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Ten things to remember from the Premier League season

Alejandro Garnacho scores one of the great Premier League goals with his overhead scissors kick against Everton in November

It has been another astonishing campaign in the Premier League where unfortunately VAR has dominated – and there have also been some Very Astonishing Reactions. And maybe the competition’s greatest ever goal.

Here are 10 memorable moments in what has been a season to remember for good and bad – and also for a life and death moment that places everything into perspective.

1. Liverpool’s VAR goal v Tottenham 

Of all the VAR controversies this season nothing matches the horrendous decision to rule out Luis Diaz’s goal last September for offside. The audio alone – “that’s wrong that, Daz” – will haunt those involved and continues to embarrass the Premier League and the PGMOL.

2. Alejandro Garnacho’s overhead kick against Everton

The moment the ball hit the net at Goodison Park, it led to the debate: was it the greatest overhead kick – or even the greatest goal – ever scored in the Premier League? Those are huge claims but the 19-year-old’s strike was an incredible display of skill and athleticism. It should be goal of the season.

3. Tottenham 1 Chelsea 4

The most bonkers game of the season. Tottenham, though reduced to nine men, continued to play an apparently suicidal high defensive line but looked like they had actually salvaged a point only for Eric Dier’s volley to be ruled out for a tight offside – and then they conceded twice in injury time as Nicolas Jackson completed a hat-trick. Spurs were then cheered off.

4. Arteta’s rant, Arsenal’s statement and no punishment

The Arsenal manager lost it after Anthony Gordon’s winning goal for Newcastle in November was allowed to stand, labelling it a “disgrace” and adding: “I feel sick”. Arsenal were criticised for doubling down with a statement backing their manager, while, remarkably, Mikel Arteta went unpunished because a Football Association commission accepted the argument that “disgrace” has a different, less accusatory meaning in Spanish (even though Arteta used English).

5. Villa qualify for Champions League

Unai Emery is the manager of the season. Carrying on his brilliant work, he has transformed Villa and taken them into the Champions League for the first time and the European Cup for the first time since 1983. It was summed up by their exhilarating 1-0 win over Manchester City in December when they outplayed the champions. City have not lost in the league since.

6. Ten Hag in the rain

Nothing seemed to sum up the mood at Manchester United more than their manager being drenched to the skin in his linen suit – the one Erik ten Hag wore on the opening day of the season when optimism was in the air – following the recent 1-0 defeat at home to Arsenal. With the heavens opening, Old Trafford’s roof leaked and the stairwells flooded. It felt symbolic.

Erik ten Hag, Manager of Manchester United, leaves the field in the rain following defeat to Arsenal during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Arsenal FC at Old Trafford on May 1
Erik ten Hag, Manager of Manchester United, leaves the field in the rain following defeat to Arsenal during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Arsenal FC at Old Trafford on May 1 - Stu Forster/Getty Images

7. Forest’s extraordinary tweet

Wild statements, allegations and rants have been a theme of the season and they reached a high – or low – point with Nottingham Forest’s furious tweet after the defeat by Everton in which they complained about the VAR Stuart Attwell being “a Luton fan”. “NFFC will now consider its options,” the club said. We are still waiting.

8. Klopp ‘running out of energy’

Nobody – and that means nobody – predicted that Jurgen Klopp was set to leave Liverpool. So when the clip was dropped by the club of their manager looking into the camera to explain he was going at the end of the season, it was a bombshell. “I can understand that it’s a shock,” Klopp said.

9. Lockyer’s collapse and recovery

Undoubtedly the most harrowing moment was Tom Lockyer collapsing on the pitch during Luton Town’s match against Bournemouth in December. The 29-year-old defender was “technically dead” for two minutes and 40 seconds after suffering a cardiac arrest but was revived. He has since had an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator fitted, which can instantly restart his heart.

10. Welch breaks new ground

The season has, unfortunately, been dominated by VAR and officials but a positive story was Rebecca Welch becoming the first woman to referee a Premier League game – Burnley’s 2-0 win at Fulham. “It’s a milestone moment and may there be many more,” Burnley manager Vincent Kompany said. Welch will end the season officiating the Women’s Champions League final.

Referee Rebecca Welch (centre) before the Premier League match. In a season of much-debated decisions by officials, Rebecca Welch made history just before Christmas when she became the first female Premier League referee after she took charge of Burnley's 2-0 win at Fulham. Issue date: Friday May 17, 2024. PA Photo. See PA
Referee Rebecca Welch (centre) before the Premier League match. In a season of much-debated decisions by officials, Rebecca Welch made history just before Christmas when she became the first female Premier League referee after she took charge of Burnley's 2-0 win at Fulham. Issue date: Friday May 17, 2024. PA Photo. See PA - PA /Bradley Collyer

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