Leicester City’s poor home run at the King Power stadium continued when they went down to title-holders Manchester City 0-1 on Saturday. Brendan Rodgers’ Foxes have won just one of their 6 outings at the venue which was once considered their fortress. Prime scorer Jamie Vardy missed a golden opportunity to put his side forward in the first half when he blotched an absolute sitter. Vardy had the City goalkeeper Edison completely beaten and just had to put the ball into a vacant net, but instead hit the outside of the post with the ball rolling away. Sergie Aguero missed a penalty in the second half when he shot his spot kick straight at Leicester goal-keeper Kasper Schmeichel but Gabriel Jesus gave City the winning goal in the 80th minute. The hosts had to bear the brunt of some strange inaction on the part of VAR (Video Assisted Referee). James Maddison’s free-kick in the first half clearly hit Kevin De Bruyne’s arm and Ederson took out Kelechi Iheanacho inside the box, but the VAR chose to overlook both these infractions. City after Saturday’s win are 7 points ahead of Leicester City’s tally of 50, but the latter still look safe in the 3rd place being 6 points ahead of 4th placed Chelsea. Liverpool look unassailable at the top with 76 points, 19 clear of Manchester City, what with one more fixture with West Ham to go.
Chelsea moved 4 points adrift of Tottenham when they overcame Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham 2-1 at Stamford Bridge and remain ensconced in the Top Four of the EPL table. The Blues first goal came in as early as the 15th minute of play when Olivier Giroud, who came in for Michy Batshuayi, fired low past Spurs keeper Hugo Lloris after Ross Barkley’s shot hit the post. Defender Marcos Alonso got into the scoresheet three minutes after the interval when he converted a perfect pass from Mason Mount. Spurs without their key forwards Son Heung-min and Harry Kane looked toothless and things could have got even worse for them as Giovani lo Celso survived a send-off after a dreadful second-half challenge on Chelsea captain Cesar Azpilicueta. Mourinho’s side gave themselves late hope when Erik Lamela’s shot deflected off Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger for an own goal but nothing changes the fact that Frank Lampard’s men were worthy winners.
Sheffield missed an opportunity to leapfrog Manchester United and Tottenham to the 5th spot when they drew with bottom-half club Brighton 1-1. Enda Stevens’ rasping finish put the Blades in control against Brighton in the 26th minute of play but the lead was short-lived as Neal Maupay marked his return to the starting line-up with a headed equalizer just four minutes later. Sheffield are now in the 7th place with 40 points, one ahead of 8th placed Wolves who added three points after their 3-0 win over bottom-placed Norwich City.
Manchester United moved to within 3 points of Chelsea’s 44 when they demolished Watford 3-0 at Old Trafford on Sunday. Goals from £47m January signing Bruno Fernandes, Anthony Martial and Mason Greenwood completed the rout as United leapt to the 5th place with 41 points. Arsenal pipped Everton out of the Top ten when they beat Everton 3-2 in a thrilling encounter at the Emirates stadium on Sunday. The game began in spectacular fashion when some terrible Arsenal defending allowed Dominic Calvert-Lewin to essay an overhead kick from a Gylfi Sigurdsson free-kick after just 49 seconds from the commencement. Eddie Nketiah brought parity for the Gunners, side-footing a volley from substitute Bukayo Saka’s superb left-wing cross. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored twice, including the winner thus taking his personal tally to 19 goals for the season and an impressive 60 in 95 games for the Gunners. Richarlison capitalized on yet one more Gunners defensive frailty to poke Everton level at the stroke of half-time but Aubameyang headed the home the winner just 26 seconds after the break. The win means Arsenal remain unbeaten in 2020 and gives them back-to-back league victories for the first time since the opening two matches of the campaign. Everton have dropped to the 11th place after the defeat at Emirates, one behind Burnley who have moved into the top 10 after a string of good performances. Sean Dyche’s men have had their best phase in the Premier League so far, winning four of their 5 previous fixtures. Their 3-0 win over Bournemouth has taken them to equal points with 9th placed Arsenal’s 37.
Southampton and Crystal Palace still remain out of the Top 10 despite weekend wins overs Aston Villa and Newcastle respectively while West Ham were pushed below to relegation territory after their 0-2 loss to Manchester City in a mid-week fixture. They have company at the bottom in the 19th and 20th places in the form of Watford and Norwich City.
Team standings with points on the Premier League table after 27 games