These are five things we learned from matchday 12 fixtures of the Premier League.
1. Manchester United 1 Vs Arsenal 1: Gunners can grind out results
Over the years, Arsenal have been labeled as a soft team that hardly get results on their bad days. This season, however, the Gunners have been sturdier and stronger; they have managed to get results when they are not playing well. Like the Burnely game where there scored with the last kick of the game, Arsenal once again showed they can grind out results even when they are not at their best. The Gunners would certainly have lost the game against Manchester United in previous seasons. A lunchtime fixture at Old Trafford against a Jose Mourinho team immediately an international break; that’s a perfect scenario for a heavy Arsenal defeat. This season, however, Gunners stayed strong after waves and waves of attack from United, especially in the second half. After conceding, the remained calm and still got an equalizer to leave Old Trafford with a draw. It wasn’t a good performance from Arsenal but they left with a precious point.
2. Manchester United 1 Vs Arsenal 1: Mourinho’s men getting their groove back
Jose Mourinho and his players will rue the two points they lost after dominating against Arsenal and still conceding a late minute goal to draw the game 1-1. The result does not tell the full story of the game as United completely dominated the Gunners, especially in the second half. The fluency of the midfield paring of Ander Herrera and Juan Mata was a beauty to watch while Marcus Rashford was a livewire in attack. They might not have been getting the results, but Morinho’s men are clearly getting their groove back.
3. Crystal Palace 1 Vs Manchester City 2: Yaya Toure isn’t done yet
ALSO READ: Yaya Toure scores in City return
After a prolonged battle with Pep Guardiola, Yaya Toure returned to Manchester City’s starting XI for their away trip to Palace and scored a brace to give the Citizens all three points. Pundits predicted that Toure will be one of the casualties of Guardiola’s change at City, opining that the midfielder has become to slow for the coach’s style of play. Toure, however, returned with a brace to put all those suggestions to rest. Sergio Aguero misfired, Kevin de Bryune was not impressive while David Sliva is yet to rediscovered his form. In the midst of all that, Toure returned to prove he still has something to offer Guardiola and City.
4. Southampton 0 Vs Liverpool 0: Kloop has cause to be happy
“I’m not happy, but I’m fine,” Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp told pressmen after their goalless draw at St Mary's. Klopp, however, has every cause to be happy despite the draw as his men showed where they are the best team in the Premier League with their performance, The result might not have gone their way, but Liverpool were completely in control in the game.
The Reds had 65%, possession and 15 shots on goal but where they failed was their shots on target (just three). There weren’t as fluid as they have been all season but most of the players just came back from international break, travelling long distances to play for their respective countries. With that performance against a well-organised Southampton, Klopp should be happy, don’t worry about the goals, it will come.
5. Middlesbrough 0 Vs Chelsea 1: Victor Moses is special for Conte
ALSO READ: How Chelsea beat Middlesbrough
Much have been said about Victor Moses’ performance for Chelsea in his wing-back role for Chelsea and at the Riverside against Middlesbrough, the forward showed again where he is a special player for Antonio Conte. Moses occupies everywhere on the right-wing, he defends, attacks, creates chances and is a goal threat himself. Easy to see why Chelsea are much more dangerous on the right side. While Marcus Alonso on the left is a good player, he does not possess the pace and trickery of Moses and also lacks the fitness to maraud the whole left wing like the Nigeria international.