Theo Walcott scored three goals as Arsenal routed 10-man Blackpool 6-0 in English soccer’s Premier League, while defending champion Cheslea beat Wigan by the same score.
Andrey Arshavin, Abou Diaby and Marouane Chamakh also scored at the Emirates Stadium in north London. Ian Evatt received a red card for promoted Blackpool, which beat Wigan 4-0 last week in its first top division game since 1971.
Tottenham won 2-1 at Stoke, Bolton was a 3-1 winner at West Ham, Birmingham beat Blackburn 2-1 and West Brom defeated Sunderland 1-0, while Everton drew 1-1 at home with Wolverhampton.
Walcott gave Arsenal the lead with a goal after 12 minutes. Blackpool went a man down in the 31st minute as Evatt was sent off for taking down Marouane Chamakh in the area, with Arshavin converting the resulting penalty.
Walcott scored again eight minutes later and completed his hat trick in the 58th minute, but not before Diaby made it 4-0 early in the second half. Chamakh scored his first goal for Arsenal with seven minutes left.
Florent Malouda and Yossi Benayoun also scored for Chelsea, which beat Wigan 8-0 on the final day of last season to claim the Premiere League title. Wigan has given up 10 goals, and failed to score, in losing its first two games.
The game ended in controversy as Stoke felt an injury-time shot by Jon Walters crossed the line before it was cleared by Peter Crouch. The goal was not given by referee Chris Foy.
Johan Elmander scored twice to help Bolton win at West Ham. The visitor’s keeper Juusi Jaaskelainen stopped Carlton Cole’s first-half penalty, before Mark Noble scored from the spot in the second half for the Hammers.
Craig Gardner scored both goals and Ben Foster stopped a penalty as Birmingham beat Blacburn. Steven N’Zonzi scored for Rovers.
Peter Odemwingie, who was signed yesterday, scored in the 81st minute as promoted West Brom beat Sunderland. Sylvan Ebanks-Blake’s goal gave Wolverhampton the draw at Everton, which got a goal from Tim Cahill.
Manchester United is at Fulham and Newcastle hosts Aston Villa tomorrow, and Liverpool visits Manchester City in two days.