The Premier League is one of the most-watched sporting leagues in the world due to its unpredictability. Anybody can beat anybody on their day and in it’s 29-year history several giant killings have occurred in the Premier League. In this article, we will look at five famous upsets in the history of the Premier League.
#5 Brentford 2-0 Arsenal, 13/08/2021
In the first game of the 2021/22 season, Brentford hosted Arsenal in what was their first appearance in PL since 1947. On paper, Arteta’s Arsenal could not have got an easier fixture to start their season. However, Thomas Frank’s high pressing, relentless Brentford took Arsenal by complete surprise.
Sergi Canos opened the scoring for Brentford after Chambers’ clearance was cut short by Onyeka. Although Arsenal enjoyed much of the possession, Brentford created better goal scoring opportunities. In the second half, Arsenal’s hopes of a comeback was ended by Christian Norgaard who doubled Brentford’s lead with a free header at the near post.
#4 Chelsea 0-3 Sunderland, 14/11/2010
By November 2010, Chelsea were sitting merrily at the top of the table and looked set to defend their title. Steve Bruce’s Sunderland visited Stamford Bridge, and nobody expected them to stun Chelsea away from home. Defender Onuoha surprisingly scored the opening goal of the game after beating three Chelsea players.
In the second half, Asamoah Gyan finished clinically with his right foot after a perfect pass from Jordan Henderson. Chelsea tried to fight back, but Sunderland’s defense stood firm. Danny Welbeck completed a terrific victory after a horrible back-pass from Ashley Cole. This was Chelsea’s first home defeat of the season and the beginning of the end for their title hopes.
#3 Leicester City 5-3 Manchester United, 21/09/2014
After a tough start to the 2014/15 season, United finally came back to form by thrashing QPR 4-0 at Old Trafford. Their next game was against relegation-threatened Leicester City, and United were the favourites to win this fixture. Van Persie and Di Maria struck in close succession, and United were 2-1 up at halftime.
In the second half, Ander Herrera gave United a two-goal advantage, and it seemed like the game was over. However, Leicester’s comeback started with a penalty from Nugent. Cambiasso levelled the game for the home side, and future star Jamie Vardy scored the fourth goal for Leicester. Tyler Blackett was sent off and Leicester scored a famous fifth goal to seal the tie. Due to Leicester’s sustained success since 2015, this game is often not mentioned among the upsets in the history of the Premier League
#2 Watford 3-0 Liverpool, 29/02/2020
Watford’s giant-killing is quite famous among the many upsets in the history of the Premier League. The joint-longest winning streak in the history of the Premier League came to a dramatic end at Vicarage Road.
Liverpool were the heavy favourites for the Premier League after a huge lead at the top of the table. But Watford completely outplayed them and could have scored more goals with better finishing. Ismaila Sarr was the star of the day as he scored two goals and assisted Deeney’s strike.
#1 Aston Villa 7-2 Liverpool, 04/10/2020
On the same day as this game, Spurs had thrashed United 6-2 and Liverpool fans were celebrating United’s blushes. No one could have anticipated that Aston Villa would score seven goals against the defending champions. In the fourth minute of the game, Villa scored after a blunder from Adrian, and it was a sign of things to come.
Grealish scored two goals and registered three assists as Aston Villa pounced mercilessly on some horrible defending and goalkeeping. Mo Salah scored a brace, but it was not even consolation on that day. Liverpool did recover decently from this defeat, but their PL title defense ultimately ended in disappointment.