Arsenal went five points clear at the top after they beat Wolverhampton Wanderers 2-0 and Manchester City were stunned 2-1 by Brentford in a sensational day full of goals on the final weekend before the season pauses for the FIFA World Cup 2022.
Martin Odegaard tapped in from substitute Fabio Vieira’s cutback early in the second half to open the scoring before firing in his second to ensure Arsenal will be top of the Premier League at Christmas for the first time since 2007/08.
Wolves, who were watched by new boss Julen Lopetegui before he formally takes charge on Monday, are without a win in five matches and now sit bottom on 10 points.
Arsenal took advantage after a double from Ivan Toney that ended Man City’s 11-league match winning run at home as Brentford shocked the champions 2-1 at the Etihad Stadium.
Toney’s header had given Brentford a deserved early lead but Phil Foden’s superb half-volley levelled the scores in first-half stoppage time.
As City chased a winner in the 10 added minutes of the second half, Toney struck again on 97 minutes and 16 seconds, the latest goal this season.
Newcastle close the gap
Newcastle United closed the gap to City to two points after they beat Chelsea 1-0 thanks to a wonderful curling strike from Joe Willock that extended their winning streak to five matches.
Eddie Howe’s side remain third, on 30 points, the first time they will have been in the top three at Christmas in 21 years. Chelsea, who are without a win in five, slip to eighth, nine points further back.
Nunez double aids Reds
Liverpool climbed into the top six for the first time since the start of September by handing Nathan Jones a 3-1 defeat on his managerial debut for Southampton.
Roberto Firmino gave Liverpool an early lead, only for Che Adams to provide an instant response.
But Darwin Nunez struck twice before half-time to take the Reds up to 22 points on a day when James Milner became only the fourth player to make 600 Premier League appearances. Saints drop to 19th.
Bentancur brace decisive
Rodrigo Bentancur was the two-goal hero for Tottenham Hotspur as they came from behind three times to beat Leeds United 4-3. Crysencio Summerville scored for a fourth match in a row, but Harry Kane’s 12th PL goal of the season levelled the scores before Rodrigo’s brilliant volley restored Leeds’ lead as the Spaniard scored for the fourth successive match as well.
Ben Davies equalised after the break, only for Rodrigo to score again. But Bentancur’s double turned the match on its head and Leeds’ day got worse with Tyler Adams’ red card, as they fall to 14th on 15 points. Spurs stay fourth on 29 points.
Foxes on a run
Leicester City’s revival continued with a fourth victory in five matches as they won 2-0 at West Ham United. James Maddison gave Leicester an early lead but then limped off shortly after being named in England’s squad for the FIFA World Cup 2022.
Youri Tielemans saw his penalty saved by Lukasz Fabianski but it mattered not as Harvey Barnes sealed the win that lifts Leicester to 12th, while West Ham fall to 16th.
Cherries on top
AFC Bournemouth earned a first win in six matches, beating Everton by three goals for the second time this week. Marcus Tavernier and Kieffer Moore gave the Cherries a two-goal lead for the third league match in a row.
But after losing the previous two, this time Gary O’Neil’s team added to their advantage through Jaidon Anthony and followed up a 4-1 EFL Cup win over the Toffees in midweek to go 13th with 16 points. Everton fall to 17th, with 14 points.
Forest climb off the bottom
Morgan Gibbs-White’s second-half goal earned Nottingham Forest only a second win in 12 matches with a 1-0 victory over Crystal Palace that lifted them off the foot of the table. Wilfried Zaha missed a first-half penalty for Palace, who drop to 11th, while Forest are 18th but only a point behind West Ham and Everton.
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