Another weekend of Premier League football has been and gone, physically untouched by Storm Eunice but with the weather leaving all kinds of pun opportunities in her wake.
Hurricane Harry netted a brace at the Etihad, just like the scriptwriters demanded. It rained goals for Man United at Elland Road. Cyclone Salah got his 150th Liverpool goal in their battering of Norwich at Anfield. And, of course, Whirlwind Weghorst got off the mark in Burnleyâ€™s 3-0 win over Brighton.
Up in Manchester, where the weather conditions were considered â€˜mild for the end of Februaryâ€™, Antonio Conte outwitted Peppy G and condemned City to their first Premier League defeat since October.
Ruben Dias and Aymeric Laporte defended with all the strength of a creaky gate with a broken latch being battered by 90mph winds as Kane, Son and new-boy Kulusevski whistled past them on occasion. Naturally, City had more of the ball and a silly amount of touches in Tottenhamâ€™s box. Even facing a hapless Hugo in nets for Spurs didnâ€™t guarantee three points for City and there was something that just meant Kane was going to deliver.
Tottenhamâ€™s main man has not been as prolific as usual this season, but judge a goalscorer on against whom and when he scores – City did a better job of chasing Kane in the summer than they did on Saturday.
The defeat leaves the door ajar for King Kloppoâ€™s Liverpool. Somewhat amusingly, they trailed Norwich at Anfield and it oh-so-briefly looked like the Canaries were going to get something valuable out of the game. That was until Sadio Mane added a clever little overhead finish to the AFCON trophy in his February swag bag. Then, Alisson lumped it up to Mo Salah who swivelled the hips, stuck the Norwich defence on the floor and tucked home number 150 for the Reds – the second-fastest Liverpool player to achieve this tally.
City will most likely go on and win the league but itâ€™s not as over as everyone was saying a couple of weeks ago, thatâ€™s for sure.
Chelsea, a team tipped by some fools (yes, me) for the title, were incredibly average at Selhurst Park against Patrick Vieiraâ€™s Palace. Romelu Lukaku continues to look nothing like a near â‚¬100m investment and the World Champions needed a late, late volley by Hakim Ziyech to nick three points.
Manchester United widened the gap between them and West Ham to the size of the 02 Arena roof with a 4-2 win over Leeds at Elland Road. United led 2-0 and all looked harmonious – Harry Maguire even scored when the ball seemed to just hit his head and go in. Ronaldo even joined in the celebrations – see, no rift, honest.
But, early into the second-half Leedsâ€™ disorganised chaos had got the scores level – if only theyâ€™d considered shutting up shop and being grateful with a point, eh?
West Ham had got the weekend underway with a 1-1 draw with Newcastle – a much-improved team who wonâ€™t be going down. Eddie Howeâ€™s men were without Wilson, Saint Max and Kieran Trippier and probably should have won.
Burnley, scorers of about three goals all season, found the back of Brightonâ€™s net three times in the same 90 minutes at the Amex. Wout Weghorst got his first and helped Dycheâ€™s men off the bottom of the Premier League on goal difference. Burnleyâ€™s goal difference is -9 after 22 games – Norwichâ€™s a mere -38.
Uncle Roy was called to Vicarage Road to keep them up and Saturdayâ€™s 1-0 win over Aston Villa could well be a turning point. The Hornets look more organised than theyâ€™ve looked all season and whilst they wonâ€™t win any bonus points for pretty football, theyâ€™ll compete in all the games they need to compete in between now and the end of the campaign.Â
The gap between them and Everton is now only four points after Southampton were the latest team to find the Toffees rolling over and letting their tummies being tickled away from home. Lampard is going to need time to get his new side playing the way he wants – but the problem is, that relegation zone is worryingly close for them and they are one of the teams heading very much in that direction.
Not as quickly as Brentford, however. Arsenal starlets Emile Smith-Rowe and Bukayo Saka were the match-winners once again as Artetaâ€™s lot heaped another defeat on Thomas Frankâ€™s side. Was Christian Eriksen expecting a relegation battle when he signed that contract?
If Brendan Rodgers is looking to make it easier for a bigger club to appoint him in the summer, continuing to oversee Leicester Cityâ€™s demise is certainly going to remove the issue of hefty compensation being paid to release him from his contract. Two outside-of-the-box pearlers from Wolves saw off the Foxes this time – well, at least they didnâ€™t concede from a set-piece.