Lacazette blow for Gunners

Arsenal have been dealt a blow with the news that striker Alexandre Lacazette is set to miss up to six weeks after undergoing minor knee surgery. Lacazette is expected to return in March after a successful operation on his left knee. The £52m summer signing will however miss the upcoming Carabao Cup Final against Manchester City at Wembley later this month.

The French forward came off the bench as a 65th-minute substitute during Arsenal’s 1-0 defeat to Tottenham on Saturday, missing a late chance to level the match when one-on-one with compatriot Hugo Lloris. Lacazette will be absent when Arsenal travel to Sweden to face Ostersunds FK in the last-32 of the Europa League on Thursday.

The Gunners are odds on to win that game, while they may be pinning their hopes on justifying a price of 5/1 to win the Europa League in a bid to get back into the Champions League next season, given their struggles in the Premier League’s top-four race. With January signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang not eligible for European football, Danny Welbeck is set to be Arsene Wenger’s only available senior striker for Thursday’s game in Sweden. News and odds courtesy of Bet365.

Premier League Injury News

Swansea City‘s recent revival under new boss Carlos Carvalhal has been dealt a blow with two key players set to miss the rest of the season.

Leroy Fer and Wilfried Bony both suffered injuries in the Swans draw away to Leicester in the Premier League on Saturday and both were confirmed by the club to be season-ending. Fer has ruptured his Achilles tendon while Bony, injured just coming on as a substitute in the game, has torn his anterior cruciate ligament.

The double blow threatens Swansea’s recent revival under Carvalhal who took over from Paul Clement at the end of last year. In his short time in charge he has seen the side suffer just one defeat in nine matches and they are now unbeaten in seven matches in all competitions. The point at the King Power Stadium saw the Swans climb out of the relegation zone on goal difference and, in a congested bottom half of the Premier League table, they are just three points behind Watford who are 11th.

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has urged Marouane Fellaini to sign a new contract as the Belgian nears the end of his current deal. The 30-year-old former Everton star, who out of contract at the end of the season, is set to miss several weeks after suffering a knee injury in United’s 2-0 defeat at Tottenham on Wednesday. Fellaini has made 12 top-flight appearances this season but may now be sidelined until mid-March.

“I told him, ‘sign the contract and shut up’,” Mourinho said. “I told him, ‘don’t gamble too much, sign the contract before you know the extent of the injury’. “It is not an ACL, a complete rupture of any structure of the knee. “But we need him, the Champions League is arriving [United play Sevilla on 21st February] and lots of tough matches to play and probably we are going to lose him for a few weeks. Two, three, four or five, I cannot say at the moment.”

Burnley boss Sean Dyche has confirmed that midfielder Steven Defour will miss the rest of the season because of a knee injury. Crystal Palace forward Bakary Sako will not play again this season after suffering a serious ankle injury during Tuesday’s 1-1 draw with West Ham United.

Finally, away from injuries, Liverpool and Tottenham drew 2-2 in their Premier League game at Anfield in a tale of two penalties in the dying minutes. Liverpool led early through a Mohamed Salah goal only for Victor Wanyama to score with a thunderous equaliser on 80 minutes. There then followed 10 minutes of drama with Spurs missing a penalty, Salah scoring again and Harry Kane taking another penalty and scoring to equalise with virtually the last kick of the game. The result keeps Liverpool third in the table with Spurs in fifth.

Premier League news courtsey of bet365.com.

The Importance of Football Betting Price Boosts

The football betting industry is hugely competitive among online bookmakers. A lot of effort is put into advertising campaigns and other forms of marketing, with bookmakers keen to get themselves noticed and highlight what advantages they hold over their competitors.

This competitiveness can obviously work to the benefit of those who bet on sports. There is, of course, always some sort of promotion, such as a free bet, available when signing up to a bookmaker. These are always useful for anyone looking to maximise their profit from betting. However, one promotion offered by some bookmakers, yet often overlooked by the majority of punters, is the idea of a price boost.

What is a price boost?

