With three of the top four Premiership teams involved in FA Cup quarterfinal play this weekend, the league fixtures were put on the backburner.
On Saturday, Manchester City showed the difference between a top Premiership side and a Championship side as they pounded an overmatched Barnsley 5-0. Without striker Sergio Aguero (knee injury) Carlos Tevez scored a hat rick even with the lingering possibility that the Argentinean striker could face jail time after he was sited Thursday on suspicion of driving with a suspended license.
While Barnsley did not put up much of a fight, the Sky Blues were greatly to blame as they hounded The Tykes from start to finish; edging them in possession, shots, shots on target, and corner kicks. Along with the hat trick by Tevez was complimented by goals from Aleksandar Kolarov and David Silva, and even with the match seemingly over by half time, City showed professionalism in continuing to play hard through the match.
On Sunday, the other Manchester team Manchester United welcomed Chelsea to Old Trafford in what turned out to be a thrilling 2-2 draw with close calls and chances for either side to win throughout.
Within 11 minutes of kickoff, the home fans were feeling pretty confident as Javier Hernandez and Wayne Rooney scored to put the Red Devils up 2-0. At that point in the match, United was dominating possession and chances on goal, which had most viewers thinking it could be a blowout. However, as time ticked and Chelsea began to find their stride, the match evened out and by halftime, Chelsea had created some decent chances.
After halftime, Chelsea really picked up the pace and began to dominate play. In the 59th minute, Eden Hazard made a quick move at the top of the box to get free and sent a beautiful bending shot passed the outstretched arms of goalkeeper David De Gea and into the back of the net. With over 30 minutes left in the match, Chelsea was now back in it and looking dangerous.
Just nine minutes later, Chelsea midfielder Ramires made a surging run from near half field and slotted a left footed bender into the bottom left corner to tie the match at 2-2.
With 20 minutes still left to go, Chelsea now looked the favorite against a wilting United side, but in the end, thanks to some brilliant saves by De Gea, the Red Devils were able to salvage a draw and set up a replay at Stamford Bridge.
Manchester United’s failure to capture victory was compounded by the loss of winger Nani, who limped off before halftime with what looked to be a rather serious hamstring injury. After being unfairly red carded against Real Madrid in the Champions League round of 16 that lead to the Red Devils losing 2-1 and being booted from the tournament, Nani capped off a rough week with a disappointing injury. His status is unknown at this point.
Elsewhere, Clint Dempsey missed another match for Tottenham with a calf injury, while Spurs also missed the services of winger Aaron Lennon, who was kept out with a hamstring injury.
Let’s take a look at some other injuries around the league:
Courtesy of Physio Room
Paul Scholes/Knee Injury/March 2nd
Darren Fletcher/Chronic Bowel Syndrome/Unknown
Kieran Gibbs/Thigh Strain/Unknown
V. Diaby/Calf/March 13th
B. Sagna/Knee/March 13th
Jack Rodwell/Hamstring/March 30th
Sergio Aguero/Knee/March 16th
Micah Richards/Knee/March 4th
S. Ranieri/ACL/October 13th
Clint Dempsey/Calf/March 14th
Hatem Ben Arfa/Hamstring/Unknown
H. Vuckic/ACL/May 13th
Ryan Taylor/ACL/March 29th
Tim Krul/Ankle/April 6th
Fabio Borini/Dislocated Shoulder/Unknown
Martin Kelly/ACL/March 22nd