11 Dec Premier League talking points
Only struggling Swansea stand in Manchester City’s way as the runaway leaders bid to set a new record for successive Premier League wins on Wednesday.
Here, Press Association Sport looks at some of the main talking points ahead of a full midweek programme of Premier League fixtures.
Record in City’s sights
Manchester City claimed the bragging rights as Nicolas Otamendi’s second-half winner sank derby rivals United and extended City’s lead at the top of the table to 11 points. Pep Guardiola’s side now switch their focus on the trip to the Liberty Stadium, where a win would see them break the Premier League record for consecutive victories set by Arsenal in 2002. Sunday’s win at Old Trafford moved City alongside Arsenal on 14 straight wins and another victory over 19th-place Swansea will hand them the outright record. But the Swans – fresh from their Wilfried Bony-inspired 1-0 victory at the weekend – will be no pushovers, with the Ivory Coast striker bound to be up for the clash against his former club.
Just how high can Burnley climb?
Victory over Stoke on Tuesday would propel high-flying Burnley into the top four, for a day at least. Sean Dyche’s side currently sit seventh in the table – two points behind Liverpool in fourth – but with the sides directly above them not in action until Wednesday, Clarets fans could be able to say they support a top-four team at the end of the game, even if their stay in that lofty position is only temporary.
Beware the wounded animal
Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United saw their club record-equalling 40-match unbeaten home run come to an end at the weekend as they lost to neighbours City in the Manchester derby. This United side have a habit of bouncing back from disappointing defeats with impressive victories, as Newcastle found out when they lost 4-1 to Mourinho’s men in the game after United’s defeat at Chelsea in November. And Wednesday’s opponents Bournemouth could be the victims as United look to get back to winning ways.
Will Allardyce’s unbeaten run continue?
Everton have swiftly moved away from the bottom half of the table since appointing Sam Allardyce as their new manager last month. With the former England boss watching in the stands ahead of his appointment, the Toffees eased past Allardyce’s former club West Ham and then won twice more in all competitions before holding derby rivals Liverpool to a 1-1 draw at the weekend. The 63-year-old will be keen to continue his unbeaten start to life as Everton boss when he takes his 10th-placed side to another of his former clubs – Newcastle – on Wednesday.
Can Moyes do it again?
Many would have expected relegation-threatened West Ham to come away empty-handed from their first three games in December, with their opponents being Manchester City, Chelsea and Arsenal. But after taking the lead before suffering a narrow 2-1 defeat to City, the Hammers stunned Chelsea with a 1-0 victory over the champions at the London Stadium on Saturday. And manager David Moyes will be looking to pull off another shock against the Gunners, who needed a late Olivier Giroud header to salvage a point from their trip to Southampton at the weekend.