Five Things The Premier League Taught Us This Weekend

Anthony Joshua

There was plenty of sporting drama this weekend, with Anthony Joshua knocking seven bells out of Charles Martin, everyone losing a few quid on the Grand National, and the Masters golf being won by Danny Willett.

However, the Premier League was at its usual best once again, as it moved towards its dramatic conclusion.

Leicester City’s incredible season continued as they swept aside Sunderland, Rafa Benitez watched on as his Newcastle United team rolled over against Southampton, and West Ham United and Arsenal kicked the weekend off with a classic.

Here are five things the English top flight taught us this weekend

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Arsenal Are Very Good At Throwing Things Away

The last ever London derby at the Boleyn Ground was always going to be memorable, but the 90 minutes that were played out on Saturday lunchtime will be remembered even by neutrals.

Arsenal looked as though they’d fully rediscovered their rhythm, racing into a 2-0 lead thanks to Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez goals.

But then came the juggernaut that is Andy Carroll, who gave the Hammers a lifeline with a goal before half time, and then netting two more to give his side a 3-2 lead.

Laurent Koscielny grabbed an equaliser, but it was another case of Arsenal throwing away something they should have easily wrapped up – just like the Premier League title this year.

Swansea City v Chelsea - Premier LeagueAlex Morton/GETTY

Chelsea Still Have Problems

Since Guus Hiddink took over the mess that Jose Mourinho left behind earlier this season, Chelsea had drastically improved.

However, with nothing left to play for, the Dutchman made changes to his side and they duly backfired against Swansea.

Gylfi Sigurdsson’s volley past newly-installed goalkeeper Asmir Begovic was enough for the Swans, who reached the magic 40 point mark with six games to spare.

With Antonio Conte taking over this summer, the Blues have some improving to do – and the defeat in Wales was a timely reminder that there is plenty of work to be done.

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Newcastle Don’t Fancy The Fight

After bottling it against Norwich City last time out, Newcastle turned in a similarly terrible performance against Southampton.

Steven Taylor’s criminal defending allowed Shane Long to score, before further goals from Graziano Pelle and Victor Wanyama moved the Geordies one step closer to the Championship.

Rafa Benitez is finding it hard to install belief into a side that simply doesn’t look bothered, and will likely be happy to collect his wages before finding himself another club this summer.

Julian Finney/GETTY

Andy Carroll Is A Geniune England Option

When West Ham were 2-0 down to Arsenal, they needed a spark and they got one.

Andy Carroll’s superb eight minute hat trick kept the Hammers in the hunt for the top four, and also reminded Roy Hodgson that he is a genuine option for the Euro 2016 squad this summer.

Carroll offers something different to every other English striker in current squad, and he proved as much as he bullied Arsenal’s defence into giving up their two goal lead.

We all know Hodgson has his squad favourites, but Carroll is a serious shout for a late push for the flight to France in two months time.

lvg gettyIan Walton/GETTY

Manchester United Have A Long Way To Go 

With an hour gone in Manchester United’s game against Tottenham Hotspur, it was all going well enough for Louis van Gaal.

But, as is common these days, his defence let him down dramatically, conceding three goals in six minutes to throw a point away.

Matteo Darmian’s total failure to block Christian Eriksen’s cross allowed Dele Alli to score, before further goals from Toby Alderweireld and Erik Lamela ensured Spurs’ title challenge kept its pace.

£250m spent and Ashley Young comes on as a striker – what is van Gaal doing?!