Advertisement

Liverpool on the charge as Manchester United stumble, Aguero awesome

Liverpool on the charge as Manchester United stumble, Aguero awesome
From ESPN - February 11, 2018

Rounding up the best and worst of the Premier League action over the weekend.

Goal of the weekend

At first glance it was one of those where you thought the keeper might have done better. The ball flew in right over Kasper Schmeichel's head, and given his previous errors in the game it would be easy to point the finger at him. But when you watch Sergio Aguero's thunderous fourth goal for Manchester City in Saturday's 5-1 mauling of Leicester, you will see that the ball was hit with such dip and power that Schmeichel actually had no chance. Not many can strike a ball like him.

Assist of the weekend

Liverpool might have been a touch disappointed they did not beat Southampton by more than 2-0 on Sunday, but if it was panache you are looking for then look no further than Roberto Firmino's flamboyant back flick for Mohamed Salah's strike. Impudent, showboating, damn entertaining, but most importantly, brilliantly incisive.

Prediction of the weekend

With six more wins required to confirm themselves as champions, it would take an act of God to stop Manchester City at this stage. Beneath them, though, it's all up for grabs. Most have thought Manchester United would take second place, and for much of the season they have justified that to a point, a relatively grim accumulation of points leaving them clear of the rest.

But the way things are going, they might not stay there. United were not calamitously bad against Newcastle but were still beaten by a team that was in the relegation zone at the start of play. United have not been in dazzling form recently, to say the least, winning four of their last nine: not a calamitous run, but neither one that will put any sort of fear into their rivals.

Liverpool, on the other hand, have matched Manchester City over the last 10 games, and are now only two points behind United. So here's a prediction: Liverpool will finish second in the Premier League, or at least above United. At the very least, the match between the two on March 10 looks like a spicy affair.

Resurrection of the weekend

A few months ago, it would not have been the most outrageous conclusion to more or less write off Mousa Dembele. Certainly to say he would never return to his imperious best, constant injuries having taken their toll. Mauricio Pochettino was apparently worried about the same: at least part of the reason for his extended interest in Ross Barkley was that he suspected Dembele's best days were behind him.

But to watch Dembele strut around the Wembley pitch on Saturday as Tottenham thrashed Arsenal 1-0 (if such a thing is possible) was to watch a man return to his peak. At his best, getting the ball off Dembele is like trying to extricate fluff from Velcro: frustrating and impossible. That's what he did to Arsenal this weekend.

Unsurprisingly, Pochettino is convinced again. "For me he is a genius," he said, "an unbelievable player."

Advertisement

Continue reading at ESPN »