Norwich finally succumbed to relegation, a fate their own manager and many others expected at the start of the English Premier League season.

Fewer, though, would have predicted Liverpool losing their perfect home record against Burnley.

With two weeks remaining in the longest English season, issues at both ends of the standings are close to being finalised.

Certainly, the relegation picture looked a lot clearer, with Norwich guaranteed a return to the second-tier Championship after one season after losing to West Ham 4-0 at home.


"From the first day after promotion, our chances to survive were perhaps 5 per cent," Norwich manager Daniel Farke said, "so in 19 out of 20 cases, you will go down."

The team have played attractive football but have been too easy to score against, with their 67 goals conceded the most in the league.

But their players will take with them that memorable 3-2 win over Manchester City in September, one of only five victories in total.

"When we are 100 per cent, we are competitive, but when it's 96 or 97 per cent, then it sometimes looks like men against boys," Farke said. "That's what I expected."

That win for West Ham, achieved thanks to four goals by makeshift striker Michail Antonio, and Watford's come-from-behind 2-1 victory over Newcastle, courtesy of two Troy Deeney penalties, pushed those two victorious teams six points clear of the relegation zone with three games left.

Bournemouth and Aston Villa, the teams in 18th and 19th respectively, will probably need three wins from their remaining four matches to survive. A tough ask, considering neither had won their first five games since the Premier League resumed.

At the other end of the table, Liverpool have just records to chase after clinching a first league title in 30 years, and one of them fell by the wayside yesterday.

The Reds will not become the first team in the Premier League era (since 1992) to win all their home games in a single campaign, after drawing with Burnley 1-1. They won their previous 17 matches at Anfield and have just Chelsea left to play there.


While Liverpool cannot complete a perfect home campaign, the champions have one big record to claim. They need to win their remaining three games — against Arsenal, Chelsea and Newcastle — to beat the record points haul by a team for a single season in the Premier League, held by Manchester City with 100 in 2017-18.

Liverpool were heading for an 18th straight home win until Jay Rodriguez drove a low shot into the bottom corner in the 69th minute in a rare sight on goal for Burnley.

All Whites striker Chris Wood started and was substituted four minutes before Burnley's equaliser.

Andrew Robertson had put the hosts ahead with a powerful header.

"It was a draw," Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said, "but I cannot deny it feels like we lost the game."

Chelsea lost at Sheffield United 3-0 in a surprisingly one-sided match — a heavy defeat that means third-placed Chelsea could get overtaken by both Leicester and Manchester United in the coming days in the race for Champions League qualification. Sheffield United moved above Wolverhampton into sixth place.


Fifth will still secure a place in next season's Champions League if second-placed Manchester City fail in their bid to get a two-year European ban overturned in the courts. City will discover the result of their appeal on Tuesday.

City won at Brighton 5-0 in the late game, with Raheem Sterling scoring a hat-trick, securing second place with another easy win that took their tally of goals to 23 in seven games.

Players wore black armbands as games started with a minute's silence in a tribute to England's 1966 World Cup winner, Jack Charlton, who died on Saturday aged 85.

- AP