We hit the century mark on the goals front from the Loan Army this week and then set about surpassing it. While the record of 126 looks safe for another year, plenty of other milestones have been reached and improved upon, and numerous players have earned significant individual honours.
We start our review of the week by rewinding all the way back to Monday night, where Mario Pašalić brought up the 100 mark with Atalanta’s second goal in a 2-0 win over Udinese, his seventh of the season.
He then played 25 minutes on Sunday as Atalanta gave Lazio a 3-1 shellacking at the Stadio Olimpico to take advantage of results elsewhere and move into fourth place outright. With three matches left, Champions League qualification lies in their own hands.
Christian Pulisic and Dortmund are still fighting for the Bundesliga title in Germany but, despite his wonderful early solo effort to open the scoring, they could only draw 2-2 with Werder Bremen and find themselves four points adrift of Bayern Munich with two matches to go.
In the Premier League, Michy Batshuayi’s fourth goal for Crystal Palace helped to condemn Cardiff City to relegation. He struck the second of three in a 3-2 win in South Wales.
— amadí (@amadoit__) May 4, 2019
The final day of the Football League season saw Sheffield Wednesday host QPR with nothing to play for on either side. Wednesday had named Michael Hector as their Player of the Season earlier in the week; the Jamaican international has been a rock at the heart of their defence all season, and they gave him a nice send-off late in the game as he stepped up to take a penalty to score his second goal of the season.
In Serbia, Danilo Pantic struck for Partizan against Napredak to score his first league goal of 2019. It hasn’t been quite as good as season for him this time as it was in 2017-18, but Partizan might still take up the option to sign him permanently. The goal helped to turn around a one-goal deficit into a 2-1 win, almost surely confirming Europa League qualification.
And in Brazil, Nathan scored his first league goal in more than a year as he equalised for Atlético-MG away to Ceará, a match they won with a Jair goal three minutes into stoppage time.
Kurt Zouma was impressive for Everton in a 3-0 win over Burnley that has had people speculating about his future once again. The Toffees would love to keep him at Goodison Park, but know that Chelsea would likely ask for a minimum of £40m, if they were to even entertain the idea of selling him. Rumours abound that he will be back in SW6 next season to play under Maurizio Sarri, but for a manager who demands a ‘technical’ centre-back who will touch the ball ’110-120 times’ per match, you think Zouma might not be exactly what he’s looking for. If, on the other hand, you want a premier penalty-box defender who dominates in the air, the 24 year-old is for you.
Kenedy was an unused substitute for Newcastle as they lost late to Liverpool and, watching the match unfold, you began to question whether Christian Atsu – who scored for the hosts – is and always has been a better footballer by comparison. Kenedy is, at least, four years his junior, but is yet to make a tangible impact anywhere and is fast running out of time to do so at all.
The last day of the season wasn’t the last day for everyone; Derby County are playoff-bound again, but under Frank Lampard for the first time and, while it wasn’t always pretty against West Brom they are at least in the hat, and are three matches away from the Premier League.
A midweek draw at Swansea left them with work to do, work they eventually saw through, with Fikayo Tomori a steady hand at the back in his 51st appearance of an award-winning campaign, and Mason Mount always available as a pressure release valve in midfield. The Rams have lost just once in 2019 in matches where the Chelsea boy has completed ninety minutes – and just twice overall – and they now prepare themselves to take on Leeds United in what should be a two-legged affair to remember.
Elsewhere, Reece James was named captain for the day and afforded a late standing ovation as he brought his memorable stay at Wigan Athletic to an end. If he isn’t in the Premier League next season, something will have gone very wrong.
— Paul Kendrick (@PKendrickWIG) May 5, 2019
Derby claiming the final playoff berth meant Bristol City fell just short in what has been a superb season for the Robins regardless. Tomas Kalas, Jay Dasilva and Kasey Palmer all saw action either against Millwall or Hull this week, and manager Lee Johnson has already made considerable public overtures to the three of them to make their stays in Bristol permanent.
