ENGLISH PREMIER LEAGUE ROUND UP WEEK 33

 In Gary Mabbutt Blog

ENGLISH PREMIER LEAGUE ROUND UP WEEK 33

MANCHESTER CITY 2 V 3 MANCHESTER UNITED

The Premier League title was there to be won if City had won this game, but after destroying United in the first half and going two goals up, they let it slip and an amazing comeback by United saw them halt the popping of champagne corks. Pep Guardiola’s side had delivered the first-half masterclass with captain Vincent Kompany scoring with a thumping header after 25 minutes and Ilkay Gudogan adding a second five minutes later after a clever turn and finish, Paul Pogba stole in to pull a goal back after 53 minutes and headed the equaliser two minutes later.

The remarkable turnaround was complete when Smalling, arrived unmarked to steer Alexis Sanchez’s free-kick past the exposed Ederson in the 69th minute. In a furious finale, players from both sides clashed and Ashley Young was fortunate that his wild lunge on City substitute Sergio Aguero in the area was ignored by referee Martin Atkinson. De Gea made a world-class one-handed save from Aguero as City attacked furiously, but United held out and Guardiola’s title party must wait for at least another week. City will win the title but they threw away the chance of putting the icing on the cake if they had won the title against their biggest rivals.

Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kVkY6ODaBmc

EVERTON 0 V 0 LIVERPOOL

The bore draw of the week came at Goodison Park, where the Merseyside rivals went into battle, but it was barely a skirmish as neither side looked like winning the game. Liverpool was held to a drab goalless draw by Everton. Liverpool, with one eye on their Champions League return game with Man City this week, rested Mohamed Salah, and substituted midfielder James Milner and forward Sadio Mane to give them some rest before the European game in midweek. The draw meant Liverpool are now four points behind Manchester United.

No Highlights from this one!

BOURNEMOUTH 2 V 2 CRYSTAL PALACE

Palace are showing their fighting spirit, in their battle to avoid relegation, they visitors took the lead early in the second half thanks to a quality Luka Milivojevic free-kick, before substitute Lys Mousset equalised with a calm finish from the edge of the area, Palace again took the lead on 75 minutes as Wilfried Zaha scored, only for the hosts to level again when Joshua King bundled home.

Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MG34P6w4Z-c

BRIGHTON 1 V 1 HUDDERSFIELD

The Seagulls and the Terriers are hoping to secure another season of top-flight football after they were promoted from the Championship last year and three points in this game would have gone a long way to making that a reality, Brighton took the lead when the ball rebounded off Huddersfield goalkeeper Jonas Lossl’s head after he had pushed Solly March’s shot onto the post, Huddersfield responded almost immediately as Steve Mounie pounced on Shane Duffy’s terrible back pass to slot in.

The visitors’ hopes of snatching victory were then boosted when Brighton midfielder Davy Propper was sent off for a late challenge on Jonathan Hogg. However, it was the hosts who could have taken the three points at the end when Jose Izquierdo was put through on goal, but the forward was superbly denied by Lossl. The draw means Brighton are 13th, seven points above the relegation zone, while Huddersfield is 16th and four points above 18th-placed Southampton.

I personally think that both teams did enough in the early part of the season to avoid the drop.

LEICESTER 1 V 2 NEWCASTLE

Newcastle came out fighting in their bid to avoid relegation, they started the brighter at the King Power, and Shelvey’s guided shot from outside the area opened the scoring after a deflection off Ben Chilwell, Spaniard Perez doubled the lead for Rafael Benitez’s side 15 minutes from time with a delightful lob over Kasper Schmeichel.

Jamie Vardy grabbed a late goal from close range, but it proved to be only a consolation for the hosts.

Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zq3Nb_3d1_M

STOKE CITY 1 V 2 SPURS

Tottenham is the only side yet to lose in 2018 in the Premier League and on this form it is hard to see anyone beating them. Spurs took a big step towards securing a top-four finish with a victory at the relegation-threatened Stoke, it was our sixth successive Premier League win.

