An American's Premier League Power Rankings Week 10.
Liverpool isn't finished just yet, Crystal Palace managed to snag a point, and Manchester City keeps on winning in this weeks Premier League action.
20. Crystal Palace (No Change)
Palace was electric in pulling off a brilliant two goal deficit to sneak out a point from under West Ham's noise and keep building off the momentum they captured two weeks ago against Chelsea.
Sadly for the Eagles that positive growth is going to be put under severe strain this Sunday when they take on Tottenham at Wembley Stadium. Regardless, Roy Hodgson should be very proud of the turnaround he has started here.
19. Everton (No Change)
Everton is officially in crisis mode now. Another pitiful performance, this time against a largely underachieving Leicester City side sees Everton spiraling further out of control. Everton has allowed the second most goals. Has the second worst goal-differential, and has only managed to score seven goals after its first ten games, the third lowest, on every level it has been a failure for the squad.
Few teams have left me as shocked and saddened as Everton, a weekend match against one of the Premier Leagues biggest overachievers, Watford awaits next.
18. Bournemouth (-1)
Bournemouth is not good. Yet, honestly only losing by a single goal to a Chelsea team in desperate need of a win isn't too terrible a result. Bournemouth actually hasn't been terrible on the defensive side of the ball, it's putting the ball in the back of the net where they seem to encounter many difficulties. Only Palace, a team historically poor at scoring, has scored fewer times then Bournemouth. Going forward that has to be the biggest area of concern for the side.
They travel to Newcastle next so sadly for Bournemouth fans it's unlikely the goals will start flowing this week.
17. Swansea City (-2)
Alright, so positives first. Swansea managed to score in its game. Bad news, they lost yet again. Swansea actually has one of the top ten defenses in the league. The problem quite simply is that they can't seem to find a way to score goals. Compounding the problem is the fact that in these past two games when Swansea has managed to snag a goal they still lose.
A weekend match against Brighton will be a good chance for Swansea both to test its mettle and also grab some much needed points.
16. West Ham (No Change)
West Ham played some good football but late mistakes allowed Crystal Palace to sneak in an equalizer and stop West Ham from managing to grab the full three points. Two weeks ago I was talking about West Ham and discussing its ability to rise up the table and suck up points from quality teams. Two lackluster results against bottom tier teams later though and The Hammers are suddenly in a minor crisis. West Ham should have put away Palace and locked up the three points, their inability to do so and allow them back into the game could be a mistake that haunts them down the road.
Now, they will have to take on Liverpool and then Watford in its next two games, neither of which appears likely to drop points to the Hammers.
15. West Brom (-2)
West Brom's slide down the table continues as they lost to Manchester City 2-3 in a game that extends the squads winless streak further. Now without a win since the middle of August and despite some impressive draws along the way, West Brom now faces the very real fact that it is only two points above the relegation zone after being near the top of the table for much of the opening few weeks.
A trip to Huddersfield awaits for the squad. Expect a tight, hard fight affair between two mid table teams eager to be far clear of the drop zone.
14. Stoke City (+4)
Mark Hughes men seem to shine brightest against the best. After a gruesome run of games following their impressive draw against United, Stoke reappeared full of life in their match against Watford. The tight 1-0 win lifted Stoke out of the drop, and also gave the team its first clean sheet since an August 19th victory over Arsenal.
Stoke has still given up far too many goals, the second most in the Premier League, but if they are capable of turning this solid win against Watford into something else those occasional flashes of quality that we saw against United and last week can hopefully become the normal run of things.
13. Huddersfield (-2)
So. Woof. Huddersfield got ripped to shreds by Liverpool. Like many teams in the bottom half of the league one of Huddersfield's biggest problems is an inability to score goals on a regular basis. That big win against Manchester United seemed like it could be a step in the right direction. Against a second top level opponent Huddersfield simply was not able to rise to the level again.
West Brom should be a side much more in their wheelhouse and I expect David Wenger and team to pull off a much better result.
12. Brighton (No Change)
Brighton did exactly what it needed to against Southampton delivering a solid performance in the 1-1 draw. Brighton has now grabbed five points in its last three matches and hasn't lost since it's October 1st game against Arsenal. The Seagulls are flying high at the moment and a match against Swansea and then Stoke await Brighton next as they look to solidify this current run into something long-lasting.
11. Leicester City (+3)
Back to back league wins now see the Foxes finally beginning to realize their potential. Their 2-0 victory against Everton was even more complete and dominate then the scoreline suggests. They totally outclassed and outplayed their foes. What a massive two weeks this has been for Leicester. Real progress seems to be made now and the side seems to be growing with confidence with each result. A match against Stoke is their last game before the break and a win or good showing there could send them off on a high and with a nice run under their belt.
