"With a bit more luck we would have found the finishing touch."
Arsenal had their lead at the top cut short to only two points after losing to Manchester United at Old Trafford. Hot on Arsenal’s tails are Liverpool who plundered four goals against Fulham at Anfield.
Chelsea escaped a home defeat by winning a controversial penalty in injury time at home to West Bromwich Albion.
Remembrance Sunday was a memorable day for the North East England as Newcastle United and Sunderland claimed wins against Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City respectively.
Newcastle United beat Spurs away 1-0, while Sunderland clinched a 1-0 home victory against Manchester City. Southampton are firmly in the title race and dreaming of Champions League football following their 4-1 thumping of Hull City.
Liverpool 4 Fulham 0 – 3pm KO, Saturday
Shahid Khan’s Fulham suffered a heavy defeat in what appeared to be a routine win for Liverpool. The Luis Suárez show was back again as he scored a brace in a 4-0 win.
The early pressure came from the home side as the rout started with an own goal by Fernando Amorebieta following a Liverpool corner. Martin Škrtel scored with his head to double Liverpool’s lead three minutes later and it looked game over for the Cottagers.
Suárez then struck to take the home side 3-0 up at half time with the visitors showing very little in return. With just under ten minutes to go, Suárez bounced again to make it 4-0. The return of Philippe Coutinho from the start made a big difference as nearly everything went through him.
This wasn’t really a contest, but a great confidence boosting win for Liverpool before they visit neighbours and fierce rivals Everton in a fortnight.
A jubilant Liverpool fan on the Pakistan reds Facebook page quipped: “With Spurs dropping points Liverpool stand alone on the second spot.”
Chelsea 2 West Bromwich Albion 2 – 3pm KO, Saturday
Only a controversial penalty could save the blushes of José Mourinho and his Chelsea side at home to West Bromwich Albion. Old friend Steve Clarke returned to Stamford Bridge with his Albion side putting on a good display.
Chelsea took the lead on the stroke of half time with a Samuel Eto’o goal that eased the home fans. Chelsea started the second half strongly, but West Brom held firm and were rewarded with an equaliser on the hour mark through a Shane Long header.
West Bromwich Albion didn’t sit back though. They continued the pressure and scored again eight minutes later through Beninese footballer Stéphane Sessègnon.
It was all Chelsea after that, but to no avail until they received an injury time penalty, which was somewhat harsh on The Baggies. Eden Hazard kept his cool and equalised for Chelsea to earn them a crucial point.
When questioned about the controversial spot kick, Chelsea manager José Mourinho said:
“I am sure it was a penalty. I watched after the match from different angles and different speeds and no doubt it was a penalty.”
Tottenham Hotspur 0 Newcastle 1 – 12pm KO, Sunday
Newcastle United beat Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 with a goal from Loïc Rémy. Newcastle United’s Dutch goalkeeper Tim Krul was the hero making no less than fourteen saves to clinch the points for the visitors.
Loïc Rémy scored for Newcastle early in the 1st half which gave the home side plenty of time to try and equalise. However, Spurs couldn’t score for love nor money despite a staggering thirty-one shots on goal.
A surprising home defeat for Tottenham Hotspur meant they lost the chance to catch up, especially after London rivals Chelsea and Arsenal had failed to win.
After the match, Tottenham Hotspur manager, André Villas-Boas humbly acknowledged: “Krul did well today. Today he was the inspiration, he made the difference. With a bit more luck we would have found the finishing touch.”
Sunderland 1 Man City 0 – 2.05pm KO, Saturday
Phil Bardsley’s goal helped Sunderland beat Manchester City 1-0 at home for the 4th straight season.
Whatever Sunderland manager Gus Poyet is doing at the Stadium of Light seems to be working wonders as their form continues to improve. A Phil Bardsley goal in the 21st minute was enough for all three points despite intense pressure from the visitors.
The return of Wes Brown to action after twenty-two months out added extra strength to the Sunderland defence, which made all the difference. Manchester City piled on the pressure for an equaliser, but Sunderland stood up well and deserved the win.
Manchester City have won all their games at home, but four defeats from six away games is not the form of champions.
Manchester United 1 v Arsenal 0 – 4.10pm KO, Sunday
Robin van Persie scored the only goal as Manchester United beat Arsenal 1-0 to climb to 5th position in the English Premier League.
Robin van Persie haunted his former club again, reminding them of their error in selling him to their arch rivals by heading the winner in the 27th minute.
Following Arsenal’s recent good form, a rejuvenated Manchester United turned up and fought. Although Arsenal lost Per Mertesacker and Tomas Rosicky to sickness, they still had plenty of match winners to rely on.
A relatively uneventful first half saw Robin Van Persie leap above his marker to head home from a Wayne Rooney corner. The second half was a lot better for the neutrals as Arsenal upped a gear and went in search of an equaliser. But it was a day which the Gunners will like to forget in a hurry.
Manchester United now feel their momentum is beginning to pick up pace.
A disappointed Arsenal fan from India tweeted: “Wouldn’t mind losing if Arsenal had played well. But we failed to turn up today. United were, admittedly, better.”
Elsewhere, Crystal Palace and Everton played out a goalless draw, while Norwich City beat West Ham United 3-1 and Aston Villa won 2-0 at home to Cardiff City. Swansea City and Stoke City played out an epic 3-3 draw to share the spoils.
Another international break sees a vacant Premier League weekend before rivalries are renewed in a fortnight with the Merseyside derby being the pick of the matches.