Leeds United, Everton, Southampton and Leicester City all earned big results on Saturday in their efforts to beat the drop.

The Premier League's struggling sides were the big winners from the five matches to take place.

Leeds beat fellow relegation candidates Wolves 4-2, while Everton pegged back Chelsea twice at Stamford Bridge and Southampton came from 3-1 down to draw 3-3 with Tottenham.

Leicester, meanwhile, snatched a draw at Brentford, though 19th-placed Bournemouth lost 3-0 at Aston Villa.

Wolves 2-4 Leeds United: Six-goal thriller and two reds at Molineux

Leeds came out on top in an enthralling encounter at Molineux, with Javi Gracia's side claiming what could be a vital three points in their bid to survive this season.

Jack Harrison put them ahead early on, and he has now been directly involved in four goals (two goals, two assists) in his four Premier League games under Gracia, just one fewer than in his previous 21 matches under Jesse Marsch and Michael Skubala this season (five).

Luke Ayling netted his first league goal since doing so against Wolves exactly a year ago (March 18, 2022) to make it 2-0, with Rasmus Kristensen putting Leeds three ahead.

Their hopes of a comfortable win were dashed when Illan Meslier, on the day he became the youngest goalkeeper in Premier League history to reach 100 appearances, made a mistake that Jonny pounced on, volleying in from 41 yards. That is the furthest distance a player has scored from in the top flight since Wayne Rooney's 58-yard strike for Everton against West Ham in November 2017.

A deflected Matheus Cunha strike gave Wolves hope, but Jonny became the first Wolves player to both score and be sent off in any league game since September 2008. 

Julen Lopetegui was fuming that Wolves were not awarded a first-half penalty and that a foul was not given in the build-up to Rodrigo's late effort for Leeds, with Matheus Nunes then sent off even though he was on the substitutes' bench.

"I'm not waiting for [further apologies]. I just want them [the officials] to do their job," Lopetegui said.

Southampton 3-3 Tottenham: Conte left seething after Ward-Prowse seals comeback

Southampton came from two goals down to avoid defeat for a second time in the Premier League this season, with only Manchester City (P3 W2 D1) avoiding defeat having fallen two goals behind on more occasions this term.

Tottenham, who took the lead through Pedro Porro but saw it cancelled out by Che Adams, restored their advantage through Harry Kane – he has now scored nine headers in the league this season, equalling Duncan Ferguson's single-season record in the competition from 1997-98.

Ivan Perisic took Spurs' tally of Premier League scorers to 162, with only West Ham (164) having more different scorers in the competition's history, yet Theo Walcott pulled one back for Saints. The former Arsenal winger has more top-flight goal involvements (12) and goals (seven) against Tottenham than he does against any other opponent.

Yet Spurs conceded a 14th goal since the season restarted when Pape Sarr was deemed to have fouled Ainsley Maitland-Niles, and James Ward-Prowse converted the penalty. He has been involved in more Premier League goals against Tottenham than he has any other opponent (nine – five goals, four assists).

Brentford 1-1 Leicester City: Barnes holds the Bees

Brentford remain without a win against Leicester in the Premier League (P4 D2 L2). The Bees have not beaten the Foxes in the league since March 1953 (P8 D3 L5 since).

Leicester ended a run of four consecutive defeats in the Premier League but this was just the eighth point they have picked up in 2023 (P10 W2 D2 L6). Only Crystal Palace (five) have picked up fewer points since the turn of the year, while only Everton and Bournemouth (20 and 18 respectively) have conceded more goals in the competition this calendar year than Leicester's 17.

Only Ivan Toney (eight) has scored more home goals for Brentford in the Premier League this season than Mathias Jensen (five), whose goal was the Bees' 19th from a set-piece this term – more than any other side in the division.

Leicester scored from their only shot on target of the game. Harvey Barnes' goal was his ninth of the season – his joint-most in a single Premier League campaign (also nine in 2020-21).

Chelsea 2-2 Everton: Simms snatches huge point

Substitute Ellis Simms scored his first goal for Everton as Sean Dyche's team drew 2-2 at Stamford Bridge, twice coming from behind.

 

Chelsea are unbeaten in their last 28 Premier League home games against Everton (W15 D13), but the Toffees can take plenty of confidence from this result.

Joao Felix put Chelsea ahead with his first home goal for the Blues, but Abdoulaye Doucoure equalised from a corner; four of Everton's seven goals under Dyche have come from set-pieces.

Kai Havertz converted a spot-kick to restore Chelsea's lead. He has scored in three consecutive games for the Blues for the second time, previously doing so in March 2022.

However, Simms came on from the bench to earn a point for Everton. The Toffees have now had 13 different goalscorers in the competition this season, with only Arsenal, Chelsea and Leeds (14 each) having more.

Arsenal crashed out of the Europa League with a penalty shoot-out defeat to Sporting CP on Thursday, and Mikel Arteta will be looking for an instant response in the Premier League.

The title is now their sole focus, and with Manchester City in FA Cup action this weekend, the Gunners can move eight points clear at the top should they beat Crystal Palace, who on Friday sacked Arsenal great Patrick Vieira after an 11-game winless run.

Palace are 12th but only three points above the relegation zone, and that picture could change by the time they play on Sunday.

