Premier League Recap: A very slow weekend

Manchester United’s Aaron Wan-Bissaka, right, duels for the ball with Chelsea’s Christian Pulisic during the English Premier League soccer match between Manchester United and Chelsea, at the Old Trafford stadium in Manchester, England, Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Photo by Michael Regan/Pool via AP Photo.

It seemed like the Premier League finally went back to normal this past weekend. No dramatic score lines or crazy plays, just a very plain weekend. Everton finally has an L in the loss column after losing to Southampton, nothing could separate Manchester United and Chelsea and Jamie Vardy single-handedly took care of Arsenal at the Emirates.  

Everton: 0, Southampton: 2 
Everton and Carlo Ancelotti finally suffered defeat in the Premier League. The Toffees fell at the hands of Southampton which ties them with Liverpool at the top of the Premier League, both with 13 points. 

The game got off to a fast start with Everton being the aggressor. In the 18th minute, midfielder Gylfi Sigurðsson took a shot for Everton and struck the crossbar. Winger James Rodriguez also had a chance early on for a free kick just outside the Southampton box. However, it was Southampton who would get on the board first in the 27th minute when captain James Ward-Prowse slotted the ball into the bottom left corner to give Southampton a 1-0 lead. They quickly doubled their lead less than ten minutes later when the ball was crossed into the box by Danny Ings and settled at the feet of Che Adams who put the ball into the back of the net. 

The second half was less action-packed as both teams were unable to create any major chances. Everton defender Digne received a red card in the 72nd minute after committing a questionable foul before the final whistle blew, sealing Southampton’s win. 

Chelsea: 0, Manchester United: 0 
Chelsea versus Manchester United did not live up to its headline. The match brought nothing but frustration for the players, managers and fans, with neither team bringing any energy to the pitch. 

Neither side had any real opportunities through the first half and they both had their spells in possession. Chelsea’s best chance came in the 32nd minute when Christian Pulisic won the ball in the middle of the field. Pulisic then drove forward and lined up a shot that just went by the far post. Manchester United then had a chance minutes later when winger Marcus Rashford made a scampering run down the field. He then shot, forcing Chelsea keeper Edouard Mendy to make a save. Right before the stroke of halftime, Chelsea had what looked like a sure penalty, only to have it waved off by the official. 

The second half was the same as the first with neither club having any sort of major change. The best chance of the game came in stoppage time as United defender Aaron Wan-Bisakka whipped a cross into the Chelsea box. After a failed clearance, the ball fell to Rashford at the end of the box who struck it toward the top right corner of the net. Mendy then made another crucial save, which secured a point for both teams. Edison Cavani also made his first appearance for Manchester United during the match. 

Leicester’s Cengiz Onder, left, and Arsenal’s Granit Xhaka battle for the ball during the English Premier League soccer match between Arsenal and Leicester City at Emirates Stadium in London, England, Sunday, Oct. 25, 2020. Photo by Catherine Ivill/Pool via AP Photo.

Arsenal: 0, Leicester: 1 
Arsenal versus Leicester looked like a stalemate until Leicester’s lord and savior Jamie Vardy came onto the field. The not-fully-fit striker was the difference between the two teams awarding the foxes a crucial three points.  

The first half was all Gunners all the time, with Arsenal handling a majority of the possession during the first 45 minutes and creating multiple opportunities. It looked as though they would take an early lead in the first three minutes of the match when striker Alexandre Lacazette headed the ball into the back of the net, but the goal was waved off for offside and goalie interference. The Gunners had multiple opportunities after the goal was waved off but weren’t able to convert. 

In the second half of play the game seemed stagnant, neither team seemed interested in scoring. Leicester played the park the bus tactic and let Arsenal have possession of the ball in their half. Arsenal held possession of the ball, but to say creativity was lacking is an understatement. Leicester finally got their chance to strike in the 80th minute and they made it count. Wingers Cengiz Ünder made a run behind the Arsenal defense and crossed the ball into the middle of the box, finding the head of Vardy, and he could not miss. That goal was enough to propel the Foxes over the Gunners in a stunning 1-0 win. 

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