It was the Premier League weekend that saw Liverpool drop points for the first time this season against bitter rivals Manchester United.
Sportsmail’s ADAM SHERGOLD takes a look at 10 things we learned from the season’s ninth round of Premier League fixtures.
‘Three-0’ Walcott has still got it
Everton’s Theo Walcott may now officially be ‘Three-0 Walcott’ (courtesy of Peep Show’s Jeremy Usborne, who presumably became a millionaire back on March 16) but the winger can clearly still cut it in his fourth decade.
Walcott was excellent as Everton claimed a much-needed victory on Saturday, their first in five Premier League matches dating back to September 1.
Theo Walcott impressed on only his second Everton start of the season against West Ham
He was desperately unlucky not to get on the scoresheet from his seven shots during the game at Goodison Park, including a thunderous second-half effort that hit the crossbar.
But Walcott’s drive on what was only his second start of the season – his other, against Man City last month, saw him injured after only seven minutes – has bought under-fire manager Marco Silva a bit of breathing space.
One suspects Walcott will be in Silva’s team when Everton travel to Brighton on Saturday.
Everton manager Marco Silva celebrates as Bernard scores their first goal in Saturday
Will Grealish get his England chance?
Aston Villa fans have been saying this for a long time – even in the Championship last season – but perhaps Jack Grealish does deserve an England chance.
Their captain marvel was outstanding in Villa’s 2-1 home win over Brighton on Saturday, scoring their equaliser having been on the receiving end of Aaron Mooy’s second bookable offence a few minutes earlier.
Grealish then released Matt Targett for a 94th-minute winner that ensured Villa didn’t waste a golden opportunity playing against 10 men for 55 minutes.
England manager Gareth Southgate watches Aston Villa vs Brighton on Saturday afternoon
Jack Grealish took his chance to impress Southgate, scoring and setting up Villa’s winner
If only in the interests of fairness and thoroughness, Gareth Southgate, who was at Villa Park on Saturday, should maybe include Grealish in his England squad for next month’s Euro 2020 qualifiers against Montenegro and Kosovo.
With England likely to secure their qualification in the former, surely Grealish can get a few minutes for an England debut in the second?
Fraser is getting frustrated at Bournemouth
It was about 12 months ago that Ryan Fraser was at the peak of his powers for Bournemouth, creating goals for fun as the Cherries sat in the top six of the Premier League.
The Scot’s returns this season haven’t been as impressive and Fraser’s 100th Premier League appearance for the club was a damp squib as they were held goalless by a Norwich side fielding two midfielders at the back.
But Fraser’s comments afterwards strongly hinted at lingering frustration as he revealed manager Eddie Howe had specifically stopped his players from delivering the ball from wide area after 16 in the first-half.
Ryan Fraser wasn’t impressed after Eddie Howe instructed Bournemouth not to cross the ball
‘When you get told not to cross the ball, as a winger, it’s a little bit hard,’ Fraser said. ‘So I felt like in the first-half I affected the game more than I did in the second-half.’
His comments aren’t likely to go down well with Howe, who often plays Fraser in what the player perceives to be his weaker position on the right as opposed to the left.
Chelsea can win ugly under Lampard
There have been some truly impressive, free-flowing wins by Frank Lampard’s Chelsea this season – notably away at Wolves and Southampton.
But the Blues manager will have found Saturday’s hard-fought 1-0 win over Newcastle equally, if not more, satisfactory.
Frank Lampard gives match-winner Marcos Alonso a hug after Saturday’s win over Newcastle
Not only did it prove Chelsea can keep a clean sheet – this was only the second of his tenure in all competitions – but it proved they can win ugly and when not at their best.
They didn’t look themselves in the first-half but improved vastly after the break and finally gained their reward when Marcos Alonso drilled home the winner.
And, almost by stealth, that was a fifth straight victory for Lampard’s men in all competitions and they’re up into the Premier League top four.
Vichai would be proud of Leicester’s progress
It would have been easy for the Srivaddhanaprabha family to walk away from Leicester City following the tragic helicopter crash that killed owner Vichai on October 27 last year.
Instead, Vichai’s son Aiyawatt, known as ‘Top’, pledged to continue his father’s legacy and the club continues to make progress.
