Arsenal return to top of Premier League

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Arsenal showed both their ability on the break and their defensive capability to win 3-0 away to Brighton on Saturday evening and returned to the top of the Premier League above Liverpool, who play away to Manchester United on Sunday.

The deadlock in an absorbing first half, in which Brighton had a lot of the ball, was broken in the 31st minute when Bukayo Saka opened the scoring from the penalty spot for Arsenal.

Arsenal soaked up pressure after the break and Kai Havertz swept home to finish a flowing team move just after the hour, before former Brighton forward Leandro Trossard rounded off the scoring in the closing minutes.

Kevin de Bruyne showed he was fully fit ahead of Manchester City’s Champions League quarterfinal with Real Madrid, as he scored twice in his side’s 4-2 win away to Crystal Palace.

Pep Guardiola’s side began the day by falling behind after an error from John Stones allowed Jean-Philippe Mateta to give Crystal Palace a shock early lead, and the home side also hit the bar before De Bruyne leveled with a curling shot in the 13th minute.

Rico Lewis put City ahead in the 47th minute and Erling Haaland made it 3-1 in the 66th minute, before De Bruyne added another, and his 100th for the club, with 20 minutes left to play.

Odsonne Edouard pulled a goal back for Palace in the closing minutes, as City moved level on points with Liverpool.

Ollie Watkins returned to score twice as Aston Villa and Brentford drew 3-3, a result that edged Brentford closer to safety, but leaved the home side with work to do to ensure fourth place.

Watkins’ first goal of the game and a second strike from Morgan Rogers had given Villa a 2-goal lead, but three goals in 10 second-half minutes from Zanka, Bryan Mbeumo and Yoane Wissa turned the game on its head, before Watkins’ header assured the points were shared.

Bruno Guimaraes scored after good work from Harvey Barnes to give Newcastle United a 1-0 win away to Fulham to keep their hopes alive of returning to Europe next season and condemn the home side to their third consecutive defeat.

The Brazilian scored the only goal of the game in the 81st minute, six minutes after Fabian Schar saw his effort ruled out for a prior foul.

West Ham also retained the chance of qualifying for Europe thanks partly to James Ward Prowse, who curled the ball in directly from an 84th minute corner to see his side to a 2-1 win away to Wolverhampton.

Pablo Sarabia had put Wolves ahead from the penalty spot, but Lucas Paqueta leveled for the visitors 18 minutes from time, although West Ham coach David Moyes will be relieved Max Kilman’s 99th header for the home side was ruled out for offside.

Things remain tight at the bottom of the table, where Dominic Calvert-Lewin scrambled home in the 45th minute to give Everton a 1-0 win at home over Burnley and give his side their first league win of 2024.