LONDON – Fans of Premier League title challengers Liverpool and Tottenham had waited since March to watch their teams win from the stands.
They weren't disappointed.
Spurs supporters — a maximum of 2,000 under coronavirus restrictions, and no away fans — were treated to a 2-0 win over fierce north London rival Arsenal. It was the first Tottenham home game since fans were allowed back in stadiums in England.
The 2,000 fans at Liverpool's Anfield home belted out the first rendition of “You'll Never Walk Alone” at the stadium since the pandemic interrupted the previous season in March. Liverpool responded with a 4-0 win over Wolverhampton to stay level with league leader Tottenham on points.
SPURS IN CONTROL
The dependable duo of Harry Kane and Son Heung-min delivered again as Tottenham beat its old rival and stayed atop the table as it chases what would be the club's first English league title since 1961.
First Kane played in Son to score with a curling long-range shot, and then the 28-year-old South Korean assisted Kane to score from close range just before the end of the first half.
“We’re just feeling good. We’re both at an age now where we’re coming into maybe our prime in terms of understanding the game, understanding each other," the 27-year-old Kane told broadcaster Sky Sports. He and Son have combined for 12 goals this season.
Liverpool fans missed the official celebration when their club ended its long wait for the title last season, but had plenty to smile about in a straightforward win over Wolves.
There was a goal for Mohamed Salah after the Egyptian showed good awareness to snatch the ball away from Wolves defender Conor Coady, then a spectacular curling shot from Georginio Wijnaldum. The home crowd was treated to the rare sight of a goal from Joel Matip, the defender's first in 14 months. Nelson Semedo's own-goal fully extinguished Wolves' last hopes of a comeback.
It was Liverpool's biggest margin of victory in the EPL since beating Crystal Palace 4-0 in June. The game was effectively over before Diogo Jota, a key Liverpool forward since his arrival from Wolves, came off the bench in the 73rd to face his old club.
Jamie Vardy hit the winning goal in the 90th minute as Leicester stayed in the Champions League qualifying spots with a 2-1 victory over Sheffield United.
Vardy's goal meant an end to a four-game winless run in all competitions for Leicester. Sheffield has just one point from its first 11 league games this season.
That's the worst start to a season by any team in EPL history and a dramatic contrast to last season, when Chris Wilder's promoted Sheffield was a surprise mainstay in the top half of the table and challenged established clubs for a spot in European competition.
ZAHA BACK IN STYLE
The fans weren't back as Crystal Palace won 5-1 at West Bromwich Albion — the Hawthorns stadium is in an area under tighter coronavirus restrictions — but Wilfried Zaha returned triumphantly from his own encounter with the virus.
Zaha scored two goals for Palace in his first game since recovering from the coronavirus, and Christian Benteke also scored two. It was a one-sided game after a red card for West Brom's Matheus Pereira in the 34th minute after he appeared to catch an opponent in the stomach with his boot.
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