Premier League: Alan Curbishley talks title race and Alan Pardew incident on Sky Sports' Match Choice
Ex-Charlton chief says rampant Liverpool can win the Premier League - but that Chelsea probably will
Last Updated: 02/03/14 1:47pm
CURBS SAYS: There was a lot of talk during the week about Chelsea's European trip and, to be fair, they looked a bit flat in the first half, but something obviously happened at half time, whether or not it was the hairdryer treatment by Jose Mourinho. They came out a different team, Andre Schurrle and Eden Hazard got into the game more - their movement off the ball caused Fulham no end of problems - and once they scored their first goal there was only going to be one winner. Fulham, though, were found wanting defensively and they are going to have to be better in the run-in because they need to win at least six games. They are in danger of getting stranded which makes next week's game against second-bottom Cardiff vital and if they don't win it, things will be very tough.
Arsenal's morale-sapping defeat at Stoke
CURBS SAYS: Arsene Wenger has obviously been disparaging about Stoke over the years, especially when Arsenal have gone to the Britannia, but it was a good performance from Stoke. They set about Arsenal, got in their face all the time, never allowed them to settle and deserved their three points. Wenger said Stoke's penalty was soft but there could have been two penalties for that incident - one for a Laurent Koscielny handball and another for Koscielny's challenge on Jon Walters - while Arsenal didn't create opportunities you usually associate with them, as it was lots of shots from distance that the keeper saved or weren't on target. Arsenal didn't do enough and I think Chelsea are still my favourites for the title, even though City have games in hand, as they have points on the board.
Liverpool's push for the Premier League title
CURBS SAYS: Everyone has been talking about Liverpool going for the top four as they have been out of the Champions League for a while now, but they are a threat to win the league now. Going to Southampton and winning so convincingly was a great result and Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester City will know they are contenders. Liverpool have got a world-class player in Luis Suarez but his partnership with Daniel Sturridge is great - if one doesn't score, the other one does - and they give defenders kittens. With a strikeforce like that, you always have a chance and after Man United away up next, which is always massive, they have some good games, as well as City and Chelsea to come to Anfield, where they are red hot and scoring goals.
Pardew's red mist at the KC Stadium
CURBS SAYS: Alan will have to take a long, hard look at himself as he has got involved on the touchline a few times now, but this was over the top - and could have been a lot worse if Howard Webb hadn't got involved. Alan, though - who probably can't quite believe he has gone in with to David Meyler with his head - knew that wasn't going to be the end of it and he quickly held his hands up and apologised. Newcastle have acted quickly and tried to nip it in the bud a little bit but I expect a lengthy touchline ban to come from the FA. It's a shame this has happened as it overshadowed a great win for Newcastle, which featured impressive performances from Moussa Sissoko, and a man they really missed while he was out, Loic Remy, who has been excellent and probably wanted by lots of clubs.