Premier League roundup: Chelsea, Man City, Man United, Arsenal roll

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That was quite a day of Premier League action, and with all eight matches in the books we can finally exhale (for now).

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

With just Newcastle-Norwich and Swansea-Stoke remaining in this match week, the league saw nearly three goals per game on Saturday.

[ MORE: Standings | schedule | stats ]

And one of the more exciting matches was scoreless.

Tottenham Hotspur 0-0 LiverpoolRECAP

Jurgen Klopp’s debut didn’t disappoint in terms of his exuberance, as the German manager watched over an entertaining but goal-free match at White Hart Lane. Without Christian Benteke and Danny Ings, Liverpool started Divock Origi up top and couldn’t produce a goal, but neither could Harry Kane and unfortunate Christian Eriksen. Spurs sit seventh, one point ahead of the eighth-place Reds.

Watford 0-3 ArsenalRECAP

An uninspired first half, one Arsene Wenger credited to the international break, had Odion Ighalo and the Hornets dreaming of their first win over the Gunners in three decades. But Arsenal produced a second half ripe for soccer lovers most places outside of Hertfordshire, getting goals from Alexis Sanchez, Olivier Giroud and even Aaron Ramsey in a thrilling and fluid second half. Arsenal is tied for second with Man Utd, two points back of Man City.

Everton 0-3 Manchester UnitedRECAP

This was a litmus test for the Toffees, one which never got to the lab. Everton lost legendary manager Howard Kendall before the game at the age of 69, and didn’t find its footing against goals from Ander Herrera, Wayne Rooney and Morgan Schneiderlin. United can leapfrog City for first in the league come next weekend’s Manchester Derby at Old Trafford.

Crystal Palace 1-3 West Ham UnitedRECAP

Dwight Gayle saw red for a Palace side that picked up a fortunate penalty kick but ultimately sunk to the magic of Dimitri Payet and his Hammers. The French midfielder seems to be devising ways to beat Premier League defenses on a minute-by-minute basis, and West Ham is benefitting to the tune of fourth place on the table.

Chelsea 2-0 Aston VillaRECAP

Diego Costa scored an easy goal and had a part in Alan Hutton scoring an own goal, with Willian and an Aston Villa defender helping each be possible. Jose Mourinho’s club moves to 11th with 11 points, while Villa stays in the drop zone with a meager quartet of points.

West Bromwich Albion 1-0 SunderlandRECAP

Tony Pulis‘ Baggies started the match laying back. Yep, laying back against Sunderland. Three cheers for conservatism. But they opened up as the match moved forward, and Saido Berahino‘s controversial collision with Costel Pantilimon led to the young English striker’s goal, ruining Sam Allardyce‘s debut as Sunderland boss.

Southampton 2-2 Leicester CityRECAP

Saints got goals from a pair of defenders, then watched as the Premier League’s most consistent scorer took the advantage away. Virgil Van Dijk and Jose Fonte, baby, netted for the hosts before Jamie Vardy stunned St. Mary’s with his eighth and ninth goals of the season. The draw leaves Leicester fifth and Saints eighth.

Manchester City 5-1 BournemouthRECAP

So… City loses Sergio Aguero, who was coming off a five-goal bender against Newcastle, and finds a hat trick from Raheem Sterling and a brace from Wilfried Bony in a dominant run over defenseless Bounemouth. City’s atop the Premier League by two points ahead of a visit to Old Trafford for next weekend’s derby.

Brazilian player Taison banned in Ukraine for response to racism

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KYIV, Ukraine (AP) Brazilian player Taison has been banned for one game for his reaction to racist abuse in a Ukrainian league game.

The Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder showed his middle finger to Dynamo Kyiv fans who had abused him with monkey chants and kicked the ball into the stands during a game Nov. 10. Taison was shown a red card.

[ MORE: Mou says Spurs can win the PL next season ]

The Ukrainian Football Association ordered Taison to serve a one-game ban plus a suspended two-game ban.

Dynamo has been fined 500,000 hryvnyas ($20,000) and ordered to play one game behind closed doors. Another one-game sanction is suspended.

World players’ union FIFPro says “sanctioning a victim of racial abuse is beyond comprehension and it plays into the hands of those who promote this kind of disgraceful behavior.”

More AP soccer: and

Top Premier League storylines: Week 13

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Yes, Jose Mourinho is back in the Premier League and, sure, both Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Manuel Pellegrini are in managerial hot seats, but is there any match more intriguing than Man City and Chelsea squaring off with the knowledge that a bad outcome could see them double digits out of first?

