Tuesday, March 19, 2024

Premier League Results Matchweek 29: Spurs Smashed; Aston Villa Draws With Hammers; Premier League Chops Down Forest; Burnley Defeats Bees

Just a week after routing Aston Villa, Tottenham Hotspur was on the wrong end of a decisive verdict as Fulham thrilled Craven Cottage supporters with a 3-0 victory over Spurs, ending a nine-match winless Premier League run for the Cottagers versus their London rival. Tottenham Hotspur saw its momentum towards a Champions League slot quizzically stall with a complacent effort versus its mid table opponent. Fulham, meanwhile, has seemingly filled the vacancy at striker which was created upon Aleksandar Mitrovic’s departure and the shortcomings of a late career Raul Jimenez. Rodrigo Muniz, scorer of two goals on Saturday, has now scored seven times in his last seven matches and becomes the first Fulham player to score in four consecutive home matches.

The damage of the loss to Spurs was somewhat mitigated the following day when Aston Villa managed only a point at London Stadium versus West Ham. Even the single point came hard for Villa. Nicolo Zaniolo scored in the 79th minute to equalize the match for the Villans. A potential winning goal in stoppage time by West Ham’s Tomas Soucek was then disallowed after a lengthy VAR review determined a handball violation. It was the second goal of the day ruled out for a West Ham handball. Michail Antonio scored West Ham’s first goal of the match and would have had a brace but for a later score being disallowed. Villa was thus fortunate to escape with a point from a London Stadium venue where they have never won. Aston Villa increased its advantage over Tottenham Hotspur for a guaranteed Champions League berth to three points with Spurs still having a match in hand versus the Villans.

The bottom of the table race for survival also saw an inconclusive result on the pitch as Luton Town scored late on an 89th minute Luke Berry goal to share the points with Nottingham Forest in a 1-1 draw at Kenilworth Park. The stalemate would have left the Hatters three points behind Forest for a safe position in the table, but matters would change off the pitch on Monday. A penalty of four points was imposed on Nottingham Forest for violations of Premier League profit and sustainability rules (PSR). Luton Town thus is at least temporarily removed from the three-club doom patrol at the foot of the table with Nottingham Forest now dropping below the line of safety.

Everton, however, faces a second points penalty of its own in coming weeks, which could again change the look of the relegation race. One of the three clubs currently riding the relegation express experienced some rare success on Saturday. Burnley won for just the second time this season at home as the Clarets capitalized on an early Brentford red card to defeat the Bees 2-1. A Sergio Reguilon foul on Vitinho in the eighth minute of play was adjudged a red card offense by VAR. The resultant penalty kick gave the Clarets a lead and reduced Brentford to ten men. David Datro Fofana then added a second goal for the Clarets and the home side held on despite an 83rd minute goal by Brentford which resulted in some anxious moments for home supporters, particularly when a potentially equalizing goal by the Bees was disallowed. Fofana, a Chelsea loanee, scored in a second consecutive match for Burnley which is now five points from safety.

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