The Premier League has returned after the final international break of 2019 and it’s back with a bang as six games took place at the traditional 3pm kick-off time on Saturday.
League leaders Liverpool were looking to extend their grip on top spot when they traveled to Crystal Palace, while second-placed Leicester City were also in action against Brighton & Hove Albion.
Unai Emery’s Arsenal welcomed struggling Southampton to the Emirates, with the Gunners still looking to find their identity. Elsewhere, Bournemouth hosted Wolverhampton Wanderers, Everton welcomed Norwich City and Burnley traveled to Watford.
So, what happened in the games?
Arsenal 2-2 Southampton
The match summed up in one stat… Arsenal have failed to win in five consecutive Premier League games for the first time since 2011, losing two and drawing three.
What does this mean for the Premier League? Arsenal have moved up to sixth while Southampton remain in the relegation zone.
Man of the match? Danny Ings, who opened the scoring and won Southampton’s penalty.
Spare a thought for… Danny Ings. The English striker has been in good goalscoring form this season, being directly responsible for 46.2% of Southampton’s 13 Premier League goals. This has seen him score against Liverpool, Wolves, Everton, Tottenham, Chelsea and Arsenal so far. But Southampton fans may wish that Ings would stop scoring, with Saints yet to win a game in which the Englishman has found the net.
Bournemouth 1-2 Wolverhampton Wanderers
The match summed up in one stat… No Premier League player has been involved in more goals across all competitions than Raul Jimenez this season (14).
What does this mean for the Premier League? Wolves have moved up to fifth after their win, while Bournemouth drop to 11th.
Man of the match? Joao Moutinho, who opened the scoring and helped Wolves control the midfield.
A day to forget for… Simon Francis. The Bournemouth captain was making his first Premier League start since Boxing Day of 2018 having recovered from a cruciate ligament injury. But it is not a return he will want to remember, as the 34-year-old lasted just 37 minutes before being sent off for two yellow cards.
Brighton & Hove Albion 0-2 Leicester City
The match summed up in one stat… Jamie Vardy has scored in each of his past five Premier League appearances.
What does this mean for the Premier League? Leicester remain second, eight points behind Liverpool while Brighton are also unmoved in 12th.
Man of the match? Jamie Vardy, who recorded an assist before extending his lead as the Premier League’s top scorer.
Are Leicester title challengers? It wasn’t a resounding win but Leicester City’s season rolled on and they kept the heat on league leaders Liverpool. Brendan Rodgers’ side have won their past five Premier League games and have opened up a 10-point gap to fifth place, but is it time to consider them genuine title contenders?
Subscribe to Squawka’s Youtube channel here.
Crystal Palace 1-2 Liverpool
The match summed up in one stat… Sadio Mane has scored in each of his last five Premier League games against Crystal Palace.
What does this mean for the Premier League? Liverpool remain eight points clear at the top of the table, while Crystal Palace drop to 14th.
Man of the match? Virgil van Dijk, who was key to helping Liverpool hold off a Crystal Palace onslaught in the first half.
Spare a thought for… James Tomkins. Just before half-time, the centre-back thought he had given Crystal Palace the lead. It would have been his first goal since January, which also came against Liverpool. However, the goal was ruled out after a consultation with VAR, with Jordan Ayew having pushed Dejan Lovren inside the area moments before Tomkins put the ball in the back of the net.
Everton 0-2 Norwich City
The match summed up in one stat… Teemu Pukki has scored or assisted in a Premier League game for the first time since September 14.
What does this mean for the Premier League? Norwich City stay in the relegation zone while Everton remain 15th.
Man of the match? Kenny McLean, who created more chances than any other player at Goodison Park (5).
Time for Silva to go? With Tottenham making the big decision to sack Mauricio Pochettino in midweek, Everton could be persuaded to call time on Marco Silva’s tenure at Goodison Park. The Toffees were well beaten by a Norwich side without a win since September, condemning them to their seventh defeat of the season.
Watford 0-3 Burnley
The match summed up in one stat… Burnley scored with three of their five shots on target against Watford.
What does this mean for the Premier League? Watford return to the bottom of the table while Burnley have jumped to sixth.
Man of the match? James Tarkowski, who capped off the scoring while also winning seven aerial duels to help keep a clean sheet.
Spare a thought for… Watford fans. The Hornets endured a tough start to the season under Javi Gracia but Quique Sanchez Flores’ appointment was made with the view to turning their troubles around. But, despite getting a first win prior to the international break, Watford returned to their poor ways and look certain for relegation already.