|Image from PremierLeague.com|
Well it has been an interesting few days in the Premier League, Liverpool remaining on course for their first Premier League title and a 16 point gap intact after wins against United and Wolves. No one wishing to intrude on Chelsea’s Top Four challenge despite poor performances from the Blues and the relegation battle tightening up and certainly not over in a huge contrast to the top of the table.
Here are the results:
Watford vs Tottenham Hotspur 0-0
Brighton vs Aston Villa 1-1
Manchester City vs Crystal Palace 2-2
West Ham vs Everton 1-1
Arsenal vs Sheffield United 1-1
Norwich vs Bournemouth 1-0
Southampton vs Wolves 2-3
Newcastle vs Chelsea 1-0
Burnley vs Leicester City 2-1
Liverpool vs Manchester United 2-0
Bournemouth vs Brighton 3-1
Aston Villa vs Watford 2-1
Crystal Palace vs Southampton 0-2
Sheffield United vs Manchester City 0-1
Everton vs Newcastle 2-2
Chelsea vs Arsenal 2-2
Leicester City vs West Ham 4-1
Tottenham vs Norwich City 2-1
Manchester United vs Burnley 0-2
Wolves vs Liverpool 1-2
Here are the Grades:
LIVERPOOL 9/10 and 9/10 = 18/20
Blitzing through the league at warpspeed and don’t look like stopping. Narrow wins but that is what champions are made of.
MANCHESTER CITY 4/10 and 8/10 = 12/20
Poor draw at home but a solid win at Brammall Lane, which is a difficult ask but will probably look to win the Champions League for the first time as the league is dead and buried in Liverpool.
LEICESTER CITY 4/10 and 9/10 = 13/20
Poor loss against Burnley but made up for it with a sumptuous win against West Ham. They will look at the cup competitions for some silverware and should remain in the Champions League spots as they have enough talent to keep hold.
CHELSEA 3/10 and 5/10 = 8/20
They have been very poor but it hasn’t mattered. They look lost without Abraham but struggle to perform against low blocks anyway. Kepa has been very poor in the last few games and needs to sort himself out or he could be in for a torrid time. They have big games to come against Leicester, United, Tottenham and Bayern in the next month and will hope to get some results or they could fall out of the top four.
MANCHESTER UNITED 5/10 and 2/10 = 7/20
A decent performance at Anfield marred by poor marking, poor finishing and a gut-punching sealer from Salah. The same problems occurred at Old Trafford against Burnley but without the performance to accompany it. United are in trouble without the players to make a difference but are certainly not done yet.
TOTTENHAM 5/10 and 7/10 = 12/20
Poor draw with Watford as they almost lost the game and at the same time were inches away from winning it too. Made up for it with a gritty win against Norwich but honestly should be sweeping them aside even without Kane.
WOLVES 9/10 and 5/10 = 14/20
Great comeback against Southampton and took the form into the Liverpool game but missed glorious chances to score. Sensing a trend against Liverpool but nonetheless, they remain in seventh and could get European football next season.
SHEFFIELD UNITED 8/10 and 5/10 = 13/20
Great performance at the Emirates and unlucky in a tight game against City. Henderson has been outstanding but is likely to go back to United at the end of the season but Wilder may be happy to know they could loan him out again.
SOUTHAMPTON 4/10 and 8/10 = 12/20
Very poor to let Wolves comeback from 2-0 down but made up for it with a well deserved win. They need not always rely on Danny Ings but it is looking good from their part.
ARSENAL = 4/10 and 6/10 = 10/20
Back to back draws does not show progress and it does show the side is not good enough to get into the top six right now but Arteta requires time to do so. Lampard, Solskjaer and Arteta are new to management and are in similar circumstances in which they are making their teams their own but it is a transition and they all need to be backed and given the chance to develop.
CRYSTAL PALACE = 8/10 and 4/10 = 12/20
Could not follow up a good performance at the Etihad at home against Southampton. I don’t think they’re in trouble of relegation but they are not performing consistently.
EVERTON = 6/10 and 4/10 = 10/20
The performances have dropped recently and there is no way they should have conceded those goals against Newcastle. They will need investments to build on this shoddy season but Ancelotti is getting them playing good football and getting some results.
BURNLEY = 8/10 and 9/10 = 17/20
Massive comeback for Burnley and they have earned their wins. They will want to push and improve even more as the season continues. They will want to cause Arsenal problems next and can easily do so.
NEWCASTLE = 9/10 and 8/10 = 17/20
Stunning results against Chelsea and Everton and have left it late both times. Big results for Steve Bruce and the squad seems to back him throughout.
BRIGHTON = 6/10 and 5/10 = 11/20
They haven’t been at it recently but I trust they can remain safe with the other teams in a worse position than them but they need wins.
ASTON VILLA = 6/10 and 8/10 = 14/20
A decent draw and a dramatic win. They seem to be in danger still but can pull themselves out of it if they keep going. They have the quality, it is whether they can maintain this for long periods.
WEST HAM = 6/10 and 4/10 = 10/20
Dropped off a bit but they need replacements and Moyes should get the time to keep them up and survive. They have a good squad it is whether they can keep performing without Anderson or not.
BOURNEMOUTH = 3/10 and 8/10 = 11/20
Tragic performance against relegation rivals but bounced back with a massive win for Eddie Howe. They could keep this up and get out of trouble but it is whether the other teams can keep up too.
WATFORD = 7/10 and 5/10 = 12/20
While they should have beaten Tottenham their run is over against Villa and that was a hard loss for them. They are out of the FA Cup which will be a bonus if they push for survival and they have what it takes to do so, only time will tell if they do.
NORWICH = 9/10 and 5/10 = 14/20
Great win against Bournemouth but couldn’t follow it up with a result against Spurs. They have a massive game against Newcastle next and will have to win the game or be dead and buried in the league.