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Premier League Round Up (Nov 30 - Dec 5 2019)

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Steve Bruce, he’s got a beautiful head, he’s got a beautiful head, he’s got a beautiful head. What a guy. What a result. Good old Newcastle eh?

 

I’d been following the game on the way to Anfield and when news came through of De Bruyne’s late screamer, it was a case of ‘ah well, never mind, still eight points clear if we beat Brighton’. I was stood outside the Kop when I heard a cheer coming from the Albert that could mean only one thing; Newcastle had equalised. 

 

I would quite happily have hugged Steve Bruce at that moment and I won’t even say what I’d have been prepared to do to our old mate Jonjo.

 

Leicester may be our nearest challengers but every point dropped by City is huge. Eleven points is a big gap and will take a lot of closing, but anyone dismissing them needs their head testing. If the gap gets to 14 or 15 then maybe I’ll relax, but last season cut deep and I’ll be the last one to arrive at Man City’s funeral.

 

Fair play to Newcastle though, they aren’t scared of City are they? They were one of the few sides to beat them last season and now they’ve come from behind twice to snatch a draw. It’s funny really, because all I do is rip Newcastle and Wolves fans, but along with us, those two teams have done more to slow City down than virtually anyone else over the last couple of seasons.

 

What makes Newcastle’s record against City more impressive is they always seem to concede first and then come back. Last year they came from behind to win, this time they twice came back to grab a draw.

 

Sterling put City in front as the ball ricocheted off four players before landing perfectly for him to find the bottom corner. Newcastle hit back immediately though as Almiron found Willens and he lashed one in the bottom corner. Almiron looked all emotional as it was his first assist apparently. I knew he hadn’t scored yet but to not have had an assist either is just shit, as he’s played 25 games or something. I don’t know how that’s even possible.

 

As you’d expect, City had chances but they weren’t exactly peppering the Newcastle goal. Dubravka made a couple of decent saves but was eventually beaten by that De Bruyne thunderbolt. Shades of Tony Yeboah about that. They always look better when they go in off the bar.

 

Then up stepped the Redmen to save the day. Javi Manquillo won a free-kick and when the ball was rolled back across the edge of the box, good arl Jonjo lashed one into the corner. The only way that could have been better is if Big Andy had come off the bench to score the winner, but that didn’t happen because he’s fucking injured. Again.

 

While City were dropping two points and falling further behind, another of the chasing pack were faring even worse. A little over a week ago Chelsea were within eight points of us. Two successive defeats later and they’re just a spot in our wing mirror now. 

 

Losing at home to West Ham was a real shocker, as they haven’t been beating anybody for months. Mind you, I have been saying that their biggest problem is that wiseguy keeper who keeps throwing them in. 

 

Pellegrini finally dropped him and went with former Red David Martin instead. He’s 33 and this was his Premier League debut having spent his entire career either on our bench or in the lower leagues. He kept a clean sheet, broke down in tears at full time and then climbed up into the stands to celebrate with his Dad, Hammers legend Alvin. 

 

Lovely scene that, nice moment for them both. Admittedly, if he wasn’t a former Red I might have been less moved by it and might even have called him a bit of a fanny, but he’s a good lad so I’m genuinely happy for him.

 

Cresswell got the only goal of the game but it wasn’t exactly smash and grab as they had some other great chances too. Remarkably, Chelsea didn’t commit a single foul in the entire game. Ron Chopper Harris will be turning in his grave. How is that even possible?

 

 

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Probably should have mentioned Shelvey's goal at Bramall Lane and the VAR offside farce.

 

I'm surprised it hasn't happened more often. Linesmen are generally not flagging and letting the video sort it out, but sometimes when they think they're sure they stick the flag up. Defenders usually stop, so it's not really fair as it stands.

 

Either the whistle has to go when the flag goes up (and if its wrong, tough shit), or they need to not flag at all. If they don't flag at all, you get situations when an offside player can run through and win a free-kick or corner, and it can't be pulled back for offside.

 

So neither of those options are ideal, but this is what we're stuck with now. 

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Unpopular opinion I know but I felt a bit sorry for Silva too. Still he’s got Christmas off now and a pay off I guess.

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Re Delli Ali: "That was so, so good. If he keeps this up I might have to go back to moaning on a weekly basis again about how Ian Ayre fucked that deal up." 

 

My boy Usher. 

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You mentioned how Watford don't hesitate to fire managers. Arsenal are a great example of what happens when you don't. For about 3 years there Wenger was the story and the players more or less got a pass when there was a bad result. Emery wasn't able to do anything with them so maybe now belatedly, the spotlight will fall on the players and just how ordinary they are.

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Told you United would win. I was a little out on the score but I knew Rashford and James would cause havoc on the break.

 

City have been found out. Everyone knows if you hit them quickly when you win the ball there's oceans of space to run into. As long as you have fast, skilful forwards you can tear them apart.

 

United should have battered them today, they had so many great counter attack opportunities.

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Vardy must be excited at the prospect of facing them in a few weeks. Although the way things are going we might actually be better off with City doing something in that game. A draw would probably be ideal. Arsenal certainly have the forwards to cause them problems next week as well, but it's probably a bit much expecting anything from them these days. They'll probably score 1 or 2, but City will get 3 or 4 at the other end.

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