Barclays Premier League Table: 2016 EPL Roundup After Week 25 Saturday Results

James DudkoFeatured ColumnistFebruary 6, 2016

LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 06: Kieran Trippier of Tottenham Hotspur celebrates scoring his team's first goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Watford at White Hart Lane on February 6, 2016 in London, England.  (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)
Clive Rose/Getty Images

Tottenham Hotspur took advantage of Manchester City's home defeat to top-of-the-table Leicester City to go second in the Premier League after beating Watford at White Hart Lane on Saturday, despite finding former goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes in fine form for the visitors.

The result means the table has an unfamiliar look, featuring a top two few, if any, would have predicted at the start of the season.

Elsewhere, there was minor shake-up at the bottom, where Aston Villa registered a rare win, while many of those around them dropped vital points.

Here are the final scores from Saturday's fixtures:

Premier League Results Week 25: Saturday's Final Scores
HomeScoreAway
Manchester City1-3Leicester City
Aston Villa2-0Norwich City
Liverpool2-2Sunderland
Newcastle United1-0West Bromwich Albion
Stoke City0-3Everton
Swansea City1-1Crystal Palace
Tottenham Hotspur1-0Watford
Southampton1-0West Ham United
Sky Sports

Here's what those results mean for the table:

Premier League Standings: Week 25
PositionClubPlayedWonDrawnLostGoal DifferencePoints
1Leicester City2515822053
2Tottenham Hotspur2513932648
3Manchester City2514562147
4Arsenal2413651545
5Manchester United2411761040
6West Ham United251096939
7Southampton251078937
8Everton2581161235
9Liverpool25988-435
10Watford259610033
11Stoke City259610-733
12Crystal Palace259511-432
13Chelsea24789-229
14West Bromwich Albion257810-929
15Bournemouth247710-1028
16Swansea City256910-927
17Newcastle United256613-1824
18Norwich City256514-2023
19Sunderland255515-1920
20Aston Villa253715-2016
PremierLeague.com

 

Recap

Spurs found a typically stubborn Watford defence in a miserly mood during the first half. The visitors hardly did any attacking but were content to frustrate at the back, as this stat from BBC 5 live Sport revealed:

Gomes consistently flummoxed Spurs' attacks with some splendid saves. It took a moment of inspiration from precocious midfielder Dele Alli to finally breach the Hornets' defence.

The 19-year-old's direct running and smart low cross teed up talented full-back Kieran Trippier to tap in. It was instant impact from Tottenham's teenage gem:

Earlier in the day, Leicester went to the Etihad Stadium and stunned City with two goals from centre-back Robert Huth and one from winger Riyad Mahrez.

Uncompromising defender Huth helped himself to a brace after turning in a free-kick in the first half before nodding home a corner after the break. The burly German proved a menace from set pieces all game.

Losing the lead early meant the hosts played right into Leicester's cagey but well-drilled counter-attacking style. So it proved when Mahrez broke early in the second half to slot a classy finish past Joe Hart.

Mahrez's goal confirmed his status as the deadliest attacking force in England's top flight this season, per WhoScored.com:

The Foxes utilised their pace, via both Mahrez and the prolific Jamie Vardy, perfectly. But it was in midfield where manager Claudio Ranieri's team really won the day.

Danny Drinkwater and N'Golo Kante simply bossed proceedings, with the latter an energetic nuisance who plagued City's attempts to get their quick passing game going.

Unlike Leicester, the home side's midfield looked bereft of ideas. The decision to play winger Raheem Sterling behind centre-forward Sergio Aguero backfired, while playmaker David Silva's performance was long on effort, but oddly short of quality.

One of the day's most impressive results saw Everton thrash Stoke City at the usually hostile confines of the Britannia Stadium. Romelu Lukaku struck from the spot, before Seamus Coleman headed in a corner and Aaron Lennon pounced on a loose ball to score.

The Toffees passed the ball with confidence and class, receiving some excellent performances in midfield. In particular, young talisman Ross Barkley was very efficient during the first half, as Squawka Football noted:

But perhaps the best showing came from Tom Cleverley. He won the penalty and provided the corner for Coleman's header. The former Manchester United man has been very impressive in recent matches.

At the bottom of the table, Aston Villa welcomed a precious three points after Joleon Lescott and forgotten man Gabriel Agbonlahor scored to beat Norwich City. Remi Garde's team still prop up the table, but a rare win is at least something of a reprieve.

Villa needed the three points, because many of their fellow relegation-threatened rivals endured disappointing days, with only Newcastle United managing to win. The Magpies saw off West Bromwich Albion courtesy of an Aleksandar Mitrovic goal.

His chance was created by new boy Jonjo Shelvey, who has made a fast start to life with his new club:

Newcastle's north-east rivals Sunderland made life difficult for Liverpool at Anfield. The Reds dominated possession but couldn't fashion clear-cut chances.

Liverpool didn't always pick the best option in midfield, with James Milner a chief culprit:

But Milner made amends just before the hour mark when he crossed for Roberto Firmino to head in. The Brazilian then rolled a pass for Adam Lallana to slot in Liverpool's second.

Things became closer than they should have been when Simon Mignolet failed to reach an Adam Johnson free-kick, but worse was to follow. Liverpool yielded the late equaliser when Jermain Defoe slotted home before stoppage time, shooting accurately on the turn.

Swansea City took the lead at home to Crystal Palace when Gylfi Sigurdsson whipped in an excellent free-kick, but his sweet strike was answered by an emphatic Scott Dann header.

The goal continued Palace's streak of finding the net through members of the back line, according to OptaJoe:

Southampton beat West Ham United 1-0 in the late game, courtesy of a Maya Yoshida goal inside the first 10 minutes that proved the winner, despite the Saints being a man down when Victor Wanyama was red-carded early in the second half.

By holding on for the win, the Saints kept a fifth clean sheet in a row.

The return of goalkeeper Fraser Forster has proved hugely significant. But manager Ronald Koeman also deserves credit for structuring his team in a way that's frustrating opponents.

Koeman's defensive acumen has revived Southampton's season.
Koeman's defensive acumen has revived Southampton's season.Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images

It's difficult to imagine a more unusual-looking table than one that has Leicester top and Spurs in second with just 13 games left. Yet at this stage of the season, it's time to concede both squads are where they are on merit.

It's up to the division's bigger names to improve their performances and match the pace set by the surprising and buoyant top two.