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The best Premier League games of the 2023-24 season

:Headline: The best Premier League games of the 2023-24 season:
Sports Mole picks out the best games of the 2023-24 Premier League season, including Bournemouth's historic comeback and Chelsea's seven-goal Manchester United thriller.
Sports Mole

A captivating 2023-24 Premier League season - one uninterrupted by COVID-19 or once-in-a-lifetime winter World Cup breaks - will live long in the memory of football aficionados, for both the right and wrong reasons.

As officiating controversy - both inside and outside the VAR room - reared its ugly head most weekends, 20 top-flight hopefuls endeavoured to put on a magnificent show for the tens of thousands of supporters making their way through the turnstiles, and many succeeded at doing just that.

While there was inevitably the drab 0-0 draw, 1-0 win or other matches that are best consigned to the rear of the annals, goal-laden fixtures were commonplace throughout the campaign, from emphatic victories - such as Newcastle United's eight-goal Sheffield United annihilation - to engrossing high-scoring stalemates.

Here, Sports Mole counts down the best games of another absorbing Premier League season.



10. Manchester City 3-3 Tottenham Hotspur (December 3)

Traditionally one of Manchester City's bogey teams, Tottenham Hotspur fans may have had mixed feelings about their side labouring to a two-goal loss to Pep Guardiola's side in May due to the Arsenal-related title connotations, but the Lilywhites faithful erupted into raptures at the Etihad five months beforehand.

Going from hero to zero in the blink of an eye, Tottenham captain Son Heung-min put the ball in the back of both nets inside the opening 10 minutes, before Phil Foden and Giovani Lo Celso's strikes cancelled the other's out.

An 81st-minute Jack Grealish effort would ostensibly punch the Citizens' ticket to victory, but Dejan Kulusevski's aerial effort right at the end of normal time completed a six-goal spectacular, one which both sides emerged a point better off.

However, for those of a Sky Blues persuasion, the contest was marred by Simon Hooper pulling play back for a foul as Erling Haaland slipped Grealish through, leaving the Scandinavian sensation completely incandescent as he ranted and raved his way down the tunnel.



9. Liverpool 4-3 Fulham (December 3)

Both Liverpool and Fulham's backlines were giving away chances like Christmas presents in December's Anfield contest, where two Cottagers players were the two first names on the scoresheet; Bernd Leno's blushes were spared when ex-Liverpool winger Harry Wilson corrected his own goal.

An outrageous Alexis Mac Allister effort from range was then met with a Kenny Tete response on the stroke of half time, and with 80 minutes on the board, Bobby Decordova-Reid's header in front of the away end would presumably prove telling.

However, Wataru Endo notched a collector's item of a goal to get both teams back to square one again, and barely one moment later, a crisp Trent Alexander-Arnold strike found the bottom corner to complete one of several exceptional Reds comebacks this season.

A thought was spared for the unfortunate Joel Matip, though, as the Cameroonian suffered an ACL injury on what proved to be his final game for Liverpool, but what a closing match to be involved in for the adored defender.



8. Luton Town 3-4 Arsenal (December 5)

Just two days after Liverpool and Fulham's frenetic Anfield battle, Luton Town and Arsenal's Kenilworth Road scrap was equally littered with goals, drama, and - of course - a late, late winner for the North London boys.

Twice Mikel Arteta's charges took the lead through Brazilian duo Gabriel Martinelli and Gabriel Jesus, and twice Luton responded through Gabriel Osho and Elijah Adebayo before Ross Barkley's 57th-minute effort squirmed underneath David Raya's body and put Luton in the ascendancy.

The newly-promoted outfit were only celebrating their lead for all of three minutes, though, as Kai Havertz prodded home the game's sixth goal on the hour mark, before Declan Rice astonishingly found the bottom corner from a last-gasp free kick.

The ever-passionate Arteta would questionably land himself in the referee's book for "excessive celebrating" - thus ruling him out of their subsequent loss to Aston Villa - but that was a small price to pay on a special winter evening.



7. Aston Villa 3-3 Liverpool (May 13)

In what was Jurgen Klopp's last away game as Liverpool manager, the Champions League-bound Reds and Aston Villa did not fail to deliver, engaging in an enthralling six-goal thriller where a multitude of other strikes were disallowed.

High line vs. high line inevitably brought about countless offsides and aborted celebrations, but the travelling party were celebrating yet another early Villa Park goal in the second minute, when regular own-goal victim Emiliano Martinez flapped the ball into his own net for the third time in the Premier League.

Youri Tielemans would temporarily spare his goalkeeper's blushes, but Cody Gakpo and Jarell Quansah had launched Liverpool into a seemingly unassailable 3-1 advantage, a scoreline that was still present in the top left-hand corner heading into the final 10 minutes.

However, superstar sub Jhon Duran netted twice in a chaotic three-minute period to deny Klopp a victorious away farewell and inch Villa ever closer to Champions League qualification, a feat they achieved the very next night.



6. Newcastle United 4-3 West Ham United (March 30)

Villa's meteoric rise to Champions League participation has come at the expense of Newcastle, and the Magpies were on course for another devastating European setback when West Ham United came to town in March.

Alexander Isak's early penalty would surely be rendered meaningless by strikes from Michail Antonio, Mohammed Kudus and Jarrod Bowen, as David Moyes's men clung onto their 3-1 advantage heading into the final 15 minutes.

Another Isak spot kick would relight the Magpies fire, though, and the Swede's second 12-yard effort preceded a hero arc from injury-plagued winger Harvey Barnes, who came off the bench to level the scores in the 83rd minute and complete the exhilarating turnaround in the 90th.

A late red card for Barnes's fellow winger Anthony Gordon was a minor dampener on proceedings, but there was no silencing the St James' Park party.