A price boost is a deliberate inflation of the odds by a bookmaker. It could be based on a single event, such as a player to score a goal in a match, or for several different events, such as three specific teams to win in the latest round of Premier League fixtures. The idea is that the bookmaker will show the ‘real’ odds then give you an option of betting on ‘boosted’ odds.

How does it work?

Using UK Company Betway Sport as an example, we can see that they offer ‘Betway Boosts’ for the Premier League, as well as various other sports. On Premier League Gameweek 25, they offered a boost on Liverpool, Arsenal and West Ham to win their games Huddersfield, Swansea and Crystal Palace respectively. The ‘real’ odds for the teams were: Liverpool 1/3, Arsenal 1/2 and West Ham 21/10.

Those odds for a treble work out at just a touch over 5/1, thus a £10 bet would return £62 if all three teams win their respective games. However, the boosted price offered by Betway is 13/2, meaning a £10 bet would return £75. This represents a 17.5% increase in returns by the person placing the bet.

Why are boosts important?

It might be stating the obvious, but price boosts can really increase your profit margins when betting on football. As mentioned at the start of this piece, bookmakers are highly competitive when it comes to offering odds and promotions, but that is not always the case for customers. Many punters will simply not check around for the best odds or promotions, simply settling for their current bookmaker’s offerings.

Are bet boosts different from other promotions?

The thing to remember about boosted bets is that they are just like a regular betting selection, i.e. there are no hidden catches. Many bookmakers’ promotions, while generous, may carry certain stipulations, such as requiring you to turn over (re-bet) money before it can be withdrawn to your account. With a bet boost there are no such restrictions, it is simply a standard bet with increased odds.

Are bet boosts only available for the Premier League?

Major UK bookmakers, like the aforementioned Betway, will offer price boosts across a whole range of sports, with everything from football to US sports to eSports included. The main thing to remember is to check out the promotions tabs on the top of your bookmaker’s homepage to see if you can get a boost for your chosen sport. It really is a no-brainer, as it does not cost the punter anything, yet increases the odds of their bet.

Use Your Fantasy Football Knowledge To Your Advantage

We all love keeping our Fantasy Football teams up to date and following their progress every step of the way. It is a constant conundrum to decide which eleven players to start in your team each week and who to leave on the bench.

When watching football, having your Fantasy team set up gives every kick a bit of extra spice. Never has an assist meant more than when it comes from the player you eventually decided to captain after hours of deliberation.

As fun as it is to see your side rack up the points each week, you can also use your extensive knowledge of Fantasy Football to your advantage to potentially make a bit of extra money. If you have a player that is constantly banging in the goals, then a bet on that player to score anytime in the next match may be worth a look.

For example, with Tottenham striker Harry Kane racking up the points for your Fantasy team, you will be able to predict a goal from him in the next game. Therefore, you will know that a bet on the England striker to score in a market such as First Goalscorer, Last Goalscorer or Anytime Goalscorer is quite likely to win.

Knowledge of other football betting markets will also come into play. A lot of the time, picking an excellent and winning Fantasy Football team starts with building from the back. Your defenders and goalkeeper can be crucial. If a defender from one particular team keeps picking up clean sheets every single week, you could make a profit from their next game.

Markets such as Both Teams To Score and Over/Under 2.5 Goals can be exploited. If Phil Jones is grabbing clean sheet points every week, the chances are that his Manchester United team are going to keep a clean sheet in the next game too. Therefore, a bet on ‘Both Teams To Score – No’ will probably offer you a good chance of finding a winning bet.

You will also be able to benefit from football betting predictions with Tipsfix tips. They provide tips for the biggest and best football matches taking place around the world, and by following their tips you may be able to earn a bit of extra cash.

The tips on their website cover a couple of different key betting markets, including Match Odds, Over 2.5 Goals, Correct Score and Both Teams To Score. Many people simple use Fantasy Football as a fun game to play for free, but there are opportunities to make a little more money too.

Fantasy Football is all about the stats, and when trying to find a winning bet the stats will almost always be the most important thing.

