Robin van Persie’s 21st goal of the season ensured Manchester United would come out of the weekend with their seven-point lead atop the Premier League table intact. Referee Mike Dean was at the centre of things as Manchester City eased to a 2-0 win over Arsenal at the Emirates. Jonathan Walters scored two own goals and missed a penalty as Stoke City fell 4-0 to Chelsea.
England’s Premier League served up a smorgasbord of storylines on the weekend’s world football buffet, but there was no shortage of narratives to sample from other competitions as well.
In Italy, Lazio, Napoli and Inter Milan crept up on Serie A-leaders Juventus, who only managed a draw at Parma. In Spain, Real Madrid was held to a scoreless draw at last-place Osasuna while Barcelona and Atletico Madrid kept chugging right along. In South America, both Argentina and Brazil failed to win either of their first two matches at that continent’s ongoing U-20 championship.
The football world is a big exciting place, and no matter which games you watched and leagues you followed there was no doubt a handful of talking points that will keep you engaged well into the week. Following are six of mine, and they begin, where else, with the Premier League.