Thursday 29 May 2014
Looking back on an enthralling Barclays Premier League season, now is the time to decide which match during the 2013/14 campaign was the best.
After much deliberation, a shortlist has been drawn up with many superb matches sadly omitted. West Bromwich Albion’s consecutive 3-3 draws at home to Cardiff City, then Tottenham Hotspur, Liverpool’s 5-1 destruction of Arsenal, a weakened Chelsea’s 2-0 win at Anfield, Stoke City’s last-minute 3-2 win over Jose Mourinho’s team could all easily have featured.
To decide which of the five below was the best, go to the Premier League homepage and scroll down to the poll and choose one. The winner will be announced later on.
Usually one expects Merseyside derbies to feature more cards than goals but this pulsating tie swung one way then the other as the two sides epitomised their commitment to play the game in an attacking way, but with passion fuelled on by a raucous Goodison Park.
With goals from the sixth minute to the 89th minute, this early Saturday match left those who watched it breathless for much of the weekend.
Leaders Arsenal came to the match with the best defence in the division, conceding 11 times in 15 matches. That mattered little to a Manchester City side rampant at home. Arsene Wenger’s side tried to keep up, pulling a goal back at 2-0 down, then 3-1 down but in the end could not live with Manuel Pellegrini’s side, who by the end of the match had raised Arsenal’s goals conceded total by 50%.
Not all the top matches were filled with goals. When Jose Mourinho’s team arrived at the Etihad Stadium City were defending a record from 11 straight wins at home at an average of almost four goals scored per match. A tactical masterpiece from the Chelsea manager, with the defence and Nemanja Matic and Eden Hazard leading the way, snuffed out the City attack for the first time, allowing Branislav Ivanovic’s goal to earn the three points.
The two leading rivals for the Barclays Premier League title met on a sunny April afternoon and slugged it out. Liverpool dominated the first half before Manchester City showed why they had started the season as title favourites as they came back from 2-0 down. Then a late slip by Vincent Kompany was punished by Philippe Coutinho to the jubilation of Anfield and Liverpool looke set to be rewarded for their endeavour with a first title in 24 years.
A match that demonstrated the competitiveness within the Barclays Premier League. League leaders Liverpool were 3-0 up and cruising to victory with 12 minutes to go at Selhurst Park against a Crystal Palace side who had just confirmed that they would avoid relegation from the Barclays Premier League for the first time in their history. But in their final match in front of a crowd who generated arguably the best atmosphere in the division, Tony Pulis’s side did not ease off and struck three times to deal a heavy blow to Liverpool’s title ambitions.