The Soccer Saturday panel look at Arsenal's cracker with Fulham, Southampton's costly error and Everton's top-four aspirations...
Last Updated: November 12, 2012 8:48am
Matt Le Tissier on why Fulham deserved their draw against Arsenal at the Emirates
"Arsenal shaded the game possession-wise but Fulham gave it a right good go and when they attacked they threw plenty of men forward, and Dimitar Berbatov, who makes the game look effortless, was outstanding, particularly in the first half; when the ball goes up to him it sticks and he brought other players into play. Fulham showed character to come back from 2-0 down and they deserved at least a point, as even at 3-3 they were pressing.
"Theo Walcott was involved in most of the good things Arsenal did; he took the corner for Olivier Giroud's first goal and put the cross in for his second. Giroud looks like he is finding his feet, too, as other than his goals his all-round play was good and he could have had a hat-trick when he hit a left-foot shot from 25 yards that Mark Schwarzer had to get down well to save. He was a real handful.
"I thought Arsenal's last-ditch penalty, which Schwarzer saved, was unjust, though - I thought it was impossible for Fulham's Sascha Riether to get his hand out of the way and it was not in an unnatural position anyway - while Aaron Ramsey could have been sent off as the offence he got a yellow card for - a shirt pull - was identical to the one he could have got a second yellow card for!"
Charlie Nicholas on whether Everton can finish in the top four
"I like the way Everton play; people can say it is a bit route one at times, but it is very clever. Marouane Fellaini played deeper today and got involved in the build-up, while Steven Pienaar was back and Leon Osman was steady.
"Kevin Mirallas is a player that intrigues me, too; I find him very exciting. But I still look at Everton's bench and wonder if there is enough to keep them in the top four if someone big gets a suspension or an injury. They can stay there but they need everybody fit - and I don't see that happening.
"As for Sunderland, I thought this was the best they have played in a while but they ended up getting nothing. They had five very good chance and even when they were 2-1 down they kept the ball alive in the box and it was cruel on them that Craig Gardner blocked his own man Carlos Cuellar's shot towards the end."
Paul Merson on the error that cost Southampton victory against Swansea
"Southampton will be kicking themselves as they were the team that were going to win the game; they were very comfortable at 1-0, while Swansea were were playing as bad as I've ever seen them play.
"Then the goalkeeper, Paulo Gazzaniga, instead of booting the ball way, tries to play it to his defender and Nathan Dyer nips in and scores. It was atrocious and you feel for the manager, Nigel Adkins, as his hard work has been thrown out of the window.
"On the plus side, Rickie Lambert won virtually every header, while Gaston Ramirez played well in the hole, which looks like his true position; not everything he did turned to gold but he was the 'one' for Southampton and Lambert came alive when he had the ball. Jack Cork was good, too; most of the time Southampton let the other team play but they didn't let Swansea play and I think that was because of him squeezing people and closing them down."
Phil Thompson on Stoke's 1-0 win over QPR
"The Stoke crowd were anxious for a lot of the game as their team couldn't get anything going, despite trying to hit Peter Crouch and Jonathan Walters up top. QPR were the ones trying to get on the ball and keep possession and they did that quite well, but I reckon the respective 'keepers only had to make one save each, with QPR goalie Julio Cesar's coming in the 88th minute.
"Adel Taarabt had all the chances for QPR - and some were golden chances - and you just wonder with him if he is too focussed on scoring a 'worldy'. Charlie Adam, who surprisingly started on the right side of midfield for Stoke, scored his first goal for the club with a good half-volley - but I think Stoke boss Tony Pulis will be disappointed at how his team played."
Click this link to read Charlie Nicholas' views on Neil Lennon, Luis Suarez and John Terry.