I have said before that this is the most bizarre Premier League season in history, the results that we are seeing are all topsy turvy and anything can happen this season. The Champions Liverpool (who completely pulverized all before them last season) are in sixth place, with anyone in the top ten can still claim a Champions League place and any team that puts in a three or four wins will be back amongst the chasing pack for the title. Manchester City are in control, but a few shock defeats are possible and so I am enjoying the uncertain results that we are seeing.
Please click here for the current league positions to see where your team are placed – https://www.premierleague.com/tables
Please click here to see an interview that I did with CNN, showing what I have been doing during the Covid 19 Pandemic.
WEST HAM UNITED 3 V 0 SHEFFIELD UNITED
Chris Basham’s lunge on Jesse Lingard helped gift the Hammers victory, Rice making no mistake from the spot before Diop, doubled the lead from Aaron Cresswell’s corner. Substitute Fredericks added a third deep into stoppage time.
Sheffield United, 14 points from safety with 14 games left, went close to equalising at 1-0 only for Lukasz Fabianski to produce an outstanding save to keep out David McGoldrick’s deflected header.
West Ham had been awarded an early penalty when Craig Dawson was fouled by Enda Stevens and referee Simon Hooper pointed to the spot, but after a VAR consultation the decision was overturned.
CHELSEA 3 V 1 NEWCASTLE
Timo Werner scored and assisted as he ended a 14 game goal drought to help Chelsea to victory over Newcastle in the Premier League at Stamford Bridge.
Werner’s cross rebounded out to Olivier Giroud to net Chelsea’s opener in the first half, after the France striker replaced the injured Tammy Abraham.
Summer signing Werner then made it 2-0 eight minutes later, scrambling in a flick-on at the back post.
Victory sees Chelsea move back up to fourth place, ahead of West Ham.
The Hammers, who won earlier on Monday night, are level on points with Chelsea but both sides sit above defending champions Liverpool as competition for Champions League places heats up.
Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z547Y_hyH2A
EVERTON 0 V 2 FULHAM
Everton’s home form was again abysmal, as relegation threatened Fulham were by far the better side in the first half but were left frustrated as they missed several opportunities to score, with Bobby Decordova-Reid hitting the post and Harrison Reed driving over.
But their dominance was rewarded early in the second half when Maja slid in to turn home Ola Aina’s cross from close range.
Maja, 22, then capped a superb debut with a second, tapping in after Reed’s shot had hit the woodwork. Everton were poor throughout and although Seamus Coleman clipped the outside of the post in the first half, they rarely looked like scoring.
Joshua King did have the ball in the back of the net late on but it was ruled out for offside.
There is still plenty of work to do for Fulham to escape the drop, with this victory cutting the deficit to safety to seven points, but it will significantly boost their hopes they they can fight their way out of trouble.
Defeat for Everton, meanwhile, means they remain seventh on 37 points.
Click here for the goals –https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1w9r1Auuaa4
ARSENAL 4 V 2 LEEDS UNITED
Aubameyang opened the scoring in the 14th minute before doubling his side’s advantage from the spot towards the end of the first half.
Right-back Hector Bellerin grabbed a third on the stroke of half-time, with Aubameyang completing his first Premier League hat-trick with a header moments after the restart.
But from 4-0 down Leeds grabbed two second-half goals through Pascal Struijk and substitute Helder Costa to give Arsenal a late scare.
Click here for the goals –https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1bBD-YmkB-0
WEST BROMWICH ALBION 1 V 1 MANCHESTER UNITED
Bruno Fernandes stunning volley salvaged a point for Manchester United at struggling West Brom, but United lost further ground in the Premier League title race.
United moved back above Leicester in second place, but are now seven points behind leaders Manchester City, who also have a game in hand.
The Baggies took a shock lead after just 83 seconds as on-loan striker Mbaye Diagne outmuscled Victor Lindelof to head in from Conor Gallagher’s cross.
United were finding it difficult to make inroads in a lacklustre opening period until Fernandes hooked Luke Shaw’s cross into the top corner with his weaker left foot.
The visitors improved in the second half, Mason Greenwood testing Sam Johnstone with a low strike and Scott McTominay seeing his follow up cleared off the line.
With time running out, skipper Harry Maguire leapt to send his header towards the top corner, but Johnstone tipped the effort against the post to deny United an injury-time winner.
Sam Allardyce’s side could have won it themselves late on, but Diagne struck his effort over the crossbar from six yards out.
Though they claimed a draw, West Brom remain in deep trouble at the wrong end of the table, second from bottom and 12 points from safety.
Click here for the goals –https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UToiSbpUa5w
SOUTHAMPTON 1 V 2 WOLVES
Danny Ings scored in the 25th minute to give Saints a 1-0 lead, and Southampton comfortably held the advantage until Wolves were awarded a second-half penalty when Ryan Bertrand blocked Nelson Semedo’s attempted cross with his arm.
The point of contention was whether the left-back’s arm was in an unnatural position. The VAR team, led by official Martin Atkinson, saw no need for the on-field referee to reconsider his initial decision to award the kick.
