Another festive Matchday of the English Top-Flight has whistled by in the blink of an eye and it’s now time to look back at all of Game week’ 20’s action as Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City marched on and David Moyes’ Irons were denied late on at the Vitality Stadium.
Hat-Trick Harry Inspires Spurs Romp
Harry Kane netted a hat-trick on his way to smashing the record for most PL goals in a calendar year as his side and Mauricio Pellegrino’s Southampton were involved in a seven-goal thriller at Wembley Stadium.
The hosts, also under a Mauricio, Pochettino, first took the lead on 22 minutes through Kane, an advantage that he doubled before the break, leaving two goals in the space of three minutes from Dele Alli and Son Heung-min to make it four.
Kane would seal his hat-trick with a deft finish a short while later, this came moments after Sofiane Boufal had pulled a goal back for the visitors, they would trouble the scorers once more, late on as Dusan Tadic struck from range, a mere consolation.
Tottenham remained in fifth position after the three points with their fourth win in five matches, whereas, the Saints fell to 14th and will have one eye over their shoulder at the bottom currently.
Lack-Lustre United Scrape Clarets Point
Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United relied on an added-time equaliser from Jesse Lingard to draw 2-2 with Sean Dyche’s Burnley on Tuesday afternoon at Old Trafford in an entertaining affair.
Ashley Barnes gave the away side a surprise lead early on with a low finish from close-range and a quite spectacular free-kick from Steven Defour made it two to the surprise of 75,000 fans on 36 minutes.
Another moment of brilliance, this time coming in the form of a fancy Lingard flick pulled one back for the home side the other side of half-time although it would take them until the 91st to level as the Englishman volleyed from the centre of the box.
A point for United sees them slip even further behind in the Title race, now a full 15 points off their dearest rivals at the very top of the Table, meanwhile, Burnley’s magnificent start shows no signs of letting up as they occupy seventh.
Blues Sail Past Seagulls In West London
Antonio Conte’s Chelsea continued their impressive run of form by making Chris Hughton’s Brighton & Hove Albion their latest victims at Stamford Bridge at the same time.
After a half of dominance, their two goals arrived in the second period, the first coming courtesy of Spanish forward Alvaro Morata, who has proved quite a Fox in the box so far, this campaign.
Free-scoring full-back Marcos Alonso popped up with the home side’s second to seal the deal on the hour-mark, ensuring that the Seagulls head into the New Year without a single win on the road to show for their efforts.
The West Londoners remained in third position and are presently a single point behind the Red Devils as they creep up on them, the side from the South Coast can still be found further down the Standings, 12th position.
Happy Hornets Stop The Rot At Home
Marco Silva’s Watford picked up their first League victory since late November three days ago, edging past Leicester City under Frenchman Claude Puel at Vicarage Road.
It had looked like it would be another miserable afternoon for the Hertfordshire club when a rare headed goal by Riyad Mahrez put the visitors in front during the first-half.
But, Silva’s men roared back at them through a first PL goal for defender Molla Wague and an unfortunate own-goal by Kasper Schmeichel forced by Abdoulaye Doucoure, giving them the three points.
As a result, the Hornets managed to stay in the very middle of the Table, while the Foxes stayed in eighth place, both sides continuing to battle for the low top-half positions as 2018 dawns.
Points Shared In Hawthorns Stadium Stalemate
In what was surely one of Boxing Day’s lesser entertaining matchup’s, Alan Pardew’s West Bromwich Albion were embroiled in a goalless draw with Everton.
Both teams had their fair share chances throughout the tie, Salomon Rondon and Craig Dawson coming the closest for the home side, on the day to their excruciating run without a win was extended to 18 matches.
The biggest highlight for the Toffees was the return of Yannick Bolasie who has been out of action for over a year with injury, as they managed to remain unbeaten since the arrival of Sam Allardyce as Manager.
A point for the baggies means that they remain in deep slumber, sitting 19th and now a full three points from the safety that lies above the drop zone, the Blue Boys of Merseyside have no such problems and can be found lying comfortably in ninth place.
Terriers Held By Potters In Yorkshire
Mark Hughes’ Stoke City frustrated David Wagner’s Huddersfield Town to leave the John Smith’s Stadium with a point for their troubles in a clash that was also played out a day after Christmas.
