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ENGLISH PREMIER LEAGUE FINAL GAMES OF THE 2020/21 SEASON

Congratulations to Manchester City, taking the title for the third time in four years, an amazing achievement, also congrats to Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool for securing Champions League football and Leicester, West Ham United for Europa League qualification and Spurs for the new Europa Conference League competition.

Full credit to all the teams, as playing without fans has been very testing for all involved, however getting all the games on TV has kept the country sane.

We have the European Championships this summer, after which the new season will be upon us, with new managers, new players and fans back in stadiums. Smile

ARSENAL 2 V 0 BRIGHTON

Nicolas Pepe scored twice in the second half as Arsenal beat Brighton, only to be denied a place in Europe by Tottenham’s fightback against Leicester.

A strong finish to the season moved the Gunners within a point of their north London rivals heading into the final day, and with Arsenal cruising after Pepe’s double, they were set to snatch seventh place from Spurs.

Despite finishing the season with a fifth straight league win, Arsenal were condemned to an eighth-placed finish as Tottenham clinched a 4-2 victory at the King Power Stadium.

That result ends the Gunners’ record of playing in Europe every season since 1995-96 and means they have not finished above Spurs since 2016.

In what has been a miserable season for Arsenal, fans voiced their disapproval during the game and as news of Tottenham’s win filtered through after the final whistle, the natives were not happy.

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ASTON VILLA 2 V 1 CHELSEA

Chelsea pipped Leicester to a spot in next season’s Champions League despite losing to Aston Villa on the final day of the Premier League season.

The Blues had started the day in third spot, knowing victory over their mid-table opponents would guarantee a place in the group stage of Europe’s prestigious knockout club competition.

Thomas Tuchel’s side carved out the better chances but fell behind when Bertrand Traore’s attempt went in off the underside of the crossbar following Matt Targett’s corner.

It went from bad to worse for Chelsea when Edouard Mendy was injured, making him a doubt for next Saturday’s Champions League final with Manchester City.

Substitute keeper Kepa Arrizabalaga was beaten by Anwar El Ghazi’s second-half penalty after former Chelsea player Traore was fouled by Jorginho, before Ben Chilwell pulled one back for the visitors from close range.

Chelsea finished the game with 10 men after captain Cesar Azpilicueta’s straight red card for a foul on Jack Grealish, but Leicester’s defeat against Spurs means Tuchel’s side finish the season in fourth on 67 points  one measly point more than fifthplaced Leicester.


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FULHAM 0 V 2 NEWCASTLE

On loan Arsenal midfielder Joe Willock scored for the seventh successive game, equalling Alan Shearer’s club record, as Newcastle matched their best points tally in the Premier League since promotion in 2017.

Willock’s opener was a fine one, marauding from his own half before capitalising on a fortunate rebound to lash the ball into the bottom corner.

Fulham huffed and puffed in front of their 2,000 fans but rarely troubled Martin Dubravka in the visiting goal, their afternoon summed up by Ivan Cavaleiro ballooning over with the goal at his mercy. For Newcastle, Fabian Schar’s composed late penalty sealed a fifth win in eight games.


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LEEDS UNITED 3 V 1 WEST BROMWICH ALBION

Leeds United ended their first season back in the Premier League with a fourth successive victory as they comfortably beat relegated West Brom in front of the returning fans at Elland Road. Goals from Rodrigo, Kalvin Phillips and substitute Patrick Bamford ensured the hosts end the season ninth, after one defeat in their final 11 games.

Jack Harrison had an early strike ruled out for offside, but Leeds did not have to wait long to celebrate properly when Rodrigo headed in Raphinha’s corner after 17 minutes.

England international Phillips doubled the advantage with his first Premier League goal shortly before half-time, beating goalkeeper Sam Johnstone with a curling free-kick that bounced over the keeper’s dive. Bamford added his side’s third from the penalty spot with 11 minutes remaining after a handball by Okay Yokuslu, before Hal Robson-Kanu grabbed a late consolation for the visitors. But a very disappointing campaign ultimately ended in defeat for the Baggies, who finish 19th and 13 points adrift of safety.


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LEICESTER CITY 2 V 4 SPURS

Leicester city for the second year in a row, threw away a Champions League spot, clearly a team without the belief that they deserve to be there, losing the last game of last season at home to Manchester United blew their chances then and to lose at home to Spurs 4-2 after being 2-1 up with 14 minutes to go is just awful.

They the last round of fixtures in fifth place, and knew their best chance of finishing in the top four was to win and hope Liverpool and Chelsea slipped up in their respective final games. Chelsea defaet to Aston Villa gave them the chance, but Leicester were unable to do their part and finished a point behind  Chelsea. It means the Europa League awaits the Leicester again.

It was Gareth Bale who hammered in the final nails, finishing low into the bottom corner to put Spurs ahead in the game for the first time in the 87th minute, before following up his own shot that had hit the post to add a second in stoppage time. though, it was an own goal from Kasper Schmeichel that really ripped the heart out of City’s challenge, with the keeper punching a corner into his own net under pressure to make the score 2-2 with 14 minutes left.

Two coolly taken penalties from Jamie Vardy looked to be sending the Foxes into Europe’s premier competition for just the second time.