After Nottingham Forest welcome Newcastle United on Friday, Bournemouth visit Aston Villa, Leicester City have a tough trip to Brentford, Southampton host Tottenham, and Wolves and Leeds United face off in another big match at the bottom of the table. Everton, who are also in the relegation scrap, play Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

Here, with the help of Opta data, Stats Perform has provided some key insights and predictions.

Southampton v Tottenham 

Between December 2019 and January 2021, Southampton won five of six Premier League games against sides starting the day in the top four of the table (L1). However, since then they are winless in 15 such games (D6 L9), conceding 43 goals and scoring just nine in return.

Southampton have scored at least once in each of their last 14 Premier League games against Spurs, since a 2-0 home loss in December 2015, but they have kept just one clean sheet in their last 21 against them, when they won 1-0 in January 2020.

In all competitions, Tottenham have lost each of their last four away games, the last three of which without scoring. This is Spurs' longest run of away defeats in succession since May 2019 (five in a row), while not since January 1983 have they lost four straight away matches without scoring (a run of five).

Best bet – Harry Kane to score or assist: Harry Kane has been directly involved in 17 goals in 15 Premier League appearances against Southampton (11 goals, six assists), having only had a hand in more goals against Leicester (22). The England captain has scored nine away goals in the competition this season – no other player in Premier League history has netted 10 times on the road in more than four separate campaigns, whereas Kane is on the verge of doing so for the seventh time.

Long shot – Richarlison to score: Richarlison was desperately unlucky not to break his duck for Spurs in the win over Forest last week, with a fierce finish ruled out for offside. The Brazil forward has netted five times in his last seven league appearances against Saints, making them his favourite team to play against when it comes to goals, but he is yet to score in the Premier League this season.

Opta prediction: Spurs are made favourites for this one by Opta's supercomputer, with Antonio Conte's team given a 54 per cent chance of victory. There is roughly a one in four chance of a draw (25.7 per cent), while Southampton, who prop up the table but could move as high as 15th with a win, are given a 20.3 per cent chance of claiming the spoils.

 

Wolves v Leeds United

Having been unbeaten in six league games against Leeds between 2017 and 2021 (W5 D1), Wolves have lost their last two against the Whites. Indeed, Leeds are looking to complete their first league double over Wolves since 2015-16 and their first in the top flight since 1973-74.

Leeds, who will be without key midfielder Tyler Adams due to a hamstring issue, have earned four points from their three Premier League games under Javi Gracia (W1 D1 L1), as many as they had in their 10 games before his arrival (W0 D4 L6). However, they are winless in their last seven away matches (D2 L5). 

Wolves boss Julen Lopetegui has won both of his previous meetings with Gracia in all competitions. These games came in the 2020-21 campaign, with Lopetegui's Sevilla beating Gracia's Valencia 1-0 in LaLiga and 3-0 in the Copa Del Rey.

Best bet – Wolves to avoid defeat: No side have fewer away wins (one) or away points (six) in the Premier League this season than Leeds, who have lost nine of their 13 away league games this term. Wolves, meanwhile, have won three of their last four home league games (L1), more than they had in their previous 12 (W2 D3 L7). 

Long shot – Wolves to score over two goals: Wolves have a shot conversion rate of 6.8 per cent in the Premier League this season, their lowest in any of their nine campaigns in the competition. Only once have they scored more than twice in a top-flight game this term, when they beat Liverpool 3-0 in February.

Opta prediction: Expect this one to be close, based on the prediction model, which makes Wolves the slight favourites (39.3 per cent), although Leeds are at 31.3 per cent. A draw is certainly feasible and is given a 29.4 per cent chance.

 

Chelsea v Everton

Chelsea are unbeaten in their last 27 Premier League home games against Everton (W15 D12) since a 1-0 loss in November 1994. Against no side have they ever had a longer unbeaten run at Stamford Bridge in their top-flight history. Everton managed a 1-1 draw with a makeshift side in the corresponding fixture last season, but a win still evades them.

Before this season, Everton had beaten Chelsea in each of the last four Premier League campaigns, although all of their victories were at home. They have not beaten the Blues in five straight league seasons since the 1930s.

Everton have won three of their seven Premier League games under Sean Dyche so far (D1 L3), as many as they had in their 20 matches under Frank Lampard this season (D6 L11), but again all of those wins have come at home.

Best bet – Chelsea to win: Everton are winless in their last 11 Premier League away games against London sides (D3 L8), failing to score in each of the last four, and Chelsea have only failed to beat the Toffees at home twice since the start of the 2016-17 season.

Long shot – Everton to win 1-0: If the visitors are to claim a victory, expect it to be a cagey one. In fact, 40 per cent (30) of Dyche's 75 Premier League wins have been by a 1-0 scoreline, including his three as Everton boss. Of the 52 managers with at least 50 wins in the competition, only Tony Pulis (42 per cent – 41 of 98) has won a higher share by a 1-0 scoreline.

Opta prediction: Given Everton's torrid form on the road – they have won fewer Premier League away games (three) and earned fewer points on the road (18) than any of the 17 ever-present sides since the start of last season – and dismal record at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea are the overwhelming favourites at 54.1 per cent on Opta's model. Everton are handed a slim 19.3 per cent chance of success, while the draw is rated at 26.6 per cent.

