Arsenal ran out convincing 3-0 winners against Fulham at Craven Cottage on Sunday to defy the pressure applied by Manchester City from the previous day and reassert their five-point lead at the top of the Premier League table.
The Gunners, looking to win their first top-flight title since 2004, started the day only two points above defending champions City but were much the better team in their London derby clash against the Cottagers, scoring three unanswered goals in the first half to ultimately ease to victory.
After an own-goal from Antonee Robinson was ruled out due to an offside in the build-up, strikes from Gabriel, Gabriel Martinelli, and Martin Odegaard meant they went into the break 3-0 up and cruising.
Mikel Arteta's men are now once again five points clear at the top of the table and have 11 games to hold on and win the title.
Elsewhere, ten-man Manchester United stuttered to a goalless draw against rock-bottom Southampton, while Newcastle leapfrogged Liverpool into fifth following a 2-1 win over Wolves.
West Ham remain in the relegation battle after drawing 1-1 at home to Aston Villa, who are coasting towards a mid-table finish.
|What||Premier League 2022/23|
|When||5th August 2022 - 28th May 2023|
|How to watch||Sky Sports, BT Sport, Amazon Prime|
|Odds||Arsenal 8/11, Man City 6/5, Man Utd 100/1|
Manchester City's earlier win at Crystal Palace wasn't pretty, but Erling Haaland's second-half penalty ensured Arsenal faced some pressure to maintain the advantage that means they can afford to lose to the Citizens next month, when they travelled to face eighth-placed Fulham on Sunday.
It almost feels like onlookers have been waiting the entire season for Arsenal to slip up but, despite losing to City last month - in both league and cup - they have shown they are up for the fight.
The soft underbelly that almost defined the latter years of Arsene Wenger's reign appears to have gone.
The first half was a wonderful display of attacking football against a side who have proven tough to beat while defying expectations themselves this season.
The signing of Leandro Trossard in January is proving to have been a smart bit of business, with the Belgian teeing up all three goals against Fulham to wrap the game up inside the opening 45 minutes.
The victory means the Gunners will definitely go into the international break at the top of the table, and their lead could even be extended to eight points as they face Crystal Palace next Sunday with Manchester City in FA Cup action.
Arteta's men are 8/11 To Win Outright this season while City are 6/5 to retain their title under Pep Guardiola.
Manchester United's response in midweek to their 7-0 walloping from arch-rivals Liverpool was admirable as they brushed aside Real Betis in the first leg of their Europa League round-of-16 tie at Old Trafford.
However, the main emotion leaving Sunday’s goalless draw with Southampton was one of frustration and a missed opportunity to further cement their top-four place.
The game's defining moment came in the first half when Brazil midfielder Casemiro - already having been sent off once this season - was shown a straight red card for a poor challenge on Saints midfielder Carlos Alcaraz.
Initially, it was given as a booking by on-field referee Anthony Taylor but, after consultation from VAR and a look at the replay on the pitchside monitor, he changed his mind and gave a red.
It means Casemiro now faces a four-match domestic ban, starting with next weekend's FA Cup quarter-final against Fulham.
He has undoubtedly been one of the reasons behind United's improvement this season, but this latest show of ill-discipline means United are significantly weakened in the immediate future.
However, they are still priced at 1/9 To Finish in Top 4 as they have a six-point buffer to Newcastle now in fifth.
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Newcastle's first half of the season was nearly note-perfect so it was always likely that the second half would bring a sticky patch.
The Magpies went into their Sunday meeting with Wolves on the back of five matches without a win and they were desperate to get three points to keep their unlikely pursuit of Champions League football alive.
It was hard-fought but they managed to secure the victory, thanks to a late goal from substitute Miguel Almiron after Hwang Hee-chan had cancelled out Alexander Isak's first-half header, with the help of an untimely slip from Kieran Trippier.
The Magpies are now 7/4 to secure a Champions League place and their next contest is away at Nottingham Forest on Friday. Eddie Howe's side can be backed at 4/6 to win, with Forest available at 9/2, and a draw at 5/2.
It has generally been a good weekend for the teams struggling with Southampton and Leeds United both drawing while Everton ended Brentford's long unbeaten run with a 1-0 win on Saturday.
Bournemouth caused the biggest shock by beating Liverpool by the same score.
West Ham also gained a positive result against Aston Villa but, given they had more chances, they may feel this was a case of two points dropped rather than a point won.
Ollie Watkins headed Villa in front but the Hammers got back on level terms thanks to an emphatic Said Benrahma penalty after Lucas Paqueta was bundled over by Leon Bailey.
The Hammers have still climbed out of the bottom three up to 17th but a win could have seen them rise as high as 14th.
David Moyes' men are 1/6 to stay up while they are 4/1 To be Relegated.