Manchester City strengthened their hold on the title race by beating Arsenal thanks to Raheem Sterling’s early goal, while faltering champions Liverpool lost the Merseyside derby to Everton.
At the bottom Fulham are making a fight of things but West Brom and Sheffield United lost more ground.
Here, the PA news agency looks at what we learned from the Premier League this weekend.
Another Kop flop for Klopp
The problems have deepened for Jurgen Klopp as Liverpool slumped to a fourth consecutive home league defeat and Everton secured their first win at Anfield since 1999; The champions are vulnerable at the back and showed a distinct lack of creativity and composure in attack. They dominated possession and territory but it was the lack of cutting edge which has defined Liverpool over the last two seasons that was most striking from a team low on confidence. City’s latest win left the Reds 19 points adrift.
The thoughts of the boss on the second half reaction and what we must do better 💪 pic.twitter.com/Mwwq4Yzuf4
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) February 21, 2021
Thomas Tuchel showed his ruthless streak for the first time since taking over as Chelsea manager in a move which will have left the dressing room in no doubt about the standards he sets. Callum Hudson-Odoi was the victim, sent on as a half-time substitute and hauled off after 76 minutes because Tuchel “was not happy with the energy and with the attitude”. Ouch!
Foxes take their chances
With Jack Grealish out injured, James Maddison and Harvey Barnes took centre stage in front of England manager Gareth Southgate at Villa Park. Both were on the scoresheet in Leicester’s 2-1 win over Aston Villa to boost their claims for a place in the Euro 2020 squad. Barnes now has 13 goals for the season in all competitions and manager Brendan Rodgers said: “Harvey looks like he’s going to score in every game, he was sensational today.” Leicester were briefly second until Manchester United won the late match against Newcastle.
Soucek spills claret
— SK Slavia Prague EN (@slavia_eng) February 21, 2021
Social media was buzzing after West Ham’s Czech enforcer Tomas Soucek shrugged off what appeared to be a horror clash of heads against Tottenham. The 25-year-old was branded ‘Terminator’ after he got straight back up and carried on defending, despite having blood pouring from a gash above his eye. Even Soucek’s former club Slavia Prague joined in the applause. West Ham’s 2-1 win lifted David Moyes’ iron men up to nosebleed territory in fourth, and left Jose Mourinho with a headache after another defeat.
Sheffield United’s top-flight adventure is all but over and Big Sam’s record of never being relegated looks certain to come to an end with West Brom. But Fulham are suddenly making a relegation battle out of what a few weeks ago looked a three-horse race for three places. Ademola Lookman’s goal sank the Blades and made it eight points from their last four matches. Suddenly Newcastle – who lost the late Sunday game 3-1 at Manchester United – Brighton and Burnley are looking over their shoulders again.