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EPL week 16 review: Chelsea end City’s unbeaten run; Liverpool rise to the top

TAGs: English Premier League, liverpool

Week 16 of the English Premier League sees Liverpool take the lead from Man City after battering Bournemouth with Chelsea beating Pep Guardiola’s side by 2-0. 

There is only one king of the jungle.

Man.

EPL Wk 16 Review: Chelsea end City’s unbeaten run; Liverpool rise to the topThere is only one king of the English Premier League (EPL).

Man City.

This weekend, as Parisian streets burned, the South East of the USA froze, and Australians broiled beneath the baking hot sun, Pep Guardiola’s kit man lost the crown.

With Man City facing Chelsea in the late kickoff spot, Liverpool had the chance to overtake them at the summit of the EPL if they could overcome the ‘champagne football’ of Bournemouth at The Vitality.

And overcome them they did.

A few months ago, the press postulated that Mohamed Salah was a one-season wonder. You can’t blame them. The Egyptian’s body language resembled that of a teenage kid whose mother had just told him to turn Fortnite off and eat his Brussel sprouts.

Some things have changed.

Other things remain the same.

His hat-trick against Eddie Howe’s side, his second since signing for Roma 18-months ago, not only shot Liverpool to the top of the EPL but also saw him hit the top of the EPL goalscoring charts, level with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang with ten.

The golden touch is back, although there is still some work to do on his demeanour.

The Egyptian’s first goal came on the 25-minute mark. Roberto Firmino caught Asmir Begovic off guard with a long-range effort, and the ball fell to Salah who finished with his assured equanimity.

It was tough on Bournemouth as the replay showed that Salah was offside by a button’s width, but there was no controversy surrounding his second when three-minutes after the break, the Liverpool midfield won the ball in the centre of the pitch and sent Salah running like a hare on a hot and harried day. Bournemouth defenders surrounded the Liverpool striker, including Steve Cook who raked his Achilles in a bid to stop him, but Salah kept his cool and put the ball away.

Josh King had a penalty shout after Allison seemed to catch him with his legs in the six-yard box. It could have gone either way. On this day the result went the direction of the Merseyside club.

Then on 68-minutes, Liverpool broke from the back, Andy Robertson put in a belter from the left, and the hapless Cook sent the ball past Begovic with his heel.

Then with Bournemouth dashing forward in a bid to make amends, Adam Lallana sent Salah through on goal, and the 2017/18 Golden Boot winner, rounded Begovic twice before walking the ball into the net for his hat-trick.

I’ve seen my kids celebrate more emphatically when reaching the top of an escalator.

But Klopp doesn’t pay him to be happy; he pays him to score goals, and those three meant Liverpool jumped on top of the EPL throne and donned the crown.

But how long would it last? 

Chelsea 2 v 0 Man City 

Yes, the headline gives it away.

It will last at least a week.

City turned up at Stamford Bridge for the battle of the two former champions without key men: Sergio Aguero and Kevin De Bruyne, but had managed to smash all and sundry without them in the past couple of months.

Not on this day.

City dominated the first half.

Raheem Sterling couldn’t find any oomph when eight yards from goal and Cesar Azpilicueta put in a goal-saving tackle on Leroy Sané after Sterling had made Marcos Alonso look like a mug down the right.

As both coaches began preparing their half-time team talks, Chelsea put a notch in the ‘Shots on Goal’ column for the first time and it coincided with a notch in the ‘Goals Scored’ column.

David Luiz released the pressure by spraying an excellent ball to the right, and the white thing eventually found Eden Hazard who found N’Golo Kante and the former Leicester star smashed the ball into the roof of the net for his second league goal of the season.

Suddenly, after losing to Wolves, Chelsea was on the verge of beating the unbeatable. Ederson expertly denied Willian after the Brazilian looked to curl a free kick into the net. And then in the 78th minute, Hazard flung in a corner, and Luiz gained an inch on the near post crowd to loop a header over the City keeper.

It was a much-needed win for a Chelsea side who have stuttered of late, winning one of four, after starting the season with a run of 12-games unbeaten.

City, who Guardiola said was ‘exceptional’ suffered a defeat for the first time in 21-EPL games and dropped to the second spot for a lengthier spell than 24-hours for the first time since the opening few weeks of the season.

Here are the rest of the weekend’s results:

Results in Full

Bournemouth 0 v 4 Liverpool
Burnley 1 v 0 Brighton
Man Utd 4 v 1 Fulham
Arsenal 1 v 0 Huddersfield
Cardiff 1 v 0 Southampton
West Ham 3 v 2 Crystal Palace
Chelsea 2 v o Man City
Leicester 0 v 2 Spurs

To Be Played (Sun)

Newcastle v Wolves

To Be Played (Mon)

Everton v Watford

Premier League Table

1. Liverpool – 42 points
2. Man City – 41
3. Spurs – 36
4. Chelsea – 34
5. Arsenal – 34
6. Man Utd – 26
7. Everton – 23
8. Bournemouth – 23
9. Leicester – 22
10. West Ham – 21
11. Brighton – 21
12. Watford – 20
13. Wolves – 19
14. Cardiff – 14
15. Newcastle – 13
16. Crystal Palace – 12
17. Burnley – 12
18. Huddersfield – 10
19. Southampton – 9
20. Fulham – 9

Odds

To Win

Man City 4/11
Liverpool 5/2

Top 4 Finish

Man City 1/1000
Liverpool 1/100
Spurs 1/3
Chelsea 1/3
Arsenal 5/6
Man Utd 15/2

Relegated

Huddersfield 4/9
Burnley -4/7
Cardiff 4/6
Fulham 4/5
Southampton 2/1

Top Scorer

Mohamed Salah 11/4 (10 goals)
Harry Kane 5/2 (9 goals)
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – 5/1 (10 goals)
Sergio Aguero 4/1 (8 goals)

Next Manager to Leave

Jose Mourinho 9/4
Roy Hodgson 4/1
Sean Dyche 9/1

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