LONDON (Reuters) - Everton manager Ronald Koeman is under mounting pressure after they lost 1-0 at home to Burnley on Sunday, while Liverpool drew 1-1 at Newcastle United as the Merseyside clubs continued to struggle in the Premier League.
Liverpool’s latest slip allowed Arsenal, who beat Brighton & Hove Albion 2-0, to leapfrog them into fifth place as the chasing teams scrambled to keep up with the ferocious pace set by the Manchester clubs who are five points clear at the top.
City and United have 19 points ahead of Tottenham Hotspur on 14, after they won 4-0 at Huddersfield Town on Saturday, with Chelsea, who lost 1-0 at home to Manchester City also on Saturday, and Arsenal both on 13.
Sixth-placed Burnley have 12 points, above Liverpool on goal difference, as their first league win at Goodison Park since 1976 saw them continue their best start to a Premier League season.
Sean Dyche’s side have taken eight points from four away games — more than they managed in the whole of last season.
Jeff Hendrick scored the only goal after 21 minutes, finishing off a magnificent team move in a game that brought more speculation about the future of the under-fire Koeman.
The Dutchman splurged 140 million pounds ($187.5 million) in the transfer market during the close season but dropped one of his major signings, former England striker Wayne Rooney, to the bench for Burnley’s visit.
Rooney came on for the last half-hour but failed to inject any life into Everton’s attack and a chorus of boos greeted the final whistle. The defeat left Koeman’s side languishing in 16th place with seven points from as many games.
“I have experience and I know if you win your life on a daily basis is different from if you lose,” said Koeman.
“It is not nice to get two weeks (for) an international break if you lose.... I will try to do my best for the job. All the stuff and the questions is not in my hands.”
The Mersey mood was no better at St James’s Park where Liverpool’s performance was typical of their season so far.
Brazilian midfielder Philippe Coutinho’s superb long range free-kick gave the visitors the lead — his third goal in as many games — before another display of defensive frailty.
Jonjo Shelvey, a former Red, split the Liverpool defense with a pass to Joselu who scored after the ball rebounded off his shin following Joel Matip’s tackle.
Visiting forwards Daniel Sturridge and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain missed easy chances against a team well-drilled by former Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez, who has never lost to them in five games.
“We usually would score but didn’t,” said Liverpool coach Juergen Klopp. “You need these simple moments.”
Liverpool’s 4-0 rout of Arsenal at the end of August already seems like a long time ago and the Gunners continued to put their shaky start to the season behind them by chalking up a sixth win in seven games since that Anfield thrashing.
On the 21st anniversary of Arsene Wenger taking over as manager, goals from Nacho Monreal and Alex Iwobi gave Arsenal their third win in seven days.
Iwobi’s strike was set up by Alexis Sanchez, whose superb backheel wrong-footed the Brighton defense.
The Chilean was at the center of most of Arsenal’s best moments, producing the sort of display that shows why the club has tried so hard to keep him.
“We have played more fluent than today but playing Monday, Thursday and today, it was important to get three points,” said Wenger.
Reporting by Neil Robinson; Editing by Christian Radnedge