Barclays Premier League Review – January 2016

CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES/AFP/ADRIAN DENNIS
CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES/AFP/ADRIAN DENNIS

By far the most explosive month in this season’s Premier League so far, January saw the battle at the top and bottom continue to be hotly contested. Not only that, but we saw enough brilliant goals to fit in a goal of the season compilation as well as some dramatic games up and and down the country, including one that will go down in history as one of the best ever…

The table on January 1st
The table on January 1st
The table on February 1st
The table on February 1st

What We Can See From The Table

  • Leicester City went from joint top to sole leaders, and have a three point gap over Manchester City and Arsenal in second and third respectively.
  • It was a poor month for Crystal Palace, who didn’t pick up a single point to drop from fifth to 11th.
  • Everton were the only other side not to pick up a win in January, but the Toffees have only fallen one place to 12th.
  • Chelsea were the only team to remain unbeaten throughout the entire month but there is still a long a way to go in order to make the top four – 14 points to make up.
  • The bottom three remains the same, but Aston Villa did pick up their first win in the league since August – they are now 10 points from safety.

Player of the Month

Sergio Aguero – Manchester City

CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES/MICHAEL STEELE
CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES/MICHAEL STEELE

After spending most of December on the sidelines, Sergio Aguero returned with a bang in January, beginning by scoring the winning goal in City’s 2-1 win over Watford. After he and the Citizens drew a blank in the goalless draw against Everton, the Argentine’s best performance of the month came in the 4-0 thrashing of Crystal Palace, as hit the back of the net twice and also set up David Silva’s goal. He then scored another brace in the 2-2 draw at West Ham United, meaning that Manuel Pellegrini’s side finished the month unbeaten in second place. Without Aguero’s five goals and one assist last month, they would be in fifth – nine points off leaders Leicester City. The 27 year old’s tally in the league this campaign now stands at 12 goals, and by winning this award he becomes the first player to do so in all three seasons that I’ve been doing this blog!

2nd – Wayne Rooney (Manchester United)

3rd – Enner Valencia (West Ham United)

Manager of the Month

Ronald Koeman – Southampton

article-0-1F92E0AA00000578-886_634x428

After Southampton’s performances last season which saw Ronald Koeman win my manager of the month award twice and finish second in the overall season accolade, many fans have been disappointed by what they have seen at St. Mary’s this season, with the South Coast side going into the New Year in 12th position. However, three wins from four games in January sees them now occupy eighth position, with Ronald Koeman seeming to have found what makes the Saints tick again. The month began badly with a 1-0 defeat to Norwich, but Southampton would not drop another point or concede another goal for the rest of January. They beat Watford 1-0, West Bromwich Albion 3-0 and won away at Manchester United 1-0 for the second season in a row. In the transfer window, Koeman made just one signing, bringing in Charlie Austin from QPR for £4 million for what looks to be a bargain after the striker scored the winner at Old Trafford on his debut.

2nd – Claudio Ranieri (Leicester City)

3rd – Guus Hiddink (Chelsea)

Goal of the Month

Dele Alli vs Crystal Palace

2nd – Johnny Howson vs Stoke

3rd – Willian vs Palace

Game of the Month

Norwich City 4-5 Liverpool

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Adam Lallana’s injury-time strike saw Liverpool edge a nine-goal thriller at Norwich in one of the most dramatic Premier League games of the season. Roberto Firmino scuffed the Reds ahead but Dieumerci’s Mbokani’s backheel levelled and Steven Naismith’s debut strike put the home side in front. Wes Hoolahan added a penalty before Jordan Henderson and Firmino struck. James Milner put the away side ahead and though Sebastien Bassong netted in added time, Lallana delivered a twist. The England midfielder’s volley – which was fired into the ground and bounced agonisingly in for the home side – sparked chaotic scenes as Reds boss Jurgen Klopp raced along the touchline to celebrate with his players. Read the full BBC report here. 

2nd – Chelsea 3-3 Everton

Read the full report here.

3rd – Liverpool 3-3 Arsenal

Read the full report here.

Managerial Departures

CREDIT: SWANSEA CITY
CREDIT: SWANSEA CITY
  • Alan Curtis ended his time as caretaker Swansea City boss (18/01) – Francesco Guidolin appointed on the same day

Games To Look Forward To In February

CREDIT: PLUMB IMAGES
CREDIT: PLUMB IMAGES
  • Manchester City vs Leicester City (06/02)
  • Chelsea vs Manchester United (07/02)
  • Arsenal vs Leicester City (14/02)
  • Manchester City vs Tottenham Hotspur (14/02)
  • Manchester United vs Arsenal (28/02)
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