|Joy for Everton, hearbreak for the the duo of Leicester and Leeds United as they relegate to the championship. (Photo credit: BBC)|
The Premier League season ended on Sunday with a flurry of goals, heartbreak for two teams at the foot of the log, and excitement for the likes of Aston Villa with a European berth, Brentford for completing a double over the champions, and Everton that lives to fight another day.
A roundup of the final day in the English Premier League: 33 goals, two relegations, and a factory reset across all grounds, including Turf Moor, which returns with Burnley, Sheffield United, and street club Luton Town.
Manchester United finished on a high, beating Fulham 2-1 with goals from Jadon Sancho and Bruno Fernandes that went down to a fine header from Brazilian defender Kenny Tete for Fulham. It's been a laudable season for Fulham, with a top-ten finish and the hope of a better new season.
Aston Villa sealed an unprecedented Europa League place with a clinical 2-1 win over Brighton and Hove Albion. The Seagulls had sealed Europa's appearance earlier in the month, and it's been an amazing season for both sides.
Chelsea’s better-forgotten season didn’t end on a high; the Blues needed a Kieran Trippier own goal to force Newcastle to a 1-1 draw at the Stamford Bridge Stadium. Mauricio Pochettino is said to take over the affairs at the Chelsea dugout, and the fans can dream again.
It didn’t go as planned for the champions; Manchester City lost at Brentford 1-0 on the final day through a late Ethan Pinnock goal. Pep Guardiola had made a host of changes, including the absence of Kevin De Bruyne, Erling Haaland, and Ilkay Gundogan, ahead of the FA Cup final and the big one in Istanbul.
Arsenal’s title charge may have ended in futility, but Wolves felt the wrath of the Gunners on Sunday as Arsenal recorded the biggest win of the weekend, beating Julien Lopetegui’s side 5-0. Martin Odegaard once again showed his magic in the game, and Bukayo Saka also wrapped up his campaign with a goal.
The highest-scoring game was at Southampton; Liverpool had nothing to fight for; a win, loss, or draw would still have seen them in fifth, but how did they ship four against a relegated side? Jurgen Klopp has a lot to reflect on, this time in the mirror.
The relegation battle went down to the wire. Tottenham did Leeds no favours; Harry Kane led Spurs to a 4-1 annihilation of the Whites right in front of their own fans. What a way to end it for the sorry followers. Kane ended the day on the history front as the highest scoring player on the final day with eleven goals.
Everton beat Bournemouth, but at some points on the day, the Toffees were headed for the championship as Leicester took the lead against West Ham. Abdoulaye Doucoure fired one in, and the result at the King Power Stadium became inconsequential.
The league is done, with City with the blue ribbons on the trophy, Arsenal and United with a return to the Champions League, the first time since 2013 that the two had entered the competition together, and a return as well for Newcastle after a twenty-year absence.
Delirium at Goodison Park, despair at Elland Road and the King Power; the chance to try again for the likes of Brentford and Fulham, who punched above their weights; another shot at redemption for Liverpool and Chelsea; but for the fans across all grounds, how do we stay afloat till the new season begins?