EPL

Premier League Review: Van Dijk inspires Liverpool win, Manchester City falter

By Sports Desk November 30, 2019

Liverpool remain on course for a first ever Premier League title after a nervy 2-1 win over Brighton and Hove Albion, while Manchester City could only manage a 2-2 draw at Newcastle United.

Jurgen Klopp's side endured a tense finish at Anfield after goalkeeper Alisson was dismissed with 14 minutes remaining, but they held on for a 13th win in 14 games this season.

City, meanwhile, were far from their fluid best at St James' Park and were denied a vital win by Jonjo Shelvey's superb late strike.

Jose Mourinho racked up a second consecutive Premier League win since taking over at Tottenham, Dele Alli proving to be the star man in a 3-2 win over Bournemouth, while West Ham pulled off a surprise 1-0 victory over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

REDS SURVIVE ALISSON RED CARD

Runaway leaders Liverpool survived a nervy finale to equal their longest unbeaten run in the top flight and capitalise on City's slip-up.

A Trent Alexander-Arnold free-kick set up the opener for Van Dijk in the 18th minute and the same combination soon provided a second goal as Brighton were found wanting at a corner.

Brighton were given an unexpected lifeline when Alisson was sent off for handling outside his box – meaning he will miss Wednesday's derby clash with Everton – and Lewis Dunk caught out replacement goalkeeper Adrian with a quick free-kick.

The Seagulls could not find a late equaliser, though, and while Leicester City can cut Liverpool's advantage at the summit to eight points by beating Everton on Sunday, there looks to be no stopping a team who have now gone 31 league games unbeaten, matching their record streak from May 1987 to March 1988.

CITY'S TITLE HOPES SLIP AWAY

City's hopes of claiming a third consecutive Premier League title suffered a fresh blow, with Shelvey's late intervention leaving them 11 points behind leaders Liverpool.

Pep Guardiola's side looked set to cruise to all three points when Raheem Sterling scored his eighth Premier League goal of the campaign midway through the first half, but they were pegged back by Jetro Willems' fierce drive three minutes later.

Kevin De Bruyne restored City's lead with a sumptuous half-volley in the 82nd minute, the Belgium international using his chest to control a headed clearance before unleashing a stunning effort that crashed in off the underside of the crossbar.

Newcastle bounced back in style to ensure a share of the spoils two minutes from time, though, when Shelvey whipped home from 25 yards after Christian Atsu had picked him out with a short free-kick.

MOURINHO'S PERFECT START CONTINUES

Tottenham beat West Ham and Olympiacos in Mourinho's first two matches and were good value for their latest triumph at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, despite another late collapse.

The hosts made a slow start but took the lead midway through the opening period through Alli, who slotted the ball underneath Aaron Ramsdale after being teed up by Son Heung-min's first-time pass.

The England international scored a second early in the second half before Moussa Sissoko added a third with his first league goal in his past 69 appearances.

Harry Wilson pulled two goals back for Bournemouth in the closing stages - one of which was a superb free-kick - but Tottenham held on for back-to-back league wins for the first time since April to climb to fifth, six points off a Champions League place.

PRESSURE EASES ON PELLEGRINI AFTER FINE WIN

Aaron Cresswell scored the only goal of the game as West Ham eased the pressure on Manuel Pellegrini and ended their seven-game Premier League winless streak at Chelsea.

The Hammers became only the second side to win at Chelsea in the league this season and Frank Lampard's side, who lost at Manchester City a week prior, could have few complaints about the result.

Cresswell scored the winner early in the second half and West Ham could have extended their lead before surviving a late rally from the hosts to secure their first victory since they beat Manchester United on September 22.

Crystal Palace, meanwhile, beat Burnley 2-0 at Turf Moor courtesy of goals from Wilfried Zaha and Jeffrey Schlupp.

Related items

  • Coutinho wants Premier League return but could stay with Barca, claims agent Coutinho wants Premier League return but could stay with Barca, claims agent

    Philippe Coutinho wants to return to the Premier League after his Bayern Munich loan finishes but could yet remain with parent club Barcelona, according to his agent Kia Joorabchian.

    Coutinho left England for Barca in 2018 having spent five years with Liverpool, with the Catalans bringing him in to help alleviate the loss of Neymar to Paris Saint-Germain the previous year.

    The move did not work out, with his first full season at Camp Nou marred by poor form, which in turn led to jeers and criticism from Barca fans.

