Welcome to This Week from Premier Skills English, a weekly review of all the action from the Premier League for learners of English from across the globe. In This Week, Jack and Rich talk about all of the weekend's action in the Premier League; the big headlines and the main talking points. We also ask you to get involved; do you agree with Jack and Rich's choices of best player, best team and best match of Matchweek 23? Make your prediction for next week's big match and tell us how your club or fantasy football team is doing. We welcome comments from all football fans and especially welcome comments from football fans who are learning English.
Rich: Hello my name’s Rich and welcome to our Monday round-up section on Premier Skills English.
Jack: Hi there. I’m Jack. Every Monday we discuss last weekend’s action, the best players, the best matches, Fantasy Football, and make some predictions for next weekend.
Rich: We want you to practise your English and interact with Premier League fans from around the world in our comments section.
Jack: You can do this on the Premier Skills English website or the Premier Skills-British Council Facebook page - if that’s where you are listening to us.
Rich: There were some brilliant games in Matchweek 23 so let’s get on with this week’s round up!
Rich: City’s unbeaten run ended by Liverpool!
Jack: Manchester City fell to their first defeat of the season in a thrilling match against Liverpool. The Reds won the game 4-3. Liverpool’s Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain opened the scoring for the Reds but Leroy Sane equalised just before half-time for City. In the second half, three goals in 9 minutes from Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah put the home team in charge. But City scored twice to set up a nervy finish but Liverpool hung on to end City’s unbeaten start to the season.
Rich: The Hurrikane shows no signs of stopping.
Jack: Harry Kane scored another two goals as Tottenham beat Everton 4-0. Kane is now Tottenham’s highest scorer in Premier League history. His 97th and 98th goals for the club helped Spurs to victory and keeps them in the hunt for a Champions League place.
Rich: A helping hand for Watford against Southampton.
Jack: Watford scored a last-minute equaliser for Watford at home to Southampton but the goal shouldn’t have been allowed. Abdoulaye Doucoure put the ball in the net with his hand. In the week that virtual assistant referees or VAR were tried for the first time in English football, it will be disappointing for Southampton that VAR wasn’t being used at this game. The match finished 2-2.
Rich: City scored twice to set up a nervy finish but Liverpool hang on. Set up and hang on; these are interesting expressions. What do they mean?
Jack: Both to set up and to hang on are phrasal verbs and they are quite common in a football context. To set up in this sentence means to make something happen. Liverpool were winning 4-1. Liverpool were confident. Then, City scored two goals. Liverpool became nervous that City would equalise. So, City’s two goals set up a nervy finish.
Rich: Got it. This phrasal verb is also used in football to mean provide an assist. For example, Tottenham’s Son Heung-Min set up Harry Kane for his first goal. This means that Son passed it to Kane.
Jack: And we also have Liverpool hung on. To hang on means to continue to do something when it is difficult. When Liverpool were winning 4-1 they were not hanging on but when it was 4-3 and City were attacking they were definitely hanging on.
Rich: Right, every Monday, we give out three matchweek awards. Player of the Week, Team of the Week and Match of the Week.
Jack: In the comments section, you need to tell us if you agree with our choices …
Rich: These awards always create a lot of discussion. Let’s start with our Player of the Week. There were some great individual performances in the Premier League last week.
Jack: Yes, there were. West Ham’s Manuel Lanzini and Marko Arnautovic were great as the Hammers er … hammered Huddersfield 4-1.
Rich: Harry Kane and Son Heung-Min were fantastic for Spurs and there were some good performances by Leicester defenders as they got a goalless draw against Chelsea.
Jack: But as Liverpool are the first team to beat City this season we have to give it to a Liverpool player. Over to you Rich.
Rich: Lots of players to choose from and Liverpool didn’t miss Coutinho. Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain but our Player of the Week goes to Sadio Mane.
Jack: You could have chosen any of those four really, they all played well. Right, our next award is for Team of the Week. There were good wins for Liverpool, West Ham, Palace, Spurs and Bournemouth but our Team of the Week is West Bromwich Albion.
