Players Kick Football

Barclays Premier League Game Week 26 Review

This topsy-turvy Premier League race is surely set to go down to the wire after both Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur cut Leicester’s lead at the top to two points.

It leaves both big London clubs breathing down the necks of the surprise leaders. Indeed it is leaning towards a three horse race with big spending Manchester City, though not out of it by any means, in danger of being cut adrift in fourth.

For Arsenal the hero was Danny Welbeck, out injured since April last year, who sent the Emirates Stadium hordes home happy with a dramatic late winner after Leicester’s Marcin Wasilewski gave away a stupid foul just as the referee prepared to blow the final whistle.

Leicester’s Danny Simpson was the villain after getting sent off for two yellow cards. Arsenal snatched it 2-1, with Manchester United fans no doubt bemoaning ever letting Welbeck leave Old Trafford especially given the dismal form of the unrecognisable ‘Red Devils’.

The question now is – will Leicester get back into their stride or is this the start of the collapse that pundits have been predicting for months?

Have they got the bottle or will they crack?

Jamie Vardy gave the Foxes the lead with a hotly-disputed penalty on the stroke of half-time after he tumbled over Nacho Monreal’s outstretched leg.

However substitute Theo Walcott set up a frantic finale with a side-foot finish from Olivier Giroud’s knockdown. Then, to wild celebrations in the stands, Welbeck glanced Mesut Ozil’s free-kick past magnificent Kasper Schmeichel to pinch victory.

Tottenham Hotspur picked up a huge away triumph over Manchester City at the Etihad. Again a late winner featured, this time from playmaker Christian Eriksen.

Visiting striker Harry Kane fired home from the spot in the second half after Raheem Sterling was harshly penalised for handball. Yaya Toure struck a 20-yard free-kick against the bar before substitute Kelechi Iheanacho levelled.

But Spurs earned a fifth league win in a row as Eriksen slotted home. The White Hart Lane side, once so fragile mentally, are showing no signs of blowing up. City showed bags of fight and loads of skill, yet somehow it isn’t quite happening.

Liverpool smash Villa for six for Klopp’s biggest Premier League win

Liverpool thrashed a hapless Aston Villa 6-0.

Injury-prone Daniel Sturridge opened the scoring, James Milner saw a free-kick creep in after being missed by keeper Mark Bunn, and Emre Can, Divock Origi, Nathaniel Clyne and Kolo Toure all got in on the act.

The home side’s disgruntled supporters started streaming out of Villa Park following Liverpool’s fifth after 65 minutes – eight points off safety with just 12 games left they know their side is as good as relegated.

For the inconsistent Anfield side it still allows for opportunities despite all their problems this season.

A Champions League spot looks impossible but they are just three points off fifth, respectability at least.

Sunderland got the luck; Manchester United deserved nothing. Another really poor result for manager Louis Van Gaal, a man on borrowed time if the leaks are to be believed, with Jose Mourinho supposedly taking over next season.

Mourinho and Sir Alex Ferguson are pals who respect each other. It looks like a shoe-in. Sunderland’s Wahbi Khazri put the strugglers ahead after three minutes with a fluke free-kick from the left that went through a forest of bodies and eluded everyone.

Anthony Martial levelled after he clipped the ball over Vito Mannone, who had parried Juan Mata’s shot. But the Black Cats won it when Lamine Kone’s header from Khazri’s corner went in via a deflection off David de Gea to dent United’s top-four bid. And maybe for good.

Chelsea FC, who have surely left it too late to get involved in the race for the top four after the bizarre Mourinho suicide note, tore Newcastle apart. Do the Geordies ever travel well to London? No Dick Whittingtons are the Magpies. In the end they were embarrassed 5-1 and deservedly so.

Diego Costa opened the scoring when he slid home Willian’s pass. Pedro make it 2-0 and Costa played in Willian to score from close range. Cesc Fabregas set up Pedro for his second and Bertrand Traore turned in Cesar Azpilicueta’s cross, before Andros Townsend’s late consolation.

Football is everything to the people of the North-east; they deserve better.

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