 

Arsenal v Crystal Palace 

Palace elected to part ways with Arsenal legend Vieira and could well be further embroiled in the relegation battle by the end of Sunday's game. After all, the Gunners have won their last five Premier League matches, netting at least three goals in four of those, including each of the last three. 

Arsenal have won eight of their nine London derbies in the Premier League this season (D1); in English Football League history, no side have ever won nine all-London match-ups in a single season. Palace, on the other hand, have won just one of their eight derbies this term. The Eagles have, however, avoided defeat in their last four Premier League away games against Arsenal, with each of the last three ending level (W1).

Since his Premier League debut for Arsenal in January, no player has been involved in more goals for the Gunners than Leandro Trossard (six – one goal, five assists). He has five assists in his last four Premier League games, as many as in his previous 64 appearances.

Best bet – Gabriel Martinelli to have 2+ shots on target: After missing the crucial penalty in Arsenal's shoot-out loss to Sporting in Europe, Martinelli will be determined to put things right. He is Arsenal's highest goalscorer in the Premier League this season with 12 goals, including five in his last five appearances. 

Long shot – Palace to keep a clean sheet: Palace have kept just one clean sheet in 22 away league games against Arsenal (49 goals conceded), a goalless draw in January 2021, while the Gunners have scored in all but one of their league games at Emirates Stadium this season.

Opta prediction: Arsenal are the favourites, although given the respective form of these sides, a 54.6 per cent win prediction perhaps feels a bit low – a reflection of Palace's recent unbeaten run at Emirates Stadium. Opta gives the draw a 26.5 per cent chance, while the supercomputer has a Palace win ranked at 18.9 per cent.

Julen Lopetegui claimed Wolves were denied a "very, very clear penalty" by referee Andy Madley in Sunday's 2-1 defeat at Newcastle United.

Wolves were furious in January when they had a late goal disallowed for offside against Liverpool in the FA Cup at Anfield, and they remain convinced that was an injustice.

Madley was also the man in the middle that time, with Wolves denied what would almost certainly have been a winning goal as the game finished 2-2, with Liverpool going on to edge the replay 1-0 at Molineux.

That incident has not been forgotten by Lopetegui, and he was aghast at Wolves being denied a spot-kick early on against Newcastle at St James' Park.

Newcastle goalkeeper Nick Pope took a poor touch and gave away the ball to Wolves striker Raul Jimenez, before seeming to bundle the Mexican to the floor.

Wolves wanted a penalty and a red card but got neither, and Lopetegui said afterwards: "It's true that, for me, it was a very, very clear penalty for us. We are very unlucky with the referee. This is a pity for us.

"It doesn't matter what I think. The more important thing is that this is true that we have suffered a big mistake a lot of matches ago at Liverpool, and for me [Sunday's incident] was a penalty, but the VAR can't help in this case the referee. We were very unlucky with the decision. We didn't have a penalty since I arrived here."

Alexander Isak headed Newcastle ahead in the first half, but Hwang Hee-chan brought Wolves level in the 70th minute.

The visitors sat deep and were punished by a fine finish from Miguel Almiron nine minutes later.

Newcastle head coach Eddie Howe told Sky Sports he felt there would have been no justification in awarding Wolves a penalty for the clash between Pope and Jimenez, which came when the game was goalless.

Howe said: "I didn't think it was a penalty at the time. You might say I was biassed, but I didn't. I thought it was Jimenez going down before the contact was made, that was my initial assessment."

Substitute Almiron delighted Howe with his contribution off the bench, having been a regular starter up to now.

"Not that he necessarily needed to give a response, it was a case of us just trying to freshen him up," Howe said. "It's an outstanding season that he's had, he's contributed in lots of different ways, and you see the work rate he gives every week. He made a massive impact, and I'm delighted for him."

Howe was glad to halt a five-game winless run, with the Magpies jumping above Liverpool into fifth place.

"I just think it reignites us," he said. "Hopefully it re-sparks us into action and restores confidence levels to where they should be."

Leandro Trossard and Casemiro were two of the standout players in Sunday's Premier League action – though for contrasting reasons.

Belgium international Trossard was inspirational as Arsenal's title tilt remained on track, while Casemiro was shown a second red card in three Premier League appearances as Manchester United slipped up again.

Miguel Almiron was Newcastle United's hero, Eddie Howe's men closing on the Champions League places again, and Ollie Watkins continued his fine form for Aston Villa in their draw with West Ham.

After the conclusion of the day's drama, Stats Perform highlights the pick of the Opta numbers.

Manchester United 0-0 Southampton: Another Casemiro red threatens to derail Ten Hag's men

Casemiro has undoubtedly been one of United's best players this season, but if they now miss out on the top four, the Brazil international will have to take part of the blame.

His sending off in the first half on Sunday for a heavy challenge on Carlos Alcaraz proved costly, with United only able to scrape a point thereafter.

That made him the first United player to receive two red cards in one Premier League season since Nemanja Vidic in 2013-14, and just the second to earn a pair of reds in his first campaign for the club after Darren Fletcher (2003-04).

He will now miss their next four matches – at the end of that run, he will have been suspended for eight games this year alone.