Expert Tips for Making the Best Football Score Predictions

People who practice sports betting on a regular basis agree that making accurate football scores predictions is both a science and an art. There is a series of important aspects to consider when predicting, which is why many beginners fail and end up losing money. In this article, you’ll find what experts have to say about the latest score predictions, what things to pay attention to the most when predicting, and where to find the best betting offers.

Make sure you check your odds

According to experts, football odds available on the Internet don’t always match up to what happens in real life. Even so, they are the closest and fastest source you can get. The first thing to do before betting on a game is to take a quick look at the odds to see which team has more chances to win. Based on this aspect, you can make a more accurate football score prediction and increase your chances of winning more money.

Consider the team’s history when making predictions

Another important aspect you must keep in mind before going on with score prediction is the history of each team. Spend some time browsing the Internet and learning everything that is out there about each football team. Simply assuming that some team is stronger won’t take you too far with score prediction. Find out what the specific strengths of each team are, which players will be on the field during the match, and so on. The latest score prediction you find online may not match the reality, so you’d better do some research yourself and see which football team is actually worth betting on.

The best team doesn’t always come with the best value

The most frequent betting mistake many beginners make is to bet all their money on the team that is known to be the strongest instead of the one that has the best value. Chances for the best team in the league to win against any other football team are lower than you may believe. Even the best ones have their draws sometimes and lose matches. Don’t make football score predictions based on assumptions because you may have a surprise.

Consider unpredictability too!

Keep in mind that even those who have years of experience in sports betting and make some of the most accurate football score predictions can be wrong sometimes. You’ll always have to be prepared for unpredictable results, unexpected losses or, why not, surprise victories. You’ll never be 100% sure with score prediction, but this doesn’t mean you can’t use it to get an idea of what football team to bet your money on this time.

Overall, football score prediction is something that can only be learnt with time. There are several important aspects to consider when betting and some of them have already been mentioned above. Take them into account and you’ll definitely improve your betting strategy in the shortest time possible.

Lavish Lifestyle of Footballers

Most of the football players nowadays earn high class wages, with the power of living life the way they want. Their houses speak for itself, and at the same time show how they like to live with their sense of tastes. These luxury homes feature the most beautiful and extravagant amenities that one could ask for. At the end of the day, footballers have the lavishness to live a fancy life in a fancy home. In the following, you will read about some of the well-known footballers, and their luxury homes:

Zlatan Ibrahimović

The former Swedish international and current Manchester United striker Zlatan Ibrahimović, definitely has a greater taste and loves living the deluxe life. The dynamic footballer famous for his crazy bicycle kicks and witty one-liners found himself an extravagant mansion in Cheshire, England.

Estimated around £16,500 per month, the wonderful mansion comes with six bedrooms, gymnasium, a plush garden for his two kids to kick the ball around, a luxury swimming pool, a cocktail bar, and a double car garage for his expensive supercars.

Ricardo Kaka

Ricardo is one of the most popular and beloved football players across the globe. During the peak time in his career, he was one of the most decorated players. The latter also went on to win personal accolades such as the FIFA World Player of the year and the FIFA Ballon d’Or.

Ricardo later moved to America, to play football for Major League Soccer team Orlando City SC. This move meant that he had to find himself a nice home. Ricardo went on to buy a beautiful $2.4 million mansion in Isleworth. This mansion may not be as expensive as his other mansions located in Italy and Spain, but it certainly has a lot of charm to it.

Frank Lampard

The 39-year-old former Chelsea football club legend is one of the top midfielders football has ever seen. Frank enjoyed his last spell in the Premier League with Manchester City, after his beloved club Chelsea FC chose to let him go. He later moved to play to New York City FC in the Major League Soccer.

It is believed that this football gem has a $39 million penthouse in New York. This 9,000-sq. ft. apartment was formerly rented out by Hollywood megastar Robert DeNiro. And it is also believed that the rent is an enormous $95,000 per month.

Gareth Bale

The Welsh superstar has come a long way from since he made his debut with Southampton Fc, before moving to Tottenham Hotspur FC. The winger now plays for Spanish powerhouse Real Madrid FC, and has managed to cement himself in a starting spot within the team.

