Liverpool maintain their impressive form against the top six sides, West Brom out muscle and outwit Arsenal while Leicester win four in four! Lukaku hitting 20 goals, Manchester United leap to fifth and the relegation battle hots up! We discuss this and so much more in this week’s EPL TALKING POINTS.
Liverpool continue form against top six!
Liverpool claimed a solid point against Manchester City at The Etihad, in an enthralling encounter.
James Milner put Jurgen Klopps side deservedly ahead from the penalty spot, before Sergio Aguero fired the goal that salvaged the Citizens the draw.
It was an end to end encounter, with both sides creating their fair share of chances to win the game. Liverpool arguably had the better chances to come away from Manchester with all three points, with the best chance of the lot falling to Adam Lallana, who somehow managed to miss an open goal from a mere few yards.
The draw does neither team any real favours in keeping with Chelsea and Tottenham above them respectively.
Manchester remain in third, just two points behind Tottenham but trail leaders Chelsea by twelve points.
Liverpool still occupy fourth place over Manchester United and Arsenal and are only one point behind City.
Talking Points: Was this game really as ‘Special’ as Guardiola stated? Will Pep really cull 13 players at the end of the season? Are Liverpool certainties for top 4?
WBA pile pressure on Arsenal
West Bromwich Albion piled on the pressure on both Arsenal and manager Arsene Wenger, as they convincingly beat the Gunners 3-1 at The Hawthorns.
Arsenal’s inability to defend set pieces this season was influential in this defeat, as defender Craig Dawson scored twice for the home side among woeful Arsenal ‘zonal’ defending. Hal Robson Kanu scored the decisive third for West Brom.
This defeat was Arsene Wenger’s forth in five league games and it leaves their Champions League hope’s in danger as they now sit sixth in the league table, six points behind Liverpool – and the Gunners play Manchester City next!
Alexis Sanchez scored his 18th goal of the season to initially pull the game level for the away side prior Arsenals calamity defending which enabled Dawson to restore the lead.
Credit due to West Brom as Arsenal had no answer to their organised and rugged approach. Worryingly for Arsenal fans, this is further demonstration that the team lack leaders and real fight for the cause – which seems to only point to a potential Europa League finish – in what is looking increasingly more like, Wenger’s last season in charge. Or is it….?
Fans for arguments both FOR and AGAINST Wenger, flew planes carrying contradictive messages over the Hawthorns during this game. Though fans, seem to be torn – the Arsenal manager stated after the game he would announce “very soon” whether he will remain at the club, after apparently reaching a decision on his future.
He also added:
“It leaves us in a unique situation that we’ve never had before. We face big problems to regroup and find resources to sort out the problem. We need some togetherness.
Will that togetherness come in the form of a new one year contract? If you believe recent reports – it appears so. With an announcement expected soon – we await in anticipation.
Talking Points: Will Wenger sign a new deal or is this his last season? Arsenal have won only 1 game in 8 away to a Tony Pulis side! Why do Arsenal struggle vs Tony Pulis? Will this win spur WBA on for top 8?
Foxes win first away game of the season
Craig Shakespeare’s revitalised Leicester City continued their impressive form under their new manager, by picking up their fourth consecutive win and their first three points away from home all season, in a thriller at The London Stadium.
Riyad Mahrez scored his second successive goal to open the scoring before Robert Huth made it 2-0 after only seven minutes. Manuel Lanzini hit a wonderful freekick to bring the Irons back into the game before, Jamie Vardy wrapped up the win with a third Leicester goal before half time!
In the second half, West Ham laid siege to Leicester City’s goal, which saw Andre Ayew reduce the deficit as well as an incredible save by Kasper Schmeichel, who denied Andy Carroll from point blank range.
The Champions League Quarter Finalist’s held on to record their first away win of the season.
Talking Points: Is Shakespeare the right man for the job for next season? Will they reach the Semi Finals of the UCL? How has Slaven Bilic fared this season?
Additional Talking Points Match Week 29
Maroune Fellaini, Jesse Lingard & Antonio Valencia reaped more misery on manager less Middlesbrough, as the Red Devils climbed to fifth. Boro did score a goal through Rudy Gestede. Who will boss Boro next? Harry Redknapp, Nigel Pearson or Guus Hiddink? Can United make Top 4?
Spurs beat Southampton 2-1 thanks to goals from midfield maestros Christian Erikson & Dele Alli. New England recruit James Ward Prowse scored the Saints goal. Will Spurs miss Kane? Does Ward Prowse deserve England call up?
Chelsea fought out a 2-1 win away against a resilient Stoke City. Willian, John Walters (Pen) and Gary Cahill with the goals. Can Chelsea have title wrapped up by end of April? Is this JT’s last season? Was Berahino a good signing?
Big Sam’s rescue mission continued at Crystal Palace as they won their third successive match to steer clear of the relegation zone. A Troy Deeney own goal gave Palace the vital win vs Watford. Is Big Sam about to avoid save another club from the drop? Will Walter Mazzari still be Watford coach at end of season?
Romelu Lukaku scored his 19th & 20th goals of the season, to fire himself ahead of Harry Kane at the top of the Goal Scoring Charts. He also came the first Everton player since Gary Linekar to hit 20 goals in a season, as Everton smashed Hull City 4-0. Young Calvert-Lewin scored his first goal and Enner Valencia came off the bench to score the other. Will Lukaku sign a new Everton deal? Are Hull City staring relegation in the face?
Bournemouth took a giant stride towards Premier League safety with a 2-0 win at home to Swansea. An Alfie Mawson own goal and Benik Afobe, scoring the goals. Are the Cherries safe? Does this defeat pull Swansea into a relegation crisis?
Sunderland were held 0-0 by Burnley in a dire draw. Can Defoe get enough goals to secure both a move and a slot in England’s World Cup squad? Will Burnley win away from home this season?