The Yorkshire team had been put a goal ahead after just ten minutes by Tom Ince’s first goal in blue & white, however, they were made to pay in the wake of not taking their chances.
The man who grabbed the equaliser must be feeling like Premier League goals are Buses at the moment, his first, after over a year in England, coming in last weekend’s victory over WBA, swiftly followed by his second to ensure that the encounter finished all-square.
The draw leaves the Terriers sitting pretty in mid-table, 12th to be precise in the wake of a superb start to their first ever PL campaign, whilst the Potters have been lifted out of immediate danger and currently occupy 13th on 20 points.
Controversial Wilson Saves Cherries In Vitality Thriller
AFC Bournemouth dramatically came back in added-time to stake their claim on a point on the South Coast in Tuesday’s final afternoon kick-off, a clash with West Ham United that had just about everything.
The visitors opened the scoring with a mere seven minutes on the clock, James Collins heading home from a corner, before Dan Gosling lashed a volley to equalise, Simon Francis and Josh King were both lucky to stay on the field just before the break.
But, Eddie Howe’s men rode their luck to go ahead through Nathan Ake on 57, leaving star man Marko Arnautovic to net a quick-fire double capitalising on two Asmir Begovic errors, however, there would be one last twist of fate, with Callum Wilson making it 3-3 with his arm from an offside position in the dying embers.
A point apiece was enough to see the two outfits remain in their respective places within the Table, the Cherries are still just inside the bottom three with the Hammers just above it, Howe’s men are winless in eight League games after the fortunate draw.
Five-Star Reds Trounce Sorry Swans
Later that day, a match with a little more conviction to it was played out at the famous Anfield, as Jurgen Klopp’s Reds thrashed Leon Britton’s Swans in trademark style live on Sky Sports.
Surprisingly, only one of Liverpool’s five strikes would arrive during the first period and this came courtesy of a stunning Philippe Coutinho effort, although Roberto Firmino did make it two just after the restart.
Two goals in under two minutes from the hosts put to bed any suggestion of a Swansea comeback, Trent Alexander-Arnold grabbing his first league goal and Firmino getting his second, before Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain rounded things off nicely later.
The resounding win kept the Red Half of Merseyside just inside that top four and one point ahead of Tottenham Hotspur, in contrast, the Welsh side are now two points adrift at the very bottom of the Table and face a huge uphill struggle to survival.
Sterling Finish Continues City Run
In Wednesday night’s only slice of action live on Sky, Guardiola’s Citizens paid Rafa Benitez’s Newcastle Unite a visit at St James’ Park and the story would be very much the same for Europe’s second-highest scorers this season.
Though they did manage to get their hands on an 18th successive League win, a resolute showing from the hosts’ back line would make them work for it as they dug in to avoid being on the end of a trademark thrashing from Blue Moon.
Their plan did somewhat work as the away side hit the post three times aside from the match’s definitive moment, Kevin De Bruyne playing in Raheem Sterling to finish low off the post send into the back of the net mid-way through the first period.
The Sky Blues’ lead at the very summit of the standings now seems unassailable as they soar towards the New Year, 15 points ahead of the chasing pack, whilst the situation is very different for the Toon, they managed to stay 15th, a point above the dreaded bottom three.
Three-Star Gunners Down Helpless Eagles
Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal ended Crystal Palace’s run of eight PL games unbeaten at Selhurst Park live on Sky Sports at Selhurst Park, in the final of Match Week 20’s encounters.
Shkodran Mustafi gave the visitors the lead early on with a neat finish from a tight angle, Andros Townsend levelling things up just before half-time with an even neater one.
However, the affair was given a totally new complexion a short while after that as Chilean sensation Alexis Sanchez netted twice in the space of four minutes to give his team breathing space, before James Tomkins headed home in added-time, not enough for the hosts to come back, however.
A rare defeat for Roy Hodgson’s men saw them remain in 16th position, a mere point above 18th place, at the other end of the Table, three points were enough to keep Arsenal level on points with their North London rivals above, they’re sixth.
So, now that all of the spoils and thrills from yet another action-packed Game Week of the League that we all know, and love have been well and truly reviewed, there is little rest bite for the English Top-Flight over the next few days as it duly returns on Saturday afternoon.