City untouchable, United, Liverpool and Everton embarrassed – analysing this weekend’s BIG PL fixtures.

THE Kon-X Anglesey League fixtures were all cancelled this weekend thanks to storm Brian.

Therefore, in place of my usual report on those matches, I thought I’d turn my attention to the more glamorous world of the Premier League, where waterlogged pitches are nowhere to be seen.

As usual, the weekend threw up some unpredictable score lines in England’s top tier and punters everywhere were no doubt left to cry into their pints after being let down by their acca’s.

Here, I’ve decided to take a closer look at five of the biggest results from the weekend and give my opinion on what those victories and defeats could spell for each side.

 

Huddersfield 2-1 Manchester United

Aaron Mooy
Mooy wheels off in celebration as Matic despairs. PICTURE: Getty Images/BBC Sport Football.

Let’s start off with the weekend’s biggest shock shall we?

Prior to this match kicking off, there were talks of Mourinho’s men being untouchable, with some even going as far as to say that they could do the unthinkable and march on to an unbeaten season.

However, Huddersfield obviously didn’t get the memo.

The newly-promoted Premier League side marched into the lead through their Australian midfielder Aaron Mooy before Belgian giant Laurent Depoitre scored his second goal of the season to give the Terriers an unlikely 2-0 lead at half time.

United responded in the second half after fine play between Romelu Lukaku and Marcus Rashford with the latter heading in, but it was not enough as the home side clinched a historical win.

On this rare occasion, United seemed mortal and far from their usual dominant selves which we had seen in nearly every 2017/18 PL fixture prior to this one.

They showed their defensive fragilities, Victor Lindelof in particular, for the first time this season and showed that they can be beaten. Huddersfield on the other hand, will take a huge amount of confidence from this victory and will no doubt be looking to push on from this one in their quest to survive in the Premier League.

 

Tottenham Hotspur 4-1 Liverpool

Harry Kane
Kane was on fire once again for Tottenham. PICTURE: Getty Images/BBC Sport Football.

As an Arsenal fan, it’s hard for me to admit this, but I have to say that Tottenham are playing some absolutely brilliant football nowadays.

Spurs raced into an early 2-0 lead after clever goals from Harry Kane and Heung Min Son. It highlighted Liverpool’s weaknesses to no end as their defenders, especially Dejan Lovren, were caught napping on both occasions.

It was no surprise then to see the Croatian centre back taken off after just half an hour of the match and replaced by Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.

Mo Salah pulled one back for Liverpool before Dele Alli volleyed in and Harry Kane added another to end his Wembley hoodoo and pile the misery onto Jurgen Klopp and his squad.

Two main things learnt from this one.

Number one: Tottenham now have the strongest squad that they have had for a VERY LONG time and they should make the most of Harry Kane whilst they still have him, because for me a “bigger club” is going to nab him soon enough.

Number two: Liverpool are going to be nowhere near challenging for the title until they clear out some of their dead wood. It’s no secret that their defence needs a leader and some stronger players than they currently have. Dejan Lovren, Alberto Moreno and Simon Mignolet were all caught out at some point on Sunday and I think you’d have to ask yourself how are they still at the club after so many errors.

 

Everton 2-5 Arsenal

Everton 2-5 Arsenal
Class combination – Lacazette and Ozil  linked up well in this one. PICTURE: Premier League.

When will the misery end for the Toffee’s? Ronald Koeman’s side continued their awful run of results with an embarrassing home defeat to Arsenal, who themselves had lost to Watford last weekend.

Terrible defending, a man sent off, simple passes not being played to team mates, Everton were very much off colour in this one. In fairness though, it wasn’t all just about them being poor, it was definitely somewhat to do with Arsenal being good too.

For the first time this season, fans of the Gunners got to see the trio of Mesut Ozil, Alexandre Lacazette and Alexis Sanchez play along side one another and boy did they do that!

After Wayne Rooney had initially fired the home side ahead (his 13th goal against Arsenal in his career, more than anyone else in the PL), Arsenal quickly bounced back into the game.

Defender, Nacho Monreal, equalised to make it 1-1 in half time, before goals from Mesut Ozil and Alexandre Lacazette made it 3-1. A late flurry of goals in added time from Aaron Ramsey, Oumar Niasse (Everton) and Alexi Sanchez saw the game finish 5-2.

Two things learnt from this one too.

Number one: Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez may just be looking to leave Arsenal at some point in 2018, but in order to attract other clubs, they have to play well and so the Gunners will benefit from that for the time being.

Seeing those two and Lacazette bag a goal each in their first start together is a very positive point, but can they really fire themselves up for a title push? unlikely.

Number two: Everton need to find a win and fast. It’s all well and good saying “oh yeah we’re 18th now but it’s early days!”, but ask any fan who has seen their club down that end of the table and they will tell you that the further you slip into a run of losses, the harder it can be to get out of it. So, whether it’s Koeman leading them next weekend or not, they need to seriously up their game.

 

Chelsea 4-2 Watford

Michy Batshuayi
BAT-man to the rescue. PICTURE: Getty Images/BBC Sport Football.

Watford are looking the surprise package of the season for me right now and at one point during this match it looked as though they were going to pile even more misery onto Antonio Conte’s side who had had a very tough week.

After their shock 2-1 loss at bottom of the table Crystal Palace last weekend, Chelsea drew 3-3 with Roma in their midweek Champions League match and came into this one, looking a little shaky.

Despite that though, they went 1-0 up courtesy of a Pedro Rodriguez thunderbolt. However, goals from Abdoulaye Doucoure and Roberto Pereyra threatened to put the dampeners on the home side at Stamford Bridge.

With Chelsea on the ropes, Watford failed to capitalise and slowly began to crumble. A goal from Cesar Azpilicueta and a brace from Michy Batshuayi gave the Blues a much-needed win to help them keep the pressure on at the top of the table.

Watford have made a very strong start to the season, but this win has brought them down a peg or two. The real question now I suppose is: can Chelsea fight their way back into the title race?

 

Manchester City 3-0 Burnley

Leroy Sane scores
Sane is in form for City right now. PICTURE: Getty Images/BBC Sport Football.

This win puts City five points clear at the top of the Premier League table and they are looking truly untouchable right now.

Pep Guardiola’s men are on fire with a goal difference of +28 after just nine games (32 goals scored), they’re tearing defences apart with the likes of Leroy Sane, Raheem Sterling, Sergio Aguero and Gabriel Jesus scoring for fun, whilst Kevin De Bruyne and David Silva pull the strings in midfield.

On the surface of things, this result won’t have surprised many, but it’s the way in which City are putting games to bed that is impressive.

Prior to this match, Burnley had not failed to score against City in a Premier League fixture before, so is this also a quiet sign that the City defence is now improving as well?

One thing’s for sure, if it is and they continue to play the style of attacking that they are currently doing, then they could build a monstrous goal difference by the end of the season.

They must surely be favourites to win the title right now, but bigger leads than five points have been thrown away by various teams in years gone by, so who knows what might happen?


Keep reading AFEFootballNews for all the latest reviews and news from the Premier League and beyond!

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