Being part in this giant club gives Gareth the luxury to live amongst the famous and rich. The star currently lives in Pozuelo de Alarcón, Spain, near his famous teammate Cristiano Ronaldo. Current Real Madrid manager, Zinedine Zidane also lives nearby. The luxurious mansion is estimated around $8 million. The property consists of four bedrooms, an indoor gym and pool, and a six-car garage. The place has effective security 24/7 and is secure from paparazzi.

There are many more football players who live in luxury houses, and have a lavish lifestyle. This include the likes of Lionel Messi, Neymar Jr, Cristiano Ronaldo, and many. Football is all about passion and wins, just like the countless online slots at Aspers Casino Online. This online casino site consists of a huge array of online slots, that can make you feel the football spirit while accessing its sports themed slots, such as Cup Carnaval Slot, Football Champions Cup Slot, and Football Star Slot.

Tips for Enjoying the Next Celtic Match Better Than You Have Before

When you cannot get tickets to the match itself, for whatever reason, you need to make do. Thankfully, there are many tactics that you can use which will heighten your experience as a spectator, even if you don’t have the thrill of the stadium and the fans around you. Celtic games can be fun and exhilarating, you just need to make a night of it. Even if you are only watching the game in your local pub or at home, there are many ways to increase the excitement. So, to enjoy the next Celtic game better than you have ever before, follow these steps:

1. Organise with Your Mates
Watching a game alone is fine, but watching the game with fellow fans is so much better. Don’t be shy about inviting over your mates whose team is the Celtic’s opposition, either. The more you get into the game, the more exciting and immediate it will feel; the more people you can invite over, the better. Make this a regular event, and you’ll have a group around to make every game feel thrilling.

2. Stock Up
One of the benefits of staying at yours instead of going to the pub is that you can stock up on your favourites, from food to drink, and still save your money. That being said, it is up to you to decide whether you enjoy the ambience of your living room or the pub better. Each location is sure to work for you, unless, of course, your local is too crowded with non-Celtic fans for you to enjoy.

3. Half-Time Pick-Ups
Betting on the game is always a great way to make it feel so much more important, even if it isn’t, objectively, that exciting of a match. You don’t necessarily need to bet on the game itself to pump yourself back up during the half-time. You could play Unibet casino games instead and keep your adrenaline going.

4. Make it a Regular Event
Even if you don’t go wild with every game, watching the matches with your mates can be a great way to make it a social event. It is how you can see more of your friends, and stay in the loop. Maintaining friendships as an adult, after all, can be difficult, but with a mutual love of football, you can’t go wrong.

To truly enjoy your local Celtic matches, however, you must put in an effort to see them in person once in a while. That way you can carry on the thrill of the live match back home with you. If you cannot do it often, that’s okay, but you should absolutely treat yourself and see them, even if that means needing to book accommodation because the distance is too far to go back to. If you are in the local area, go for the matches you care about, and make the rest a social get-together with your mates. It’s how you’ll enjoy the games better, and how you’ll enjoy the next, and every Celtic match after that so much more.

FPL Gameweek 23 Preview

Harry Kane
Tottenham’s main man, Harry Kane” (CC by 4.0) by Brad Tutterow

After last night’s EFL Cup semi-final between Chelsea and Arsenal we can once again fully focus on what’s awaiting us, FPL managers, in the roller coaster ride we call the Premier League. After what for many of us turned out to be disappointing first double gameweek of the season it is now time to get settled for the second half of the 17/18 season. For those of you who triple-captained Harry Kane last time out, we feel for you, but fear not, because this weekend might just offer Kane and company a chance of redemption. Let’s take a look at some of the most interesting games and players for the coming Premier League round.

The captain conundrum

Choosing the right captain for your squad can mean the difference between a weekend full of rainbows and butterflies, and another &%@! weekend. It’s a bit like playing the lottery and, if you are, then have you checked the Eurojackpot latest winning numbers? Lining up against Swansea and then West Ham in the first double gameweek of the season catapulted Harry Kane to the top of practically everyone’s captains lists, although some selected Son or Eriksen and received a reasonable payback. A return of only three points for Kane was, to use an understatement, not really what was expected of him, but he might make up for some of the damage against Everton this weekend. The Toffees have become much more defensively stable under Big Sam Allardyce, but they did ship two at home against a Lukaku-less United last weekend. Putting the armband on Kane or Alli, who’s on fire with 2 goals and 4 assists over the last four league games, might not be a bad idea.

