Inaugural Premier League Games
The 15th of August 1992 AD
A commercial success if not a competitive one, the Premier League was formed after the end of the 1991-92 season, the clubs who would have played in the First Division resigning to form the new competition. Strangely the first year was played without a league sponsor, a deal with Bass blocked by almost half the clubs, though given a TV contract worth £305 million over five years had been signed the £13 million that would have brought was not perhaps so badly missed.
The first games, played on Saturday August 15 1992, produced some interesting results: the mighty Arsenal beaten 4 - 2 at Highbury by Norwich City who topped the table for that day at least (and managed a best-ever finish of 3rd and a European place); Sheffield United defeated Manchester United 2 – 1, Brian Deane of the Yorkshire club scoring the first ever goal in the Premier League; and Crystal Palace v Blackburn finished 3 – 3, with Rovers' debutant Alan Shearer scoring twice.
Many clubs doubtless dreamed of endless riches thanks to the new set-up. But it’s interesting to note that 12 of the 22 don’t currently feature in the Premier League, three of them - the two Sheffield sides and Oldham – plying their trade in the third tier as this is written. The season ended, as it has 11 times since, with Alex Ferguson ’s side taking the trophy. Teddy Sheringham finished as top scorer with 22 goals (one for Nottingham Forest , 21 for Spurs ). And in stark contrast to the contemporary trend, only one manager in the top flight was fired during the season – Ian Porterfield of Chelsea .
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