The Roar
The Roar


Mahrez misses late penalty to give Liverpool boost in title race, Everton collapse, Spurs pile pressure on Gunners

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15th May, 2022

Another Premier League trophy was virtually in Manchester City’s hands. 

All it needed was Riyad Mahrez to convert a penalty, like he’d done in each of his previous seven attempts from the spot this season.

Not this time.

There’s still plenty of life in this absorbing title race after Mahrez had a penalty saved by Lukasz Fabianski in the 86th minute, leaving City to settle for a 2-2 draw at West Ham on Sunday and a four-point lead over Liverpool heading into the final week of the season.


Liverpool head to Southampton for their game in hand on Tuesday, needing at least a point to take the title race to Sunday’s last day of the season. 

A win is probably required, given City have a superior goal difference of seven compared to Liverpool.

City host Aston Villa while Liverpool host Wolves in their last games with the Reds still dreaming of an unprecedented quadruple of major trophies.

“We couldn’t expect different with this Liverpool, they are almost the perfect team,” City manager Pep Guardiola said.


“We didn’t expect to win the title with three, four or five games to spare.”

It could have basically been over by now, however, had Mahrez put his spot kick past Fabianski.

Guardiola hardly flinched when Fabianski dived to his left and clawed away the penalty, which was at an inviting height for a goalkeeper. 

“We won’t look at anyone else, we’ll just try and win our game,” Guardiola said, thinking of a date with Villa manager Steven Gerrard, who was, of course, a Liverpool legend. 


It’s just as tense at the other end of the standings, though Leeds provided a twist in the relegation fight, scoring in the second minute of stoppage time through Pascal Struijk to salvage a 1-1 draw against Brighton and move out of the relegation zone at Burnley’s expense.

Burnley had lost 1-0 at Tottenham a few hours earlier – Harry Kane scored the winner from the penalty spot – and dropped into third-to-last place, one point behind Leeds.

That left Everton with the chance to guarantee top-flight survival by beating Brentford – but they lost 3-2 after having defender Jarrad Branthwaite sent off in the 18th minute when they were 1-0 up and then substitute Salomon Rondon red-carded in the 88th.


Richarlison had reclaimed the lead for Everton with a penalty in first-half stoppage time, but Brentford replied with two goals in two minutes from the 62nd.

Everton, who have two games left, stay on 36 points, with Leeds, who have one more match to play, on 35 and Burnley, with two to come, on 34. 

The race for Champions League qualification is heading for the final day, too, with Tottenham climbing into fourth, two points ahead of north London rivals Arsenal.


Arsenal have two games left compared to Tottenham’s one, the first coming at Newcastle on Monday.

Tottenham finish the season at Norwich, while Arsenal host Everton.

Watford’s season is coming to a messy end under departing manager Roy Hodgson, a 5-1 home loss to Leicester leaving his team a point above last-place Norwich.

Jamie Vardy and Harvey Barnes both scored twice and James Maddison netted the other for Leicester as already-relegated Watford tied the all-time top-flight record of 15 home losses in a season.

Norwich drew 1-1 at Wolves, the same as the score between Aston Villa and Crystal Palace.