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Premier League Matchday 14: The Good, Bad And Bizarre

(BPI/Imago/Icon Sportswire)

Throughout the Premier League season, Sebastian Noren will provide analysis from the week of games, talking about the good, bad and bizarre.

The 14th week of Premier League action is over and fans were treated to another round of some great games, some bad games and some bizarre situations. Manchester City is back on top after beating Southampton, Jamie Vardy scored again as Leicester City drew against Manchester United and Arsenal’s injury troubles continues as they drop points for the second straight week.  

 

Wild Finish In Bournemouth – Everton Draw

What Happened: Ross Barkley thought he had won the game as he made it 3-2 for Everton in the final minute of extra time. The away fans stormed the pitch to celebrate with the players, but Bournemouth got the final laugh as Junior Stanislas tied the game with the last kick if the game. Everton had a 2-0 lead at halftime after goals by Ramiro Funes Mori and Romelu Lukaku.

Bournemouth clawed their way back into the game. Adam Smith scored a real beauty in the 80th minute, and in the 87th minute Stanislas scored his first of the night to tie it up.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DZLjzmWp48Y

Seb’s Take: An incredible finish to a very entertaining match. Bournemouth showed a great fighting spirit as they do their best to climb out of the relegation zone despite suffering from several injuries.

 

Honors Even Between Leicester And Man United

What Happened: Leicester City and Manchester United entered Matchday 14 as the top two teams in the league. Leaders Leicester hosted United at the King Power Stadium on Saturday in a game where striker Jamie Vardy wrote himself into the Premier League history book. The 28-year-old gave the Foxes the lead in the 24th minute after a great run into the penalty area. The goal meant that Vardy had scored in 11 consecutive games, which is a new Premier League record. Bastian Schweinsteiger tied the game up right before halftime with his first goal for the Red Devils.

Seb’s Take: A pretty even game. Vardy continues to be hot as it seems like every time he gets a scoring opportunity he takes it. He broke former Manchester United striker Ruud van Nistelrooy’s record and has made a remarkable journey. United had most of the possession, like usual, but failed to find a way to win the game.

 

Watford Piles On Misery For Aston Villa

What Happened: Newcomers Watford took a 3-2 win on the road against bottom-placed Aston Villa on Saturday. Fans at Villa Park has had to endure a rough start to the season, as the Villans sit at the bottom of the standings with a mere five points. Odion Ighalo has been in fine form for Watford, and the Nigerian striker gave the visitors the lead in the 17th minute with his eighth league goal of the season.

Micah Richards tied things up in the 41st minute and gave the fans some hope. But in the second half, the uphill battle would continue for Villa as defender Alan Hutton scored an own goal in the 69th minute to give Watford the lead once more. Troy Deeney made it 3-1 in the 85th minute with a powerful header. Jordan Ayew scored a consolation goal for Villa in the 89th minute.

Seb’s Take: Villa are in deep trouble. Five points in 14 matches is absolutely terrible, and new manager Remi Garde must figure things out soon. They are already five points behind 19th-placed Newcastle and they have seven points up to safety. Watford moved up to 11th place as they now have 19 points.

 

Palace Thrash Newcastle

What Happened: Crystal Palace took a convincing 5-1 win over Newcastle at Selhurt Park on Saturday as the Eagles move up to seventh place. Yannick Bolaise and James McArthur both scored a brace and Wilfried Zaha also got on the scoresheet for Palace. But it was Newcastle that took the lead in the 10th minute through Papiss Demba Cisse.

But Palace responded in great fashion and McArthur got his first of the night in the 14th minute. Bolasie then gave Palace the lead three minutes later and Zaha made it 3-1 in the 41st minute. Bolasie then got his second of the game early in the second half as Palace totally dominated Newcastle. McArthur capped off the scoring in extra time.

Seb’s Take: Palace is showing time and time again that they have a really interesting team that can not only go up against the bigger sides and do a good job on the counter attack, but they can also dominate games against lesser sides when they need to be the ones pushing forward.

 

City Back On Top After Win Over Southampton

What Happened: Manchester City are back at the top of the table after a solid 3-1 win over Southampton on Saturday at the Etihad Stadium. Kevin De Bruyne got the home team off to a great start with a goal in the ninth minute. Fabian Delph made it 2-0 in the 20th minute.

Southampton did have a couple of chances, and Virgil van Djik had a ball denied by the bar a couple of minutes after Delph’s goal. Shane Long got Southampton on the scoreboard early in the second half, but Aleksandar Kolvarov put City back up by two with a goal in the 69th minute.

Seb’s Take: City were able to get a solid win despite being without goalkeeper Joe Hart and captain Vincent Kompany. It turned out to be the perfect weekend for City as all the other teams at the top of the table dropped points.

