Liverpool go top of the English Premier League after another resounding victory this time at home to Watford; Arsenal and Spurs in London Derby stalemate and Sunderland finally win.
Liverpool knocks Man City off the top of the English Premier League for the first time this season after rattling six past a hapless Watford side at Anfield.
It’s the first time Liverpool have climbed to the summit of the world’s toughest league since they went a point clear of Man City in May 2014. Back then, they were a one man band with Luis Suarez holding all of the instruments. Today, there are goals everywhere you look.
Philippe Coutinho, Emre Can, Roberto Firmino, Georginio Wijnaldum, and Sadio Mane (2) grabbed the goals as they destroyed Watford. Daryl Janmaat scored a late consolation goal, his first since joining the club from Newcastle.
They should have won the league back in 2014. Perhaps, this is the year they make amends and win the Premier League for the first time? If Jurgen Klopp is going to do what Brendan Rodgers failed to do so spectacularly, then he is going to have to go Christmas shopping and come out with a central defender. You cannot win this league with Lucas Leiva playing at the heart of your defence, and James Milner at full back.
Liverpool has now scored 30 goals this season, more than any other team, and more at this stage of the season than ever before in Liverpool’s Premier League past. They look like the hero, but normally they get lost in the second half of the journey, struggling to overcome those last few hurdles.
Will this season be the same?
Chelsea Sparkle Against Everton
The big difference between Chelsea and Liverpool is the London side are proven winners and the Merseyside outfit are not. Chelsea has won the Premier League four times, and it’s for this reason that I still back them to go all the way this year.
For the fifth game in a row, Antonio Conte sent his team out playing three at the back, and once again they showed him that his formation is the bee’s knees. They have won all five, scoring 16 goals without reply, hammering the likes of Leicester, Man Utd, Southampton and now Everton.
Eden Hazard was the star of the show, bagging two goals, and Diego Costa moved to the top of the Premier League goalscoring charts with another classy strike – Alonso and Pedro rounded off the rout.
Everton boss Ronald Koeman told the press that his Everton side was handed a lesson in every department after this crushing defeat. The Chelsea ship sails into second spot.
Man City, Arsenal and Spurs All Draw
Liverpool and Chelsea ascended above Man City after the Blues allowed Middlesbrough to escape from the Etihad with a last-gasp draw. It was a low for City after the high of beating Barcelona in midweek. They weren’t the only side to suffer a European headache this weekend, and they won’t be the last.
But City has a squad to be able to handle these games, and they will be kicking themselves after dropping two points against the type of team you need to beat if you are going to win the Premier League. Middlesbrough was abject in the first half, and City deservedly took the lead thanks to Sergio Aguero’s eighth Premier League goal of the season. Boro came out of the traps looking like a different side in the second half, and they got their reward in the final minute of injury time thanks to a header from Marten de Roon.
City has now only won two of their last nine games in all competitions.
Mauricio Pochettino becomes the first Spurs manager to remain undefeated against Arsenal after his first five derby games after emerging from the Emirates with a point.
While Spurs will be delighted with the point, they have now failed to win in seven games in all competitions. Perhaps, fortunes will start to change now Harry Kane is back in the side. The England striker has been sorely missed, and it was his strike from the penalty spot that gave Spurs a valuable point after a Kevin Wimmer own goal had given Arsenal the lead before half time.
Vital Wins For Sunderland & Hull; Swansea Sunk
It seems teams respond better when their managers are watching from the stands. Both David Moyes at Bournemouth and Jose Mourinho at Swansea were sitting out touchline bans as they saw their sides react with much-improved performances.
Sunderland finally got their first league win of the season after coming from behind to beat Bournemouth by 2-1 thanks to goals by Victor Anichebe and Jermaine Defoe, despite playing the last 30-minutes with only 10-men after Steven Pienaar was sent off for two bookable offences.
It was Sunderland’s first win in 12 Premier League games.
Winning has also been a lost art for Man Utd who had not won a league game since hammering Leicester in September. Mourinho made a host of changes, most notably starting with Wayne Rooney playing further forward, and for once they looked the part as they raced into a 3-0 lead thanks to goals from Paul Pogba and Zlatan Ibrahimovic (2).
Bob Bradley’s side are now five points adrift of Hull and after this display looks like Championship fodder to me.
Where Swansea lacked desire and effort, Hull City had it in pallet loads. Mike Phelan’s side faced a Southampton team who were coming off the back of a historic home win against Inter Milan and without a single point since drawing with Burnley at the beginning of September, and yet they somehow fought back from a goal down to take all three points.
It’s a game that Southampton was in complete control of but failed to add to Charlie Austin’s six-minute penalty. Hull suffered a litany of losses on the pitch after injuries to Abel Hernandez and Will Keane, and it was one of the subs, Robert Snodgrass, who inspired the comeback with his 61st-minute strike. Michael Dawson sealed the win two minutes later.
Here are the rest of the weekend’s results.
Premier League Results (Week 11)
Man City 1 v 1 Middlesbrough
West Ham 1 v1 Stoke
Burnley 3 v 2 Crystal Palace
Bournemouth 1 v 2 Sunderland
Chelsea 5 v 0 Everton
Arsenal 1 v 1 Spurs
Hull 2 v 1 Southampton
Liverpool 6 v 1 Watford
Swansea 1 v 3 Man Utd
Leicester 1 v 2 West Brom
Premier League Table
1. Liverpool – 26
2. Chelsea – 25
3. Man City – 24
4. Arsenal – 24
5. Spurs – 21
6. Man Utd – 18
7. Everton – 18
8. Watford – 15
9. Burnley – 14
10. Southampton – 13
11. West Brom – 13
12. Stoke – 13
13. Bournemouth – 12
14. Leicester – 12
15. Middlesbrough – 11
16. Crystal Palace – 11
17. West Ham – 11
18. Hull – 10
19. Swansea – 5
20. Sunderland – 5
Premier League Title Odds (Courtesy of Bodog)
Man City – +200