Liverpool beat Brentford 4 - 1

Premier League: Matchweek 25 Review

This weekend had no shortage of enthralling action up and down the country, with the fates of teams at the top and the bottom of the table getting closer to being decided.

The Premier League action in Matchweek 25 at the weekend had plenty of enthralling football on display, with 18 of the top flight’s 20 teams taking part in 9 fixtures across Saturday and Sunday. The only fixture left is Everton going face-to-face with Crystal Palace at Goodison Park on Monday evening.

There were some crucial ties this week – Spurs and Aston Villa continued their intense battle for fourth place, with the two teams playing against Wolves and Fulham, respectively. Manchester United are also closing in, and they knew that a win against Luton Town would help their cause.

The likes of Arsenal and Liverpool faced Burnley and Brentford as they both continue to fight for the title, as did Manchester City who faced Chelsea at the Etihad Stadium.

Eddie Howe’s Newcastle United looked to continue their campaign for Europe, as did West Ham, who were looking to bounce back from their devastating defeat against Arsenal the week before. Finally, there are the sides threatened with relegation down to the Championship.

Everton and Palace are in the midst of this battle, although they do not play until Monday night, as mentioned before. The aforementioned Burnley also looked to edge closer to safety with a win at Turf Moor against Arsenal, whilst Luton battled against Manchester United.

Nottingham Forest looked to climb further away from the bottom three against West Ham at the City Ground, whilst Chris Wilder’s bottom-of-the-table Sheffield United looked for a crucial victory against Brighton at Bramall Lane.

It was another intense weekend of action, and here we review each game that took place throughout the weekend, starting with a trip to the Gtech Community Stadium to face Brentford for Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool at Saturday lunchtime.

Brentford 1 – 4 Liverpool (Gtech Community Stadium, Saturday 17th February 2024)

Ahead of this weekend’s Premier League action, Liverpool were the league leaders and had a two-point gap ahead of reigning Champions Manchester City, albeit the Cityzens had a game in hand.

Klopp’s Reds secured a 4 – 1 win against Thomas Frank’s Bees thanks to goals from Darwin Nunez (35’), Alexis Mac Allister (55’), the recently returned Mohamed Salah (68’) and Dutch international forward Cody Gakpo (86’). Ivan Toney got the only goal of the afternoon for the home side late on in the contest.

The result saw Liverpool maintain a two-point gap at the top, but this time ahead of Arsenal, who had leapfrogged Manchester City into second place following the Gunners’ emphatic win against Burnley and City’s stalemate against Chelsea.

As for Brentford, they remain 14th with 25 points from 24 matches, so they have a game in hand on some of the clubs around them. They are currently 6 points above the relegation zone.

Burnley 0 – 5 Arsenal (Turf Moor, Saturday 17th February 2024)

The next match of the most recent Premier League weekend to review was between Burnley and another title contender, this time in the form of Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal at Turf Moor in Lancashire. Ahead of their game against the Clarets, they now found themselves in third place following their 6 – 0 triumph against West Ham United.

There was a two-point gap, which was maintained following the action after both Arsenal and Liverpool won. As mentioned before, the North London side leapfrogged Manchester City into second place. Following results, Arsenal are 2 points behind the Reds and two points ahead of City.

Arsenal ran out as emphatic 5 – 0 winners against Vincent Kompany’s Burnley, with these goals being scored by Martin Ødegaard (4’), Bukayo Saka (41’ – Penalty, 47’), Leandro Trossard (66’) and Kai Havertz (78’).

This result does leave Burnley in 19th place with Kompany’s Clarets now 7 points adrift of safety, and only ahead of bottom of the table Sheffield United on goal difference.

Fulham 1 – 2 Aston Villa (Craven Cottage, Saturday 17th February 2024)

Unai Emery’s Aston Villa had dropped out of the top four following their defeat against Manchester United at Villa Park, together with Spurs’ 2 – 1 win at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium against Roberto De Zerbi’s Brighton. As for Fulham, they were in 12th place with 29 points to their name ahead of their game against the high-flying Villans.

