Leicester – Manchester City 4-2, Swansea – Sunderland 3-0, Liverpool – West Ham 2-212th Dec 2016 |
It has been quite an eventful weekend on the island of football. Both for the top teams and the bottom teams there has been a lot at stake as we are seeing the table roughly as it will be in May. What is more, we have had two games between rivals where the results gave both huge bragging rights and an advantage in the competition on table positions.
Good results in the bottom…
Out of the eight lowest placed teams in the Premier League, only two of them ended up without points this weekend. The most talked about result is obviously the one between Leicester and Manchester City, where the ruling champions ended up winning 4-2. That means that they are now four points clear of the relegation zone. Two of the teams in that zones, Swansea and Sunderland, faced each other in Wales on Saturday, and it became clear why Sunderland are on the bottom of the league. The Welshmen ended up winning 3-0, a very poor result for Sunderland. No one will be surprised to see them in The Championship next season, a fact will make Newcastle’s probable promotion to the Premier League even sweeter for the black and white part of Tyne and Wear. Two hot candidates for relegation, Hull and Crystal Palace met to finish 3-3 while West Ham managed to get one point against Liverpool. This means that Slaven Bilic’s men are now one point clear of the relegation zone.… is bad for some on the top
Three points to Leicester and one point to West Ham is bad news for their opponents, Manchester City and Liverpool. Without three points for either of them, Arsenal and Chelsea now has a very small breathing space at the top of the league after victories against Stoke and West Bromwich. The fact that Manchester United took three points against Tottenham, at fifth place, means that they have fallen considerably behind in the struggle for the league title as well. They might not have had very high hopes for that one, but they are also falling behind Arsenal. This means that the spectre of St. Totteringhams day is coming ever closer. The top two teams in The Championship have also done their job good. Newcastle’s 4-0 victory over Birmingham and Brighton’s 2-0 victory over Leeds has given them a nice space down to the third place.
Two rival classics
Rival games are what keeps British football the finest in the world, and we had two of the most traditional ones this weekend. Hearts came to see Glasgow Rangers at Ibrox this Saturday, and the tables has of course turned over the last years with the bankruptcy and forced relegation of Rangers. But the latter’s historical dominance seems to go on, and a 2-0 victory means that Rangers are now five points clear of Hearts from their second place. Another team that keeps their dominating place against their rival is Derby County. The East Midlands derby is one of the most intense in English football, and there was no exception this time. We could see this very well after only nine minutes, when only fellow teammates kept Derby’s Bradley Johnson from giving Nottingham’s Ben Osborn a good old pub beating. Nicklas Bendtner scored an own goal, and only the post kept him from scoring another one. The end result was 3-0, and anyone who tries to say that the result is unflattering for Forest is lying.