‘Top’ not only made the right call in appointing Brendan Rodgers as manager in February having dispensed of Claude Puel, but also backed the manager in the transfer market over the summer.
Leicester defeated Burnley 2-1 on Saturday having honoured Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha
And while a repeat of their astonishing 2016 Premier League title triumph isn’t likely, there’s no reason why Leicester can’t finish this season in the top four.
Saturday’s battling win over Burnley, on an emotional day at the King Power Stadium, was secured through goals by Jamie Vardy and Youri Tielemans.
Spurs need the real Dele Alli back
Dele Alli is only 23 but you get the distinct impression plenty of people are ready to write off his career already.
An injury-plagued campaign in 2018-19 was also marked by poor form and further setbacks at the start of his campaign led to Dele losing his England place.
Memories of Dele being ranked among the finest midfield talents in Europe already seem distant but his performance on Saturday was one of precious few bright points in Spurs’ lacklustre 1-1 draw with Watford.
Dele Alli scores Tottenham’s crucial equaliser in their 1-1 draw against Watford on Saturday
He scored an absolutely crucial late equaliser to spare Tottenham the embarrassment of defeat and Dele now needs to use that as a springboard for the remainder of the season.
Spurs definitely need him to restore not only a bit of swagger, but his in-built aggressive streak, to his play.
VAR could be Southampton’s player of the season
Southampton had a distinct style when managed by Mauricio Pochettino and Ronald Koeman, and there are signs that Ralph Hassenhuttl is trying to stamp his own mark on the team.
They lined up in a 3-4-2-1 at Wolves on Saturday, the fourth time they’ve fielded three at the back this season, and they just about succeeded in stopping the likes of Adama Traore and Raul Jimenez in a 1-1 draw at Molineux.
VAR came to Southampton’s rescue twice in their 1-1 draw at Wolves on Saturday afternoon
But not before seeing Wolves have two goals disallowed by the Video Assistant Referee.
Seven goals against the Saints have now been ruled out by the VAR this season and they’d certainly been in the relegation zone without it.
Gabriel Jesus’s stats are insane
Why don’t we talk about Gabriel Jesus in the same breath as Kylian Mbappe as the best young striker in world football?
The Brazilian, 22, scored his 50th goal for Manchester City in their 2-0 win at Crystal Palace on Saturday night.
That has come in 108 appearances for the club since his arrival in January 2017. Perhaps a better stat is that Jesus has been directly involved in 58 goals in 64 starts for City in all competitions.
Gabriel Jesus scored his 50th Manchester City goal in their 2-0 win at Crystal Palace
They’re certainly impressive returns and remember that he has also been affected by a couple of injury setbacks in that time.
Alarmingly for the remainder of the Premier League, City won’t be short of firepower for quite some years to come.
Man United urgently need to improve their game management
Given that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is trying to hark back to Manchester United’s Sir Alex Ferguson glory years in so many ways, here’s one thing they really need to work on.
You’d hardly ever see a Ferguson team chuck away a lead, especially at Old Trafford, and it was even a trend continued by his successors.
Adam Lallana sneaks in behind the Man United defence to score Liverpool’s equaliser
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side have chucked away eight points from winning positions
In 282 home Premier League games prior to Sunday’s 1-1 draw with Liverpool, United had never lost when ahead at half-time. Indeed they’d gone on to win 265 of them.
Not so on Sunday as Adam Lallana’s late equaliser meant Solskjaer’s team have now chucked away eight points from winning positions in nine league games this season.
Had they showed more effective game management to get themselves over the line, Solskjaer’s side would be sitting third in the table as opposed to 13th.
Same old problems for Arsenal
As The Who sang in Won’t Get Fooled Again, ‘meet the new boss, same as the old boss.’
The lyric came to mind watching Arsenal’s abject performance in losing 1-0 to Sheffield United on Monday night, 90 minutes that left you wondering whether Unai Emery really is an upgrade on Arsene Wenger.
Arsenal fans can rightly question whether Unai Emery has been an upgrade on Arsene Wenger
A distinct lack of cohesion, passive when not in possession, unimaginative when in possession, devoid of leadership and lacking the mentality needed to win in a northern town on a midweek evening.
Just two clean sheets in their last 24 matches away from home plus four defeats in their last seven away encounters with newly-promoted teams says it all really.
Has anything changed in the last year-and-a-bit?