Premier League: 10 talking points from the weekend’s action | Premier League


1) Solskjær must work on squad rotation earlier than remaining

As soon as it could have been unimaginable to say Luke Shaw seems to be like Manchester United’s fittest participant. However the newest proof of the method that the left-back has rotated his profession at United got here on Sunday at Villa Park, the place he was his crew’s most energetic and efficient performer earlier than the remainder of them roused themselves sufficiently to mount one other comeback. Nonetheless, Ole Gunnar Solskjær should discover a method of giving Shaw and all his different gamers a relaxation throughout United’s ridiculous schedule this week. Bruno Fernandes, particularly, seems to be like he may do with a few video games throughout a schedule by which United play 5 matches in 15 days, ending with the Europa League remaining in Gdansk on 26 Might. Paul Doyle

Match report: Aston Villa 1-3 Manchester United

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2) Guardiola unflustered by second defeat to Tuchel

This was solely Manchester Metropolis’s fifth league defeat however as with the reverse to Chelsea in the FA Cup semi-final Pep Guardiola’s choice was a puzzle. A again three of Rúben Dias, Aymeric Laporte and Nathan Aké, sandwiched by the wing-halves, João Cancelo and Benjamin Mendy, with Rodri the holding participant behind a entrance 4 of Raheem Sterling, Ferran Torres, Gabriel Jesus and Sergio Agüero, stuttered in a show that discovered an apt personification in the latter’s unconvincing Panenka. Guardiola will area his strongest XI for Metropolis’s Champions League remaining showdown with Chelsea however Thomas Tuchel’s crew has two good reminiscences of wins to name upon throughout troublesome moments in Istanbul. Of the losses, Guardiola mentioned: “It may occur. While you say we’re not used to shedding too many video games, that’s an enormous praise.” A 3rd reverse to Chelsea in the large one is not going to go away the Catalan as sanguine. Jamie Jackson

Match report: Manchester Metropolis 1-2 Chelsea

(*10*)Benjamin Mendy (proper) didn’t take his likelihood to impress in opposition to Chelsea. {Photograph}: Shaun Botterill/Getty Photographs

3) Allardyce sees proud document ended by Gunners

As Emile Smith Rowe slotted Arsenal’s first, Sam Allardyce slumped into the cushioned seats of the Emirates dugout and commenced muttering. That document of by no means having been relegated from the Premier League was being consigned to historical past. West Brom has been a job too far even for the self-styled Purple Adair of English soccer. Arsenal are an opponent he loved getting one over when each he and the North Londoners have been having fun with higher days. However even the Arsenal of Might 2021, an opponent with low shallowness after their midweek Europa League exit, managed to carry off this West Brom. Half-time, the place Allardyce has earned a lot of his survival bonuses down the years, introduced temporary enchancment and an outstanding solo objective from Matheus Pereira, and a trademark Cheshire Cat smile from his supervisor. However Willian’s free-kick introduced extra muttering and what has been inevitable for months. John Brewin

Match report: Arsenal 3-1 West Brom

4) Klopp not apprehensive about United crew choice

There have been no clouds on Jürgen Klopp’s horizon following Liverpool’s first win at Anfield by two clear objectives in 2021 plus the clear sheet that introduced uncommon consolation to the finale. 4 extra wins from a crew that, regardless of the prevailing downbeat temper, has taken 14 points from six unbeaten Premier League matches are attainable for Champions League qualification, he insisted. The combat for fourth, nevertheless, may effectively be formed by Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s crew alternatives in opposition to Leicester on Tuesday and Liverpool 50 hours later as the Manchester United supervisor offers with the fall-out from the Outdated Trafford protests. If there’s one recreation the place Solskjær fields a weakened crew, it’s unlikely to be Liverpool. “We’d have performed the strongest United crew attainable on the unique date and that’s what we anticipate once more,” Klopp mentioned. “Manchester United solely have good gamers. They may be younger however they’re all good. What they do in different video games we’ve got no affect on.” Andy Hunter

Match report: Liverpool 2-0 Southampton

5) Mourinho ensures Spurs’ season was wasted

Tottenham’s top-four problem felt over after a 3-1 defeat to a promoted membership in Yorkshire. For Sheffield United, learn Leeds; for 2020, learn 2021. But when a few of the similarities are superficial, they nonetheless underline the method this has been a wasted 12 months for Tottenham. They will nonetheless be overrun and outthought by higher coached groups with extra coherent gameplans. There are methods of illustrating Spurs’ underachievement, however one is to have a look at their achievers. Harry Kane has 21 league objectives and 13 assists, Son Heung-min 17 and 10. Any crew with two such potent gamers should be fairly larger than seventh. It signifies the method others have been unproductive, that abilities have been squandered or neglected and {that a} defence with simply six clear sheets of their final 24 league video games have meant their objectives have counted for too little. And, in fact, it displays on José Mourinho. Roma, take observe. Richard Jolly

