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Monday, December 05, 2022

Liverpool title setback: Drawing with Spurs helps City’s bid

LIVERPOOL, England ( Associated Press) — Disappointment but no groaning for Jurgen Klopp, even after a title blow for Liverpool.

Klopp’s side gave Manchester City an even bigger lead in the Premier League title race on Saturday by a strategically disciplined and defensively strong Tottenham.

The damage would have been greater if Luis Diaz’s distracted strike hadn’t canceled Son Heung-min’s tap-in for fifth-placed visitors.

“I’m really proud of the performance,” Klopp said. “The mindset we showed.”

It is this mindset that may yet inspire the Champions League and FA Cup finalists, who have already collected the League Cup.

Quadruple trophies may soon be out of reach.

Liverpool are back in first place in the league, but City can beat Newcastle on Sunday to clear three points with three games to go.

“I’d love to sit here and say, ‘Yeah, the city will drop the points,'” Klopp said. “The only problem is I can’t see it.”

It is a testament to Liverpool’s recovery this season that the title race is moving closer to the wire. It was only the second time Liverpool have dropped points in 14 matches due to being held by Tottenham, and the second time was against City.

While Tottenham are the only team unbeaten against City and Liverpool this season – with eight points out of a possible 12 – a draw at Anfield also hurts Spurs’ bid to qualify for the Champions League.

Fourth-placed Arsenal could draw four points ahead of Tottenham after beating Leeds on Sunday ahead of Thursday’s north London derby meeting.

But a performance against the 2020 champions will propel Tottenham to a run-in.

“It was perfect in our game plan, good team play,” Son said. “But we should have met more.”

The moment to take the lead was seized with a flowing attack when Harry Kane hit the ball to the left flank in the 56th minute, where Ryan Sessegon squared off to end Son in an unsafe net.

The 74th shot had little chance of doubling the lead before Diaz’s shot deflected from Rodrigo Bentancur and defeated goalkeeper Hugo Lloris. It was one of only three shots on target from 22 attempts – Tottenham managed the same number of eight.

“I don’t like this kind of football but that’s my problem,” Klopp said. “I can’t train it.”

United embarrassed

It is five straight defeats for Manchester United – with 16 goals in that run – after losing 4–0 to Brighton, for another low in Ralph Rangnick’s interim spell as manager.

Trailing 1–0 at halftime after a long-range strike from Moises Caicedo, United scored three goals in the 11th minute from the 49th as Marc Cucurella, Pascal Gross and Leandro Trossard scored a big one with little to play at the end of the season. Scored for Brighton team on the scale. ,

The best United can realistically hope for is a sixth-place finish and a spot in the Europa League.

The season would end with United’s lowest points since 1991, before the Premier League era began. It is a challenging position to inherit incoming manager Erik ten Haag.

Chelsea collapse

Todd Boehley certainly got drama after taking his seat at Chelsea as a potential part-owner, just not what he was hoping for as the West London club fell to a 2-2 draw against Wolverhampton Was.

Boehly appeared to be winning the emotional rollercoaster of the match – refusing two Chelsea goals from the opening VAR call, to a double from Chelsea striker Romelu Lukaku, to an equalizer by Wolves defender Conor Cody in the seventh minute of second-half stoppage time.

Chelsea captain Cesar Azpilicueta said of Bohli: “We are disappointed not to give him the first win.”

A consortium agreed terms for Chelsea’s 2.5 billion pounds ($3.1 billion) purchase before the Los Angeles Dodgers part owner. The acquisition requires the approval of the Premier League and the government.

Third-placed Chelsea are still not sure about securing Champions League qualification for the first full season of Bohli’s reign. The team is four points ahead of Arsenal playing Leeds on Sunday.

Watford Exiled

Roy Hodgson could not keep Watford up in what was perhaps the last job of his long coaching career.

Watford’s immediate return to the championship was sealed by a 1–0 defeat at Crystal Palace.For which Wilfried Zaha imposed a penalty.

When Hodgson – the 74-year-old former England manager – was hired in January, Watford were next-to-last and the team still had three games to go. Time is up, however, as Watford have 22 points – 12 from safety.

Burnley may yet join Watford and are already leading Norwich to the championship after a 3-1 loss at home to Aston Villa For their first defeat under interim manager Mike Jackson.

This leaves Burnley two points behind third-to-last Everton, who have two games in hand – the first at Leicester on Sunday.

Brentford, however, could begin preparations for another season in the Premier League after beating Southampton 3–0 in their first top-flight campaign since 1947.

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