Premier League talking points

Jorginho.
Jorginho.PHOTO: REUTERS

1 EMERY GETS TACTICS SPOT ON

Manchester United arrived at the Emirates, having won every away game under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, including a comprehensive FA Cup fourth-round away victory over Arsenal.

The hosts had an unbeaten run of their own to protect - they have not lost at home in the league since the opening day - and Granit Xhaka's early goal enabled them to maintain that run.

The Gunners rode their luck at times, but Unai Emery's three-man defence restricted the visitors' threat on the break and, with a relatively kind run-in, a top-four finish now appears firmly within reach.


2 TOTTENHAM LACK CONSISTENCY

Having reached for the quarter-finals of the Champions League with victory over Borussia Dortmund, Spurs may not qualify for next season's edition of the competition via their league position.

They remain third but are now only one point ahead of Arsenal in fourth, and have played a game more than sixth-placed Chelsea, who are four points behind.

This is a team that can deliver two impressive performances against the joint-leaders of the German Bundesliga and, within the same period, lose at Burnley and Southampton, and it must be a maddening state of affairs for their fans.


3 JORGINHO SCAPEGOAT AGAIN

Had Eden Hazard not prised wonderfully disciplined and organised opponents apart at the death, denying Wolves a first win here in four decades, then a mood of mutiny might have returned to Stamford Bridge.

As it was, the home support pinpointed familiar culprits for the plod of it all, with the substitution of Jorginho 18 minutes from time prompting cheers from a significant proportion.

The Italy midfielder suffered yet again as the personification of a philosophy that too often has simply not clicked, with "Sarri-ball" failing to open up stubborn opposition.

THE GUARDIAN


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 12, 2019, with the headline 'Premier League talking points'. Print Edition | Subscribe