London - Liverpool warmed-up for the Champions League final in style by
ensuring they are back in the competition next season as Mohamed Salah
set a new Premier League record of 32 goals in a 4-0 thrashing of
Brighton on Sunday.
Victory for Liverpool meant it didn't matter
what fifth-placed Chelsea did at Newcastle, but they failed to put any
sort of pressure on the Champions League finalists by succumbing limply
to a 3-0 defeat at St. James's Park.
Gabriel Jesus's stoppage time
winner for Manchester City in a 1-0 victory at Southampton saw the
champions set another record landmark by becoming the first side in
English top flight history to reach 100 points.
At the other end
of the table, Swansea's seven-season stay in the Premier League came to
an end as they were relegated to the Championship after a 2-1 defeat by
Liverpool faced the uncomfortable scenario of travelling to
Kiev to face the might of Real Madrid in the Champions League final on
May 26 having to win to qualify for next season's competition had
results gone against them.
However, there was little doubt over
the outcome once Salah eased any nerves by swivelling to strike his
first goal in four games on 26 minutes to take his tally in all
competitions this season to 44.
"I'm really proud of the boys, a nearly perfect season," said Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp.
"We had no chance to challenge Man City so the only thing you can go for is a Champions League spot. It is a big thing."
Salah's strike also saw him secure the Premier League Golden Boot to add to his multiple Player of the Year accolades.
was fantastic," Klopp added.
"I can't imagine how difficult it must be
if everybody tells you every day how brilliant you are but not only
that, they give you an Oscar, an award for this and award for that, for
getting out of the car without an accident.
"It is really difficult to stay focused but he is focused. He now has two weeks to prepare for our biggest game."
Lovren, Dominic Solanke and Andy Robertson were also on target as Klopp
could even afford the luxury of substituting Salah in the second-half.
were under little pressure all afternoon as Chelsea slumped to a 10th
Premier League defeat of the season in the north-east.
Gayle and two goals for Ayoze Perez piled ever more pressure on Chelsea
boss Antonio Conte just six days ahead of what could be the Italian's
final game in charge in the FA Cup final against Manchester United.
"Newcastle showed greater desire and fight, and if we play like this in the FA Cup final we don't have a chance," said Conte.
victory also saw them set a record Premier League margin of victory of
19 points from Manchester United, who won 1-0 over Watford at Old
"When you win for 100 points it's something special for
the club," said City manager Pep Guardiola. "I think it's a record that
will stay for a long time."
England manager Gareth Southgate will
name his World Cup squad later this week, and there was plenty of
encouragement for Southgate as three of his strikers were on target.
Rashford scored his first goal since March for United's winner, whilst
Jamie Vardy and Harry Kane both struck twice at Wembley as Tottenham
came from 3-1 down to beat Leicester 5-4 and hold off Liverpool to
Kane cancelled out Vardy's early opener before Riyad
Mahrez restored Leicester's lead and Kelechi Iheanacho's smashed home a
third for the visitors early in the second-half.
An Erik Lamela
double and Christian Fuchs own goal to put Spurs in front before Vardy
levelled with his 20th league goal of the campaign.
However, Kane had the final say with his 41st of the season to head to the World Cup in fine form.
gave Arsene Wenger a parting gift in his final game as manager after 22
years in charge by winning their first points away from home in the
Premier League in 2018 with a 1-0 win at Huddersfield.
it is very emotional after 1 235 games for the same club," said Wenger.
"To enjoy it we had to win it. Winning football games is what makes me
happy and the boys did it."
Club record signing Pierre-Emerick
Aubameyang netted his 10th goal in 13 games since joining in January by
finishing off the sort of free-flowing move that Wenger has made his
trademark as Gunners boss.