Ultimately, Villa edged Marco Silva’s side to a 2 – 1 victory at Craven Cottage. Ollie Watkins is his team’s leading goal scorer in the Premier League, and he made it 13 top flight goals for the 2023/24 season with his brace (23’, 56’) against the home side from West London. Rodrigo Muniz scored the Cottagers’ only goal of the game (63’).

Following this result, Aston Villa returned to the top four with no less than 49 points accumulated from their 25 matches to date. The Villans are now two points clear of Spurs in 5th place after the Lilywhites were defeated by one of Villa’s West Midlands rivals – Wolves.

Newcastle United 2 – 2 AFC Bournemouth (St. James’ Park, Saturday 17th February 2024)

Eddie Howe was reunited with his former club, Bournemouth, in the Premier League at St. James’ Park on Saturday afternoon. Now led by Spanish Head Coach Andoni Iraola, the Cherries sat comfortably in 13th place with 27 points. As for the Magpies, they were in 7th place with 36 points ahead of this match against their South Coast counterparts.

In the end, this game on Saturday afternoon was a highly competitive 2 – 2 draw in the North East between these two teams. Dominic Solanke gave the away team the lead early in the second half (51’) before Anthony Gordon restored parity with his equalising goal to make it 1 – 1 just seven minutes later (58’).

Antoine Semenyo’s powerful drive into the bottom left corner handed Bournemouth the lead again before a very late equalising goal from former Cherries man Matt Ritchie ensured that it would be a point for each team (90+2’).

Following this result, and others elsewhere, Eddie Howe’s Newcastle have fallen to 8th place with 37 points, with them just 1 adrift of the European places. As for the Cherries, they are 13th with 28 points, 9 clear of the drop zone.

Nottingham Forest 2 – 0 West Ham United (City Ground, Saturday 17th February 2024)

Relegation-threatened Nottingham Forest, led by Nuno Espirito Santo, welcomed a West Ham side led by David Moyes to the City Ground on Saturday afternoon. Forest were looking to extend the gap between themselves and the bottom three, whilst the Hammers were looking to come back to winning ways following their 6 – 0 defeat at the hands of Arsenal.

Before the game, the Reds were sat in 16th place with 21 points – this saw them have just a 2 point gap above the danger zone. As for West Ham, they were in 8th place with 36 points – just outside of the European places on goal difference.

In the end, it was a crucial 2 – 0 win for Nuno’s Nottingham Forest. Taiwo Awoniyi (45+5’) and former Chelsea forward Callum Hudson-Odoi (90+4’) found the back of the net for Forest in their win against their East London counterparts.

Following this result, Nottingham Forest climbed up to 15th place with 24 points – their gap to the relegation zone has now been extended to 5 points. As for West Ham, they fall to 9th place with 36 points.

Spurs 1 – 2 Wolves (Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, Saturday 17th February 2024)

Manchester United are slowly closing in, but Spurs’ closest competitor for a place in next season’s UEFA Champions League is currently Aston Villa. Ange Postecoglou’s side had re-taken the fourth place spot with their win against Brighton and Villa’s home defeat at Villa Park against Manchester United.

The Lilywhites knew that a victory over Gary O’Neil’s Wolves would secure 4th spot for at least another week, no matter what Villa did against Fulham. As for Wolverhampton Wanderers, they were sat in 11th place with 32 points – they were just 6 points adrift of those coveted European places.

In the end, Wolves defeated Tottenham Hotspur 2 – 1 in North London. Portuguese midfielder Joao Gomes gave the away side the lead very late on in the first half (42’) before the hosts got their equalising goal in the opening minute of the second half (46’). Gomes was the scorer of the visitors’ winning goal, making it 2 – 1 with just under half an hour of the game remaining (63’).

Following this game, Spurs fell to 5th place with a narrow two-point gap separating them and Aston Villa in 4th place. As for Wolves, they remain in 11th place but have now got 35 points – but the gap to European qualification has halved to just 3 points overall.

