Liverpool takes the title race to the final round, Everton secures Premier League status, and more…￼
With all 20 teams slated to be in action at the same time on Sunday for the final round of the 2021/22 Premier League fixtures, the midweek matches saw a few teams playing out their penultimate fixture.
Given the results these matches produced, it is now confirmed that both the title race and the relegation battle will go right down the wire. Liverpool closed down the gap with Manchester City to only one point by beating Southampton whereas a 1-1 stalemate against Aston Villa was enough for Burnley to exit the relegation zone.
Everton secured Premier League status in dramatic fashion as they scored three second-half goals after going two goals down at the half-time break. Besides that, Arsenal remained stuck in the fifth position following a 2-0 defeat against Newcastle United.
Check out what happened in the latest round of fixtures of the Premier League:
Newcastle United 2-0 Arsenal
Despite losing the North London Derby against arch-rivals Tottenham Hotspur by a humbling 3-0 margin, Arsenal still had things pretty much under control in terms of qualifying for next season’s UEFA Champions League. However, the same cannot be said anymore, as they have suffered yet another defeat – this time losing out 2-0 against Newcastle United.
The Magpies dominated the game right from the first minute, and though Arsenal somehow managed to keep the scoreline at 0-0 in the first half, the deadlock was eventually broken in the 55th minute when Ben White’s botched clearance attempt resulted in an own goal, Brazilian midfielder Bruno Guimaraes then doubled his team’s led in the 85th minute, subsequently doing Tottenham Hotspur a big favour.
Southampton 1-2 Liverpool
With Manchester City drawing their last fixture against West Ham United, Liverpool had a golden opportunity of closing the gap with the current league leaders to only one point. Jurgen Klopp’s men did just that, as they handed Southampton a 2-1 defeat.
The start was not particularly promising for the Reds as Nathan Redmond scored the opening goal for the Saints in the 13th minute. However, their joy did not last long as Takumi Minamino’s 27th-minute strike got the visitors back in the 27th minute. Liverpool was by far the better team in the second half and they eventually got the lead when Joel Matip added his name to the scoresheet in the 67th minute.
Aston Villa 1-1 Burnley
Given that Leeds United had secured a point from their last outing against Brighton & Hove Albion, it was absolutely imperative for Burnley to get at least a draw against Aston Villa and that is exactly what they did, as the match ended in a 1-1 stalemate.
The Clarets were awarded a penalty just before the lemon break and veteran English striker Ashley Barnes made no mistake in taking full advantage of it. However, Steven Gerrard’s team equalized only three minutes into the second half, courtesy of an Emiliano Buendia strike. While the Clarets’ full-back Matthew Lowton was given marching orders in the 91st minute, it was too late for the Villans to capitalize on their numerical supremacy.
Chelsea 1-1 Leicester City
Chelsea did not have much at stake in their fixture as their place in the top four was already sealed, but after a heartbreaking defeat in the FA Cup final against Liverpool, their fans would have hoped to see their favourite team secure a win here. That, however, was not to be, as Leicester City restricted them to a 1-1 draw.
It was the Foxes who drew first blood, courtesy of a James Maddison strike in the 6th minute. The Blues equalized in the first half itself, as Marcos Alonso got his name on the scoresheet in the 35th minute, but it was their solitary goal in this fixture.
Everton 3-2 Crystal Palace
The massive Everton comeback is now complete as the Toffees have gone from being a prime contender for relegation to confirming their place in next season’s Premier League with one game to spare. They defeated Crystal Palace 3-2 to create an unassailable four-point cushion over both Burnley and Leeds United.
Like their season, Frank Lampard’s men made a miraculous comeback in this fixture as well since they went 2-0 down inside the first 36 minutes, courtesy of strikes from Jean-Philippe Mateta and Jordan Ayew. However, the second half gave a glimpse of what this Everton side can produce if they play to their strengths. Michael Keane got the hosts back in the game with his 54th-minute strike, whilst Richarlison and Dominic Calvert-Lewin netted goals in a span of 10 minutes to officially confirm the team’s safety for yet another season in the top flight.