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City break win-margin record and Liverpool too good for Chelsea again | EPL Matchweek 6 Review

Lord help any team that plays Manchester City the week after a loss. Pep Guardiola’s men weren’t messing around in sending a clear message to Liverpool that if they thought they weren’t hungry for a third title – they better think again.

In other games – Liverpool beat Chelsea again, Arsenal left it late to steal a win from Villa, whilst Tottenham and United are just happy the other lost as well.

Chelsea 1 – 2 Liverpool  | Stamford Bridge

Frank Lampard will be mightily disappointed his side didn’t come away with at least a draw from this game but Liverpool did just enough to hold onto their perfect record. Liverpool’s first goal was the definition of set piece perfection with Mo Salah’s cheeky backwards lay off stroked masterfully into the top corner by Trent Alexander-Arnold. The young fullback is firmly cementing himself as England’s go-to for corners and free-kicks. Kepa quite simply had no chance.

Cesar Azpilicueta thought he’d equalised for Chelsea before VAR overturned it judging Mason Mount to be off-side in the build up. To add insult to injury, Roberto Firmino headed home from another well-worked free kick just a minute later to double Liverpool’s lead.

N’Golo Kante waltzed through the Liverpool defence in the 71st minute to score a brilliant solo goal that will leave Jurgen Klopp and his defence more than a little frustrated at their inability to keep a clean sheet recently.

But despite heavy pressure and a myriad of late chances for the blues, Liverpool held on for a sixth win out of six games whilst Chelsea drop down to 11th.

Manchester City 8 – 0 Watford  | Etihad Stadium

This was an exhibition of masterful ruthlessness from the very first whistle. David Silva scored in the first minute, and by minute 18, Nicolas Otamendi had netted City’s fourth. To go through every goal would take until Matchweek 7 but Bernardo Silva was the standout with a hattrick whilst Kevin de Bruyne laid on two assists before smashing home a goal for himself.

Watford were bad and remain rooted to the bottom of the table. However, you can’t help but feel the result wouldn’t have been all that different no matter which team City played. It was plainly obvious for all to see that Pep had made his feelings on the Norwich loss perfectly clear and his players responded.

The result becomes their biggest winning margin in the Premier League, and it was done with Raheem Sterling and Gabriel Jesus sitting on the bench.

 

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Leicester City 2 – 1 Tottenham  | King Power Stadium

Guaranteed there’s at least one game a week when VAR makes the headlines, and this week it was at the King Power Stadium. So often, VAR has been Tottenham’s friend and it was again early in the game with a scrappy goal to Leicester in the 15th minute ruled out due to Ayoze Perez being offside.

On the half-hour mark, Harry Kane showed just what it means to be a natural goal scorer latching onto a Son flick before getting a shove in the back. Despite tumbling forward, Kane still managed to slot the ball past Kasper Scheichel to give Spurs the lead.

French full-back Serge Aurier thought he’d double Spurs lead midway through the second half but VAR turned from friend to foe judging Son to be millimeters (if that) off-side in the build up. The decision has split debate since, the margin was that tight. And in typical fashion, Leicester equalised just minutes later through Ricardo Pereira.

James Maddison put the dagger in the heart of Mauricio Pochettino with the English midfielder smashing an unstoppable shot from 30-yards out to complete the Fox’s comeback. That lifts his side into an impressive 3rd whilst Tottenham slip to 7th.

West Ham United 2 – 0 Manchester United  | London Stadium

This was not a pretty game of football at all. But West Ham didn’t need pretty as they defeated Manchester United to make it five matches without defeat for the Hammers.

The first half was a dreary affair as rain pelted down in London and neither team were able to craft any kind of clear chances. Just before half-time though, Felipe Anderson showed a moment of quality to find Yarmolenko just inside the penalty area, with the Ukrainian slotting home into the bottom corner.

Juan Mata missed an open net just after the break and Lukasz Fabianski saved a Harry Maguire shot from point blank range to show it simply wasn’t going to be United’s day. Aaron Creswell’s glorious free kick from 25-yards out was the clear highlight of the afternoon, sealing the three points whilst pushing West Ham up to 4th and United down to 8th.

Arsenal 3 – 2 Aston Villa  | Emirates Stadium

The notoriously hard-to-please Arsenal fans will be happy with the result but not particularly happy with the performance. Villa started clearly the better side and got rewarded in the 20th minute with Arsenal’s defensive deficiencies laid bare once again as John McGinn ran completely untracked into the box to glance home a cross from deep.

Things went from bad to worse for the Gunners as defender Ainsley Maitland-Niles was sent off for a second yellow card before half-time. Arsenal equalised early in the second half with regular penalty taker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang allowing new signing Nicolas Pepe to take an opportunity from the spot in order to get his first goal for the club – which he did. His joy was barely momentary though as Villa took the lead back less than a minute later.

It wasn’t until the 80th minute when fullback Callum Chambers’ persistence paid off and he put away a scrappy goal to level the scores again. And just minutes later with a free kick on the edge of the area, Aubameyang took matters into his own hands this time smashing a curling effort low and hard into the edge of the net.

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