Match report: Leeds 3-1 Tottenham

6) Potter profile rises regardless of acquainted challenge

Graham Potter can be livid at his gamers for passing up the likelihood to safe their security however the end result right here mustn’t detract from the high quality on present throughout the first half. Brighton handed the ball crisply and opened up Wolves on a variety of events, with a scarcity of innovative up entrance the one factor stopping them from being out of sight by half-time. Brighton’s lack of ability to complete has been exhaustively documented this season and in that sense it felt surprisingly becoming that the one objective they did rating was a towering header from a centre-back. However that acquainted failing it isn’t one thing that may be laid at the door of a coach who has made his crew into greater than the sum of its elements. There are many different managers, some far larger up the desk, who’ve spent the season doing the reverse. They need to be apprehensive for his or her jobs. Alex Hess

Match report: Wolves 2-1 Brighton

Graham Potter has proved himself as a Premier League manager.
(*10*)Graham Potter has proved himself as a Premier League supervisor. {Photograph}: Jack Thomas – WWFC/Wolves/Getty Photographs

7) Foxes buckling beneath stress with top-four spot in sight

Brendan Rodgers blamed Leicester’s surprising defeat by Newcastle on Friday to a sequence of focus lapses. That evaluation was honest sufficient, so far as it went. However to what ought to we attribute these lapses in focus? One attainable rationalization is that Leicester are shedding their nerve simply as Champions League qualification is inside their grasp. It’s as much as them to show that concept fallacious. That might entail profitable all of their remaining matches. Jonny Evans’ health could possibly be important: shedding him to damage simply earlier than kick-off in opposition to Newcastle did nothing for Leicester’s composure. Rodgers’ crew have typically achieved effectively in opposition to different prime groups this season: they have to proceed that pattern when the stress is at its most intense, or undergo one other late-season shortfall. PD

Match report: Leicester Metropolis 2-4 Newcastle

8) Toffees admit flaws after victory

Dominic Calvert-Lewin summed up Everton’s victory at West Ham. “It was about dedication, arduous work, sticking collectively,” mentioned the goalscorer, who alongside Richarlison up entrance had helped squeeze the life out of David Moyes’ crew. He scored on a counterattack from Ben Godfrey’s glorious cross. “We aren’t a possession crew as a result of we’ve got totally different qualities,” mentioned Carlo Ancelotti. West Ham, desperately chasing down Leicester and fourth place, performed into Everton’s palms. With a recreation in hand on Tottenham, seventh place will be claimed. Each Calvert-Lewin and Ancelotti’s phrases additionally hinted why Everton haven’t challenged for the prime 4 as determinedly as both West Ham or Leicester, and had received simply one in every of their final eight league matches earlier than visiting the London Stadium. That reliance on the counter makes them fairly one-dimensional. West Ham, riven by accidents and fatigue, simply didn’t have the manpower to forestall it. JB

Match report: West Ham 0-1 Everton

9) Gilmour proves himself excellent for Tuchel

Had Sergio Agüero not produced one in every of the worst penalties in Premier League historical past, Billy Gilmour’s efficiency might need been remembered for bundling over Gabriel Jesus in the field. As an alternative the midfielder will be happy with a efficiency which noticed him develop in confidence, admittedly in opposition to a complicated Metropolis aspect. The Scotland worldwide grew to become extra concerned the longer the recreation went, incomes better freedom when Jorginho got here off the bench, permitting Gilmour to make extra superior runs. Some feared he wouldn’t get a lot of an opportunity beneath Thomas Tuchel however he rapidly proven he fits the fashion of his new supervisor and has accomplished the previous two matches, proving his adaptability in the course of. The all-action midfielder seems to be like a prime Premier League participant in the making and a advantageous finish to the marketing campaign may make him a key man for Tuchel subsequent season, to not point out for Scotland at the upcoming Euros. Will Unwin

Sergio Agüero’s rush of blood provides Thomas Tuchel a day to savour

10) Hodgson has introduced stability for others to construct on

Crystal Palace achieved security and 40 points in beating Sheffield United. An eighth successive season in the Premier League beckons. Not dangerous for a membership relegated at the finish of every of their earlier 4 Premier League seasons going again to 1992-93. When Roy Hodgson was employed in the early weeks of the 2017-18 season, it was to repeat the stability he had beforehand introduced at Fulham and West Brom. He has delivered. The summer time forward, although, is make or break. Hodgson has been tetchy when questioned on whether or not he’ll proceed subsequent season when he can be 74. Eddie Howe, Frank Lampard and Sean Dyche are linked with changing him ought to he retire. He selected on Saturday to pay tribute to “a bunch of gamers who’ve been very devoted to the membership, very loyal” although 15 gamers’ offers are set to run out in June. Subsequent season may even see a really totally different Crystal Palace. JB

Match report: Sheffield United 0-2 Crystal Palace

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