What did we be taught within the Premier League over the weekend?
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Right here’s a take a look at 10 issues that stood out, as our writers Joe Prince-Wright (JPW), Nick Mendola (NM) and Andy Edwards (AE) share their observations from throughout an abbreviated weekend of Premier League fixtures.
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Let’s get to it.
1. Bruno, Rashford make certain Crimson Devils don’t slip up (Man United 2-1 Brighton): Marcus Rashford scored his first Premier League purpose in 5 matches and simply his third PL marker of 2021 when he ran onto Bruno Fernandes’ via ball to tie the rating with a half-hour left versus a recreation Brighton facet at Previous Trafford, and each the well being and wealth of that mixture has been crucial to United’s runner-up standing. Fernandes and Rashford have performed in every of United’s 30 PL matches this season. Solely 5 instances has one or the opposite gone lower than 70 minutes. And there have solely been 10 events when neither has a purpose nor an help. United is 1W-6D-3L in these matches. When each get a purpose or an help? 11W-2D (NM).
2. Moyes, Lingard proceed revival tour (Wolves 2-3 West Ham): If there was ever an opportunity for an outside-the-box alternative for Supervisor of the 12 months, it’s this 12 months (Sure, even with Pep Guardiola’s Man Metropolis masterclass waltz to the title). David Moyes has picked up his profession from a dire, dire place and reinstated the Evertonian overachieving vibe that helped him change into a Manchester United boss. Lingard’s renaissance is almost as exceptional, the English playmaker trying nearly as good as he has in any interval of his profession after being thought-about an “Eh, I assume” mortgage signing from Previous Trafford. Lingard has six objectives and 4 assists in eight appearances for West Ham. That’s nuts (NM).
3. Sluggish Chelsea go down a person, then implode (Chelsea 2-5 West Brom): Thomas Tuchel’s facet began slowly and although they took the lead, he wasn’t proud of their show. Thiago Silva was despatched off within the first half (he may have gotten a pink for the primary yellow he picked up) and Jorginho, Timo Werner, and several other others have been means under par. Sure, they’ve simply returned from worldwide obligation, however Tuchel’s facet had conceded simply two objectives in 14 video games earlier than this abomination. This was a surprising Chelsea show — They made massive errors which have been ruthlessly uncovered. That strong defensive unit was completely lacking and the Blues fell aside once they went all the way down to 10 males (JPW)
4. Deja vu for Tottenham (Newcastle 2-2 Spurs): Tottenham has now dropped 15 factors from profitable positions, the third-most within the PL this season, and Spurs simply can’t shut video games out. The newest instance got here after Spurs took a 2-1 lead over the previously-moribund Magpies at St. James’ Park. Jose Mourinho retains altering his again 4 and the backs made a mistake for the primary purpose. Then it was too straightforward for Newcastle to swing in a cross, head down and end for the second. Spurs are caught in an odd psychological block in these kind of conditions and they aren’t studying from their errors. That may price them a high 4 end this season, as they didn’t profit from Chelsea’s slip-up and so they have some fairly powerful video games of their closing eight video games. They’re nonetheless in with an opportunity, however this was an enormous alternative missed. Once more (JPW)
5. Everton whiff on massive probability to shut high 4 hole (Everton 1-1 Crystal Palace): This can be a massive blow for Everton. They have been a couple of minutes away from going two factors off the highest 4 with a game-in-hand. All season lengthy they have inside one step of creating that massive leap into the highest 4. All season lengthy they’ve come up quick, particularly at dwelling. Carlo Ancelotti’s facet solely has itself guilty. They need to have received this recreation simply and after Chelsea and Tottenham dropped factors this weekend, this can be a large alternative missed (JPW).
6. Fulham flinches, loses twice (Aston Villa 3-1 Fulham): The relegation-worried Cottagers have been higher within the first half and went deservedly in entrance via Aleksandar Mitrovic, who would possibly’ve had a pair objectives on one other day by the point he put Fulham forward with a half-hour to play. However Fulham simply fell aside, maybe shocked a bit when Trezeguet scored his first purpose. Scott Parker’s males by no means actually discovered their footing regardless of forcing a pair of saves from Emiliano Martinez. And the late third purpose may makes the loss sting extra, as Fulham’s purpose differential benefit over Newcastle shrunk to 3 (NM).
7. Klopp is adapting, sure, however Fabinho and Jota extra useful (Arsenal 0-3 Liverpool): Liverpool has sorted out its defensive woes, no less than for now, keepers of three-straight clear sheets in wins over RB Leipzig, Wolves, and now Arsenal. The Reds, who’ve been fairly unfortunate this season in each bounces and fortune, entered the day permitting 8.5 shots-per-game. Solely Man Metropolis has allowed fewer.
However a deep dive into the statistics will probably be a worthwhile endeavor to dig into simply how Klopp has sorted out his protection regardless of accidents to Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez, and Joel Matip. The rising chemistry Ozan Kabak and Nathaniel Phillips has helped a bunch — the middle backs teaming up in all the aforementioned wins — however the midfield in entrance of them has taken a lot strain away from the children. Thiago Alcantara was sensational in opposition to Leipzig, profitable 7-of-10 floor duels, however Fabinho has been a pressure within the different two. On Saturday, he received 11-of-14 duels whereas making six tackles. Hazard? Snuffed out (NM).
8. Leicester Metropolis’s solely impediment is themselves (Leicester Metropolis 0-2 Man Metropolis): The Foxes didn’t have James Maddison prepared to start out after an extended damage absence, and so they’ll grasp their high 4 hats on three issues: His return, a four-point lead on the chasing pack, and an upcoming delicate portion of the fixture listing. After visiting top-four rivals West Ham subsequent week and internet hosting Southampton in an FA Cup semifinal on April 18, Leicester will meet West Brom, Crystal Palace, Southapton, and Newcastle earlier than their brutal run to complete the season. Brendan Rodgers can have his males firing ahead to deal with their enterprise earlier than ending with Man United, Chelsea, and Spurs. Any hiccup will recall final season, when the Foxes have been high 4 from Matchweeks 3 till 36, tumbling into the Europa League through a 1W-1D-3L run to complete the season which included a 4-1 loss to Bournemouth and no objectives in closing week losses to Spurs and United (NM).
8. Danny Ings comes again with bang (Southampton 3-2 Burnley): What a comeback from damage for Danny Ings, as he arrange one purpose, scored a tremendous solo effort, and was concerned in Saints’ third purpose. Ings, 28, has only one 12 months left on his contract and is needed by Manchester Metropolis and others, however he could keep at Saints. He would be the important man for his hometown membership, will play commonly, and when he’s match and firing on all cylinders he offers Southampton a wholly new dimension. Can Saints persuade him to signal a brand new deal this summer season (JPW)?
10. Concussions hamper Blades however present import of rule change (Leeds 2-1 Sheffield United): George Baldock got here off as Sheffield United’s first concussion sub simply earlier than halftime, and thank goodness that the Premier League now permits a fourth substitute as a result of Jayden Bogle regarded even worse off than Baldock when he left with an obvious head damage within the 73rd minute. It additionally reveals how a lot of a non-controversy the concussion sub rule is to the PL. Positive, somebody may abuse it, however it will be really shameful and certain punished in a agency method. It simply is sensible and at all times has as a result of, , human brains (NM).