[ STREAM: Every PL match live ] 

Below we take a look at the key storylines to keep an eye on across the PL this weekend.

The Jose Mourinho Era begins against a familiar foe

  • West Ham v. Tottenham Hotspur — Saturday, 7:30 a.m. ET, on NBCSN

Manuel Pellegrini and Jose Mourinho have matched wits many times, which could help the former in his bid to get ready for a rankled Spurs side to kickstart the Premier League weekend.

Mourinho has only matched up with six managers more than Pellegrini in his career, and boasts a 7W-3D-4L record. Can he quickly get Spurs put together for a visit to a desperate Irons side.

Chelsea, Man City put slim title hopes on the line

  • Manchester City v. Chelsea — Saturday, 12:30 p.m. ET, on NBC

Both Pep Guardiola‘s City and Frank Lampard‘s Chelsea have lost to Liverpool, meaning their chances to directly affect the Reds’ title hopes are limited. Matches like this one are the ones that get the Reds salivating, in fact, knowing that only one team can snare three points.

City enters the day nine points back of first and a point behind Chelsea and Leicester City. The Top Four race sure looks clear cut right now — the chasing pack is eight points behind fourth — but failure to win on Saturday will likely leave either side double-digit points back of first.

Knock off the Red Devils? Wilder things have happened

  • Sheffield United v. Manchester United — Sunday, 11:30 p.m. ET, on NBCSN

Sheffield United boss Chris Wilder has the newly-promoted side in fifth place on the table, one point better than his celebrated visitors. The Blades will sit no worse than five points back of the Top Four if they can beat Ole Gunnar Solksjaer’s Red Devils, adding another big name to a season of results which already includes a defeat of Arsenal and draws against Chelsea and Spurs. United is still without Paul Pogba and now will also miss Scott McTominay. Another upset brewing?

Reds hope to get back to business as usual in title fight

  • Crystal Palace v. Liverpool — Saturday, 10 a.m. ET, on NBC Sports Gold

A week removed from a glitzy show against Man City, Jurgen Klopp‘s Reds now visit a Palace side who is probably getting sick of facing the Premier League’s best. Roy Hodgson‘s table rise has been stunted by a four-match winless run that includes 2-0 losses to Man City, Leicester City, and Chelsea to go with a 2-2 draw against Arsenal.

A Liverpool win will boost it clearer of Man City and/or Chelsea, as the Reds seek a double-digit lead on the field (Second-place Leicester City is away to Brighton and Hove Albion).

Arsenal looks to right wobbly league ship versus slumping Saints

  • Arsenal v. Southampton — Saturday, 10 a.m. ET, on NBCSN

Unai Emery‘s Gunners may be doing fine in the Europa League, but they’ve taken just two points from 12 since an Oct. 6 defeat of Bourrnemouth at the Emirates Stadium. Saints only win since mid-September in any competition is a 4-0 demolition of rivals Portsmouth. If Arsenal cannot get right here, well…

The 2 Robbies break down Tottenham’s big switch from Poch to Mou

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Maybe you saw the firing of Mauricio Pochettino coming, and maybe you even though Jose Mourinho could be in the running to take his place, but the whole thing happening in rapid fire fashion calls for something different.

Call it an emergency podcast for The 2 Robbies.

[ MORE: Ederson back in training ]

Robbie Mustoe and Robbie Earle respond to the shocking and divisive news coming from North London earlier this week.

Tottenham Hotspur sacked Pochettino and quickly replaced him with The Special One. This episode also includes some of Jose’s first words as the new Spurs Head Coach.

Follow them on Twitter @The2Robbies

Click here for The 2 Robbies archive ]

Pochettino leaves emotional whiteboard message to Spurs

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Mauricio Pochettino and his backroom staff have left Tottenham Hotspur, but not without fond words for the North London set.

Pochettino’s backroom staff was also dismissed, with assistant Jesus Perez and coaches Miguel D’Agostino and Antoni Jimenez leaving to make room for Jose Mourinho’s crew.

[ MORE: Mou says Spurs can win the PL next season ]

And Perez wanted to make sure that the world knew the final words Pochettino left for his players, something that has Tottenham supporters even more emotional.

It also surely plays as a political piece which will increase the villain status of Spurs chairman Daniel Levy, who’s been under fire for not helping Pochettino by selling players who did not want to be in North London.

Even Mourinho heaped praise on his predecessor.

“Mauricio, for the work he did, this club will be always his home,” Mourinho said. “He can come when he wants. When he misses the players, when he misses the people he work with. The door is always open for him. He will find happiness again. He will find a great club again. He will have a great future.”

Get your tissues, Spurs fans.