Liverpool stumble in title race


What had been a joyous week for Liverpool went flat on Saturday as they stumbled in the title race, dropping two crucial points in a 1-1 draw at home to Tottenham Hotspur.

Watford were relegated from the top flight as they lost to Crystal Palace, while Manchester United’s season can hardly end soon enough after a 4-0 hammering by Brighton and Hove Albion.

Liverpool reached the Champions League final on Tuesday with victory over Villarreal, but the mood was gloomy as they were unable to ratchet up the pressure on Manchester City at Anfield.

They had won their last 12 Premier League home games and were unbeaten at Anfield in the league for 14 months but trailed to Son Heung-min’s 56th-minute goal.

Son’s 20th league goal of the season looked like earning Tottenham the win they needed to move fourth, but Luis Diaz equalised with a deflected shot in the 74th minute.

Liverpool moved top with 83 points from 35 games with City also on 83 from 34 games. Reigning champions City can go three points clear if they beat Newcastle United on Sunday.

 “The dressing room is not flying, come on, but there are other games to play. We just have to keep going,” Liverpool Manager Juergen Klopp said.

 Watford’s 1-0 defeat by Palace soured former Manager Roy Hodgson’s return to Selhurst Park.

Wilfried Zaha’s penalty earned Palace the points to send Watford down and inflict a first relegation from the Premier League in Hodgson’s long managerial career.

Manchester United’s soon-to-be ex interim manager Ralf Rangnick apologised after a display he described as ‘humiliating’ on the south coast.

Moises Caicedo, Marc Cucurella, Pascal Gross and Leandro Trossard were all on target for Brighton as United suffered a fifth successive away defeat in the league to end any remaining hope of a top-four finish.

Chelsea are not yet assured of a top-four place as they were held to a 2-2 home draw by Wolverhampton Wanderers.

With potential new owner Ted Boehly watching at Stamford Bridge, Romelu Lukaku scored twice to put the hosts ahead.

But Francisco Trincao scored a spectacular goal 11 minutes from time before Conor Coady headed a dramatic 97th-minute equaliser to deny Chelsea victory on the day the sale of the club was agreed.

Chelsea are in third place with 67 points from 35 games with fourth-placed Arsenal, who host relegation-threatened Leeds United on Sunday, on 63 from 34. Tottenham have 62 from 35.