Vincent Kompany’s spectacular strike; Tottenham’s homecoming; Neil Warnock’s death stares toward referees every weekend; the 2018-19 Premier League season wasn’t short on special moments. Here, theScore runs down the most memorable ones.
Mourinho demands respect
Date: Aug. 27, 2018
With losses in two of the campaign’s opening three matches, including a one-sided 3-0 home defeat to Tottenham, former Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho was characteristically cranky in responding to questions. “Do you know what was the result? Three-nil … (holds up three fingers) Do you know what these mean? Three-nil, but also, three Premierships, and I won more Premierships alone than the other 19 managers together. Three for me and two for them. Respect, respect, respect man.”
Sturridge’s golazo against Chelsea
Date: Sept. 29, 2018
Jurgen Klopp looked like a genius after his decision to bring on Daniel Sturridge paid off almost immediately against Chelsea early in the season. With the threat of Liverpool’s unbeaten streak coming to an end, Sturridge stepped up and tucked away his long-distance equalizer in the 89th minute to silence the Stamford Bridge faithful.
Ramsey shows off superpowers
Date: Oct. 7, 2018
It doesn’t get much better than Aaron Ramsey’s no-look, backheel goal against Fulham. The Arsenal midfielder had just entered the match before he pulled off the unthinkable, as his instinctive effort after a lovely sequence of passes crept over the line.
Charlie Austin’s referee tirade
Date: Nov. 10, 2018
Credit to Southampton striker Charlie Austin for bucking a trend of formulaic responses when the non-leaguer-turned-top-flight standout expressed his disdain for the lack of VAR in the Premier League. Austin was incensed that a match-winner versus Watford in November was called back before the two sides settled on a 1-1 draw. The interview was superb. The Parklife memes were even better.
Pickford’s derby blunder
Date: Dec. 2, 2018
Jordan Pickford is guilty of what could be considered the blunder of the season, as the Everton goalkeeper gifted Liverpool points in the Merseyside derby. The England international was left red-faced after his daft decision to keep the ball alive led to Divock Origi heading in a 96th-minute winner from point-blank range. Origi playing the hero role has, incredibly, become a theme of the Reds’ campaign.
Jose out: Ole’s at the wheel
Date: Dec. 19, 2018
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer received a hero’s welcome at Old Trafford ahead of his first match in charge of Manchester United after replacing Jose Mourinho in December. The former United star guided the Red Devils to a decisive win over Cardiff City to kick off what would grow into a lengthy unbeaten run. He was eventually given the job on a permanent basis.
Townsend’s stunning volley
Date: Dec. 22, 2018
Although it wasn’t the decisive goal, Andros Townsend’s long-distance volley against Manchester City was a strike worthy of winning any match. Townsend latched onto the end of Bernardo Silva’s attempted clearance and catapulted the ball into the roof of the net. Crystal Palace went on to hand City their first Premier League home loss in eight months.
A matter of centimeters
Date: Jan. 3, 2019
The one-point difference at the top of the table doesn’t even tell the full story of just how tight the battle between City and Liverpool was all season. John Stones’ chaotic clearance in the Citizens’ 2-1 win over the Reds in January was, obviously, pivotal. That he got a toe to the ball when it was 1.12 centimeters away from crossing the goal line makes it iconic. Less than half an inch. Fine margins, indeed.
Cat steals show at Goodison Park
Date: Feb. 2, 2019
A black cat provided Everton supporters a few moments of comic relief during what was an otherwise miserable night at Goodison Park. With the home side trailing Wolves 3-1 in the second half, a pitch-invading feline entertained suffering fans who, inevitably, chanted: “Sign him up.”
Southampton fan honors Keith Flint
Date: March 9, 2019
Keith Flint, the lead singer of British electronic giants The Prodigy, passed away in mid-March, and one Southampton fan opted for a dancing eulogy ahead of a 2-1 win over Spurs. All that was missing was the glow sticks, parched mouth, and parachute pants. Do take notice of the gargantuan fella to his right.
Date: March 16, 2019
Everton attacker Theo Walcott celebrated his 30th birthday in March, and fans of British sitcom “Peep Show” were quick to point out a silly scenario had come to fruition. In season 8, Robert Webb’s character Jez claims amid an existential crisis that one day he’ll make it rich selling tabloids on the headline “Three-o Walcott” once the former Arsenal man turned 30. “It’s cool. I’ve always got the Three-O Walcott millions,” Jez offered, not knowing that years later both he (rather, Webb) and Everton would get in on the joke.
Premier League tackles racism
Date: March 30, 2019
After a series of incidents involving players facing racist abuse, the Premier League kicked off its “No Room for Racism” campaign in March. The initiative was made to show the “continued commitment to equality and diversity” of the Premier League in opposing racism. Teams around the league wore shirts displaying the message “Kick it Out,” while some players later boycotted social media in response to the abuse they have received online.
Warnock staring into souls of officials
Date: March 31, 2019
The image of Neil Warnock’s face will probably haunt referee Craig Pawson for the rest of his life. The Cardiff City manager was visibly agitated after Cesar Azpilicueta’s goal to help Chelsea beat the Welsh side was incorrectly allowed. Rather than giving Pawson and his linesmen a piece of his mind, he just glared menacingly during an awkward standoff with the officiating staff.
Mike Dean’s 100th red card
Date: April 2, 2019
Footballing milestones shouldn’t be limited to players. After making a career out of the spirited brandishing of cards, referee Mike Dean became the first match official to record 100 sending offs when he sent Manchester United veteran Ashley Young packing against Wolves.
Spurs christen opulent new digs with victory
Date: April 3, 2019
The protracted opening of Tottenham’s stadium was discussed ad nauseam, but when Spurs finally stepped foot into their new home, it was all worth it. The breathtaking ground, highlighted by a single-tier south stand modeled after Borussia Dortmund’s famous Yellow Wall, was christened with a victory over Crystal Palace and has drawn nothing but praise from the football world since.
Long wastes no time
Date: April 23, 2019
It took Shane Long less time to score against Watford in April than it takes Usain Bolt to run 100 meters. The Southampton forward etched his name into the record books after scoring just 7.69 seconds into the contest to set the mark for the fastest goal in Premier League history.
Warnock’s ‘Bitter Sweet Symphony’ tribute
Date: May 4, 2019
The national treasure that is Warnock was at the center of yet another memorable moment this season during his encounter with a cameraman. The Cardiff gaffer left viewers baffled when he appeared to do his best impression of The Verve frontman Richard Ashcroft ahead of Cardiff’s loss to Fulham, which ensured the team’s relegation.
Kompany’s ‘league winner’
Date: May 6, 2019
This was the defining moment of the season. With the minutes ticking away and Manchester City looking increasingly frustrated in their bid to break down Leicester City in the penultimate match of the season, the captain stepped up. Out of nowhere, Vincent Kompany, ignoring the pleas of his teammates not to fire a speculative effort, unleashed what was, quite literally, a perfect shot into the top corner. That was the moment City won the title.