time in six seasons.
Eric Lichaj played the final half-hour for the beaten hosts, while Brad Guzan went unused.
Brad Friedel's five saves weren't quite enough as wasteful Tottenham conceded near the death to settle for a 1-1 home draw with West Bromwich Albion. The American made two big second-half stops to temporarily preserve a slim lead, including a dazzler on Romelu Lukaku midway through the period.
One league below in the Championship, Jonathan Spector went all 90 at right back as Birmingham City lost 2-0 at Watford. The result leaves the Brums winless after three league rounds for the first time since 2007, when they were in the Premier League.
Derby County strike prospect Conor Doyle was an unused sub in their 1-1 rally draw at Wolverhampton.
Another level down in League One, Robbie Rogers made an 11-minute Stevenage debut in their 1-0 win at Oldham. Unbeaten through three rounds, The Boro stand fourth in the table.
On Bundesliga opening day, Timothy Chandler held down right back as FC Nürnberg blanked home side Hamburg 1-0. The defender got away with a last minute error that resulted in Marcell Jansen rattling the bar.
Fabian Johnson worked a full shift at left back while Daniel Williams watched from the dugout as Hoffenheim fell late, 2-1 at Borussia Mönchengladbach.
David Yelldell served as back-up netminder in Bayer Leverkusen's 2-1 loss at promoted Eintracht Frankfurt.
Turning to Belgium, Sacha Kljestan went the distance in his first Jupiler League start of the season, a 1-1 draw at OH Leuven. The midfielder saw his set-up fired off the post near the break and narrowly missed scoring himself midway through the second half.
Up north in Denmark, Charlie Davies was a stoppage time sub for Randers FC, entering just in time for the hosts to collapse in a 3-2 loss to table toppers FC Copenhagen. The away side struck twice in four added minutes to flip the result and drop the Horses down to fourth place.
Across the water in Sweden, Alejandro Bedoya's Helsingborg dropped consecutive Allsvenskan matches for the first time in nearly three years with a 3-1 defeat at Djurgården.
The US international entered on 53 minutes, striking the post with his team down one in the 70th minute and drawing a late yellow card. The loss bumped defending champs Helsingborg 10 points out of first place with 10 games remaining.
Meanwhile, Brian Span went unused for Djurgården, who climbed to sixth place. The Blue Stripes have now won three straight and are unbeaten in 15 league games.