Manchester City 1 – 1 Chelsea (Etihad Stadium, Saturday 17th February 2024)

Two heavyweights of the Premier League came head to head at the Etihad Stadium, with Manchester City and Chelsea playing against each other on Saturday evening. Ahead of the game, City sat in second place with 52 points, with just 2 points separating them from league leaders Liverpool. The Cityzens had (and still do possess) a game in hand on the Reds. As for the Blues, they were in 10th place with 34 points – there was just a 2 point gap between Mauricio Pochettino’s side and European qualification.

In the end, it was a 1 – 1 draw that Chelsea were close, and maybe unlucky, not to win themselves. Ex-City forward Raheem Sterling gave the away side the lead late in the first half after the England international received the ball from Nicolas Jackson (42’). Spanish midfielder Rodri got the equalising goal for the hosts with less than ten minutes of the match remaining (83’).

Following this enthralling encounter, Chelsea remain in 10th place, with 35 points that leaves them 3 adrift of the European spots. As for City, they have dropped down to third place, now with 53 points to their name. Pep Guardiola’s side is 4 adrift of the top, and they do have a game in hand. This game will be played on Tuesday night against Brentford at the Etihad Stadium.

Now that we have taken a look back at all of Saturday’s Premier League action, we shall now review the two matches that were played in England’s top flight on Sunday afternoon. We will start with Sheffield United hosting Brighton at Bramall Lane.

Sheffield United 0 – 5 Brighton (Bramall Lane, Sunday 18th February 2024)

The opening game on Sunday turned out to be an emphatic 5 – 0 victory for Roberto De Zerbi’s Brighton & Hove Albion against a Sheffield United side led by Head Coach Chris Wilder at Bramall Lane. Ahead of the game, the Blades were at the bottom of the table in 20th place with 13 points and 7 adrift of safety. As for the Seagulls, they were sat in 9th place with 35 points – 1 adrift of the coveted and prestigious European places.

Brighton’s five goals on the day against a ten men Sheffield United were scored by Facundo Buonanotte (20’), Danny Welbeck (24’), a Jack Robinson own goal (75’) and Simon Adingra (78’, 85’).

Following the conclusion of this game, the Seagulls rose above West Ham United and Newcastle United into 7th place, now with 38 points from 25 matches. As for the Blades, they remain 7 adrift of safety at the bottom of the Premier League table with just 13 points to their name overall.

Luton Town 1 – 2 Manchester United (Kenilworth Road, Sunday 18th February 2024)

The final game to be reviewed from the weekend’s action was between Rob Edwards’ Luton and Erik Ten Hag’s Manchester United at Kenilworth Road on Sunday evening. It was a crucial game in the Premier League for the Red Devils, who are looking to close the gap between themselves and the UEFA Champions League qualification spots.

Ahead of the game itself, the Hatters were in 17th place with 20 points – just one clear of the relegation zone, with Everton in 18th place with 19 points to their name. However, United were sat in 6th place with 41 points – 5 behind Aston Villa in 5th place, and 6 behind Tottenham in 4th.

In the end, it was a deserved 2 – 1 victory for Manchester United. The visiting side took the lead in the first minute thanks to Rasmus Højlund (1’), before the Dane doubled his team’s advantage before 10 minutes had even elapsed (7’). The home side’s only goal came through Carlton Morris, who scored for Luton just a few minutes after Højlund’s second and final goal of the game (14’).

As a result, Luton Town remain in 17th place with 20 points, but they will fall back into the Premier League’s relegation zone if Everton emerges victorious against Crystal Palace. The Hatters will also drop back into the top flight’s drop zone if Sean Dyche’s Toffees take a point in a draw with the Eagles at Goodison Park.

Excitement and anticipation is building ahead of the resumption of Premier League football this weekend. Chelsea and Liverpool will also face each other in the 2024 Carabao Cup Final at Wembley Stadium on Sunday, 25th February 2024.

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