PL hits and misses: Jordan Pickford stars, Man Metropolis’s crowd step up, Arsenal’s massive probability and Leeds on the brink

PL hits and misses: Jordan Pickford stars, Man City's crowd step up, Arsenal's big chance and Leeds on the brink

Man Metropolis crowd performed its half

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Manchester Metropolis’s win in opposition to Newcastle within the Premier League

From the second that the ultimate whistle went in Madrid, ideas turned to this fixture and what that sapping defeat within the Spanish capital may imply for Manchester Metropolis’s prospects of retaining the Premier League title. Newcastle on Sunday took on totally different perspective.

And but, the temper within the stands was supportive from the outset. It felt prefer it had been helped by the consequence at Anfield the earlier night. That information that Metropolis have been now not in a win-or-bust situation took slightly of the sting out of it. There was freedom.

Newcastle supervisor Eddie Howe appeared nearly disillusioned about that in his press convention after the sport. “I believed the gang have been superb for them, it was an excellent ambiance.” He might need sensed a chance, however the temper was totally different.

Pep Guardiola picked up on it. “Within the locker room, more often than not we speak about our away followers. After we play away they’re good. Typically I say now we have to play good [at home] to allow them to know at this time this isn’t a pleasant place to come back.” That wasn’t essential on Sunday.

The tempo was excessive from the beginning, the gang urging their group on. Maybe the Manchester Metropolis supporters sensed that their gamers wanted them. The consequence was a 5-0 victory that settles the nerves and units them on the best way to a fourth title in 5 seasons.
Adam Bate

Newcastle’s reminder of the hole

The Newcastle followers on the Etihad Stadium have been in social gathering temper all through, chiding the house help with reminders of their Champions League exit and gleefully declaring that, following their very own takeover, Metropolis could now not have the richest homeowners in soccer.

The consequence on the pitch confirmed that whereas the hole in potential of those two golf equipment has been slashed, the gulf within the high quality of the groups stays. Newcastle have work to do on the coaching floor and within the switch market, one thing Eddie Howe was eager to emphasize.

“There’s a large hole between us and Liverpool and Metropolis, however there may be that very same hole between them and a lot of the golf equipment within the Premier League,” mentioned the Newcastle supervisor in his press convention after his group’s 5-0 defeat. “Now we have to attempt to shut that hole.”

That journey is a purpose for Newcastle supporters to be excited. They’ll simply must be affected person. “That needs to be evolution not revolution as a result of now we have to watch out to not change an excessive amount of too shortly. It needs to be small, gradual steps to enhance the group.”
Adam Bate

Can Arsenal take their massive probability?

Arsenal took an enormous step in the direction of securing Champions League soccer for subsequent season with a 2-1 win over 10-man Leeds, however they did not make issues simple for themselves.

The nerves have been jangling on the Emirates Stadium as Leeds seemed the extra doubtless of the 2 sides in the direction of the tip of the sport. Arsenal have been the facet holding on.

However maintain on they did, and now they take a four-point result in Tottenham on Thursday for what is a large north London derby on the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

The Gunners now know a win on the dwelling of their rivals would safe them a return to the Champions League for the primary time since 2016, and it is a massive probability for them to take any nerves that may be there on this run-in out of the equation.

Thursday twelfth Might 7:00pm

Kick off 7:45pm

To a sure extent, the strain is off Arsenal heading into Thursday’s sport, which is dwell on Sky Sports activities. Spurs must win to maintain their top-four hopes alive, and that might play into the arms of Mikel Arteta’s facet.

A lot has been product of Arsenal being a younger facet, and simply as we noticed in opposition to Leeds, the nerves are by no means removed from the floor, particularly at this the enterprise finish of the season.

Arsenal’s remaining fixtures…

  • Thursday – Tottenham (a), dwell on Sky Sports activities
  • Might 16 – Newcastle (a), dwell on Sky Sports activities
  • Might 22 – Everton (h)

Nonetheless, they’ve an enormous alternative to get the job accomplished, and it is going to be even sweeter in the event that they handle do it on the dwelling of their north London rivals.
Oliver Yew

Watch Tottenham vs Arsenal dwell on Sky Sports activities from 7pm on Thursday; kick off 7.45pm.

No European hangover for Hammers

Said Benrahma is congratulated by team-mates after giving West Ham a 3-0 lead at Norwich
Mentioned Benrahma is congratulated by team-mates after scoring his second within the win over Norwich

West Ham might have been forgiven for nursing a European hangover after the disappointing method of their midweek Europa League semi-final loss at Eintracht Frankfurt.

However this Hammers squad underneath David Moyes has a steely focus and a unique kind of resilience about it – and it comes immediately from the supervisor.

The Hammers made two adjustments from the facet that have been crushed in Germany, and each had a decisive influence at Carrow Highway.

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from West Ham’s win in opposition to Norwich within the Premier League

Vladimir Coufal changed Ben Johnson, and he mixed with Jarrod Bowen to offer Norwich a torrid afternoon – Bowen ended up with a hat-trick of assists, taking his tally for the season to 10 and changing into the primary West Ham participant to notch not less than 10 targets and 10 assists since Paolo Di Canio within the 1999/00 season.

Mentioned Benrahma, who got here in for Tomas Soucek, scored twice, as Moyes received his group choice spot on. There was even a chance at hand Mark Noble a run out off the bench on his thirty fifth birthday.

