Talking points from this week's Premier League matches

Twelve of Europe's top football clubs, including five Premier League clubs announced late on Sunday night that they were launching a breakaway Super League, inviting widespread criticism

Premier League logo

With the season nearing an end, the Premier League is gearing for an exciting finish.   -  Getty Images

Talking Points from the Premier League weekend:

Never mind the Premier League 

Twelve of Europe's top football clubs announced late on Sunday night that they were launching a breakaway Super League in the face of widespread opposition from within the game and beyond.

West Ham suddenly have something to lose 

In the build-up to its away trip to Newcastle United on Saturday, West Ham was finally being talked about, not as imposters but the real deal for a top-four finish.

Victory at Newcastle would have put the Hammers third with five games left to play and piled the pressure on the likes of Leicester City, Chelsea and Liverpool.

But with something incredible seemingly within touching distance, the wheels came off as five calamitous minutes cost Moyes' team in a 3-2 defeat.

RELATED|Greenwood brace helps Man United to 3-1 win over Burnley

An own goal by Issa Diop, a red card for Craig Dawson and a goalkeeping howler by Lukasz Fabianski sent the Hammers 2-0 down at the interval, and although the team showed great heart to battle back to 2-2 they conceded late on to lose the match.

West Ham is still very much in the hunt, but it will need to keep its nerve better than it did at Newcastle.

Saint-Maximin has been Newcastle's saviour

If, as seems likely, Newcastle United survive in the top flight, the return of French winger Allan Saint-Maximin will go down as a turning point in its battle against the drop.

After a six-game winless run had Newcastle in grave danger of dropping into the bottom three, the Magpies has picked up seven points in three games and Saint-Maximin has been a key figure.

He inspired a comeback win at Burnley last week and was superb in the first half against West Ham in a win that lifted Newcastle into the 15th spot.

RELATED|Five English clubs signs up to breakaway league - report

The 24-year-old has been restricted to only 13 league starts this season, but when he has played Newcastle have a win ratio of 37% compared with 15% when he is unavailable.

Kane double will only increase speculation

Harry Kane must be starting to wonder what more he can do for a Tottenham Hotspur side, which appears wholly incapable of benefiting from his prolific goal spree.

The England skipper struck twice on Friday at Everton to move top of the Premier League scoring charts with 21 goals, but once again his side dropped points in a 2-2 draw that leaves its hopes of finishing in the top four remote at best.

Kane has been directly involved in 62 goals in 62 appearances in all competitions for Spurs under Jose Mourinho (45 goals and 17 assists) but unless it beats Manchester City in next week's League Cup final, he will still be waiting for the first winners' medal in his career.

RELATED|Moyes says 'horrendous mistakes' cost West Ham in defeat to Newcastle

While the Golden Boot prize would be consolation, Kane knows his career will ultimately be defined by silverware.

And if Tottenham is to beat City, it might need to do it without Kane anyway as he hobbled off at Goodison Park with what appeared to be an ankle injury.

Time running out for Fulham as late goals bite 

A second-half penalty put Fulham within touching distance of a first-ever win away at Arsenal, but yet again it conceded a late goal -- this time seven minutes into stoppage time -- to drop two points in its battle against relegation.

RELATED|Nketiah's stoppage-time strike denies Fulham first win at Arsenal

Scott Parker's side had defended heroically after going ahead, but Eddie Nketiah bundled the ball home to snatch a 1-1 draw for Arsenal, nudging Fulham ever-closer to the relegation trapdoor.

While Sheffield United is already down and West Bromwich Albion is nine points from safety, Fulham still has a slim chance, sitting six points behind Burnley. But it needs to start turning valiant displays into wins.

For more updates, follow Sportstar on :