Meanwhile, the Red part of Manchester is rejoicing at the return of topscorer Romelu Lukaku. The big Belgian was carried off with a head injury early on versus Southampton, but returned quicker than expected against Derby in the FA Cup, scoring one and assisting another in the process. His next match is against strugglers Stoke (who’ve just sacked their manager of 5 years, Mark Hughes, in the hope of a turn-around), who so far have conceded 47 goals and 118 shots on target, more than any other team in the Prem. Maybe it makes more sense to ask yourself why you would not bet on Lukaku to score on Monday…

Normally we would have reserved a spot here for one or more Man City players, but their starting line-up is somewhat uncertain (even more so than usual) due to their games in both the FA Cup third round and the EFL Cup semi-final of Tuesday night, although if we were to recommend someone it would be Aguero. Instead, we’d like to focus on Eden Hazard, Chelsea’s star player and the one around whom revolves everything that has to do with an attack in Conté’s side. He’s not been very prolific in terms of goals and assists over the past weeks, though he did win a penalty and then converted it last week against Arsenal. In that game, he made 6 attempts at goal, more than any other player that weekend, which leads us to think that more goals, assists and points may be on the horizon for Hazard although he did play 80 minutes last night in the 0-0 cup draw against Arsenal. The opposition in the EPL will be Leicester City, who’ve only won (and not lost) once in the last 5 games, with their victory coming last weekend at home against Huddersfield.

A few differentials

Even though there’s still a long way to go until the end of the season, it’s possible that point gaps have grown in your private leagues over time. A proven way to close a gap is to appoint a high-scoring captain with low ownership in the game. Whether Jesse Lingard can still be called an undiscovered gem is up for debate, his FPL value over the past months definitely isn’t. With 4 goals, 1 assist and 15 shots on target over his last 5 games, the 6.3m-priced midfielder is FPL gold at the moment and he might be racking in the points again on Monday night against a Stoke defense low on confidence but with a point to prove to a new manager.

Newcastle’s home game against Swansea could be littered with differentials, but the Newcastle attack has far from delivered this season. Instead, we’re looking a few hundred miles to the south, where Watford are facing a disappointing Southampton. After a great start to the season the Hornets have been stuttering in the league lately, with 4 out of the 27 last points being won. In that period Watford faced Palace, Huddersfield, Brighton and Swansea, teams against which points were expected. They might not be in the finest form of their lives, but a turn-around has to be on the way and it might just happen against Southampton (4 draws and 5 losses in the last 9 games). Richarlison or André Gray could be differential punts for FPL managers who are feeling edgy this weekend.

Finally, and for the really adventurous amongst us, Glenn Murray against West Brom deserves a shout-out. The Brighton striker netted once and picked up 3 bonus points against Bournemouth last weekend, and he played a good game overall. West Brom are having a rotten streak at the moment (the Baggies haven’t won since round 2!) and their best defender and captain Jonny Evans will be missing. The situation might just be ideal for Murray to grab another goal.

FA Cup 3rd Round 17/18 Review

Arsène Wenger
Arsenal’s Arsène Wenger” (CC by 4.0) by Ronnie MacDonald

And just like that, the Christmas festival of Premier League football flawlessly transitions into the third round of the FA Cup (or Emirates Cup, as it’s officially called this season). Not even 24 hours after Spurs hosted West Ham to close this season’s first double gameweek, Everton were already preparing to face Liverpool at Anfield to kick off the FA Cup’s third round. No less than 32 games were played over the course of 3 days and in this article we’ll take a look at some of the most interesting games for FPL managers. The FA Cup matches for the EPL teams also count towards points for Telegraph Fantasy Football.

How did the Premier League teams fare?