    He left for Bayern on loan last year, with the German champions given the option to purchase him for €120million, but having only made 15 Bundesliga starts in 2019-20, it came as little surprise when club CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge confirmed in May that they let the clause expire.

    Coutinho does not appear to have a future at Barca, while several English clubs have been credited with an interest, though Joorabchian says no decisions have been made.

    "At the moment, with Coutinho, he is so focused on getting through the next stage of the Champions League," the agent told TalkSPORT.

    "He has got a massive game - the club that owns him against the club he is playing for. So, he is in a massive situation at the moment.

    "He is going to play Barcelona, he is looking forward to it. He is looking forward to winning the Champions League. I think they [Bayern] have a side that has the potential to be there, definitely a potential to be there.

    "And I think after the Champions League is finished, and whatever happens, then we will sit down.

    "I haven't even spoken to him about it actually. It could be that Barcelona is the ultimate destination.

    "He loves the Premier League, he wants to come to the Premier League, but finances and the numbers and the situation of COVID-19 are all going to play a big part, because he is a big player with big numbers."

  • Rumour Has It: Man City, PSG eye Liverpool target Thiago Rumour Has It: Man City, PSG eye Liverpool target Thiago

    Liverpool look set to have some major competition in their bid to sign Thiago Alcantara.

    Out of contract at Bayern Munich next year, Thiago has been heavily linked with a move to the Premier League champions.

    However, two big-spending European giants are reportedly joining the race for the midfielder.

     

    TOP STORY – MAN CITY, PSG EYE LIVERPOOL TARGET THIAGO

    Manchester City and PSG are interested in reported Liverpool target Thiago, according to Le 10 Sport.

    Sport Bild says Liverpool are prepared to pay £27.1million (€30m) for the midfielder, an offer which could be enough for Bayern.

    However, it also reports the champions are worried a club like City may trump their bid.

    ROUND-UP

    - While it looks like Jadon Sancho may remain at Borussia Dortmund, Manchester United are not giving up on the star attacker. The Mirror reports the Premier League club have put other moves on hold as they chase Sancho.

    - Staying at Old Trafford and Paul Pogba's future is yet to be sorted. Sky Sports reports the midfielder, who is contracted until 2021 with the club holding an option to extend it for a further year, is expecting talks over a new deal after United's Europa League campaign ends.

    - After crashing out of the Champions League in the last 16, Real Madrid have been expected to strengthen. However, Marca reports Madrid have told players there will be no new signings.

    - With Ismaila Sarr linked to Liverpool, Watford are seemingly holding firm. The Evening Standard reports Watford are demanding £40m for Sarr, who has also been linked to Wolves and Crystal Palace.

    - Arsenal and Roma could be close to a swap deal. Nicolo Schira reports the clubs are in advanced talks about a deal that would send Lucas Torreira to the Serie A club and Amadou Diawara to Arsenal.

  • Ismaila Sarr on Liverpool speculation: Everyone would love to play there Ismaila Sarr on Liverpool speculation: Everyone would love to play there

    Ismaila Sarr says any player would be interested in playing for Liverpool and wants to join a team challenging for silverware should he leave Watford.

    The 22-year-old has been linked with a move to the Premier League champions following Watford's relegation to the Championship.

    He scored five top-flight goals in the 2019-20 campaign, including a brace in his side's shock 3-0 win over Liverpool in February, and set up four more.

    But while the Senegal international is open to a move to Anfield, he is not actively seeking a transfer from Watford during the close season.

    "Liverpool are a really great team, everyone would love to play there," he told Senegalese publication Sans Limites.

    "They won the Premier League this year and the Champions League last year, but also there are great teams in the English league. 

    "Frankly, I have yet to make a choice. If that were to happen, I just wish they are a good team. At the moment, there are only guesses."

    He added: "I still have years left on my contract with Watford; another four years.

    "If Watford want me to stay, I'll play in the Championship. A departure depends on them as well as me. This is normal.

    "Personally, our relegation hurt me a lot. I didn't think we would come to this. I told myself that we had to do everything not to go down to the Championship."

    Asked if he would aim for a higher level than Watford if he moves on in the coming weeks, Sarr said: "Yes, of course, everyone who works is looking for advancement. 

    "Maybe if Watford frees me one day I could go and play for a bigger team. Go and showcase my talent elsewhere and then win trophies."

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.