English Premier League

PL weekend in numbers: Liverpool have more points against the top six than the bottom six

Also, Manchester United brought up their 600th win with their 3-1 victory at the Riverside.

As Manchester City and Liverpool played out a perfectly enjoyable stalemate at the Etihad Stadium, the 1-1 draw did more for City’s cause than it did for the latter. Liverpool, with no games left against the top six have a clear run towards the end of the season and will be glad to get a point off City but could very easily have been three points for them had Adam Lallana not fluffed his lines.

Manchester City, who travel to Arsenal and Chelsea next will see their season decided in these three games as they look to put their Champions League disappointment behind them and seal a spot in next year’s competition.

Their neighbours, Manchester United, finally moved from their sixth spot which they hung on to for what seems like eternity now. The biggest losers of the weekend were Arsenal, whose 3-1 loss at West Bromwich Albion saw them drop below United to that sixth spot, with the Gunners in danger of missing out on the Champions League for the first time in the Arsene Wenger era.

Here are some of the key numbers from this weekend’s action:

0

Sergio Aguero's touches in the first half, via WhoScored.com
Sergio Aguero's touches in the first half, via WhoScored.com

Number of touches by City’s Argentine marksman in the opposition’s penalty box in the first half. Sergio Aguero went missing in the first 45 minutes as Liverpool pushed for an opener, having a total of 11 touches, the lowest of any player in the opening half.

The next highest? Simon Mignolet with almost double the touches, 20. As the shadow of Gabriel Jesus looms large over the frontman’s situation at the Etihad, Aguero’s second half goal was a timely reminder of his poaching abilities. His first half no-show though wouldn’t have gone unnoticed by Pep Guardiola.

1

Away wins that Leicester City have this season after their 3-2 win over West Ham at the London Stadium. The defending champions lie third from bottom in the away table, and have six points in their 14 games on the road so far.

3

Leicester are 18th in the away table, but Burnley are dead last, picking up only three away points. Their 0-0 draw against Sunderland brought Sean Dyche’s men their third away draw of the season, the Clarets having lost their remaining 12 games away from Turf Moor.

In contrast, they sit sixth in terms of points gained at home, with 29 points from 14 games, at a rate of more than two per game. As a testament to how good they’ve been at home, they sit above both the Manchester teams in the home table.

7

Games Arsenal have lost this season, tying them with Everton and higher than all the other teams in the top seven. While the Toffees have lost just one of their last five, the Gunners have lost four in that time span. This is their worst run since suffering six losses in seven games under caretaker manager Stewart Houston in April 1995.

That season, the North London club would finish 12th in the league, only six points above relegation.

10

Tottenham Hotspur have ten wins at home after defeating Southampton 2-1 on Sunday. The Lilywhites are having their best home season since 1987-’88, when they claimed 14 wins at home and are enjoying their best unbeaten home start to a season since 1964-’65.

They have claimed 41 points at home, more than anyone else in the league. It’s a pity Mauricio Pochettino’s team struggles on the road, otherwise we might have seen a stiffer challenge to Chelsea’ runaway title train.

12

Number of times Ross Barkley was dispossessed this weekend, higher than any other Premier League player. Barkley managed to lose the ball more times in Everton’s 4-0 win over Hull City, higher than other culprits Aguero (9) and Diego Costa (9).

13

Christian Eriksen has scored more goals from outside the penalty area than any other Premier League player since he joined Tottenham in the summer of 2013. The Danish maestro now has contributed to 10 goals in his last six games and it is about time for the European big guns to come calling on Daniel Levy.

14

Players under the age of 21 to score 14 or more league goals for their sides in Europe’s top five leagues: only three. Dele Alli is in an elite club with Red Bull Leipzig’s Timo Werner and AS Monaco’s Kylian Mbappe.

Harry’s pain is Alli’s gain.

14

West Bromwich Albion have scored more goals from corners than any other Premier League teams. They added two to that tally on Saturday, Craig Dawson putting Arsenal to the sword on both occassions.

You’d think Wenger’s team would have been ready for the obvious, but alas!

Goals scored from corners by PL teams, via Squawka.com
Goals scored from corners by PL teams, via Squawka.com

20

Liverpool have been more flip-flop than a penguin on thin ice. They are unbeaten in games against the top six this season, garnering 20 points, winning five and drawing the same number. Points picked up by Jurgen Klopp’s men against the bottom six, 19.

21

Romelu Lukaku leads the race for the Golden Boot in the Premier League, as Harry Kane’s injury coupled with the Belgian’s two goals has seen him register his finest return for a single season in England.

Gary Lineker was the last Everton player to register more than 20 goals in 1985-’86 while Michael Owen, Wayne Rooney and Robbie Fowler are the only other players to score more than 80 Premier League goals before turning 24.

23

In what was an indicator of West Brom’s tactics in their win over the Gunners, they had only 23 percent of the possession and yet this was not a smash-and-grab. Albion were much more clinical and had some shoddy defending from their opponents to thank for their three goals.

A Tony Pulis victory never truly goes out of style, ever.

47

James Milner has never lost any of the 47 league matches that he has scored in, winning 37 of those and drawing 10. Liverpool’s lucky talisman continued that streak on Sunday, dispatching from the spot, taking his season’s penalty tally to 7, a worthy tally for a makeshift left-back.

62

David Silva seems to be the most generous man in the Premier League, with 62 assists to his name since the Spanish wizard joined City, the highest of any player in the league in that time. Aguero may be the first true City great in the modern era, but Silva’s contribution is just as invaluable if not as eye-catching.