Ruben Neves scored from the spot before Pedro Neto produced a dazzling winner for the visitors. The home side controlled the opening period and took the lead when Ings scored with a brilliant volley after he was picked out by Stuart Armstrong.
The game turned seven minutes into the second half when Neves converted from the spot. Wolves, buoyed by the goal, went on the front foot and took the lead when Neto jinked his way past Jannik Vestergaard before threading his angled strike between Jan Bednarek and keeper Alex McCarthy.
Saints pressed for an equaliser but were thwarted by Wolves stopper Rui Patricio who made a double save from James Ward-Prowse and Che Adams.
Wolves go 12th in the Premier League table, a point and a place above Southampton.
Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xDwpjgWCsBM
LEICESTER CITY 3 V 1 LIVERPOOL
Leicester City staged an astonishing late comeback to beat Liverpool as the Premier League champions collapsed and paid the price for another defensive calamity involving keeper Alisson.
Liverpool looked to be cementing their top-four aspirations when Mohamed Salah put them ahead after 67 minutes with a clever finish after a piece of individual brilliance in the penalty area by Roberto Firmino. Leicester saw a 78th-minute penalty award ruled out by the video assistant referee and even though James Maddison’s resulting free-kick found its way into the net past Alisson it was initially ruled out for an offside against Daniel Amartey before being given after a VAR check.
Leicester’s second three minutes later was another horror show for Liverpool keeper Alisson, whose poor clearances contributed to two goals in Manchester City’s win at Anfield last Sunday. This time the Brazilian recklessly dashed out to clear Youri Tielemans long ball, only to comically crash into debutant defender Ozan Kabak, leaving Vardy to run the ball into an empty net.
Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers watched his team rub salt in his former side’s wounds as Harvey Barnes applied a composed finish to Wilfred Ndidi’s pass with five minutes left.
Leicester go second while Liverpool’s third successive league defeat means their place in the top four looks in peril.
Click here for the goals –https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uho1o9j_qQI
CRYSTAL PALACE 0 V 3 BURNLEY
Crystal Palace just did not turn up for this game, poor, sloppy, lack lustre are just a few of the more conservative adjectives that could be used for this performance.
I am good friends with the Palace manager Roy Hodgson and he would not have been happy with this awful showing. Burnley took advantage of some woeful defending before Matt Lowton scored a superb volley as they brushed aside a limp Crystal Palace to move further clear of the Premier League’s bottom three.
The Clarets came into the game as the division’s lowest scorers, but quickly set about changing that in the opening 10 minutes, thanks in large part to the hospitality of the home side.
A lack of communication at the back and a fluffed attempted clearance from Scott Dann allowed Johann Berg Gudmundsson to turn and fire in the opener before Jay Rodriguez headed the second directly from a corner. Despite naming a team with Christian Benteke, Michy Batshuayi, Jordan Ayew and Eberechi Eze all starting and so seemingly possessing considerable attacking potential. Their challenge was all but ended shortly after the break by the game’s highlight, with Lowton driving past two challenges before exchanging passes with Rodriguez and lashing a volley across home keeper Vicente Guaita and into the far corner of the net.
Palace are three points better off than Burnley, with 29 on the board. They’re unlikely to go down, but will either need a fit again Wilfred Zaha soon or a serviceable plan B without him to avoid a long, miserable trudge through the second half of this campaign.
Click here for the goals –https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u7-gvcTd9Es
MANCHESTER CITY 3 V 0 TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR
Manchester City extended their winning run to 15 games and their lead at the top of the Premier League to seven points as they easily defeated Tottenham at Etihad Stadium.
Ilkay Gundogan scored twice after Rodri had put City ahead from the penalty spot midway through the opening period. Raheem Sterling might have had another late on as City strengthened their grip at the summit, where they also have a game in hand over second-placed Leicester.
It was a chastening night for Tottenham and their manager Jose Mourinho.
When they won the first meeting between these sides in November, Tottenham were top of the table. Since then, City have taken 41 points from a possible 45 to take a decisive advantage in the title race. In contrast, Spurs have now collected 16 points in 14 games and lost four games out of five in all competitions and remain in eighth.
Click here for the goals – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pqGayF-vh1g
I am a bit like all the teams in the Prem, with my predictions, all over the place 🙂 with four correct results this week.
Please see following my predictions for week 25.
Burnley 2 v 1 Fulham
Everton 1 V 3 Manchester City
Wolverhampton Wanderers 2 V 1 Leeds United
Southampton 1 V 2 Chelsea
Burnley 2 V 1 West Bromwich Albion
Liverpool 2 V 1 Everton
Fulham 2 V 1 Sheffield United
West Ham United 1 V 3 Tottenham Hotspur
Aston Villa 1 V 2 Leicester City
Arsenal 1 V 3 Manchester City
Manchester United 2 V 1 Newcastle United
Brighton & Hove Albion 2 V 1 Crystal Palace
Leeds United 2 V 1 Southampton