 

Sunderland On A Win Streak

What Happened: Sunderland got their second straight win as they beat Stoke City 2-0 on Saturday at the Stadium of Light. Stoke went a man down early in the second half as Ryan Shawcross was sent off after getting his second yellow card of the match. Sunderland took advantage of being a man up and scored two late goals to secure the three points. Patrick van Aanholt gave Sunderland the lead in the 82nd minute and Duncan Watmore made it 2-0 two minutes later.

Seb’s Take: Shawcross sending off ended up costing Stoke the game. It could be argued that one of the cards he received were soft, but Sunderland made the most of the man advantage. Sunderland will take any wins they can get as they try to avoid relegation. Following up the 1-0 win over Crystal Palace with another win will surely raise spirits. The win took them up to 17th place.

 

Tottenham Held To A Draw By Chelsea

What Happened: Tottenham’s unbeaten run continues, but the Spurs were held to a draw at home to Chelsea. Fans at White Hart Line were confident heading into this one as Tottenham is one of the most in-form teams in the Premier League, but they were unable to break down the Chelsea defense. Both sides had chances, but both goalkeepers had some great saves.

Tottenham’s only defeat thus far came on Opening Day against Manchester United, putting their unbeaten streak at 13 games.

Seb’s Take: It was a tight game, and with Tottenham having played in Azerbaijan on Thursday, a draw was a pretty fair result. The biggest talking point of the game was Chelsea’s Diego Costa throwing a bib up in the air that landed right next to manager Jose Mourinho as Costa showed his displeasure at getting benched.  

 

No Winner In West Ham – WBA Matchup

What Happened: Mauro Zarate scored a beautiful free kick to give West Ham United the lead at home to West Bromwich Albion. But an own goal by Winston Reid made it so that the Hammers had to settle with one point. Zarate curled the ball into the top corner in the 17th minute with an absolute beauty of a free kick. Rickie Lambert came on for WBA at halftime, and it was his shot that went off of Reid and into the back of the net in the 50th minute.

Seb’s Take: Either team could have walked away with the win in this one, but instead they both had to settle with a point each. It’s obvious that West Ham is missing Dimitri Payet, but they will be without him for a long time, so they need to pull themselves together.

 

Liverpool Squeeze Out Victory Against Swansea

What Happened: A penalty was need in order for Liverpool to grab a victory over Swansea City at Anfield on Sunday. James Milner scored from the penalty spot as the Reds move up to sixth place. Swansea did a great job frustrating Liverpool, and they did deserve to get something out of this game, but the soccer gods are cruel sometimes.

Swansea has taken a real nosedive since opening the season extremely well. They are now down in 15th place with 14 points in 14 games.

Seb’s Take: Liverpool looks a lot more comfortable under Jurgen Klopp, and the German manager will have a big impact on this side in the long run and could very well make them a title contender down the road. But this season they will have to settle with competing for a European cup spot.

 

Norwich Denies Arsenal Win

What Happened: Arsenal had a chance to get back up in the top of the standings with a big win over Norwich, but instead the game at Carrow Road ended in a 1-1 draw and Arsenal lost Laurent Koscielny and Alexis Sanchez to injuries. Mesut Ozil gave the Gunners the lead in the 30th minute on a Sanchez assist.

But Lewis Grabban tied things up before halftime with a nice finish from inside the penalty area after a good through ball by Robbie Brady. Koscielny had to go off after just seven minutes and Sanchez was subbed off at the hour mark.

Seb’s Take: Injuries keeps ruining things for Arsenal. It’s tough for the players to get into a rhythm when the lineup is constantly changed due to injuries. Arsenal is still in the top four and they have a shot at the title if they can get some of the 10 injured first-team players back.

 

The Good: Jamie Vardy

Scoring in 11 consecutive game and breaking Ruud van Nistelrooy’s record is a huge achievement for Jamie Vardy. The 28-year-old has had an incredible season so far, and it’s made all the more remarkable if you look at Vardy’s backstory.

He played fifth-tier soccer just three years ago with Fleetwood Town before joining Leicester in May 2012. He’s now an English international and leads the Premier League in scoring with 14 goals in 14 games.

The Bad: Diego Costa

Costa’s behavior on the sideline during the Tottenham – Chelsea game was embarrassing. I can understand that he’s disappointed with being put on the bench, but you can’t behave like a little child and throw a bib in the direction of your manager.

It shows once again that Costa is a very temperamental person that doesn’t always think before he acts. This surely doesn’t help with the rumors that he had a falling out with Mourinho.

The Bizarre: Arsenal’s Injuries

Arsenal dropped points to Norwich on Sunday and missed the opportunity to get back in the top three. And if that wasn’t bad enough, Laurent Koscielny and Alexis Sanchez went off injured. Santi Cazorla played on, but he was hobbling along, and Wenger said that he was playing on one leg. It seems like it’s the same story each season, with Arsenal having an exceptionally long injury list. They are already without players like Jack Wilshere, Theo Walcott, Danny Welbeck, Francis Coquelin, Mikel Arteta and Tomas Rosicky.

All teams suffer injuries, but it seems like this is something that happens to Arsenal way too often.  

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