5 things we learned from the Premier League this weekend
Published 08/05/2016 | 20:06
Champions Leicester got their hands on the Barclays Premier League trophy this weekend just hours after the picture at the bottom of the table became clearer too.
Here, Press Association Sport looks at five things we learned from the penultimate weekend of the 2015-16 season.
JERMAIN DEFOE HAS GIVEN SUNDERLAND A SHOT AT SURVIVAL
If Middlesbrough's promotion-deciding game with Brighton was worth north of £100million on Saturday, 33-year-old Sunderland striker Defoe should be looking for a big rise when he pens his next contract. The ex-England forward scored the winner against Chelsea on Saturday, his 15th of the campaign in the league, leaving Sam Allardyce's Black Cats one win away from another great escape. Nearest rivals Norwich and Newcastle do not have a player who has reached double figures yet. Stick Defoe in their starting line-ups and they would likely be on the brink of safety too.
SO LONG, JOHN TERRY?
Twelve months ago Steven Gerrard signed off from Liverpool by captaining a team defeated 6-1 at Stoke. At least he managed to score. Terry has already revealed he is set for pastures new when his Chelsea contract expires this summer and he probably had an emotional goodbye planned against Leicester at Stamford Bridge next weekend. However, a red card at Sunderland on Saturday, his second of the season, has prematurely ended his campaign and Chelsea career. Like fellow one-club man Gerrard's frightful farewell at the Britannia Stadium, it was not the finale he had in mind.
SOUTHAMPTON DESERVE MORE CREDIT
Despite coming off another summer of upheaval, when Nathaniel Clyne, Morgan Schneiderlin and Toby Alderweireld all departed, Southampton could still snatch a Europa League berth this year thanks to a fine second half of the campaign. Saints have lost just three of their past 17 contests and moved above West Ham into sixth thanks to Steven Davis' brace in a 2-1 victory over Tottenham at White Hart Lane. Leicester's coaching and recruitment team have been lavished with praise all week but Southampton's own staff should garner plenty of plaudits for the work they have done over the past three campaigns.
THE UNPREDICTABILITY'S NOT OVER YET
Champions League-chasing West Ham were clear favourites to get three points against an already-safe Swansea at home, only to come unstuck in a 4-1 loss to a team that had conceded seven times in their previous two away encounters. The sight of Wes Morgan and his Leicester team-mates lifting the trophy was a reminder of how this season has upset the odds time and time again and the Swans' demolition of Slaven Bilic's club was another result that raised eyebrows.
ROBERTO MARTINEZ'S TIME LOOKS UP
Everton were merely the guests to Leicester's soiree on Saturday evening and, as their own manager Martinez admitted, they "never turned up" when falling to a 3-1 defeat. As the pressure has grown on Martinez in recent weeks, first from the club's own fans, then the media, his players have done little to fight for a man whose position looks more precarious by the game. His players seemed resigned to a future without the Spaniard and that has been typified by 25-goal striker Romelu Lukaku, who has now gone eight games without scoring.