Lee Johnson on Dasilva & Kalas: “I do believe this is the right football club for them… You never know what Chelsea have got in mind for them… I think they would be more than comfortable coming back & settling and rooting themselves in the Bristol area & driving us forward” pic.twitter.com/kwlDkwuj5M
— BBC Bristol sport (@bbcbristolsport) May 5, 2019
Lee Johnson on Kasey Palmer:
“Kasey’s been brilliant. Obviously he’s been more influential from the bench but the big thing with him would be a pre-season… I would love to work with Kasey again but on my terms, which would be give him a strong and relentless pre-season” pic.twitter.com/r48kJkZC5N
— BBC Bristol sport (@bbcbristolsport) May 5, 2019
City are believed to have already agreed a fee with Chelsea for Dasilva, who has the option of signing up or looking elsewhere. Hull, meanwhile, would love to keep Todd Kane around, but rested him for the last weekend of the season so as not to expose him to the risk of injury as he approaches a crossroads in his career; the 25 year-old is a free agent this summer and will be moving on permanently from a club he joined as an 8 year-old.
Tammy Abraham was given a special award by Aston Villa as recognition for him becoming their first 25-goal scorer in a generation, and he will be available for their playoff Semi Final against West Brom after recovering from a recent shoulder injury. Had Villa been playing for something on the last day against Norwich, he would have been involved, but with bigger fish to fry manager Dean Smith chose not to call upon him unnecessarily.
Trevoh Chalobah signed off at Ipswich Town with a dominant midfield outing against Leeds, and played a part in their stoppage-time winner with a long ball forward that caused problems in the visiting defence, allowing Collin Quaner to steal in and score.
The winning goal from @CollinQuaner! ⚽️
— Ipswich Town FC (@IpswichTown) May 5, 2019
Lewis Baker and Matt Miazga each saw ninety minutes as Reading drew 0-0 with Birmingham City. They’ll both be welcome back at the Madejski Stadium any time.
Brad Collins made it back from a recent injury to feature in Burton’s last game of the season, a 3-1 defeat to a Peterborough United side still chasing the playoffs, but with his contract also up this summer he has a few decisions to make. Burton manager Nigel Clough would like to keep him around, but Collins will know that a Championship opportunity could await him, and has his pick of options moving forward.
Dujon Sterling’s 39th and final Coventry outing ended in disappointment away to Doncaster, not least because he was out-jumped by Kieran Sadlier for the opening goal in what was admittedly a very tough situation to defend, but he’s put in a strong shift all season, learned a lot about what it takes to be a professional, and is targeting Championship football next season. It’s hard to remember that he’s still only 19 years old.
Nathan Baxter missed Yeovil’s last match as a Football League club through injury, but he cleaned up their end-of-season awards, winning the Player and Young Player of the Year honours in addition to three other supporters’ titles.
Thank you to the club for the player of the season and young player of the season awards. Also thanks to the YTCST, the DSA, and the Cary Glovers for their player of the season awards. pic.twitter.com/tnjZDQ6ILD
— Nathan Baxter (@NathanBaxterGK) May 4, 2019
Jacob Maddox played ninety minutes on his Cheltenham Town farewell; more than 40 appearances and 3000 minutes in his first season in the adult game is an underrated achievement, and one that will stand him in good stead for his inevitable step up in 2019-20.
Ola Aina played the last ten minutes of Torino’s Derby della Mole against Juventus, a 1-1 draw that gives Tiémoué Bakayoko and Milan the chance to jump back ahead of them in the race for Europa League qualification, when they play Bologna on Monday. Bakayoko is set to be dropped for that match, however, after turning up more than an hour late for training earlier in the week.
Chievo lost 4-0 to SPAL and Lucas Piazon sat dutifully on the substitutes’ bench throughout as usual.
Alvaro Morata was booked as Atlético Madrid were walloped 3-0 by Espanyol, but Kenneth Omeruo and Leganés had a much better time of things, winning 3-0 at Sevilla to officially confirm their survival in La Liga for another season. The Nigerian has found a perfect home just outside Madrid, playing at the heart of a deep defence that likes to soak up pressure, a role in which he has excelled previously in Turkey and for his national team. They might struggle to afford to buy him permanently this summer, but if he wants to stay, he and Chelsea will hopefully find a way for him to do so.
Josi Quintero didn’t play for Lleida against his former Barcelona B team-mates and is counting the days until he becomes a free agent this June.