10. Southampton (-1)
Southampton yet again did what they had to do and picked up points. Since Southampton's 1-0 loss to United they have managed five points in their last four games and their only loss came in a 2-1 match against Stoke. Southampton has slowly started to solidify its position as a top ten club this season. Something that they can secure even more with their matchup this week against Burnly.
9. Newcastle (-2)
Newcastle's three match unbeaten streak come to an end against a very impressive looking Burnly side, but the match remained a taught and tense affair for the whole ninety minutes. Newcastle quite possibly could be the biggest surprise of the entire season and the fact that they currently sit with four wins, 14 points, and a top ten placement after the first ten games of the year can't be viewed as anything other then a huge accomplishment.
They host a lowly and messy Bournemouth side at St. James Park this weekend and it provides an ample opportunity for Rafa Benitez and company to rebound nicely after the loss.
8. Watford (-2)
For the first time in the season Watford has lost back to back games and experienced its first rough patch. Watford has gotten outscored 2-5 in those losses and failed to manage a goal for the first time since that blistering loss to Man City over a month ago. While it's hardly time for panic for the Hornets a solid winning performance against Everton on the road would go a long way in easing some of the worry. It shouldn't be too hard to manage.
7. Liverpool (+3)
The Reds had their finest showing in weeks in their 3-0 victory over Huddersfield. It was everything people have been clamoring for the team to do. Attacking, exciting football, without any of the defensive blunders that have so often defined the season for Liverpool. For all the talk about disaster and crisis over at Anfield it's important to note that they still sit in a very nice position to grab a top four spot, sitting just three points away. Jurgen Klopp has changed the culture at Liverpool, now he should be given the time and patience to really see the effects and advantages of that. Liverpools Champions League performance mid-week seemed to be another positive growth for the clubs direction.
They travel to West Ham in a matchup that should provide further chances for the squad to further develop and build off this past weeks matches.
6. Burnly (+2)
Burnly rebounded nicely from its loss to Man City beating Newcastle 1-0 in the battle between the two smaller top ten teams. Burnly's performances on the defensive end of the ball have been remarkable and stout. The team just locks down in its half of the pitch. While it would nice if they could find the back of the net themselves a bit more, when you shut down opposing players and attacks as well as Burnly has this season it's not the biggest of problems.
They travel to Southampton to take on another top ten team this week, expect to find Burnly in the midst of another knock-down low scoring affair.
5. Arsenal (No Change)
Arsenal's 2-1 win over Swansea helped to keep the Gunners in the top four race. Perhaps no team has received more flake this season yet when cries ring out about the quality of the side they step up and largely answer them.
That sprit will be of critical importance this Sunday when Arsenal faces its stiffest challenge yet when it travels to Manchester to take on the remarkable City side that is reminiscent of the Arsenal Invincible's squad from the mid 2000's.
4. Chelsea (No Change)
The result was far closer then they would have liked but ultimately Chelsea will take the win and the top four spot that goes along with their 1-0 victory over Bournemouth. The stakes and quality of competition will be raised considerably when Chelsea hosts Manchester United on Sunday. A top six win would go a long way in easing some of the fears about this teams depth. A loss...and well nothing good will come from that.
3. Tottenham (-1)
It wasn't that Tottenham played poorly against United, it was more that they didn't play lights out football either. Particularly in the second half the Spurs seemed to hang back and play more for the draw. The result of this more conservative and defensive minded gameplay was a 1-0 loss due to a late United goal. An emphatic 3-1 Champions League win over Real Madrid a few days later shows the immense potential and promise of this side, yet when Harry Kane isn't on the field you could almost feel the tension and jitters the squad was feeling.
They play host to league worst Palace on Sunday. Anything less then a rousing victory should be a massive disappointment for them.
2. Manchester United (+1)
My beloved United are simply not playing their best football at the moment, yet they are doing exactly what they need to suck up points and keep breathing down City's neck. The ability to grind out a win against Tottenham was huge and United's skill at wearing down its opposition and scoring late goals has proved decisive in numerous cases throughout this campaign. Ten of its goals have come in the final ten minutes and this past weekend was no exception.
A third top six matchup in four weeks now awaits with United traveling to Sanford Bridge to take on a Chelsea team in a rut. The stakes will be huge for both teams as we move to the middle third of the season. Jose Mourinho will certainly be looking to pull one over his old side and silence the rising chorus of critics who are dismayed at United's sudden turn away from exciting, beautiful attacking football.
1. Manchester City (Yep again.)
City won their game 3-2 and the fact that caused a few eyebrows to be raised should be indicative of how utterly dominate they have been this season. Sitting with 28 points and nine wins after the first ten games of the season City is off to a historically dominant Premier League start. When they play host to Arsenal on Sunday it will provide one of the truest tests of their skill thus far this season. I expect a high-scoring game between the two, and a through City victory. They may well be the best team in Europe at the moment.