EPL Round-Up: Manchester City win to go top of the table, Fulham and Cardiff relegated
Manchester City's away win to Everton keeps them in control of the Premier League title race. Cardiff City and Fulham meanwhile won't see Premier League football next season following relegation that was ascertained by Saturday's results. Ryan Giggs tasted his first defeat as manager of Manchester United as Sunderland defeated the Red Devils at Old Trafford 1-0.
The results of this gameweek were felt around both at the top and bottom of the Premier League. Manchester City’s enthralling 3-2 win over Everton in the late game of the day meant that the Premier League had its 23rd lead change of the season. The Citizens now are in control of the title race and place the ball in Liverpool’s court; who plays Crystal Palace tomorrow.
Ross Barkley opened the scoring for Everton with a screamer that was itself worth the price of admission. City however hit back swiftly and with some venom. An equaliser from Sergio Aguero followed by a couple from Edin Dzeko put the Manchester side firmly in control of the tie by the 48th minute. Everton however were not one to give up as Romelo Lukaku’s 65th minute hit meant for an enthralling last half an hour. The Toffees however were unable to find the vital 3rd goal as Joe Hart’s heroics saw the Citizens over the line.
Meanwhile defeats for Fulham and Cardiff away to Stoke and Newcastle United respectively meant that they will play their 2014-15 seasons in the second tier of English Football. The couple of results combined Sunderland’s win over Manchester United at Old Trafford sealed the fate for the duo.
If there was any fight of desperation in either team, it certainly didn’t show on the pitch as both were thumped by a margin of 3 goals. Fulham were up against it going into the Britannia stadium, where Stoke had won 4 of their last 5 games. The game followed the predictable path as Stoke romped home to their 10th home win of the season. Meanwhile in the North-East Ole-Gunnar Solskjaer’s Cardiff couldn’t take advantage of a club in distress. The magpies, who went into the game having lost their last six and in their worst run of form since 1978; found their stride against the Welshmen. Even a walk-out from the fans on the 69 minute mark to protest against the current regime wasn’t enough to dislodge the Tynesiders from the intent as goals from from Shola Ameobi, Loic Remy and Steven Taylor made for the last nails in the coffin for Cardiff.
As so many times it happens in the Premier League, the fates of teams were yet again sealed in a game at the Theatre of Dreams. The surprise result of the weekend was provided at Old Trafford, where Manchester United succumbed to in-form Sunderland. A solitary goal from Swedish international Seb Larsson was enough to seal Sunderland’s first away win against Manchester United in league play since 1968. The victory puts the Black Cats in firm position to avoid relegation as it puts them 3 points ahead of Norwich(who have lost their last 5 games), though the Canaries have a game in hand.
The defeat seals Manchester United’s fate of finishing 7th in the table; the lowest ever finish for the Red Devils in the Premier League era.
In other games today, Aston Villa and West Ham United recorded home wins against Hull City and Tottenham respectively. Whilst in a battle for the purists in football, Southampton came up trumps away to Swansea City courtesy of Ricky Lambert’s goal.