Baba Rahman played 65 minutes in Reim’s heavy 3-0 home defeat against Nimes.
Victorien Angban played the last twelve minutes as Metz beat Valenciennes to clinch the Ligue 2 title.
The entire Eredivisie schedule for this weekend was moved into mid-May to allow Ajax the best possible preparation for their home leg against Tottenham in the Champions League Semi Finals, so there was no action for the Vitesse contingent, but there was news. Charly Musonda returned to the club this week to train after missing the entire campaign with a knee injury, and is reportedly in talks to return there next season to make up for lost time and kick-start a career that has rather stalled in the last two years.
Fankaty Dabo missed Sparta’s 3-2 defeat against Jong Ajax and will now hopefully be fit for their promotion playoff challenge that begins mid-month.
Kylian Hazard might be out until the end of the season through injury, but he has taken the opportunity to sign permanently with Cercle Brugge, penning a four-year deal.
Victor Moses made his comeback from a recent groin strain with half an hour from the bench as Fenerbahce beat Kasimpasa 3-1 to ease their relegation fears.
Started: July 14th
Final: May 29th
|Player||Club||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Europe/Cont||Other||Mins|
|Tammy Abraham||Aston Villa||40||26||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||3450||40||26|
|Lewis Baker||Leeds United||11||0||1||0||2||0||0||0||0||0||491||14||0|
|Michy Batshuayi||Crystal Palace||11||5||2||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||923||12||6|
|Isaiah Brown||Leeds United||2||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||11||2||0|
|Trevoh Chalobah||Ipswich Town||43||2||0||0||1||0||0||0||0||0||3273||44||2|
|Charlie Colkett||Shrewsbury Town||1||0||1||0||1||0||0||0||3||0||306||6||0|
|Fankaty Dabo||Sparta Rotterdam||24||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||1625||24||0|
|Jay Dasilva||Bristol City||28||0||3||0||1||0||0||0||0||0||2383||32||0|
|Kylian Hazard||Cercle Brugge||21||4||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||1116||21||4|
|Michael Hector||Sheffield Wednesday||36||2||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||3242||37||2|
|Reece James||Wigan Athletic||45||3||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||4005||46||3|
|Tomas Kalas||Bristol City||39||0||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||3586||40||0|
|Todd Kane||Hull City||39||3||1||0||1||0||0||0||0||0||3363||40||3|
|Jacob Maddox||Cheltenham Town||38||1||2||0||1||0||0||0||2||3||3077||43||4|
|Mason Mount||Derby County||37||9||2||0||4||2||0||0||0||0||3745||42||11|
|Alvaro Morata||Atlético Madrid||15||6||0||0||0||0||2||0||0||0||1245||17||6|
|Charly Musonda||Vitesse Arnhem||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||14||1||0|
|Kasey Palmer||Blackburn Rovers||15||1||0||0||2||2||0||0||0||0||984||17||3|
|Kasey Palmer||Bristol City||15||2||2||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||538||16||2|
|Danilo Pantic||Partizan Belgrade||29||6||3||1||0||0||7||1||0||0||3043||40||8|
|Dujon Sterling||Coventry City||38||0||0||0||1||0||0||0||0||0||3307||39||0|
|Fikayo Tomori||Derby County||46||1||4||0||4||1||0||0||0||0||4692||54||2|
|Iké Ugbo||Scunthorpe United||15||1||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||936||16||1|
|Jack Wakely||Basingstoke Town||15||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||0||1355||16||0|
|Player||Club||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Europe||Other||Mins|
|Apps||Cln Sht||Apps||Cln Sht||Apps||Cln Sht||Apps||Cln Sht||Apps||Cln Sht||Apps||Cln Sht|
|Nathan Baxter||Yeovil Town||35||10||1||0||1||0||0||0||1||1||3420||38||11|
|Jamal Blackman||Leeds United||0||0||0||0||2||0||0||0||0||0||180||2||0|
|Brad Collins||Burton Albion||31||10||1||0||3||1||0||0||0||0||3115||35||11|
|Ethan Wady||Tooting & Mitcham United||7||2||0||0||0||0||0||0||2||1||810||9||3|
|Karlo Ziger||Sutton United||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||0||90||1||0|