184

Manchester United held onto the sixth spot in the table for 184 days, a little over six months. They’ve been on an unbeaten run of 18 games, the highest of any team in Europe’s top five leagues but that’s just half the story. A high number of draws had ensured that Jose Mourinho’s men stay rooted to the spot which they finally vacated by ensuring a 3-1 win over Middlesbrough.

509

When Rudy Gestede’s goal went in the 77th minute, it must have been a relief for the players and the Riverside faithful. Boro’ had gone on a goal drought for over 500 minutes, spanning seven games.

600

The Red Devils also became the first team to win 600 games in the Premier League era, also recording the lowest number of losses (147) for any team to have played more than 500 games in this timeframe. United have won 2004 points since the start of the inaugural Premier League, scoring 1844 goals in the process.

We welcome your comments at letters@scroll.in.
Sponsored Content BY 

The perpetual millennial quest for self-expression just got another boost

Making adulting in the new millennium easier, one step at a time.

Having come of age in the Age of the Internet, millennials had a rocky start to self-expression. Indeed, the internet allowed us to personalise things in unprecedented fashion and we really rose to the occasion. The learning curve to a straightforward firstname.surname@___mail.com email address was a long one, routed through cringeworthy e-mail ids like coolgal1234@hotmail.com. You know you had one - making a personalised e-mail id was a rite of passage for millennials after all.

Declaring yourself to be cool, a star, a princess or a hunk boy was a given (for how else would the world know?!). Those with eclectic tastes (read: juvenile groupies) would flaunt their artistic preferences with an elitist flair. You could take for granted that bitbybeatlemania@hotmail.com and hpfan@yahoo.com would listen to Bollywood music or read Archie comics only in private. The emo kids, meanwhile, had to learn the hard way that employers probably don’t trust candidates with e-mail ids such as depressingdystopian@gmail.com.

Created using Imgflip
Created using Imgflip

And with chat rooms, early millennials had found a way to communicate, with...interesting results. The oldest crop of millennials (30+ year olds) learnt to deal with the realities of adolescent life hunched behind anonymous accounts, spewing their teenage hormone-laden angst, passion and idealism to other anonymous accounts. Skater_chick could hide her ineptitude for skating behind a convincing username and a skateboard-peddling red-haired avatar, and you could declare your fantasies of world domination, armed with the assurance that no one would take you seriously.

With the rise of blogging, millennial individualism found a way to express itself to millions of people across the world. The verbosity of ‘intellectual’ millennials even shone through in their blog URLs and names. GirlWhoTravels could now opine on her adventures on the road to those who actually cared about such things. The blogger behind scentofpetunia.blogspot.com could choose to totally ignore petunias and no one would question why. It’s a tradition still being staunchly upheld on Tumblr. You’re not really a Tumblr(er?) if you haven’t been inspired to test your creative limits while crafting your blog URL. Fantasy literature and anime fandoms to pop-culture fanatics and pizza lovers- it’s where people of all leanings go to let their alter ego thrive.

Created using Imgflip
Created using Imgflip

Then of course social media became the new front of self-expression on the Internet. Back when social media was too much of a millennial thing for anyone to meddle with, avatars and usernames were a window into your personality and fantasies. Suddenly, it was cool to post emo quotes of Meredith Grey on Facebook and update the world on the picturesque breakfast you had (or not). Twitter upped the pressure by limiting expression to 140 characters (now 280-have you heard?) and the brevity translated to the Twitter handles as well. The trend of sarcasm-and-wit-laden handles is still alive well and has only gotten more sophisticated with time. The blogging platform Medium makes the best of Twitter intellect in longform. It’s here that even businesses have cool account names!

Self-expression on the Internet and the millennials’ love for the personalised and customised has indeed seen an interesting trajectory. Most millennial adolescents of yore though are now grownups, navigating an adulting crisis of mammoth proportions. How to wake up in time for classes, how to keep the boss happy, how to keep from going broke every month, how to deal with the new F-word – Finances! Don’t judge, finances can be stressful at the beginning of a career. Forget investments, loans and debts, even matters of simple money transactions are riddled with scary terms like beneficiaries, NEFT, IMPS, RTGS and more. Then there’s the quadruple checking to make sure you input the correct card, IFSC or account number. If this wasn’t stressful enough, there’s the long wait while the cheque is cleared or the fund transfer is credited. Doesn’t it make you wish there was a simpler way to deal with it all? If life could just be like…

Created using Imgflip
Created using Imgflip

Lo and behold, millennial prayers have been heard! Airtel Payments Bank, India’s first, has now integrated UPI on its digital platform, making banking over the phone easier than ever. Airtel Payments Bank UPI, or Unified Payment Interface, allows you to transfer funds and shop and pay bills instantly to anyone any time without the hassles of inputting any bank details – all through a unique Virtual Payment Address. In true millennial fashion, you can even create your own personalised UPI ID or Virtual Payment Address (VPA) with your name or number- like rhea@airtel or 9990011122@airtel. It’s the smartest, easiest and coolest way to pay, frankly, because you’re going to be the first person to actually make instant, costless payments, rather than claiming to do that and making people wait for hours.

To make life even simpler, with the My Airtel app, you can make digital payments both online and offline (using the Scan and Pay feature that uses a UPI QR code). Imagine, no more running to the ATM at the last minute when you accidentally opt for COD or don’t have exact change to pay for a cab or coffee! Opening an account takes less than three minutes and remembering your VPA requires you to literally remember your own name. Get started with a more customised banking experience here.

This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Airtel Payments Bank and not by the Scroll editorial team.