The beauty of the FA Cup is the chance of success for teams from the lower leagues, but as an FPL manager you’ll mostly be looking at which PL teams were up and what their starting line-ups were, in an attempt to assess the impact of the ties on your FPL squad for coming weekend. Below you can find an overview of the matches involving Premier League teams. Hopefully anyone using a betting site for their FA Cup score predictions had some success as well.

Liverpool – Everton 2-1
Newcastle – Luton 3-1
Norwich – Chelsea 0-0
Man United – Derby 2-0
Exeter – West Brom 0-2
Wolves – Swansea 0-0
Fleetwood – Leicester 0-0
Fulham – Southampton 0-1
Spurs – AFC Wimbledon 3-0
Bournemouth – Wigan 0-0
Man City – Burnley 4-1
Nott. Forest – Arsenal 4-2
Bolton – Huddersfield 1-2
Watford – Bristol City 3-0
Brighton – Crystal Palace 2-1
Coventry – Stoke 2-1
Shrewsbury – West Ham 0-0

Major upsets

As you can see, 5 Premier League outfits were eliminated this round, 3 of which against other Premier League teams. Struggling Stoke continued their bad form by losing away at Coventry, where the Potters converted only one of their total 15 shots that went in the direction of the goal. The team of the recently sacked Mark Hughes actually played the better football and dominated most of the game (as could be expected against a League Two outfit!), but their attack looked toothless once again while the back was again anything but watertight.

Stoke’s woes are known though, which is why Arsenal’s elimination versus Championship mid-table contenders Nottingham Forest can probably be considered this round’s biggest upset. Wenger’s decision to send out a more or less completely new team in comparison to the last league game against Chelsea turned out to be a monumental error of judgment as Forest cut through the feable central block formed by Holding and Mertesacker time and time again. Despite 69% of the possession, the Gunners still allowed for 9 shots on target, a dazzling number when you consider Forest currently stands 28 places below them in English football. With their FA Cup hopes smashed to pieces it looks like it’s going to be a prize-less season for Arsenal, but there is some good news for FPL managers: Wenger will have to do some making up in the next game at Bournemouth and he’ll do so with, most likely, 11 different players.

Some interesting facts for FPL managers

Rotation is a major pain in the back for FPL managers when it comes to Man City this season and their continued involvement in all domestic cups does not make it any easier. What you should know, though, is that, with Jesus out, Kun Aguero is now more or less a guaranteed starter. With a goal in his last game versus Watford and a double strike against Burnley in the FA Cup, the little Argentinian is on fire and also scored a last minute winner in last night’s Carabao semi-final first leg match against Bristol City.

In the red part of Manchester meanwhile, Jesse Lingard keeps on performing and somehow he’s still remained more or less under the FPL radar. After scoring the 0-2 at Everton in the last Premier League game, the reborn quick man also put the opener in the back of the net versus Derby County, one of the clubs United loaned him to a few seasons ago. At a price of just 6.3m, Lingard is turning into a must-have for any FPL team.

Whether it was due to injury or due to his transfer to Barcelona being in the final stages of completion, we’re not sure, but even without Coutinho Liverpool managed to advance a round at the cost of Everton. The Reds attacked, pressed and dominated as they’ve been doing most of this season, and it was record signing central back Virgil van Dijk who headed in the winner a few minutes before the end. At 5.4m the Dutch strongman is on the expensive side, but he might just be worth the investment, especially if he continues to play his part in attack. Besides him, keep an eye on game time for, and performances by, Sadio Mané and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, as either one or the both of them might benefit from Coutinho’s departure. The former scored the opener in Liverpool’s victory over Burnley in the league last weekend, while the latter provided the assist for Van Dijk’s late winner in the Merseyside derby in the FA Cup last Friday.

Fantasy Premier League 17/18 Gameweek 22 Review

West Ham United Vs Manchester City
West Ham’s Adrián celebrating in goal” (CC by 4.0) by Joshjdss

Round 22 of the Premier League once again provided us with plenty of drama and excitement, not in the last place because the season’s first double gameweek had Fantasy managers fretting over their squads more than usual with some using their triple captain card.