5. Wolverhampton Wanderers 3-4 Manchester United (February 1)

Another seven-goal spectacular that will live long in Premier League folklore, Manchester United and Wolverhampton Wanderers opened the month of February with Molineux madness, sparked by Marcus Rashford's early opener in the fifth minute.

Rashford's strike immediately put him back in the good books after his Dublin night out indiscretion, and Rasmus Hojlund would double the Red Devils' lead in the 22nd minute before Pablo Sarabia managed to reduce the arrears from the spot.

A Scott McTominay goal 15 minutes from the end ostensibly rendered Sarabia's penalty meaningless, but to the bewilderement of all those inside the stadium, Max Kilman and Pedro Neto breached the leaky Man United backline to surely rescue a point for Wolves, right?

Wrong. Up stepped English wonderkid Kobbie Mainoo, who picked the ball up on the left, evaded a sea of gold shirts and curled home an exquisite 97th-minute strike to both win the day for Man United and win the February Goal of the Month award.



4. Newcastle United 4-4 Luton Town (March 2)

Another day of multiple-goal mayhem at St James' Park arrived in early March, when the Magpies and Luton shook hands on a slice of the spoils in an eight-strike extravaganza, the joint-highest scoring game of the Premier League season.

A pair of Sean Longstaff strikes arrived either side of an Osho effort, before Barkley, Carlton Morris and Adebayo incredibly turned the match on its head for the Hatters, who led 4-2 approaching the final quarter of the game.

However, an increasingly rare Kieran Trippier goal cut the deficit back down to one, before who else but Barnes - with the assistance of talented teenager Lewis Miley - completed another Newcastle fightback.

Both sides spurned late chances to seal an astouding 5-4 win in the dying embers, but the point felt like a more welcome one for a battling Luton than a defensively susceptible Newcastle.



3. Chelsea 4-4 Manchester City (November 12)

Diamonds are formed under pressure, and Chelsea's shiny new jewel Cole Palmer was totally unfazed when stepping up to take a last-minute penalty against the club that nurtured him, taught him his trade and then happily sold him on November 12.

Man City's visit to Stamford Bridge to tackle Mauricio Pochettino's Chelsea began with the customary Haaland goal, but Thiago Silva and erstwhile Citizen Raheem Sterling turned the tide in the favour of the navy Blues as opposed to the Sky Blues.

Of course, Guardiola's men responded in champions kind, through Manuel Akanji and Haaland's second of the game, and even a predatory Nicolas Jackson finish looked to be scant consolation courtesy of a fortunate Rodri goal.

However, after Armando Broja was felled by Ruben Dias in the closing stages, Palmer courageously stepped up to the chalk and nonchalantly stroked home the Blues' final equaliser to cap off an unforgettable West London contest, one which was a sign of things to come from the Premier League's Young Player of the Season.



2. Chelsea 4-3 Man United (April 4)

On the topic of Palmer and his penchant for perfect penalties, the Englishman's Chelsea unit played out another extraordinary battle with Man City's noisy neighbours Manchester United at the start of April, where Conor Gallagher's fourth-minute opener triggered a mad-cap goal rush.

Palmer did what he does best from the spot to put Chelsea two to the good, only for another promising prospect in Alejandro Garnacho to strike a brace of his own either side of Bruno Fernandes's captain's contribution, as Man United appeared to complete a scintillating Stamford Bridge comeback.

The Red Devils' advantage was holding out as the clock ticked over to 100 minutes, but Diogo Dalot's foul on Noni Madueke preceded another late Palmer penalty, and the home crowd had barely had time to catch their breath before the Englishman completed his hat-trick in minute 101.

As Man United's crestfallen charges dropped to the turf in emotional agony, Chelsea's overjoyed players and coaching staff celebrated wildly into the rainy night, while the ever-pacific Palmer travelled home with another match ball to add to his growing collection.



1. Bournemouth 4-3 Luton Town (March 13)

After the original encounter was abandoned at 1-1 amid distressing circumstances, as Luton captain Tom Lockyer suffered a traumatic cardiac arrest on the Vitality Stadium pitch, Bournemouth and the Hatters reconvened on the South Coast nearly exactly three months later.

In the presence of their beloved captain, Luton ran riot on the Cherries' turf on March 13, as Tahith Chong, Chiedozie Ogbene and Barkley propelled the Hatters into a 3-0 lead before the break, one that surely not even Andoni Iraola's improving Bournemouth could make up.

How one would have loved to have been a fly on the wall during the hosts' half-time team talk, though, as just 19 minutes into the second period, Ilya Zabarnyi, Dominic Solanke and Antoine Semenyo wiped out the visitors' three-goal advantage, before the latter struck again in the 83rd to complete one of the greatest Premier League comebacks of all time.

The Cherries became just the fifth team in history - and the first since Wolverhampton Wanderers 21 years before - to win a Premier League match in which they trailed by three goals, leaving a doomed Luton to lament a capitulation fatal to their chances of survival.


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Premier League Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
CManchester CityMan City38287396346291
2Arsenal38285591296289
3Liverpool382410486414582
4Aston Villa382081076611568
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs382061274611366
6Chelsea381891177631463
7Newcastle UnitedNewcastle381861485622360
8Manchester UnitedMan Utd38186145758-160
9West Ham UnitedWest Ham381410146074-1452
10Crystal Palace381310155758-149
11Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton381212145562-748
12Bournemouth38139165467-1348
13Fulham38138175561-647
14Wolverhampton WanderersWolves38137185065-1546
15Everton38139164051-1140
16Brentford38109195665-939
17Nottingham ForestNott'm Forest3899204967-1832
RLuton TownLuton3868245285-3326
RBurnley3859244178-3724
RSheffield UnitedSheff Utd38372835104-6916
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