Last-gasp City reach 100 points
Chelsea miss out on Champs League, Swansea relegated as Spurs win 9-goal thriller
They have also scored the most goals in a single Premier League campaign (106), won the most games (32) and amassed the most consecutive victories (18) in a season that has seen them ranked along
Chelsea’s Olivier Giroud (left), and Newcastle United’s Paul Dummett battle for the ball during the English Premier League soccer match between Newcastle United and Chelsea at St James’ Park, in Newcastle, England on May 13. (AP)
with the best teams in the history of English football.
City finished 19 points clear of second placed Manchester United — the biggest title-winning margin in the Premier League era — to emphasis the gap between the runaway champions and the chasing pack.
Fortunately for fourth bottom Southampton, the defeat didn’t matter in their battle to avoid relegation as third bottom Swansea lost against Stoke, ensuring Mark Hughes’ side avoided the drop by three points.
City are due to celebrate their title success with an open-top bus parade through the streets of Manchester on Monday.
But they had no intention of letting the impending party distract them on the south-coast.
City controlled first-half possession before Saints defender Wesley Hoedt headed against Claudio Bravo’s crossbar from a Dusan Tadic corner.
The game appeared to heading for a draw but, six years to the day since Sergio Aguero’s last-second titlewinning goal for City against QPR, Jesus found space in the final moments to lift the ball over McCarthy and spark mayhem among the travelling fans.
Mohamed Salah’s clinical firsthalf strike against Brighton helped confirm Liverpool’s presence in the Champions League next term, and also saw the Egyptian break the record for most goals scored in a 38game Premier League season.
Brighton had no answers at a sunkissed Anfield as Salah’s sensational form continued with him scoring his 32nd league goal of the campaign.
Dejan Lovren and maiden Liverpool goals for Dominic Solanke and Andy Robertson ensured there was no final day collapse against an already safe Brighton side that simply could not cope with Liverpool’s attack.
Before kick-off Jurgen Klopp’s men had to forget about trying to win the Champions League in favour of just qualifying for the competition next season.
Upcoming events in Kiev were, understandably, on everybody’s minds at Anfield, but a victory over Brighton was the immediate priority before focusing on the Champions League final against Real Madrid on May 26.
Manchester City Gabriel Jesus celebrates after scoring during the English Premier League soccer match between Southampton and Manchester City
at St Mary’s Stadium in Southampton on May 13. (AP)
Those missed opportunities raised Anfield’s volume by several notches, but the stadium remained anxious until Salah broke the deadlock after 26 minutes.
Salah pounced on a loose ball inside the area to comfortably beat Ryan and claim his 45th goal of the season overall. The finish also put him one goal ahead of Alan Shearer, Cristiano Ronaldo and Luis Suarez who had all previously scored 31 in a 38-game Premier League season. With Chelsea also losing 3-0 at Newcastle, the second-half had a more processional feel to it, helped enormously by Solanke’s stunning finish after 53 minutes when he rifled into the roof of the net to open his Liverpool account.
Liverpool remained on the front foot and Ryan did well to deny Firmino as he looked to cap off another hard-working afternoon with a goal.
Robertson did get his first goal for
the club by staying calm to thrash home a loose ball six minutes from time to add even more gloss to an afternoon of total dominance.
One European adventure for Liverpool is now guaranteed for next season; all attention now turns to a far bigger one fast approaching on the horizon.
Chelsea were denied a place in next season’s Champions League when they were well beaten 3-0 at