The match may also represent the final one in a Tottenham shirt for talismanic striker Harry Kane, who has signalled his desire to leave the club this summer.

If so, the England captain has signed off with the 221st goal of his Spurs career earns him the Golden Boot, scoring 23 for this league campaign.

Whether a place in the new Europa Conference League is enough for Kane, remains to be seen.

Sunday’s game may also be the last for Bale, who ended his loan spell from Real Madrid in impressive fashion, and interim manager Ryan Mason, with the club considering numerous candidates as a permanent successor to Jose Mourinho.


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LIVERPOOL 2 V 0 CRYSTAL PALACE

Liverpool bounced back after defending their title chances disintegrated after Christmas and they fell weakly to Real Madrid in the Champions League but rallied to win their final five Premier League games to claim a prize that looked unlikely until the penultimate weekend of the season.

Liverpool were initially nervous but got the result they needed against Palace thanks to two goals from Sadio Mane in front of almost 10,000 home fans at Anfield.


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MANCHESTER CITY 5 V 0 EVERTON

Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero marked his final appearance at Etihad Stadium with two goals as the new Premier League champions ended their domestic campaign with a thumping win over Everton. Aguero, who has won five league titles during a glorious decade with City, was not fit enough to start but, with his side already 3-0 up he quickly made his mark after coming off the bench with 25 minutes to go. The 32-year-old Argentina striker scored his 259th goal for the club with a clever curling shot with the outside of his foot, then headed home Fernandinho’s cross a few moments later. There were City supporters inside their stadium for the first time this season, and they were able to enjoy a dominant performance from start to finish, topped by Aguero’s farewell goals and seeing the Premier League trophy lifted after full-time.

Kevin de Bruyne fired City ahead from the edge of the area after only 11 minutes, then set up Gabriel Jesus to gallop clear and make it 2-0.

Gylfi Sigurdsson had a penalty saved by City keeper Ederson before the home side made sure of the points thanks to a cool finish by Phil Foden after good work by Raheem Sterling and Jesus.

The crowd had already been demanding Aguero’s introduction for most of the match and, when they got their wish, the club’s record goalscorer did not disappoint.


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SHEFFIELD UNITED 1 V 0 BURNLEY

David McGoldrick struck a fine winner as relegated Sheffield United avoided a host of unwanted records by beating Burnley to end their two-year Premier League stay with victory.

McGoldrick drove at a backpedalling Clarets defence before curling the ball past Will Norris from 25 yards to delight the Blades fans present for the first time since March 2020.

McGoldrick’s goal, his eighth in the league this season, ensured United averted the embarrassment of recording the lowest ever top flight tally as they equalled Derby’s 2007-08 total of 20. They also avoided setting a new Premier League record for defeats in a season, having matched the existing mark of 29, and equalling the most home losses, which stands at 14.

Burnley end the season 17th, albeit 11 points clear of the relegation places.


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WEST HAM UNITED 3 V 0 SOUTHAMPTON

West Ham clinched sixth place in the Premier League and a spot in next season’s Europa League group stage after comfortably beating Southampton in front of 10,000 supporters at London Stadium. They needed only a draw to guarantee a top six finish, but Pablo Fornals’ first half brace and Declan Rice’s late strike ensured the Hammers end a superb campaign on 65 points their highest tally in the top flight.Fornals opened the scoring against the run of play, firing into an empty net after Alex McCarthy had steered Jarrod Bowen’s goal-bound effort into his path on the edge of the six-yard area. The 25-year-old doubled his tally three minutes later, latching on to Vladimir Coufal’s low cross and finding the net via a slight deflection off Saints defender Jannik Vestergaard. Rice completed the scoring late on with a composed finish from Fornals clipped pass.

Southampton finish the campaign in 15th after suffering their 19th league defeat of the season.


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WOLVES 1 V 2 MANCHESTER UNITED

Wolves were unable to give manager Nuno Espirito Santo the winning send off they craved as they ended the Premier League season with defeat by Manchester United.

Four and a half thousand Wolves fans were at Molineux to say goodbye to Nuno, two days after the surprise announcement this would be his last game in charge.

But United spoiled the send off somewhat as they secured a win that ensures they have gone a full league season without losing an away game for the first time in their history.

Anthony Elanga opened the scoring when he marked only his second Premier League start with a goal, powering home a header inside the first 15 minutes.

Wolves responded well, equalising five minutes before the break when Nelson Semedo scored his first goal for the club by sweeping in from Fabio Silva’s smart square ball.

But United, who were already assured of second place before the game, reclaimed the lead on the stroke of half-time. Donny van de Beek was caught on the back of his foot by Romain Saiss, and after referee Mike Dean initially decided against awarding a penalty, he reversed his decision following a VAR review.

Click here for the goals –

I had a good finish to the season with my predictions, seven correct results and two spot on scores, means that I can at least finish on a high note 🙂

I hope that everyone has a pleasant summer/winter time, all of our holiday plans are once again in doubt, but make the most of doing things that bring a smile to your faces.

I look forward to welcoming you back to my Premier League Blog in August.

Take care

Gary

Dr Gary Mabbutt MBE, Hon Doctor Health, Hon Doctor Law, Hon MSc
eLan Ambassador