The title race
Looking at the table after gameweek 22 will surely have more than a few people thinking that the title race has been decided already, and even though ancient Premier League wisdom tells us that anything can happen until the end, City’s fortunes don’t seem likely to change any time soon. Punters who took Man City to win the Premier League at the start of the season, perhaps using Free Bets, must be very pleased with themselves. The Citizens are simply too good, too dominant and too free-scoring at the moment. They hosted Watford on Sunday and while the final score might not seem too impressive (a 3-1 victory), the underlying statistics certainly are. The home team recorded 15 shots of which 8 were on target and their average ball possession stood at 78% after 90 minutes of football. Watford managed a single shot on target and scored in the 82nd minute, when the damage had effectively already been done. With Newcastle, West Brom and Burnley after coming weekend’s away game at Liverpool, their 15-point lead is unlikely to shrink by much, if at all.

The chasing pack

The situation behind City is quite different though, with just 8 point seperating second-placed Manchester United from Arsenal in 6th place. Despite considerable injury woes in defence, Mourinho’s men booked a comfortable win at Goodison Park, with magnificent goals coming from Martial (deployed as striker in place of the injured Lukaku) and the on-fire Jesse Lingard (consider him for your FPL squads!). Everton on the other hand, while defensively much improved since Koeman’s departure, will need to work on their attack during the January transfer window. To lose at home against United can be acceptable, but to fail to record a single shot on target never is.

At the Emirates, Arsenal hosted Chelsea and both teams entertained the crowds in what was probably the most attractive 90 minutes of football in this round. Arsenal took the initiative while Chelsea looked for the counter, which resulted in Jack Wilshere’s opening goal in the second half after a nice, free-flowing Arsenal attack. The Blues then reacted twice in quick succession, first through a penalty won and converted by Eden Hazard, who was by all means Chelsea’s star performer, followed by a tap-in by Marcos Alonso after a pass from fellow wingback Zappacosta. Bringing on Welbeck and Walcott, for Lacazette and Chambers, finally resulted in the equaliser for Wenger’s men as Bellerín put a cleared ball from the Blues in the back off the net from distance.

Fourth placed Liverpool, without superstar Mo Salah, managed to take away 3 points from Burnley’s tough Turf Moor after a hard-fought battle, while Spurs, without the ill Harry Kane, booked a victory over at Swansea and then followed that up with a hard-fought 1-1 draw with West Ham on Thursday night. For the Reds, Sadio Mané and central defender Klavan (with the first goal scored by an Estonian in the Premier League ever, in the dying minutes) helped overcome Gudmundsson’s late Burnley goal , while Kane’s stand-in Llorente and the in-form Dele Alli did the job for Tottenham in Wales.

The bottom of the table

Crystal Palace and Roy Hodgson deserve a shout-out. After the Eagles lost their first 7 games of the season under Frank de Boer, failing to score a single goal, they are now comfortably placed at 12th after a decent win away at struggling Southampton. Long brought the Saints the lead early on, but James McArthur, in the 67th, and Milivojevic in the 80th turned the result around. Especially for the latter this must’ve been a great relief, after failing to score what likely would’ve been a late winner from the spot at the Etihad a few days earlier.

Fellow early-season strugglers West Ham also seem on the way back, as the Hammers booked a well-deserved victory over a largely toothless West Brom Albion side. It turned out to be the night of Andy Carroll as he single-handedly undid the effects of James McClean’s first half opener, the last of his two goals coming in the 90th minute after a nice Arnautovic assist (for the FPL’ers: 4 goals and 1 assist so far).

Finally, Newcastle took away a crucial 3 points from the Bet365 Stadium as they beat Stoke 0-1, courtesy of Ayoze Perez in the 73rd minute. Seeing as the Toons had only won once in the 12 games preceeding the battle at Stoke, the points were more than welcome. They are out of the relegation zone for now, but far they’ll need to start delivering more goals if they want to stay safe. Opponents Stoke meanwhile have dropped to 18th place, but points might be on the way with Huddersfield, Watford, Bournemouth and Brighton on the calendar over the coming five rounds.