Super City Eight Points Clear While Bottom Half Remains Tight
Manchester City remain eight points clear at the top of the Premier League table but were forced to come from behind to earn their points against Huddersfield Town, while other clubs also piled on the pressure with victories over the weekend.
The Citizens fell behind in first half added-time when Nicolas Otamendi put through his own net. Sergio Aguero’s penalty drew them level shortly after half-time before Raheem Sterling netted the winner with six minutes left. Huddersfield winger Rajiv van la Parra was shown a red card after the final whistle as tempers flared between he and Leroy Sane, who was shown a yellow card.
Manchester United were also forced to work hard for their three points against a newly promoted side. Brighton and Hove Albion were unbeaten in five games before their trip to Old Trafford and perhaps deserved a bit more than the 1-0 defeat. The Seagulls held on until the final fifteen minutes when Ashley Young’s strike deflected off Lewis Dunk and looped over goalkeeper Matt Ryan.
Arsenal leapfrogged North London rivals Tottenham Hotspur into fourth place following a last-gasp win at Burnley. The game seemed destined for a bore draw until James Tarkowski shoved Aaron Ramsey in the penalty area, allowing Alex Sanchez to score deep into injury time.
Spurs’ inconsistent form at Wembley Stadium continued as they could only draw against a West Bromwich Albion without a manager following the sacking of Tony Pulis. The Baggies, taken charge by interim manager Gary Megson, just four minutes in through striker Salomon Rondon’s goal. Harry Kane equalised with fifteen minutes remaining but manager Mauricio Pochettino believes the Lilywhites are now out of the title race. Meanwhile, West Brom are in talks with Alan Pardew to replace Pulis.
Like West Brom, Everton are without a manager but are finding times tough under interim boss David Unsworth. The Toffees were comprehensively beaten 4-1 at Southampton, despite Gylfi Sigurdsson equalising after Dusan Tadic had put the Saints ahead. Charlie Austin netted a brace within the space of six second half minutes before Steven Davis added a fourth late on. Everton seem no closer to appointing a new manager five weeks after the sacking of Ronald Koeman. Fresh reports of talks with Sam Allardyce surfaced on Monday afternoon but a move for the former England boss still seems unlikely.
Watford continue to impress under Marco Silva and earned an excellent 3-0 victory at Newcastle United. A well worked first goal saw Will Hughes score for the second successive game, before Deandre Yedlin deflected Marvin Zeegelaar’s cross into his own net. Andre Gray slid home the third in the second half but could have had another just moments before but he scuffed wide when one-on-one with Rob Elliott.
Crystal Palace’s good home form is edging them closer to safety. Their 2-1 victory against Stoke City means they are now just three points from safety. Mamadou Sakho’s injury time minute winner gave the Eagles their second league victory of the season and came after Ruben Loftus-Cheek had cancelled out Xherdan Shaqiri’s goal.
Meanwhile, David Moyes earned a point in his first home game as West Ham United boss. The Hammers drew 1-1 with Leicester City but remain in the relegation zone. Marc Albrighton opened the scoring for the Foxes just seven minutes in, taking advantage of several individual mistakes from West Ham defenders to convert Jamie Vardy’s cross. Cheikhou Kouyate equalised on the stroke of half-time, heading in via Danny Simpson’s shoulder.
Mohamed Salah scored in his first appearance against Chelsea since leaving the Blues in 2016. The Liverpool forward opened the scoring against his former side in the 1-1 draw, before Willian’s cross-cum-shot found the corner of Simon Mignolet’s goal.
Swansea City earned a much needed point as they aim to keep up with the rest of the teams at the bottom of the table. Their goalless draw against AFC Bournemouth slightly eases pressure on boss Paul Clement but they remain two points from safety and face Chelsea and Manchester City within their next four games.