Premier League Table 2014 Week 24: Updated Standings Following Matchday 23

Richard Langford@@noontide34Correspondent IJanuary 28, 2014

Arsenal's Serge Gnabry, right, challenges for the ball with Coventry's Blair Adams during their 4th round English FA Cup soccer match between Arsenal and Coventry City at the Emirates stadium in London, Friday, Jan.  24, 2014. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
Alastair Grant/Associated Press

Matchday 23 got off to an intriguing start on Tuesday, Jan. 29, and that starts at the top of the table.

Arsenal left the door for Manchester City to steal the top spot. Playing at St. Mary's Stadium, the Gunners couldn't do better than a 2-2 draw against Southampton. 

This leaves Manchester City just two points back of Arsenal and Chelsea, three. Those two clubs will not be in action until Wednesday when the Citizens will face Tottenham and the Blues take on West Ham. 

It could have been worse for Arsenal. Southampton played a strong match, and they came out determined. Jose Fonte netted the match's only goal of the first half, and Southampton missed a couple of opportunities to tack on more goals. 

Southampton couldn't extend their lead, however, and it was just three minutes into the second half that Olivier Giroud leveled the score. That goal marked a flurry of activity. Santi Cazorla pulled the away side ahead with a score in the 52nd minute. 

Just two minutes later, the match was tied again with a score by Adam Lallana. Neither team scored again. 

This brought an end to a five-match win streak by Arsenal, and possibly their stay atop the table. 

Check out the full standings, and then I'll take a closer look at some of the results.

EPL Table after Matchday 23
PlaceTeamGPWDLGDPts
1Man City2317244253
2Arsenal2316432452
3Chelsea2315532350
4Liverpool2314452946
5Tottenham231346-143
6Everton2311931142
7Man United2312471140
8Newcastle231148437
9Southampton23887432
10Aston Villa237610-627
11Swansea City236611-424
12Norwich City236611-1724
13Hull City236512-723
14Crystal Palace237214-1623
15West Brom234109-622
16Stoke City235711-1522
17Sunderland235612-1421
18West Ham234712-1119
19Fulham236116-2819
20Cardiff City234613-2318
ESPN FC

 

Manchester United 2, Cardiff City 0

Jon Super/Associated Press

Manchester United won their third straight home match on Tuesday. In a typical year, that is barely worth mentioning. This year, however, that feat has been far rarer than anyone's grown accustomed to.

Of course, this victory over cellar-dwelling Cardiff City is notable for other reasons. This was the Manchester United debut of fresh Chelsea transfer Juan Mata

Mata helped spur a quicker and sharper passing attack for the Red Devils. This helped Robin van Persie net a goal in just the sixth minute of his first game back since returning to fitness. 

Despite the return of van Persie and Mata's debut, it was Ashley Young who stood out the most. He netted the second and final goal of the match with a brilliant right-foot strike from 25 yards out. That highlighted a well-played match for Young. 

The Red Devils are still far from a complete product. They struggled in midfield and lowly Cardiff was able to out pass them, but this performance was a step in the right direction for this club's return to prominence. 

 

Liverpool 4, Everton 0

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - JANUARY 28:  Steven Gerrard of Liverpool celebrates after scoring the opening goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Liverpool and Everton at Anfield on January 28, 2014 in Liverpool, England.  (Photo by Laurence Griffi
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

In the 222nd Merseyside derby, Liverpool made their rivals look like they didn't belong on the same pitch. 

The Reds came out determined to defend their home pitch, and it was clear from the start that Liverpool were intent on sending Everton off in defeat. 

Steven Gerrard opened up the scoring with a blast in the 21st minute. That was Gerrard's only goal on the day, but it was just a small part of a fine match for the captain.

Daniel Sturridge made sure that Everton wouldn't get any dreams of a comeback. He netted two goals before the first half came to a close.

With Liverpool opening the second half with a 3-0 advantage, Luis Suarez must have got jealous of all these goals flowing without any of them coming off of his foot. So he joined the scoring party and added his 23rd goal the season—and the final statement in Liverpool's dominant 4-0 win.