This week was always going to be a week of intense and exciting football with the likes of United playing Liverpool and Leicester facing off against Chelsea. In the rest of the article, I’ll be reviewing the top three games as it happened.
Manchester United 1 – 1 Liverpool
This game was always going to be a stunner of a game with both teams needing the three points to move up the league’s table. With Philippe Coutinho recovered and back from injury, put even more pressure on United’s defense line with the injuries of Eric Bailly and Chris Smalling. However, both teams didn’t live up to the hype and size of the occasion as Jose Mourinho said, “Not a high-quality game, I think both teams can do, and did during the season, much better than we did today in terms of the quality of our game.”
Manchester were unlucky with Paul Pogba’s handball in the box, which then turned into a goal with James Milner’s calm finish into the back of the net only in the 27th minute. Although, the red devils to be fair bullied the Liverpool side but were unfortunate and didn’t convert their chances with misses from Pogba and Mkhitaryan. Then with a superb save by Simon Mingolet from Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s ferocious free kick. Then came the breaking of the deadlock with scattered shots and unlucky rebounds for Liverpool, Ibrahimovic slotted away a header in Liverpool’s goal to equalize the scoring in the 84th minute.
Everton 4 – 0 Manchester City
This was the biggest defeat ever suffered by a Pep Guardiola side and summed up for football fans that money doesn’t always win. City, who have spent $440million pounds in the past three years, have always relied on money to succeed when the players and managers don’t have any time to build up chemistry and tactics because their either sold or there’s been a new player bought to replace them. However, Manchester were always on the downside with having to play Pablo Zabaleta in the defensive midfielder role instead of the normal full-back, due to injuries and suspensions to Illkay Gundogan, Fernando, and Fernandinho.
In the 34th minute, Romelu Lukaku opened the flood-gates from a beautiful assist by Kevin Mirallas. Mirallas once again was involved in Everton’s second goal of the night from a well-angled shot to beat Claudio Bravo. But all eyes were on Tom Davies, with the chip shot over Bravo’s head to crown him the best goal of the match. However, it wasn’t over just yet with a debut goal from 18-year-old Ademola Lookman in stoppage time to send City away with their biggest defeat all season.
Leicester City 0 – 3 Chelsea
Chelsea was going into this game with missing their main striker Costa, due to his absence from injury followed the Spaniard international being linked with a big-money move to the ambitious Chinese Super League.”It was a very professional, solid performance by us on the back of the Spurs game,” Chelsea defender Gary Cahill said. With the tensions high at the King Power stadium, both teams were eager to find a way to get those three points.
Early on in the game, Chelsea went with the tactic to send in crosses from all angles to give the Leicester defense chaos. Although, in the 6th minute Eden Hazard found a way to tee up the unmarked Marcus Alonso who was in the box to find a way past Kasper Schmeichel and make it 0-1. Then when the match went on and with all the changes of Chelsea’s attack line, was totally confusing City’s defense and again in the 51st minute found a way to drill a low free-kick from 18-yards out past Schmeichel to get his name down on the scoring sheet twice. But it wasn’t over there, because 20minutes later Pedro put the scoring to 0-3, as the Spaniard nodded in the third of the night to end the game.
In other games, Arsenal absolutely thumped Swansea City 4-0 to secure their position on the table, Tottenham white-washed West Brom in another 4-0 result and West Ham showed that they are still a brilliant team even without Payet as they beat Crystal Palace 3-0 at the London Stadium.
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