With the truly wild 2022-23 Premier League season now officially done, we are finally gifted with the chance to exhale, decompress and take a look at some of the dizzying scenes that unfolded in the top flight over the past nine months.
Of course, banks of cameras were present at all 380 Premier League matches between August and May with every thrill, spill and memorable moment captured from a pitchside vantage.
Here is our ESPN writers' pick of the best action shots taken during the Premier League season, presented here in chronological order.
Thomas Tuchel and Antonio Conte's aggressive handshake (Aug. 14)
With pressure already beginning to mount two games into the season, things boiled over in spectacular fashion after Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur slugged out a 2-2 draw at Stamford Bridge. The postmatch formalities between managers Tuchel and Conte proved a flash point when the handshake descended into an ill-tempered jostle; the Italian refusing to make eye contact and his German counterpart gripping just a little too firmly in retaliation. Both coaches were subsequently fined for their churlish conduct. Tuchel was also given a touchline ban, but he was out of a job less than four weeks later anyway when Chelsea unexpectedly fired him.
Cristiano Ronaldo storms down tunnel early (Oct. 19)
Ronaldo suffered a chastening case of second-season syndrome as his return to Manchester United fizzled in the first half of the 2022-23 campaign. Relegated to the bench by new head coach Erik ten Hag, the veteran Portuguese superstar cut an increasingly frustrated figure, culminating in him storming off down the Old Trafford tunnel before the end of United's 3-2 victory over Tottenham after spending the evening as an unused substitute. Ronaldo then left for good in December when he completed a shock midseason transfer to Saudi side Al Nassr.
Kevin De Bruyne pushes Mikel Arteta at Emirates Stadium (Feb. 15)
Just three points separated Arsenal and Manchester City when the top two sides in the Premier League met at the Emirates in February. With the title on the line, the gnawing tension might have gotten the better of De Bruyne when the City midfielder physically shoved Gunners' coach Arteta in the chest after the latter moved to partially shield a loose ball that had rolled over the touchline. Clearly incensed by the perceived obstruction, the Belgian then wagged his finger in Arteta's face on his way back to the pitch. The visitors proceeded to steamroll their hosts, winning 3-1 to go top of the table on goal difference.
Players' reactions after Reiss Nelson's injury time winner for Arsenal (March 4)
After going behind inside the first 10 seconds and then finding themselves two goals down before the hour mark, things were looking dicey for Arsenal and their tentative lead at the summit when they faced Bournemouth at the Emirates. However, the Gunners rallied to score three goals in the final stages to seal a dramatic comeback, with Nelson's incredible 97th-minute winner releasing all sorts of pent-up emotion across North London.
Bournemouth player David Brooks' emotional return to the field (March 18)
There was a timely reminder of the truly important things in life as midfielder Brooks made his first Premier League appearance in 536 days when his side faced Aston Villa in March. The Welsh international was given an emotional standing ovation from everybody as he made his first appearance since September 2021 after a long and arduous recovery from cancer.
Man City manager Pep Guardiola's celebrations in front of Liverpool players (April 1)
Knowing that his side desperately needed to win the big games in order to catch Arsenal at the top, City coach Guardiola couldn't resist celebrating directly in the face of Liverpool substitutes Kostas Tsimikas and Arthur while watching his side power to a resounding 4-1 victory at the Etihad. The unedifying image of Guardiola offering Tsimikas a childish "low five" will hardly go down as the oft-excitable Spanish manager's finest moment. April Fool's indeed.
Erling Haaland letting his hair down before scoring against Arsenal (April 26)
Fans were treated to the rare sight of Haaland's hair in all its long, lustrous glory after the Man City striker temporarily misplaced his hair band during a game against Arsenal. With locks fully wild and flowing free, the Norwegian powered through the Gunners back line and got on the score sheet as City roared to a commanding 4-1 victory over their title rivals.
Diogo Jota's high kick in the face of Tottenham's Oliver Skipp (April 30)
Jota somehow managed to avoid being being sent off when he swung a high boot directly into the oncoming forehead of Skipp during the seven-goal thriller between Liverpool and Tottenham at Anfield. With both players lucky to stay on the pitch for very different reasons, Jota escaped a VAR review and was only shown a yellow card for the foul before going on to score a late winner for the Reds. He then offered a public apology to Skipp after the final whistle, explaining that the collision was purely accidental and that it was never his intention to hurt his opponent.
Jurgen Klopp pulling his hamstring while celebrating late winner (April 30)
Liverpool head coach Klopp fell afoul of a little instant karma while celebrating Jota's injury-time winner against Tottenham after sustaining an injury while bounding along the touchline to scream directly in the fourth official's face. The German coach tweaked a hamstring in the process and was forced to limp painfully back to his dugout while the excess adrenaline quickly drained from his system.
Haaland's guard of honor after breaking the Premier League scoring record (May 3)
On the back of a truly prolific debut season in the Premier League, Erling Haaland received a fitting guard of honour from his Man City teammates after turning up and smashing the league's single-season scoring record at the first attempt. The Norwegian scored his 35th goal of the campaign against West Ham, thereby beating a record previously jointly held by Andy Cole and Alan Shearer since the early 1990s.
Julio Enciso's wonder goal for Brighton vs. Man City
He left it late but Brighton attacking midfielder Enciso scored one of the best goals of the Premier League season as the Seagulls mustered another impressive result against big-name opposition. The Paraguayan youngster sent a fantastic 20-yard effort into the top corner to draw his team level against champions City, with the game ultimately ending in a 1-1 draw at the Amex Stadium.
Abdoulaye Doucoure scores to keep Everton in the Premier League
Sapping to the very last, the Premier League relegation fight rumbled right to the final day for Leeds United, Everton and Leicester City who were all desperately trying to avoid joining already-down Southampton in the bottom three come close of play. Everton's precious top-flight status was secured for another season by a moment of sheer excellence from Doucoure, who scored the only goal in a vital 1-0 win over Bournemouth that sent the tempestuous atmosphere at Goodison Park into raptures while also consigning Leeds and Leicester to their shared fate.