 

While some United fans might have had the perception this was always going to be the risk that came with signing a player like Casemiro, he had never been shown a straight red in his entire senior career before moving to Old Trafford.

Of course, for Southampton, Casemiro's dismissal proved helpful. While they could not get the win they might feel they deserved, Saints managed to keep a third clean sheet in four games under Ruben Selles – that is one more than in their previous 34 league games.

Fulham 0-3 Arsenal: Trossard inspirational as Gunners continue to deal out capital punishment

Arsenal's comprehensive win at Craven Cottage was their fifth successive away London derby win without conceding a goal.

That is a feat no club has managed previously in the Premier League.

Trossard played a vital role with a unique feat of his own, setting up all three of Arsenal's goals, with each one coming in the first half.

Thus, the Belgian became the first player to ever tally a hat-trick of assists in the first half of a Premier League away game.

 

Trossard's second was a looping cross that found Gabriel Martinelli for a close-range header, the Brazilian nodding in his 23rd top-flight goal for the club.

He is now only one away from surpassing Nicolas Anelka as the foreign player with the most Premier League strikes for the club before turning 22.

That first-half flurry keeps the Gunners on track in the title race, five points clear of Manchester City in second.

West Ham 1-1 Aston Villa: Watkins in a groove

Unai Emery has certainly managed to steady the ship at Aston Villa since replacing Steven Gerrard in the dugout, and the form of Watkins has been among the most notable improvements.

The striker netted again on Sunday, opening the scoring at London Stadium as he headed in from Alex Moreno's cross.

Since the World Cup, only Marcus Rashford (10), Erling Haaland (10) and Harry Kane (eight) have scored more Premier League goals than Watkins (seven).

That includes goals in each of his past four Premier League away games, which is the longest such scoring run by a Villa player since Dwight Yorke between March and May 1998 (also four).

 

Unfortunately for Villa, West Ham levelled just nine minutes later through Said Benrahma, who was lively throughout.

His penalty continued his 100 per cent record from the spot in English league football, with that his third from three for West Ham having also converted 4/4 at Brentford.

Over the course of the 90 minutes, Benrahma had 10 shots, which is the joint-most on record (since the 2003-04 season) for a West Ham player in a single Premier League game.

He could not single-handedly inspire a turnaround, however.

Newcastle United 2-1 Wolves: Almiron comes up trumps yet again

Almiron has stepped up this season, becoming a key player for Newcastle and a regular source of goals.

A recent dip in form saw him dropped from the starting XI for the visit of Wolves on Sunday, but he responded well.

 

Eleven minutes after his second-half introduction, he found space in the right side of the box and saw a deflected effort beat Jose Sa following Joe Willock's well-timed pass.

That was his fourth winning goal of the season – the most among Newcastle players – and his 11th goal in total in the Premier League, which is four than his previous four campaigns combined.

 

Earlier, Hwang Hee-chan had equalised just 57 seconds after coming off the bench, making it the second-fastest substitute goal of the season.

But the day belonged to Almiron as Newcastle ended a five-match winless streak.

Harry Kane has rallied his Tottenham team-mates, calling on them to make the most of the rest of the Premier League season as they aim for the top four.

Spurs slipped to a defeat against Wolves on Saturday, with Adama Traore's late strike snatching a 1-0 victory for the hosts at Molineux.

It saw Tottenham, in what is set to be their final game under temporary boss Cristian Stellini before Antonio Conte returns from his enforced lay-off, fail to build on the four-point cushion over fifth-place Newcastle United, who lost 2-0 at Manchester City.

Coupled with a shock FA Cup exit to Championship side Sheffield United on Wednesday, Kane acknowledged it has been a tough spell, but the England captain backed his team-mates to turn Spurs' fortunes around.

"It's been tough, a really disappointing week," he said. "All we can do is look forward now. We have 12 or 13 games now to push for that top-four place.

"The games come around quick, and we have to look to the next one. If we had won today, we would've been in a good spot with the last third of the season to play.

"[But] there's still going to be points dropped, and we need to concentrate on ourselves and finish as strong as possible."

Stellini, meanwhile, has overseen a tepid end to his interim time at the helm, and he knows Spurs must be at their best in order to translate their performances into crucial results.

"It was a good performance. We started well in the game," Stellini told Sky Sports. "We had chances to score and we could've killed the game. 

"It was a tough game like we expected but we were ready to challenge, to fight, to play a great game. We missed some chances in the first half and maybe it could've been a bit different."

Of the tussle for Champions League qualification, Stellini added: "It will be a tough race. We are not alone with Newcastle, other teams will arrive. We have to be ready to play these type of games again.

"Maybe we have to have more of the killer instinct, to kill the game when you have the possibility to do [so]. In the first half, it was really under control, and we needed to kill it."

Adama Traore's late strike saw Tottenham stunned by Wolves in the Premier League on Saturday, as the north London side slipped to a 1-0 defeat at Molineux.

The Spain international netted in the 82nd minute, crashing his finish in off the crossbar after Fraser Forster had parried Raul Jimenez's shot towards him.

Traore's goal condemned the visitors to back-to-back defeats under temporary boss Cristian Stellini, after their shock FA Cup exit to Sheffield United on Wednesday.

But while Antonio Conte will return to a side in disarray, opposite number Julen Lopetegui will delight in a big result that provides a major boost to his team's top-flight survival bid. 

