Friday, April 19, 2019

Premier League Review – Matchday 12

Deke Hardman in Editorial, English Premier League 15 Nov 2018

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Ahead of the final international break of the year, Manchester City top the Premier League after beating rivals Manchester United at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday.

David Silva, who was donning the captain’s armband in the absence of Vincent Kompany opened the scoring on twelve minutes with Sergio Aguero adding a second shortly after the break.

An Anthony Martial penalty just before the hour mark sparked memories of last season’s corresponding fixture where Jose Mourinho’s men came from two-down to win though a late effort from substitute Ilkay Gundogan made sure the points were City’s, with Pep Guardiola’s side returning to first place having been temporarily leapfrogged by Liverpool.

Sacked

The Reds beat Fulham by two goals to nil, and while the Cottagers put up somewhat of a fight, the result was enough to see Slavisa Jokanovic dismissed as manager with Claudio Ranieri announced as his replacement on Wednesday.

The Italian famously took Leicester City to unprecedented glory just three seasons ago and the odds of him clinching the title this season are the same as they were the Foxes – 5000/1.

Chelsea made sure that it would be three sides who remain unbeaten with, to all intents and purposes a third of the season played though they only managed to draw 0-0 with Everton while Arsenal were also held – Wolverhampton Wanderers claiming a share of the spoils at the Emirates Stadium.

Vital

Saturday’s action kicked off at the Cardiff City Stadium where an injury-time goal from Sol Bamba clinched victory for the Bluebirds against Brighton and Hove Albion.

Lewis Dunk gave the Seagulls an early lead only for Callum Paterson to level on twenty-eight minutes while the visitors were reduced to ten shortly after with Dale Stephens being shown a straight red card.

The result was not enough to see Neil Warnock’s side climb out of the relegation zone, though they do move above Huddersfield Town after they only managed to draw against West Ham United.

Newcastle United are winning Premier League games like people wait for London busses – after seeing two wins coming in quick succession having waited an age for their first.

Two first-half strikes from Salomon Rondon were enough to clinch the result for Rafa Benitez’s side, who now sit in the lofty heights of fourteenth place.

Tribute

After losing at St James’s Park in matchday eleven, Watford picked up a point at Southampton while Leicester and Burnley played out a goalless draw at the King Power Stadium – the first match to take place there since the tragic events of October 27th.

The result was of course secondary to the heart-warming tributes seen both before and after the game, and indeed during the ninety minutes of action.

Saturday concluded with Tottenham Hotspur edging past Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park – Juan Foyth getting the only goal of the game a week after conceding two penalties on his top-flight debut.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Deke Hardman


Freelance football writer with a love of the game that goes back to the mid nineties when both his beloved Nottingham Forest and England had genuine hope of acheiving some level of success. A regular contributor to both SoccerNews.com and FreeBetting.com, Deke also dabbles in music journalism with his heart and head still stuck in the latter years of the twentieth century.

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