Jack Grealish fires one in to half the deficit on Sunday at the London Stadium against Westham. It ended 2-2. (Photo credit: Sky Sports) T...
|Jack Grealish fires one in to half the deficit on Sunday at the London Stadium against Westham. It ended 2-2. (Photo credit: Sky Sports)|
The premier league is the drama queen of all football leagues and the latest evidence from Sunday fixtures confirm that by long distance.
Manchester City only needed to beat Westham to send Liverpool the right messages but it was the Hammers that offered the Kops all the hopes they need to believe in an unlikely title success. If Liverpool win on Tuesday at Southampton, City will have to match the Kops’ result on final day to win the title.
How did it almost go wrong for the champions elect? Westham raced to a two goal lead courtesy of Jarrod Bowen and some unbelievable defending from the visitors. Zinchenko was culpable in the two goals but you can’t take anything away from the movement and the finish of Bowen.
The first was a case of vigor and precision, while the second fed off luck but the young forward made his luck and rightfully reaped its rewards. The champions were stunned and at that point, they would have been condemned to win on final day assuming Liverpool win on Tuesday.
But they’re champions for a reason. The second half saw less mistakes from City and some form of panic in the Hammers defense. The front three of Gabriel Jesus, Riyad Mahrez and Jack Grealish tore into the fabric of the hosts’ backline and forced two errors to draw level.
The first was a deflected shot that left Lukas Fabianski stranded and from there on, unnecessary tackles led City back into the game. A Mahrez freekick was headed past his own goalkeeper by Vladmir Coufal and it could even have gotten worse with a penalty awarded to City late on.
There was a moment of panic for the visitors before the leveler; Fernandinho misjudged a back pass and the ever lively Michail Antonio raced in on goal but blew his effort over the bar when it was easier to round Ederson to put Westham two clear again.
He rued the miss when Coufal scored an own goal and the Dawson fouled Jesus in the area, Anthony Taylor consulted the pitch side monitor and the result was always inevitable, penalty.
Mahrez stepped up but Fabianski saved it to keep the score line even. Westham saw it out and remained in the hunt for Europa league football which they could well achieve if they better United’s result on the final day.
City now must match Liverpool’s result on the final day if Jurgen Klopp’s side beat Southampton at St. Mary’s on Tuesday night.