 

Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappe and Neymar were a joy to play alongside but Pablo Sarabia nevertheless wanted to leave Paris Saint-Germain.

Sarabia swapped hopes of a Ligue 1 title and push for Champions League glory with PSG for a relegation battle in the Premier League with Wolves in January.

The Spain international reunited with Julen Lopetegui, who he had previously worked under in La Roja's under-21s team.

Lopetegui has lifted Wolves off the bottom of the table and out of the relegation zone, though ahead of Saturday's meeting with Tottenham they have failed to win their last three games.

Sarabia is enjoying life in England, however, despite no longer playing alongside three of the world's best players.

In an interview with The Telegraph, the 30-year-old said: "It was amazing to play with Messi, Mbappe and Neymar.

"It was a very good experience, but for me the most crucial thing is to feel important in the team."

Sarabia also suggested the unity at Wolves is greater than that of PSG, adding: "I prefer to play in another team to feel that unity, to be part of it, to be a member of the team and of a family, rather than just an addition of individuals.

"I was not happy not to play. It's very difficult to play considering the level of PSG players, so I made the decision to come here. In my career I have been through a lot of difficult moments, but now I want to enjoy it.

"I feel that at this moment, I'm in the prime of my career."

Sarabia has scored once in six league appearances for Wolves, with five of those coming as starts.

He started only three Ligue 1 games for PSG this term prior to his January transfer, having spent last season on loan at Sporting CP, where he netted 21 goals.

Antonio Conte will return to Tottenham on Sunday ahead of the Champions League clash against Milan.

The Spurs head coach remained in Italy following the first-leg last month, a 1-0 defeat at San Siro, to recover from gallbladder surgery.

In his absence, Spurs secured back-to-back 2-0 victories in the Premier League against West Ham and Chelsea, resulting in Conte's nomination for the Manager of the Month award for February despite not being in the dugout.

However, Spurs also suffered a shock exit from the FA Cup at the hands of Sheffield United on Wednesday and require a turnaround in the second-leg against Milan at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium next week to qualify for the quarter-finals of the Champions League.

Conte will be back for that clash, as confirmed by his assistant Cristian Stellini in Friday's press conference ahead of the Premier League trip to Wolves.

"Antonio is fine, he cannot wait to come back. The medical department decided to leave Antonio's comeback until Sunday, after the match at Wolves," he told the club's website.

"Because that is one month after the surgery. That was the agreement from the doctor who did the surgery and our medical department."

Tottenham currently sit fourth in the top-flight, four points ahead of Newcastle United, though the Tyneside club have two games in hand.

Virgil van Dijk hailed "an important win" for Liverpool as they beat Wolves 2-0 at Anfield ahead of welcoming Manchester United on Sunday where he says they will "need a big atmosphere".

Van Dijk scored the opener as the Reds finally broke down their resolute opponents in the 73rd minute on Wednesday, heading in a Diogo Jota cross before Mohamed Salah made the points safe with a second four minutes later.

Liverpool move up to sixth in the table, while the Dutchman has now scored 20 goals in the Premier League, the most of any central defender in the competition since he joined Southampton from Celtic in 2015.

"An important win, so it's time to recover and focus on the next one," Van Dijk told Premier League Productions. "Of course [we had to be patient]. I think we see the games we played against them this season, they have been quite tough and today it wasn't any different so we had to be patient and wait for the moment."

Liverpool face an in-form United at home on Sunday, and Van Dijk is in no doubt as to how difficult the game will be, which is why they will need the fans' help.

"I think we need a big atmosphere on Sunday," he said. "I think today obviously it was quite nervous and hopefully on Sunday we can get everyone in their best – including us, because we obviously have to do the hard work on the pitch against an in-form Man United. So, we will recover now and we will be ready for Sunday of course."

Speaking at his post-match press conference, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp also looked forward to Sunday's game, saying: "I think Man United is the team in form at the moment, maybe together with Arsenal and [Manchester] City are [also] doing well.

"The teams up there are all in a pretty good moment and I didn’t see yet the line-up [for United’s FA Cup win over West Ham] but maybe they changed quite a few? That means some of them will be a bit fresher than us, but it's a home game and it's Anfield.

"I thought Anfield proved a point tonight again, it was super, super-enjoyable. It felt like a proper unit, we were all together – I loved that. That's what we need again on Sunday, but of course it will be difficult.

"Again, if you face United at the weekend whichever result you've had before, either way you have to strike back or whatever, but now we have to use it for our general situation. We have to build on the performance and on the result – and we try everything to do exactly that."

Klopp was also pleased with the performance of Van Dijk, as well as the rest of his team's defensive showing as they recorded a fourth clean sheet in a row in the league.

"Yeah, we all need that [performance] and [Van Dijk] needs that as well and it's obviously a really good one, in a tough game for defenders," Klopp said. "I thought we performed tonight, we played a really good game in general.

"But I really think the centre-halves and Fabinho together, how they covered that area, how they denied the counter-attacks, how they defended into midfield, which is very important against a team who play with one striker. I thought they did really well."

Jurgen Klopp was pleased to see Liverpool recover from their "knock" against Real Madrid as they beat Wolves 2-0 at Anfield.

