Football: Arsenal go top of English Premier League with win at Brighton, Man City stay third with victory over Crystal Palace

Arsenal sent out a huge statement in the gripping English Premier League title race with a 3-0 rout of Brighton to go top and stay ahead of Manchester City, who won 4-2 win at Crystal Palace.  

Liverpool, who had begun the day on top of the table, will now be under pressure to respond when they face Manchester United at Old Trafford on Sunday.  

Goals by Bukayo Saka, Kai Havertz and Leandro Trossard ensured Arsenal made it 10 wins from their last 11 EPL games with only last weekend's 0-0 draw at City costing them points. Mikel Arteta's side, bidding to deliver a first English title since the 2003-04 season, have 71 points from 31 games with Liverpool, who have a game in hand, on 70. Reigning champions City also have 70 points.  

In such a tight tussle Arsenal's far superior goal difference of 51 could prove crucial.  

A 3-0 home defeat against Brighton in May last season ended any realistic title hopes Arsenal had, but they have made a massive improvement since. 


From the moment Saka stroked home a penalty in the 33rd minute they looked unshakeable, and second-half goals by Havertz and former Brighton man Trossard had the away fans singing loudly in the south coast rain.  

"Really happy, a big performance," Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta told Sky Sports. "Brighton hadn't lost at home since August and that says everything really. Today we were outstanding and needed that level today."  

Arsenal have not conceded a goal in their last five away league games, while scoring 20 goals in the process, and City and Liverpool will know that Arteta's team are not going away.  

Earlier at Selhurst Park, Manchester City suffered an early shock as they fell behind to a goal by Crystal Palace striker Jean-Philippe Mateta.  

But Kevin De Bruyne struck twice with Rico Lewis and Erling Haaland also on target as City cruised home.  

Odsonne Edouard grabbed a late consolation for Palace.  

"It's just like every other title race. We have to win every game," Lewis said after the win. "There's three teams in it and we have to be the strongest team."  

De Bruyne, who along with Haaland was rested for Wednesday's 4-1 win over Aston Villa, produced a vintage display as he clocked up his 100th goal for the club.  

Kevin De Bruyne celebrates with Jack Grealish.
Kevin De Bruyne celebrates with Jack Grealish. Photo credit: Getty Images

"Without him, we would not be able to win this. You talk about managers but players like Kevin make this game easy," Pep Guardiola, whose side is seeking a fourth successive Premier League title, said.  

"He has been one of the best players in City's history."  

Aston Villa dropped points in the battle for fourth place as they drew 3-3 at home to Brentford while Luton Town secured a massive three points in their bid to avoid relegation as they hit back to win 2-1 at Bournemouth.  

Carlton Morris struck the late decider as third-from-bottom Luton claimed their first win since January to move to 25 points, the same as 17th-placed Nottingham Forest.  

Everton also claimed a vital victory as they won 1-0 against 19th-placed Burnley, Dominic Calvert-Lewin profiting from a bad error by Burnley goalkeeper Arijanet Muric.  

Newcastle United boosted their hopes of qualifying for Europe as they won 1-0 at Fulham, while West Ham United claimed a 2-1 win at Wolverhampton Wanderers to stay seventh.