Sunday fifteenth Might 1:00pm

Kick off 2:00pm

An emphatic 4-0 win at Carrow Highway, coupled with Manchester United’s embarrassing defeat by the identical scoreline at Brighton has left the door open for West Ham to grab sixth place and qualify for the Europa League once more subsequent season.

United, who’re three factors forward of West Ham, might be cheering on bitter rivals Manchester Metropolis subsequent weekend after they journey to the London Stadium for what might now show a pivotal sport in each the race for the title, and the race for a spot in subsequent season’s Europa League.
Dev Trehan

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Arsenal’s win in opposition to Leeds within the Premier League

Time working out for spirited Leeds

Luke Ayling is sent off at the Emirates
Luke Ayling is shipped off on the Emirates

At 2-0 down and with 10 males, the sport seemed up for Leeds United on the Emirates Stadium.

It appeared prefer it was time for injury limitation for Jesse Marsch’s facet, who needed to play for simply over an hour with 10 males after Luke Ayling’s senseless purple card.

Nonetheless, with the chances stacked in opposition to them, Leeds put in a vastly spirited second-half show, grabbed a purpose by Diego Llorente, they usually put Arsenal underneath vital strain in the direction of the tip of the sport as they looked for an equaliser that will hand them what appeared like an unlikely level after 27 minutes of the sport.

Arsenal have been the facet hanging on by the tip.

Leeds’ remaining fixtures…

  • Might 11 – Chelsea (h), dwell on Sky Sports activities
  • Might 15 – Brighton (h)
  • Might 22 – Brentford (a)

Nonetheless, that’s no comfort for Leeds, who additionally produced a spirited show of their 4-0 defeat to Man Metropolis.

After all, Leeds want spirit. “The combat and dedication we noticed within the second half, we want,” mentioned Marsch after the sport.” However in addition they want outcomes.

Leeds, who host Chelsea on Wednesday, dwell on Sky Sports activities (kick-off 7.30pm), have now suffered back-to-back defeats in opposition to Man Metropolis and Leeds and with the outcomes of Everton and Burnley in current weeks, they now discover themselves in drop zone for the primary time since October 30.

With simply three video games to go, time is beginning to run out for spirited Leeds.
Oliver Yew

Pickford main Everton out of bother

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Everton’s draw in opposition to Leicester Metropolis

Because it stands, Jordan Pickford’s saves are maintaining Everton within the Premier League. There are methods of dressing issues up, however that is the underside line over the previous two weekends. Two video games, six factors earned with loads of grit and dedication from the ten outfield Everton gamers.

However when the again line has been breached, one man has stood tall, defied his critics and has underlined his standing as the most effective English goalkeeper within the nation.

Coinciding with Everton’s enchancment has been a noticeable shift in the direction of a much less possession-based model that has began at Pickford’s toes, together with his extra direct distribution paying dividends. Pickford’s 17 passes into the ultimate third was greater than some other team-mate.

Goalkeepers are there to make saves, however generally they haven’t any proper to take action. Like final weekend, when Cesar Azpilicueta was left speechless at Pickford’s reactions.

Pickford has taken on a more direct approach
Pickford has taken on a extra direct method

And once more, on the King Energy Stadium, on three separate events to make sure Everton received over the road for a primary away league win since August. Nampalys Mendy remains to be awaiting his first Leicester purpose and he cannot have hit a cleaner strike that his bending effort from vary that Pickford clawed across the submit.

“Harvey Barnes was subsequent to be thwarted by the Everton goalkeeper’s sharp instincts twice within the house of three minutes. Roy Keane described Pickford’s time-wasting antics lately as “disgraceful” however mentioned he understood why the ways have been employed – he is a person without end underneath the microscope typically unfairly – however there will be nothing however reward right here.

Seven saves in complete to tug his membership out of the relegation zone – with a sport in hand on Burnley and Leeds. Again-to-back wins for Everton for the primary time since September, and because the 3,339 travelling supporters continued to sing Spirit of the Blues lengthy after the ultimate whistle from their seats – no man embodied such spirit as Jordan Pickford.
Ben Grounds

Leicester’s nook woes proceed

It is a acquainted story for Leicester. They can not defend corners.

Mason Holgate’s headed winner for Everton on the King Energy on Sunday was the 56th league purpose Leicester have conceded this season. Fifteen have come from corners, probably the most by a facet in a single marketing campaign since Brighton in 2017/18 (16).

Mason Holgate celebrates after restoring Everton's lead at Leicester
Mason Holgate restored Everton’s lead on half-hour after Leicester did not take care of one other nook

Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers mentioned it had been a “drawback all season” after Roma striker Tammy Abraham’s purpose dumped his facet out of the Europa Convention League on Thursday evening – and it price them once more three days later.

“It is changing into very irritable,” Rodgers mentioned. “We have tried every little thing. I’ve checked out it by way of the profile of participant now we have. We put in an additional centre-half to deal with these moments and altered the system for that.

“However we lack that focus and dedication to defend it and in case you maintain doing that, you undo a whole lot of your good work and that is the way it’s been for us too many instances this season.”

Leicester’s season is now vulnerable to petering out. Their final win in all competitions got here at PSV Eindhoven eight video games in the past, whereas their 10-match unbeaten dwelling run was ended by an Everton facet battling to keep away from relegation.

A top-10 end is the most effective the Foxes can hope for, but when they’re to return to European soccer and hit the heights of earlier years, Rodgers might want to work out the right way to remedy an issue that has been his group’s Achilles’ heel time and time once more.
Dan Sansom

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