The Reds blew a two-goal lead at home to lose 5-2 against the Spanish giants in their Champions League last-16 first leg last week, but kept their fourth clean sheet in four Premier League games on Wednesday.

Second-half goals from Virgil van Dijk and Mohamed Salah secured three points that send Liverpool up to sixth in the table, and six points off the top four.

Liverpool have kept a clean sheet in four or more consecutive games in the Premier League for the first time since February-April last year (five).

"We knew it would be a difficult game, we controlled the game in a lot of periods," Klopp told BBC Sport after the victory. "There were situations rather than chances, we got in a rush in these moments. We got our rhythm back in the second half, we just had to be solid defensively and keep making chances.

"In general we did defensively well tonight, Diogo [Jota] in the 10 was really important, the midfield was together, defensively we had a high line and won decisive challenges. Ali [Alisson] didn't have spectacular saves to make which was good.

"We had a knock against Real Madrid, we played a really good first half then we started the second really bad. We looked a lot more stable today, we have to carry that on."

It could have been a frustrating night for Liverpool, who were kept at bay for large periods by Wolves, and Darwin Nunez was denied the opener just after the hour when referee Paul Tierney reviewed the goal and decided Diogo Jota had committed a foul in the build-up.

"For the boys on the pitch it was a clear goal, but you have to stay focused. We forced the first goal and the second was wonderful," Klopp said.

Wolves boss Julen Lopetegui conceded that the hosts deserved to win, saying he was pleased with his team's first-half efforts but acknowledged they had been unable to keep it up in the second.

"Maybe we could have disrupted their rhythm," he told Premier League Productions. "We weren't able to do much damage in the space. We put Adama [Traore] on but didn't find the moment, they were aggressive on the press. In the first half we overcome some moments on this press, in the second half no.

"When you have this type of match, you have to keep the ball and be calm. In the first half we did this, we matched them, but in the second we did not have these chances."

Liverpool got the better of Wolves on a wet night at Anfield, eventually beating their familiar opponent 2-0 thanks to second-half goals from Virgil van Dijk and Mohamed Salah.

It was the fourth meeting between the two teams in the last two months, having also faced off twice in the FA Cup third round as well as at Molineux in the Premier League.

That familiarity could explain why it was such a tight contest for the first three-quarters, with neither team able to create much of note before Van Dijk's header 17 minutes from time.

Salah gave his team some breathing space four minutes later as Liverpool moved up to sixth in the table as they hunt down the top four and Champions League qualification.

It was the visitors who had the first chance of note, with Joao Moutinho forcing Alisson into an early save down to his right with an effort from just inside the box.

An organised Wolves kept Liverpool at bay for much of the first half, though Harvey Elliott should have given the hosts the lead in the 40th minute.

Elliott headed wide from close range after Darwin Nunez had cut the ball back from the left, before Jose Sa denied him again just before the break after Nunez had chested the ball to him on the edge of the box.

Liverpool thought they had taken the lead just after the hour when an incisive run from Diogo Jota allowed Nunez a chance to hammer the loose ball into the net, but referee Paul Tierney decided Jota had fouled a Wolves defender after being sent to the monitor by the VAR.

Jurgen Klopp's men were ahead in the 73rd minute though when Van Dijk directed a Trent Alexander-Arnold free-kick towards goal off his shoulder, with Sa saving well to his right, only for Jota to pull it back for the Dutch defender to head in.

It was two shortly after as a one-two between Kostas Tsimikas and substitute Cody Gakpo allowed the Greek left-back to race forward and provide Salah with a simple tap in and Liverpool with three valuable points.

Jurgen Klopp has told his Liverpool stars to "squeeze everything" they can out of this season as they head into a rematch with the Wolves team who left them at their lowest ebb.

A 3-0 thumping at Molineux on February 4 followed a month that contained two defeats to Brighton and Hove Albion and a loss at Brentford, with Liverpool leaving the West Midlands in a state of disarray.

Results have picked up since from that low point, with Liverpool beating Everton and Newcastle United in the Premier League and drawing at Crystal Palace. They have kept three successive clean sheets for the first time in the domestic league, but the elephant in the room is the 5-2 stuffing Liverpool suffered at the hands of Real Madrid amid that improvement.

As it stands, Liverpool are up to seventh in the league, still in the hunt for a Champions League place with 45 points up for grabs before the season ends, and manager Klopp says this is "a super-important week".

With Wolves their visitors on Wednesday, and Manchester United coming to Anfield on Sunday, the chance is there for Liverpool to take big strides towards the top four.

Considering Liverpool came from mid-table to snatch fourth in the 2020-21 season, after winning eight of their last 10 games, Klopp knows it can be done.

"It helps because it was us and I don't have to tell them the story from another team," Klopp said on Tuesday. "History is not allowed to hinder you, but you cannot constantly rely on doing it again, so we have to make sure.

"I really see we have the right mindset, and we are ready to go, but now we have to do it as well because a game is different. You have an opponent who wants the points as well. We have to create, we have to attack, we have to defend, we have to protect. I know the boys can do that, so let's give it a try.

"We have to force it as well, but we have to play and enjoy what we are doing, that's really important. I really think we are ready. If there's a club that can do it, I really think it's us, because all the things we've achieved, we've achieved together.

