sport news 10 things we learned from the Premier League featuring , ...

The nation is heading for a second lockdown but at least we will have the Premier League to keep us entertained on those cold November days.

While the goal-fests of the early season seem to have ended, there was still plenty of entertainment over the course of the long weekend just passed.

It saw Arsenal gain their first win at Old Trafford in 14 years, Liverpool assume their familiar position at the top, Gareth Bale find the net again for Tottenham and Everton and Aston Villa slide down the table.

Here's 10 things we learned from the Premier League weekend just passed.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang celebrates scoring his penalty winner for Arsenal at Old Trafford

celebrates scoring his penalty winner for Arsenal at Old Trafford

Diamonds can't be forever for Ole

On the weekend we lost Sean Connery, a reminder for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer that midfield diamonds shouldn't be used forever.

The formation that worked so effectively for against RB Leipzig in the Champions League in midweek was utterly useless against Arsenal.

You can understand why Solskjaer kept faith with the system - which saw Scott McTominay anchoring, Fred and Paul Pogba at the sides and Bruno Fernandes at the tip - but Mikel Arteta's side crushed it.

Just eight per cent of United's touches in the opening 45 minutes came inside Arsenal's half - the lowest mark in Solskjaer's 100 games in charge - and they mustered just three touches in Arsenal's box before half-time.

It was an afternoon to forget as Paul Pogba conceded the penalty that settled the contest

It was an afternoon to forget as Paul Pogba conceded the penalty that settled the contest

With his midfield diamond clearly not working, Solskjaer should have changed things earlier

With his midfield diamond clearly not working, Solskjaer should have changed things earlier

So why did it take Solskjaer until the interval to change a system that clearly wasn't having any effect?

Couldn't he have pushed the isolated Marcus Rashford up top with Pogba, Fernandes and Mason Greenwood playing in support after 20 minutes or so?

It's a good thing that Solskjaer has brought a tactical dexterity to his United team - before the game, he reeled off all the potential formations he could play - but surely this means the players can switch between them mid-game?

Also any set-up that means Rashford and Greenwood have to play with their backs to goal when receiving the ball, instead of on the half-turn ready to burn past defenders, shouldn't be happening if United are to be effective.

Lampard was right to keep faith in Kante

Remember when N'Golo Kante was being linked with a move away from Chelsea - most likely for a reunion with at Inter Milan - over the summer?

With a new defensive midfielder apparently imminent and some questions marks over the France star after an injury-interrupted 2019-20 season, an exit was a possibility.

But as Kante's performance in Saturday's 3-0 win at Burnley confirmed, Chelsea were absolutely right to keep hold of him.

N'Golo Kante again underlined how crucial he is to Chelsea in their 3-0 victory at Burnley

N'Golo Kante again underlined how crucial he is to Chelsea in their 3-0 victory at Burnley

Any notion Frank Lampard should have sold Kante during the summer has been proved absurd

Any notion Frank Lampard should have sold Kante during the summer has been proved absurd 

He remains their most important player, putting in the dirty work and the hard graft at the base of their midfield so that the flair players ahead of him can do their thing.

While Burnley don't have the scariest attack, Kante single-handedly shielded the Chelsea defence to allow fellow midfielders Kai Havertz and Mason Mount to push forward and take risks.

There will be plenty of games throughout the season when Frank Lampard can get away with just having Kante as cover, allowing his attacking players to excel, and he remains just as valuable as ever.

It's time for Jota to replace Firmino

Another game, another goal for Diogo Jota, who is looking significantly more than just the squad player we thought he would be when signed from Wolves in the summer.

That's three in three now, including winners against Sheffield United and West Ham, to restore Liverpool to the top of the table.

Liverpool's forward line of Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah has been pretty much set in stone since 2017 and with good reason.

Jota has now scored in three consecutive matches for Liverpool as they beat West Ham 2-1

Jota has now scored in three consecutive matches for Liverpool as they beat West Ham 2-1

But for the first time in a long while, someone is putting pressure on them.

Jota came on for Firmino with 20 minutes remaining on Saturday in what is becoming a theme and made the desired impact.

Though the Portuguese no doubt benefits from tired defenders, he has outscored Firmino this season with the Brazilian's goal returns diminishing by the season.

Of course, not everything should be measured in goals, even for forwards. Firmino's work rate is legendary and he operates in tandem with Salah and Mane so well.

But, if Jota continues to score at his current rate, Firmino will be glancing nervously over his shoulder and Jurgen Klopp certainly has food for thought.

Jota is outscoring Roberto Firmino, the man he replaced during Saturday's game at Anfield

Jota is outscoring Roberto Firmino, the man he replaced during Saturday's game at Anfield

Blades have the symptoms of second season syndrome

'If people think we can go toe to toe with Man City they're deluded, really deluded,' said Chris Wilder after Sheffield United's 1-0 loss to City on Saturday.

Fair comment, except the Blades did go toe to toe with the Premier League elite on a regular basis last season.

This time around, one point from their opening seven games smacks of growing emergency and a classic case of that difficult second season in the top flight.

As we've seen already this season, Pep Guardiola's side are vulnerable but Sheffield United couldn't lay a glove on them for the most part.

Oli McBurnie (left) and Chris Basham react during Sheffield United's defeat to Manchester City

Oli McBurnie (left) and Chris Basham react during Sheffield United's defeat to Manchester City

Just one shot on target all game underlines issues in attack, with just three league goals scored this season.

They will need £23.5million summer signing from Liverpool Rhian Brewster to supply some goals - admittedly his first two starts for the club have been against the Reds and City - otherwise a hard slog of a season awaits.

Winless in 11 games in all competitions, the longest such run in Wilder's career, they could have done with a winnable fixture next up. Instead, they have Chelsea away.

Bale won't be satisfied with the Thursday night role

Absolute joy for Gareth Bale as he scored the first goal of his Tottenham return to win Sunday night's meeting with Brighton.

After Jose Mourinho said he would check the Madrid press for their reaction to Bale's goal, it didn't go unnoticed in the Spanish papers that two former Real players had combined with Sergio Reguilon supplying the cross.

It also didn't go unnoticed that Bale, whose grasp of Spanish was mocked during his time at the Bernabeu, yelled 'Vamos!' At the top of his voice while celebrating. A message to his parent club, no doubt.

Gareth Bale came off the bench and scored Tottenham's winner against Brighton on Sunday

Gareth Bale came off the bench and scored Tottenham's winner against Brighton on Sunday

But

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