Football Features

Gabriel Jesus’ incredible record and Luton’s history-maker: The best of the Premier League’s Tuesday games

By CJ Smith

Gabriel Jesus' incredible record and Luton's history-maker: The best of the Premier League's Tuesday games

Published: 22:48, 30 January 2024

After a weekend of FA Cup action, the Premier League returned on Tuesday night, with plenty of issues coming to the fore.

From title challenges to relegation scraps, with the battle for Europe and mid-table anonymity in between, no part of the Premier League ladder was left untouched on Tuesday.

So, just how did things go down in another exciting night of action? Read on to find out…

1. Gabriel Jesus ticks another off his list as Arsenal close the gap

Granted, they’ve played a game more, but the gap between Arsenal and leaders Liverpool is now just two points thanks to their 2-1 victory over Nottingham Forest; their second in a row.

The Gunners had to work hard for it, waiting until the 65th minute to open the scoring through Gabriel Jesus, who connected with a long throw-in from Oleksandr Zinchenko and was allowed time to turn inside the box and finish between Matt Turner’s legs from an acute angle. Forest will be livid with that one, but perhaps it was inevitable given it means Jesus has now scored against all bar one of the sides he has played multiple games against in the Premier League. The only remaining team to tick off that list just happens to be his former club, Manchester City.

Did we also mention Jesus is unbeaten across all 60 Premier League games in which he’s scored to date?

Mikel Arteta’s men doubled their advantage just seven minutes later as Bukayo Saka finished a ruthless Arsenal break following a Gonzalo Montiel giveaway. Saka is now the first Arsenal player to score 10+ goals and provide 10+ assists across all competitions in back-to-back seasons since Alexis Sanchez in 2017.

It’s lucky for Arteta that that is the case as — after multiple missed Arsenal chances — Forest were able to halve the deficit in the final minute of regulation time, with Montiel somewhat redeeming himself to set up Taiwo Awoniyi for his second goal in as many Premier League games, having previously suffered a seven-match drought.

While Arsenal continue to dream of a Premier League title, back-to-back defeats have left Forest just two points clear of the relegation zone.

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2. Luton run riot to climb out of the relegation zone

Luton Town have spent six nervous match weeks inside the bottom three, but their form has been improving and the gap closing, with just one defeat in their last seven across all competitions heading into Tuesday. Well, that’s now one in eight and three consecutive victories, allowing Luton to look down on the relegation zone, and didn’t they do it in style?

Not one, not two, not three, but four goals inside the opening 56 minutes were enough to see off a sorry Brighton side, in what was the Hatters’ biggest top-flight win since beating Southampton 6-1 way back in January 1989.

Elijah Adebayo — who has been with the club since their days in League Two — was the fuel to Luton’s fire, helping himself to an incredible hat-trick; the first from any player in the Premier League in 2024 and the first in the top-flight from a Luton player since Lars Elstrup against Norwich City in September 1990.

Incidentally, Adebayo’s eight Premier League goals is the sixth-highest of any player in the competition so far this season, while Luton’s 17 home goals put them above Manchester United (15) in that regard.

3. Everton in bottom three despite exciting performance against Fulham

Everton must be wondering what they have to do to score a Premier League goal against Fulham this season. The Toffees have attempted 40 shots, missed nine big chances and generated 4.87 Expected Goals against the Cottagers across their two meetings combined this term, without winning or even hitting the net once.

They did manage to take a point home from Craven Cottage on Tuesday night, but only after missing their mark from 21 shots and 2.15 xG, with five big chances going wayward.

And unfortunately for Everton, those misses proved costly as they slipped into the bottom three for the first time since week 14 thanks to that aforementioned victory for Luton.

Of course, Evertonians will feel rather sour about their placing given they’ve actually picked up enough points to see them 12th; the position Fulham currently occupy.

4. Newcastle stun Aston Villa to get back on track

Injuries have massively derailed Newcastle United this season and they went into Tuesday night on a run of six defeats from their last seven Premier League matches, including four in a row. But remember those glorious days at the very start of this campaign, when they thrashed Aston Villa 5-1? Turns out Unai Emery’s Champions League challengers are just the team Eddie Howe needs when he’s looking for inspiration.

The Magpies once again put Villa to the sword on Tuesday, taking a 3-0 lead away from home inside 52 minutes in truly bizarre fashion. It was centre-back Fabian Schar scoring two goals in four minutes before the break while Alex Moreno netted a desperate own goal in the second half.

That makes Newcastle the first away side to score three or more goals in a Premier League match at Villa Park since Arsenal back in February 2023.

What’s more, only one other team has scored eight goals in a single league campaign against an Unai Emery side during the Spaniard’s ‘Big Five European Leagues’ career: Real Madrid, who have achieved the feat twice.

Ollie Watkins was able to pull a goal back in the 71st minute, but it proved nothing more than a consolation and even that’s being generous given Villa now trail leaders Liverpool by five points having played a game more. Tottenham below can leapfrog them into the Champions League spots if they beat Brentford on Wednesday.

For their part, Newcastle are up to seventh but still have work to do if they’re to once again qualify for Europe.

5. Crystal Palace fightback increases Sheffield United woes

It’s looking rather bleak for Sheffield United. The bounce from Chris Wilder’s return has barely been noticeable and on Tuesday night, they still somehow found a way to lose despite taking the lead against Crystal Palace twice inside the opening 20 minutes — including before an actual minute was even on the board.

The Blades were terrorized by the dynamic duo of Eberechi Eze and Michael Olise, the latter twice setting up the former for first-half equalisers, before finishing the game in style with an excellent goal of his own in the 67th minute.

That’s five goals and three assists in Olise’s last five Premier League matches, notching at least one direct goal involvement per game during that time. No wonder the Frenchman — and Eze for that matter, with the England international now on five Premier League goals for the season — is in such high demand.

A much-needed win for Palace, Tuesday’s result leaves Sheffield United 19th, seven points adrift of safety with just three wins from 21 games.

Tuesday, 30th January, Premier League results: 

  • Nottingham Forest 1-2 Arsenal
  • Fulham 0-0 Everton
  • Luton Town 4-0 Brighton
  • Crystal Palace 3-2 Sheffield United
  • Aston Villa 1-3 Newcastle United

Wednesday, 31st January, Premier League fixtures:

  • Manchester City vs Burnley – 7:30pm (UK time)
  • Tottenham vs Brentford – 7:30pm (UK time)
  • Liverpool vs Chelsea – 8:15pm (UK time)