"We have a future together. The immediate future, but there's a bigger picture as well. We will strike back in general, but now we have to make sure we really squeeze everything out of this season that we can squeeze out of this season.

"I don't know in this moment what it will be, but the obvious spots are not too far away from us, and we will see which one we can pick up, but there's no alternative to results, so we need results and for results we need performances."

Liverpool have won 18 of their last 20 home league games against Wolves, with the exceptions being 1-0 defeats in January 1984 and December 2010.

Klopp's Reds also beat Wolves after a replay in the FA Cup in January, so victory over the men in black and gold is not an alien concept, despite the recent woeful league result. Klopp labelled that 3-0 loss as "not a cool day" and urged Liverpool to take advantage of being at home this time.

Wolves will be looking to complete a league double over Liverpool for the first time since the 1950-51 season, and they need the points too, given they hover just above the relegation zone.

"It's a super-important week," Klopp said. "We can't ignore that and why would I? We have two home games.

"I would love to give the season a little push this week. I know we all understand, so we have to give a proper, proper, proper go against a team we played more often than any other team this season.

"We know a lot about each other. We know it will not be easy, so we have to make sure we are ready. I know Anfield will be, and we have to do our part."

Kevin De Bruyne served up a reminder of his match-winning brilliance as Manchester City usurped Arsenal at the top of the Premier League, so Nottingham Forest will be on high alert.

City go to Forest on Saturday, looking to stay at the summit, and their Belgian playmaker is set to be a key figure once more, and potentially a big points winner when it comes to fantasy leagues.

In an unlikely top-seven battle, Brighton and Hove Albion will look to in-form left-back Pervis Estupinan to contribute at both ends of the pitch against Fulham, while Wolves and Brentford will be hoping for big contributions from Ruben Neves and Ivan Toney as they tackle Bournemouth and Crystal Palace respectively.

Stats Perform, using Opta data, has chosen these four players for your selection consideration ahead of the weekend games.

Pervis Estupinan (Brighton v Fulham)

With three assists in his last three Premier League appearances, including last time out against Palace, Ecuadorian Estupinan is making a huge impact for the Seagulls.

Only three defenders have provided more assists than him in the competition this season, while Estupinan is one of only four such players to create at least 20 chances from open play (21).

Head coach Roberto De Zerbi has welcomed the efforts of the former Villarreal player, saying: "He's very important in build-up, but he's becoming a complete player now."

Kevin De Bruyne (Nottingham Forest v Manchester City)

Dropped to the bench at Tottenham recently, De Bruyne has responded by showing his value to City.

After scoring the opener, De Bruyne assisted for Erling Haaland's clincher in the 3-1 win at Arsenal, meaning the Belgian has been involved in 16 Premier League goals this season (4 goals, 12 assists), bettered by only three players.

Since the start of the 2019-20 season, only Liverpool's Mohamed Salah (14) has both scored and assisted in more games in the competition than De Bruyne (13).

Forest beware: De Bruyne has assisted Haaland six times in the Premier League this season, more than any other player has assisted another.

Ruben Neves (Wolves v Bournemouth)

Wolves midfielder Neves has scored five goals in this Premier League season, equalling his best tally from the 2020-21 campaign.

Four of those five goals have come at Molineux, including in his last such appearance against Liverpool, so he will fancy his prospects of adding to that haul and setting an outright personal best for goals when second-bottom Bournemouth visit.

He is Wolves' joint top scorer in the league, matching Daniel Podence's total, and Neves brings abundant creativity too.

Ivan Toney (Brentford v Crystal Palace)

The visit of Palace should bring the best out of Toney, given he has scored in his last three London derby appearances (against Arsenal, West Ham and Tottenham), helping Brentford to a healthy five points.

Only Haaland (30) and Harry Kane (18) have been involved in more Premier League goals this season than Toney (17 – 14 goals, 3 assists).

Another factor in his favour is that among players with 30-plus shots this term, only Haaland (33.3 per cent) has a better shot conversion rate than him (23.7 per cent).

Arsenal dropped points in the title race on a busy Saturday in the Premier League, denied by an Ivan Toney equaliser as Brentford drew 1-1 at Emirates Stadium.

Mikel Arteta's had a better day of it than north London rivals Tottenham, though, as Spurs were thrashed 4-1 at Leicester City, despite taking an early lead.

Elsewhere, Chelsea were denied a win at West Ham after Emerson Palmieri equalised Joao Felix's first goal of his loan spell from Atletico Madrid.

Southampton's woes continued as they were beaten 2-1 at home against Wolves, despite taking the lead and having a man advantage for over an hour after Mario Lemina was sent off for the visitors.

Newcastle United's run of draws continued as they were held 1-1 at Bournemouth, while Crystal Palace and Brighton and Hove Albion also could not be separated, and Fulham beat Nottingham Forest 2-0 at Craven Cottage.

Here, Stats Perform looks at Saturday's biggest games, with the guidance of Opta data.

West Ham 1-1 Chelsea: Blues struggle to handle Hammers

Graham Potter's Chelsea were left frustrated after a late claim for handball was denied at London Stadium, and this draw was the first in nine Premier League encounters between West Ham and Chelsea since a 0-0 in September 2018.

