Liverpool's record bid hit by Burnley draw, Norwich relegated
West Ham United's French defender Issa Diop (L) consoles Norwich City's English defender Max Aarons at the end of the match between Norwich City and West Ham United. AFP
Liverpool's bid to set a new Premier League points record was rocked by a 1-1 draw against Burnley, while Norwich were relegated as Michail Antonio's four-goal blitz fired West Ham to a thumping win on Saturday.
Jurgen Klopp's side are chasing the record total of 100 points set by Manchester City in 2018, but the champions have no margin for error after being held at Anfield for the first time this season. They have 93 points and need to win their remaining three matches against Arsenal, Chelsea and Newcastle to break City's record.
They would tie the 100-point mark if they win two and draw one of those matches. "For moments it was Liverpool against (Nick) Pope. We did everything right and he made saves but we should have scored more, that's on us," Klopp said. "We didn't close the game and they took their moment. We were angry with the referee but we have to criticise ourselves first for not finishing the game. The team do it right 99 percent of the time but I will never stop criticising them."
Liverpool took the lead when Andrew Robertson met Fabinho's lofted pass with a powerful header in the 34th minute. But they were made to pay for missed chances as Burnley equalised in the 69th minute.
Liverpool were unhinged by a long free-kick into their area as James Tarkowski's header found Jay Rodriguez, who drilled a superb low strike past Alisson Becker.
Johann Berg Gudmundsson almost won it for Burnley when he hit the bar in the final minutes. It was the first time Liverpool had failed to win a home league game since January 2019.
At Carrow Road, a seventh successive league defeat condemned Norwich to relegation as Antonio's ruthless display boosted West Ham's own survival bid after a 4-0 victory. Daniel Farke's side are 13 points from safety with only three games left, meaning they are certain to make an immediate return to the Championship after last season's promotion campaign.
The Canaries have set an unwanted record with a fifth Premier League relegation after going down on four previous occasions in 1995, 2005, 2014 and 2016. "We wanted to beat the odds again but when the dust settles the outcome is more or less what was expected. It doesn't take anything away from the fact that we are disappointed," Farke said. "From the first day after promotion our chances to survive were perhaps 5 percent so in 19 out of 20 cases you will go down. If you have luck and no injuries then you have a chance. When we are 100 percent we are competitive but when it's 96 or 97 percent then it sometimes looks like men against boys. That's what I expected."
West Ham's second win in four games was a huge lift to their hopes of staying up. David Moyes' side are six points above the bottom three with three games left against Watford, Manchester United and Aston Villa. The early signs were ominous for Norwich as West Ham took the lead in the 11th minute through Antonio's close-range volley
Antonio struck again in first-half stoppage-time, glancing his header into the far corner from Mark Noble's free-kick. He completed his hat-trick in the 54th minute with a looping header and his fourth came in the 74th minute from Ryan Fredericks' cross.
Troy Deeney scored two penalties as Watford improved their survival prospects with a 2-1 win against Newcastle at Vicarage Road. Newcastle snatched the lead in the 23rd minute when Matt Ritchie's corner was flicked on by Federico Fernandez and Dwight Gayle bundled home at the far post.
But Deeney pulled Watford level seven minutes after the restart with a penalty after Kiko Femenia was clipped by Ritchie.
In the 82nd minute, Javier Manquillo brought down Ismaila Sarr and Deeney stepped up again to bury his second penalty. Fourth-bottom Watford are now six points clear of third-bottom Bournemouth, who face Leicester on Sunday.