Another Premier League season is on the books but not before another frenetic ending that will long be remembered.
Here, the PA news agency reflects on what we’ve learned from the latest round of encounters.
The city shows its courage
After withering in the Bernabeu cauldron earlier this month, there would have been uncomfortable questions for Pep Guardiola if Manchester City had been propelled to the title by Liverpool. And for moments over the past two weeks, it looked possible that Guardiola’s side would fall flat. Against West Ham and Aston Villa they lost 2-0 but fought back to a 2-2 draw at the former before a stunning upset against the latter in a 3-2 win to claim a fourth title in five seasons. While that doesn’t hide their Madrid grief, they showed strong character to get through a testing period.
Liverpool must move on – quickly
Perhaps the fact that Liverpool have not, at any point, reached the top of the table on an absorbing final day will soften the blow. The title was never within their reach, with only a few late goals securing a 3-1 win over Wolves. But an unprecedented quadruple goes up in smoke and it will sting in the days to come. But Jurgen Klopp can get his hands on the prize Guardiola covets most as Liverpool travel to Paris to face Real Madrid in the Champions League final next weekend. Now, then, is not the time to wallow. Adding the Champions League to the FA and Carabao Cup gongs would still be a great season.
Tottenham redefines ‘Spursy’
There was a time when Tottenham capitulated at the end of the season, and north London rivals Arsenal reveled in their misfortune. But there was no indication there would be a mistake at Carrow Road as Spurs netted five goals against bottom Norwich to claim fourth and final Champions League berth. Arsenal won big – 5-1 against Everton – but that result was only enough for Europa League football next season. South Korean striker Son Heung-Min, whose brace on Sunday means he shares the Golden Boot with Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah, has been instrumental for Spurs this season.
Hours after Leeds secured their top-flight status for another season, chairman Andrea Radrizzani threw his support behind head coach Jesse Marsch. The 48-year-old American is yet to convince much of the fan base after replacing Marcelo Bielsa in February, but Sunday’s 2-1 win at Brentford – coupled with Burnley’s loss to Newcastle – has largely helped to silence his detractors. And Radrizzani said: “We believe that with time and a full pre-season, Jesse will be the man to take this club forward.”
Burnley’s roll from the Dyche finally backfires
Burnley have drawn heavy criticism for getting rid of Sean Dyche and while caretaker boss Mike Jackson has won almost as many games in a month as the Clarets have won the previous eight, a 2-1 loss at home to Newcastle have ended their six-year stay in the division. . A player exodus could now occur, with captain Ben Mee and fellow defender James Tarkowski out of contract while goalkeeper Nick Pope and winger Dwight McNeil are also likely to move on. Meanwhile, Burnley’s accounts have confirmed the club would have to repay a “substantial” part of a £65million loan taken out during the leveraged takeover of ALK Capital if relegated. An instant return, at this time, does not seem a certainty.
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