Manchester United edged closer to Leicester City on the Premier league points table when they overcame Brendan Rodger’s Foxes at the Etihad stadium 3-1 on Saturday evening. Leicester’s Jamie Vardy continued his goal spree, opening the scoring for the visitors in a breakaway move in the 22nd minute. Inspired by the magnificent Kevin de Bruyne and Riyad Mahrez, City fought back with goals in the 30th minute, 43rd and 69th minutes of play to make it 3-1 for the hosts when the final whistle blew. City are now on 38 points from their 18 games and a point behind Leicester City’s 39 but still a clear 11 behind Liverpool’s 49. Liverpool had the chance of going ahead by 3 further points but their 18th fixture against a struggling West Ham United was postponed as they were away in Qatar for the World Club championships.
Tottenham’s missed out on the opportunity of breaking into the Top Four when they were beaten at home at the Tottenham stadium 0-2 by Chelsea. Frank Lampard’s men broke a run of three consecutive defeats by putting on an impressive performance at the London derby. The Blues quickly went ahead with a brilliant right-footed finish in the 12th minute from Willian and the same player doubled the lead by converting a spot kick a minute before the half-time whistle. Chelsea’s victory was marred by alleged racist behavior aimed at their defender Antonio Rudiger. Rudiger was involved in the second-half incident that saw Tottenham’s Son Heung-min sent off. The striker was dismissed, following a video assistant referee review, for raising his boot in a clash with the German center-back near the touchline. Shortly afterwards, Rudiger, 26, appeared to gesticulate that he had received racist abuse from Spurs fans. Chelsea are now comfortably placed at the 4th place with 32 points, a clear 4 away from 5th placed Sheffield United.
Sheffield and Wolverhampton bettered their positions on the table after respective wins over Brighton (0-1) and Norwich City (1-2). While Sheffield raced to the 5th spot with 28 points accrued from their 18 outings, the Wolves are a notch below at the sixth with 27. Tottenham have dropped to the 7th after their Saturday’s loss to Chelsea.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s Red Devils were shocked out of their wits by a bottom-placed Watford when they succumbed 0-2 at Vicarage Road on Sunday. Goals from Ismaila Sarr and Troy Deeney put paid to United’s revival hopes as they struggle to remain in the Top 8.
A fresh entrant into the Top half is Newcastle who moved to the 9th spot after beating Crystal Palace 1-0 at the St. James Park. Steve Bruce’s Magpies who struggled to stay out of the relegation zone in October have recovered dramatically to come to where they are presently.
Arsenal playing their last match under interim coach Freddie Ljungberg put up one of better away game performances at Goodison Park, holding Everton to a goalless draw. But the Gunners have slipped below the top half despite the draw, moving to the 11th spot while Burnley have broken into the top ten with an away win over Bournemouth.
Aston Villa are new entrants into the relegation zone after a 1-3 defeat to Southampton who have moved out of that territory to climb to the 17th spot. Watford’s surprise win over Manchester United hasn’t helped as they still languish at the bottom while Norwich City are still on the 19th after their loss to the Wolves.
Positions of teams on the points table after 18 games
|1||Liverpool (after 17 games)||49|
|16||West Ham (after 17 games)||19|