The Premier League eased into Christmas with very few shocks on Friday and Saturday.
Liverpool and Arsenal played out a classic 3-3 draw at the Emirates. Liverpool sped into a 2-0 lead with goals from Philippe Coutinho and Mohamed Salah before Arsenal stormed back after half-time to go 3-2 ahead. Alexis Sanchez, Granit Xhaka and Mesut Ozil looked like they’d given Arsenal all three points but Roberto Firmino scored Liverpool’s third to share the points.
Champions, albeit only in name, Chelsea travelled up to Goodison Park on Saturday lunchtime to be met by a well drilled Everton defence. The 0-0 draw meant Sam Allardyce remains unbeaten since taking over Everton.
In the late kick-off, Jose Mourinho was left bemoaning his players once more as they failed to close out a 2-1 lead at Leicester City. Jamie Vardy’s 50th Premier League goal had been cancelled out by two Juan Mata strikes, but it was an injury-time equaliser from Harry Maguire that saw United slip further behind Manchester City.
Pep Guardiola can be very pleased with his side’s pre-Christmas performance. They now lead the table by a mammoth 13 points after just 19 matches. Manchester City beat Bournemouth 4-0, including a brace from “sad” Sergio Aguero. The defeat leaves Bournemouth in the relegation zone having conceded 8 in their last two matches.
Harry Kane equalled Alan Shearer’s Premier League record of 36 goals in a calendar year with a hat-trick away at Burnley. Dele Alli was the subject of controversy once more in Tottenham Hotspur’s 3-0 win, earning an early yellow card for a poor challenge before tumbling in the area to earn a penalty. The win moves Tottenham back into 5th place.
Watford’s season looks like it might be in freefall as they lost again, 1-0 away to Brighton. They have dropped to 10th but are bottom on current form.
Charlie Austin scored again for Southampton in their 1-1 draw with Huddersfield Town but left the field with a hamstring injury that rules him out for the rest of the festive period.
Mark Hughes “saved” his job with a 3-1 win over West Bromwich Albion. Stoke City’s win moves them three points above the relegation zone in 14th place whereas WBA are now second bottom with 14 points.
Below them are Swansea City who saw Leon Britton take caretaker charge for the first time against Crystal Palace. Swansea battled back from a goal down to take a 1-1 draw. Palace remain in 16th, two points from safety.
Below them are West Ham United who have been in better form recently. However, that came to an end in a 3-2 loss at home to Newcastle United, themselves in need of a change in form. Andre Ayew scored but missed a penalty for the Hammers who are just one point above Bournemouth.