In Saturday’s games, Spurs again took advantage of the early kick off to put Chelsea under pressure for their Sunday visit to Old Trafford by temporarily cutting their lead at the top of the Premier League to 4 points, when they beat Bournemouth 4-nil. This was their second consecutive home win of that magnitude, with goals from Moussa Dembele, Son Heung-min, Harry Kane and Vincent Jannsen.
Crystal Palace pulled back a 2 goal deficit to Leicester City, who led through goals from Robert Huth and Jamie Vardy, to draw 2-all with finishes from Yohan Cabaye and Christian Benteke.
Everton were 3-1 victors at home to Burnley, strikes from Phil Jagielka and Romelu Lukaku being added to by a Ben Mee own goal, eventually overcoming Sam Vokes’ equalising penalty for Burnley.
Stoke City defeated Hull City 3-1, Peter Crouch and Xherdan Shaqiri scoring after Harry Maguire had cancelled out Marko Arnautovic’s opener for Stoke.
Sunderland drew a see-saw game with West Ham when, after Andre Ayew’s opener for West Ham, Wahbi Khazri equalised for Sunderland, James Collins restored West Ham’s lead early in the second half, and Fabio Borini scored Sunderland’s equaliser at the end.
Watford won their game with Swansea 1-nil, courtesy of Etienne Capoue’s strike. Manchester City were 3-nil victors away at Southampton, courtesy of second half goals from Vincent Company, Leroy Sane, and Sergio Aguero.
In Sunday’s games Liverpool won 1-nil at West Bromwich Albion with the lone goal being scored by Roberto Firmino in first half injury time, whilst Chelsea suffered a 2-nil defeat against Manchester United goals coming from Marcus Rashford and Ander Herrera.
Arsenal face Middlesbrough on Monday night.
In the title race and qualification for the Champions League by finishing in the top 4 positions, Chelsea lead the table with 75 points from 32 matches, with Spurs 2nd with 71 points from the same games, Liverpool 3rd with 66 points from 33 games, Manchester City 4th with 64 points from 32 games, Manchester United 5th on 60 points from 31 games, Everton 6th with 57 points from 33 games, and Arsenal 7th with 54 points from 30 games.
Despite their defeat to Manchester United, Chelsea are still favourites to lift the Premier League title as they need 5 wins from 6 games remaining, with one of those featuring top 7 opposition against Everton.
In the relegation battle, Crystal Palace are now 15th with 35 points from 32 matches, with Bournemouth 16th on 35 points from 33 games, Hull City 17th on 30 points from 33 games, Swansea 18th with 28 points from 33 matches, Middlesbrough 19th with 24 points from 31 games, and Sunderland 20th with 21 points from 32 games. It now appears that its likely that Hull City and Swansea will be battling to avoid joining the last two in the drop into the Championship, unless there is some dramatic change in performance and fortune.
Allan Jackson has been involved in soccer for more than 40 years as a player, referee, administrator and freelance writer.