The ever whacky world of mid-week football returned on Tuesday. It brought with it more proof that City are unbeatable and the form of the other top five is seriously temperamental. Ah well, Burnley are now top six so maybe things will change…
Aside from the obvious resounding Manchester City victory at Swansea, it was another strange set of results. Tottenham squeezed passed Brighton, whilst Chelsea slammed a dire Huddersfield. Up in Tyneside, Big Sam kept up his unbeaten Everton form as Rooney scored another mid-week goal to beat Newcastle.
Crystal Palace and Burnley scored late to grab all three points. One team climbed closer to safety, one got closer to European glory. In London, West Ham drew against a boring Arsenal. West Brom similarily held up a less than clinical Liverpool. United were shaky winners at home The Cherries.
Mid-week madness: Southampton 1 Leicester City 4.
It was a return to 15/16 Leicester on Wednesday, with The Foxes cruising to victory away at Southampton.
Claude Puel’s move to the Midlands club had fans shaking their heads but the French manager has proved himself to be an apt tactician.
Leicester play their best football when it’s direct and last night was a concrete example of that. The whole game was dominated by fantastic long balls, quick breaks and beautiful link-up play between Okazaki, Vardy and Mahrez.
The Japanese striker was the standout, putting away two goals and playing a huge part in the build-up to Mahrez’s opening goal.
Mid-week losers: Newcastle United.
Is it a plane falling out of the sky? Crashing into the ground, ploughing up the earth and bursting into flames?
No, it’s just Newcastle’s form.
The Magpies haven’t won since October and have collected a single point from the last nine games. Things may be looking up with a possible take over on the horizon but Benitez needs better players and a solid identity for his team.
If he can’t sort out his chaotic defence another Championship season beckons.
Controversial Calamity: Is the premier league title race over?
Putting aside the fact that City are eleven points clear, it’s obvious that they are just head and shoulders above everyone else in the league.
Guardiola’s men won 4-0 against Swansea on Wednesday without even trying. Silva, De Bruyne and Sterling were just disgustingly good as ever.
The win was The Citizen’s fifteenth in a row, breaking the record previously held by Wenger’s Invincibles.
No one has come seriously close to beating City yet, and with United, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool failing to do so – who is left to bring them down? The title race, for all intents and purposes, is over.
Mighty Minnows: Burnley.
Whilst all the naysayers were sure that Burnley were going to be relegated, Sean Dyche had big plans.
Full of team spirit, determination and northern grit, Burnley climbed to fourth in the table on Tuesday night.
After a Barnes goal gave The Clarets all three points against Stoke, Dyche’s men were sitting pretty in a Champions League spot. After Wednesday’s results they dropped to sixth but that’s only on goal difference and we were still there for a bit so, you know.
It’s their best league position since 1975.
Just imagine it: Messi is dispossessed by a proper tackle, Tarkowski receives his thanks from the Turf Moor crowd as Iniesta shivers in the freezing Lancashire weather.