EPL – Week 22 Review
Another Premier League record has been broken in round 22 of the race for the title and it’s as you were at the top of the table. Here are some of the highlights of the weekend’s action.
ROONEY BREAKS RECORD TO SINK LIVERPOOL
Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney scored his 176th league goal for the club in Sunday’s big showdown at Anfield against Liverpool. The 30-year-old has now overtaken Thierry Henry in scoring the most goals for the same team in the Premier League era. That it was the winning goal at their deadliest rivals made it even sweeter. In a largely forgettable game (except for Rooney’s record and seeing Manchester United players, Phil Jones, Michael Carrick and Marcos Rojo in with the fans in the visitors section), coach Louis van Gaal picked up his fourth consecutive win over the club from Merseyside. He declared after the game that his team were “Right back in the title race”; the best sports betting websites currently price them at *21.00 to be champions.
CHELSEA’S LATE, LATE SHOW ANGERS EVERTON
As the clock ticked around to 98 minutes, Chelsea captain John Terry back heeled the ball into the Everton goal to salvage a point for his team in a thrilling 3-3 draw. Replays showed that the defender was clearly in an offside position, to leave Everton boss Roberto Martinez seething after the final-whistle. That his opposite number Gus Hiddink, also agreed that the goal should not have stood and that his own team had looked to have scored a dramatic winner right at the end of normal time, made it even harder for the Spaniard to accept. He described the performance of match referee Mike Jones as “unacceptable” after playing an extra minute over the seven that had been displayed by the fourth official. If his striker Ramiro Funes Mori had not decided to do a spot of crowd surfing after getting what he thought was the winning goal, the Toffeemen would have taken all three points.
ARSENAL FROZEN OUT AT STOKE
The Gunners missed their chance to extend their lead at the top of the table after they were held to a 0-0 draw by Stoke City at a freezing Britannia Stadium on Sunday. Ever since Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey had his leg broken by Ryan Shawcross several years ago, this fixture has always been a fiery encounter. In the end, coach Arsene Wenger had his goalkeeper Petr Cech to thank for making a string of top class saves in the second-half to keep the home side at bay. The North London side remain top of the table on goal difference from Leicester City.
RANIERI’S LEICESTER HELD AT THE VILLA
When Leicester City striker Shinji Okazaki (with the help of goal line technology) put the Foxes ahead on 28 minutes, they were heading clear at the top of the Premier League table. They had a chance to virtually wrap up the points before the interval when they were awarded a penalty, but Riyad Mahrez saw his spot-kick saved by Aston Villa goalkeeper Mark Bunn. 15 minutes for time, with the home side throwing caution to the wind, they were made to pay as big striker Rudy Gestede came off the bench to snatch a point for Aston Villa. A draw was a result that neither team really wanted. Whilst Villa look doomed at the bottom of the table, Ranieri’s men are now priced at *17.00 on the betting exchanges to win their first ever league title.
CITY PUNISH WASTEFUL PALACE
Manchester City remains the favourite to win the Premier League title after they hammered Crystal Palace 4-0 at the Etihad on Saturday. It could all have been so different for the visitors however, had they not wasted two glorious chances early in the match. Once England international Fabian Delph had fired the home side ahead on 22 minutes, the game changed around dramatically. Sergio Augero added a second just before the interval before grabbing his second and his team’s third on 68 minutes. Spanish play-maker David Silva completed the rout six minutes from time, to leave his side just one point from the summit in third place.
*odds courtesy of Bet365
By: Steve Mitchell (@barafundler)