Rich: Great choice. West Brom beat Brighton 2-0 but more importantly it was their first win for 20 Premier League matches. Their last win was in August so well done to them!
Jack: Finally, what about Match of the Week?
Rich: Our Match of the Week this week is … Liverpool v Manchester City. It has to be. A 4-3 thriller. And the right result!
Jack: The right result?
Rich: Well, for me anyway!
Rich: What’s been happening in Fantasy Football this week, Jack?
Jack: The top scoring player in matchweek 23 was West Ham’s Marko Arnautovic with 16 points. Did you have him in your team?
Rich: He wasn’t in the Premier Skills team who had a very bad week - only 14 points so far although we have Paul Pogba as captain and he plays tonight.
Jack: The leader in the Premier Skills League is still Gerardo Lopez from Mexico. He’s been leading the league for five match weeks now. Can anyone stop him?
Jack: Last week’s prediction was Liverpool v Manchester City and I thought City would win and Rich thought it would finish in a draw.
Rich: I’m very happy I got last week’s prediction wrong. A few of our listeners thought Liverpool would win though. Well done to Haruyuki from Japan and Ahmed Adam from Sudan. You were both confident that Liverpool would win.
Jack: What’s this week’s prediction, Rich?
Rich: This week’s prediction is the London Derby between Arsenal and Crystal Palace. Arsenal really need to bounce back from defeat against Bournemouth last week. Palace are fighting against relegation and have been improving under their new manager - Roy Hodgson. If Arsenal are not careful they could fall too far behind in the race for the Champions League so need to win this one. I think they will - just. Final score: Arsenal 2-1 Crystal Palace.
Jack: I think this will be an easy Arsenal win. 3-0.
Rich: We’ll see … we want you to make your prediction at the bottom of the page on the website. Are you a good predictor?
Jack: Right, that’s all we have time for. I hope you have enjoyed this festive football round-up.
Rich: Don’t forget to join the discussion at the bottom of this page.
ResultsThere were some great matches in Matchweek 23. Here are the full results:
Chelsea 0-0 Leicester City
Spurs 4-0 Everton
Crystal Palace 1-0 Burnley
Huddersfield Town 1-4 West Ham
Newcastle Utd 1-1 Swansea City
Watford 2-2 Southampton
West Brom 2-0 Brighton
Bournemouth 2-1 Arsenal
Liverpool 4-3 Mancheser City
Manchester Utd 3-0 Stoke City
Our Fantasy Premier League Team of Matchweek 23 is Borislav Borisov a Manchester Utd fan from Bulgaria. He has scored 82 points (so far) for his team M18 Hellcat. Well done, Borislav! Each Matchweek we will announce our weekly winner on this page. Maybe you could be our winner next week? If you want to play Fantasy Football, you can find out more here and if you want to join the Premier Skills private league, this is the code you need: 83788-212918 8-212918
The Big Match
Arsenal v Crystal Palace
Rich's predictions this week is the match between Arsenal and Crystal Palace. Both Rich and Jack think Arsenal will win but what do you think? Have a listen to what Rich and Jack say and then make your prediction at the bottom of the page.
Last week Rich thought that Liverpool and Manchester City would draw but Liverpool won 4-3. A special well done to Haruyuki from Japan and Ahmed Adam from Sudan who predicted the correct result!
Jack and Rich have spoken about last weekend's Premier League football. Now it's your turn! Have a look at the questions below and tell us if you agree with Rich and Jack. Write your answers in the comments section below.
- Jack and Rich chose Liverpool's Sadio Mane as the Player of the Week. Do you agree?
- Jack and Rich picked West Brom as the Team of the Week. Do you agree?
- Jack and Rich selected Liverpool v Manchester City as the best game in Matchweek 23. Do you agree?
- Matchweek 24's big match is Arsenal v Crystal Palace. Rich has predicted a win for Arsenal. Who do you think will win?
- Tell us about your club, your fantasy football team, or anything connected to Matchweek's 23 in the Premier League.
Don't forget to reply to fans of different clubs from different countries. Let's create a community!