We are now level with third-placed Liverpool and 10 ahead of fifth-placed Chelsea, Stoke frustrated their opponents before Eriksen fired Spurs into the lead from inside the penalty area after Dele Alli’s pass, Mame Biram Diouf equalised after a mistake by keeper Hugo Lloris, whose attempted clearance cannoned off the Stoke striker and fell kindly for Diouf to roll the ball into the net, Eriksen scored the winner from a free-kick before Xherdan Shaqiri was denied a late equaliser when his free-kick hit the bar.

Click here for the highlights – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L5JwB3Y2zrE

WATFORD 1 V 2 BURNLEY

Goals from substitute Sam Vokes, and Jack Cork, whose header was confirmed by goal-line technology, secured a fourth consecutive top-flight win for Burnley for the first time since 1968. The result leaves Burnley on course for a possible challenge on a Europa League place. Watford, who had gone ahead just after the hour mark through Roberto Pereyra, drop a place to 12th despite dominating possession and creating more clear-cut scoring opportunities at Vicarage Road.

WEST BROM 1 V 1 SWANSEA

West Brom ended their eight-game losing streak by drawing with Swansea, The Premier League’s bottom side remain 10 points from safety with five games left. Moore’s side was kept out by an impressive display from visiting goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski, who denied top scorer Rodriguez and Chris Brunt before Rodriguez eventually put them ahead when he poked in Salomon Rondon’s flick-on.

Swansea stays 15th in the table and four points clear of danger after on-loan striker Tammy Abraham rose above ex-Spurs player Jake Livermore to head in a Sam Clucas corner.

Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5xA_-Mt9aLc

ARSENAL 3 V 2 SOUTHAMPTON

Arsene Wenger had made seven changes with Thursday’s Europa League quarter-final second leg against CSKA Moscow in mind, and his side trailed when Shane Long capitalised on the first-half mix-up between keeper Petr Cech and centre-back Shkodran Mustafi, but the hosts recovered with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang prodding in his sixth goal since joining from Borussia Dortmund for £56m in January to level before Welbeck put them ahead, Southampton drew level when substitute Charlie Austin turned in Cedric Soares’ cross but Welbeck headed Arsenal back in front, securing all three points.

Click here for the highlights – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e8EqDo3nSWs

CHELSEA 1 V 1 WEST HAM UNITED

Chelsea should have won this game at a canter, but tenacious opposition from the Hammers meant that they went away with a point, that never looked likely.

Missed chances were Chelsea’s downfall, Cesar Azpilicueta had prodded the hosts ahead following Alvaro Morata’s knockdown, and the Spaniard dedicated his goal to the club’s former England midfielder Ray Wilkins, who died on Wednesday aged 61. There was also a minute’s applause prior to kick-off, with the Chelsea players wearing black armbands in memory of Wilkins. Hernandez, on as a substitute, struck his ninth career goal against the Blues to earn a point for the Hammers. The Mexican’s effort, driven into the corner after Marko Arnautovic’s fine cut-back, moves David Moyes’ team six points clear of the relegation places. Ray Wilkins was a good friend of mine, we played for England together on many occasions and against each other many times during his days at Chelsea and Manchester United, He was a great footballer and a gentleman.

Click here for the highlights – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AcuJcsX_AiM

In my predictions, I only got three correct results and one correct score, mid-table form!

Here are my week 34 predictions

Southampton 1 v 3 Chelsea
Burnley 2 v 1 Leicester
Crystal Palace 2 v 1 Brighton
Huddersfield 2 v 1 Watford
Swansea 2 v 1 Everton
Liverpool 3 v 1 Bournemouth
Spurs 2 v 1 Man City
Newcastle 2 v 1 Arsenal
Man United 3 v 1 West Brom
West Ham 2 v 1 Stoke

Have a good week,

Gary

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