The Blues have drawn three consecutive Premier League matches for the first time since February 2012, and remarkably, there were no shots on target in the second half from either side, being just the second Premier League match where that has occurred this season after Southampton v Nottingham Forest in January.

Emerson became the first former Chelsea player to score his first Premier League goal for a club against the Blues since Frank Lampard for Manchester City in September 2014.

On his return from suspension, Joao Felix became the 12th different player to score for Chelsea in the Premier League this season, with no side having had more in 2022-23 (excluding own goals), which perhaps is not a surprise when you consider the number of players they now have.

Arsenal 1-1 Brentford: Toney time dents Gunners' title push

It seemed like business as usual when Leandro Trossard gave the hosts the lead, but this ended up being the first time Arsenal had failed to win a Premier League home game in which they scored first since January 2022. They had won 10 in a row at Emirates Stadium when opening the scoring before this game.

Brentford showed great resilience and have now scored 15 goals from set-pieces in the Premier League this season, with no side netting more (including penalties).

That could also be something for Arsenal to work on, as each of the last three Premier League goals the league leaders have conceded have come from headers, despite not conceding any beforehand this season.

Only Harry Kane (nine) has found the net away from home more often in the Premier League this season than Brentford striker Toney (seven), whose equaliser broke Gunners hearts.

Leicester City 4-1 Tottenham: Lloris-less Spurs hammered by Foxes

A high-scoring game was hardly a shock at King Power Stadium. There have been 128 goals scored in 34 Premier League matches between Leicester and Tottenham, with the average of 3.8 per game the highest such ratio among fixtures to be played more than 20 times in the competition.

Spurs, who were without injured goalkeeper Hugo Lloris, have lost two of their last three away games in the Premier League (W1), conceding four goals in each defeat, having only lost two of their previous 14 such games beforehand (W7 D5). The other recent heavy loss was 4-2 at Manchester City.

Despite having a disappointing campaign so far, Leicester here became the first team in Premier League history to score three first-half goals in back-to-back matches when conceding first in each game, having also done so at Aston Villa last time out.

Leicester's James Maddison, who was linked with a move to Antonio Conte's Spurs this week, scored and had an assist. Maddison has been directly involved in 11 goals in his last 10 Premier League starts (seven goals, four assists), scoring in each of his last three league appearances against Spurs.

Southampton 1-2 Wolves: Jones under pressure as Saints lose to 10 men

Head coach Nathan Jones is not the first Jones to struggle at Southampton. Saints have lost five consecutive Premier League home games for the first time since April-August 1998, when they were under the leadership of Dave Jones.

Wolves fought from a goal and a man down to win against their favourite Premier League opposition, having won each of their last five meetings, the first time they have ever been victorious in five consecutive games against a specific opponent in the competition.

It is clear where a big problem lies for Saints, having only kept one clean sheet in their last 28 Premier League matches (1-0 v Bournemouth in October).

Jan Bednarek found his own net, again, and has now scored four own goals as a Southampton player in the Premier League; the joint-most of any player for the club in the competition, along with Jos Hooiveld.

The fixtures are coming thick and fast on multiple fronts for many Premier League teams as European football returns, meaning plenty of tinkering from managers between games.

Add into the mix an array of January signings being eased into the sides, selecting a team of guaranteed starters is becoming increasingly difficult. 

But fear not as Stats Perform, using Opta data, has picked out four players who not only look certain to start this weekend but – crucially – also earn plenty of points.

Keylor Navas (Fulham v Nottingham Forest)

Paris Saint-Germain loanee Navas needed no time at all to settle in at Nottingham Forest as he kept a clean sheet on his debut in last week's 1-0 win over Leeds United.

The Costa Rica international made four saves against Leeds – only Hugo Lloris and David Raya (both five) made more while keeping a clean sheet in the last round of games.

Forest have now kept four clean sheets in their past six league matches, while opponents Fulham have failed to score in any of their past three top-flight outings.

Craig Dawson (Southampton v Wolves)

Dawson is another who made a fast start to life at a new club, with the centre-back scoring and keeping a clean sheet on his debut against Liverpool in a 3-0 win for Wolves.

That was Dawson's 20th Premier League goal – always a handy asset for a defender – including at least one in each of his eight top-flight seasons.

Wolves will be hopeful of building on a return of two shutouts in their past three league games when they face bottom side Southampton, who are averaging 0.8 goals per game.

Harvey Barnes (Leicester City v Tottenham)

Leicester midfielder Barnes has scored one and assisted another in his past two Premier League outings, taking his tally to seven goals for the campaign.

The one-cap England international is only two goals short of matching his best tally in a single season in the competition, set in 2020-21 with nine.

Having found their scoring touch with six goals in their past two league games, Leicester appear good value to net against Tottenham, who will have back-up Fraser Forster between the posts.

Riyad Mahrez (Manchester City v Aston Villa, and Arsenal v Manchester City)

Whether he starts both games remains to be seen, but the fact City have two league matches in the next week means you have double the chance to score points with Mahrez.

He was unable to make a difference in the loss to Spurs, though he has still been involved in six goals in his past six league games for City (three goals, three assists).

Only Marcus Rashford (eight) and Erling Haaland (seven) have been involved in more Premier League goals since the World Cup than the City winger.

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