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Premier League Review

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A review of the weekend’s Premier League action, including the North London derby, while Chelsea taste defeat yet again, for the tenth time this season.

Stoke City 1-0 Chelsea.

Chelsea needed a win here and to be fair, they outplayed Stoke, but credit goes to Stoke, they stuck to the game plan and thanks to a Marko Arnautovic volley they got all three points. Asmir Begovic got down low early on to stop a Glenn Johnson shot. Jack Butland then kept Ramires and Diego Costa at bay to the keep the game goalless. Arnautovic got his goal and the only goal of the game in the 53rd minute, controlling his volley well to beat Begovic and put the Potters into the lead. Pedro hit the post for Chelsea and Eden Hazard had a good chance but put his effort went agonisingly past the post. Loic Remy could have went down in the area, but didn’t, and it was good to see. He couldn’t direct his shot into the back of the net but showed strikers that you don’t have to go down.

Leicester City 2-1 Watford.

Jamie Vardy, what a man. Rumours of being linked to Real Madrid after this incredible bump of form. His penalty assured that the Foxes would take all three points from this match. Troy Deeney scored from the spot himself while N’golo Kante got the opener. Odion Ighalo hit the post early on and the game stayed 0-0. 52nd minute and Heurelho Gomes made sure the game did not stay goalless, his dire effort to stop the effort from Kante was all wrong and the ball trickled into the net, leaving the keeper red faced. Vardy then had a shot blocked and went down injured, looking like he was not going to get that ninth consecutive goal. He came back on and was involved within minutes, a great burst of pace saw him beat the Watford defence and  Gomes brought him down, yellow card to the keeper and Riyad Mahrez let Vardy take the penalty, ninth consecutive game and one away from equalling the record, impressive stuff. Deeney then took a Watford penalty and converted with ease to set up a tight finish, 2-1 the final score though and pizza all round for the Leicester team.

Manchester United 2-0 West Brom.

Goals from Juan Mata and Jesse Lingard assured United were back to winning ways after last week’s blip, 0-0 draw to Palace. Mata had a good chance early on but could only direct his effort wide of the target. Lingard then had his shot blocked well by Johnny Evans, it was certainly going in. Boaz Myhill then kept out Anthony Martial to keep the scores level. Seven minutes into the second half though and the Red Devils got their first goal. Lingard didn’t even look up when he hit the ball, a curling effort from outside the box that went bottom corner, great composure for such a young lad. Saido Berahino had a glorious chance to level the encounter straight after, his attempt went completely off target and the chance went begging. Mata confirmed the win from the spot in stoppage time, Martial using his pace to beat Gareth McAuley and then the latter bringing him down, shown a straight red and an early shower.

Bournemouth 0-1 Newcastle United.

How the Cherries lost this one, they’ll only know. They gave Newcastle a lesson in how to play football, somehow though, they came out of the game without a point. Ayote Perez got the only goal of the game in the 27th minute, completely against the run of play. Joshua King had two good chances early on to open the scoring, one a header and one a shot, both saved well by Rob Elliot. Perez then broke for Newcastle and opened the scoring, the keeper really should have done better. Adam Smith should have equalized for the home team, his shot always rising and going over the bar. Matt Ritchie then had a handful of chances but neither really threatened Elliot in the away goal, nervy game for Newcastle but they came away with all three points.

Sunderland 0-1 Southampton.

If the Saints did not come away with three points here they would have been devastated. They played some fantastic football at times and deserved to win by more than the one goal margin. A Dusan Tadic penalty was enough to send the visitors home with all three points. Costel Pantilimon kept out Sadio Mane twice early on, and Mane had his third attempt blocked well. Steven Davis had his effort cleared off the line and it looked like the Black Cats were doing enough to take a point from the match, that was until Ryan Betrand won a penalty and Tadic’s placement was second to none to send the visiotrs one up. Fabio Borini responded well and saw his effort well saved, the game stayed 1-0.

Norwich City 1-0 Swansea City.

Norwich heaped more frustration on Garry monk and picked up maximum points. A goal from Jonny Howson was the difference. Cameron Jerome had a good chance early on but could only direct his header over the bar. Robbie Brady had a good chance to open the scoring when he saw his header stopped with comfort. Gylfi Sigurosson had a cheeky attempt at goal hit the bar, his subtle chip grazed the bar and bounced out for a goal kick. The dead lock was finally broke though when Howson’s header from close range went in and erupted Carrow Road.

West Ham United 1-1 Everton.

The points were shared between these two on Saturday afternoon, goals from Romelu Lukaku and Manuel Lanzini. Aaron Creswell tried his luck from a tight angle but Tim Howard saved well during the early exchanges, Lanzini opened the scoring in the 30th minute though, he kept his composure and slotted home into the top corner from the edge of the box. Thirteen minutes later though and the game was all square, Lukaku taking the ball around the keeper and slotting home to take it into half time 1-1. Ross Barkley had a good chance from a free kick but wasted it as the ball went high and wide, Winston Reid had a great chance to put the Hammers back in front but his header flew over the bar from close range. Lukaku had the last chance of the match, his shot going wide of the target and 1-1 it finished.

Aston Villa 0-0 Manchester City.

Villa managed to keep the league leaders to a goalless draw. Both teams had chances to win the game but neither took them, Wilfred Bony went off during the first half with what looked like a hamstring injury. Aleksander Kolorav had the first chance, Brad Guzan tipping his shot around the post. Kevin De Bruyne should have scored with the first chance of the second half, he got his feet tangled together and could not put the ball into the net despite being only three yards out. In stoppage time Fernando saw his bullet header bounce back off the bar and into play as the game finished 0-0.

Liverpool 1-2 Crystal Palace.

Jürgen Klopp faced defeat for the first time, Yannick Bolasie and Scott Dann scoring for the visitors while Philippe Coutinho got one for the hosts. Bolasie saw his powerful effort fly into the back on the net in the 21st minute to put Palace ahead. Christian Benteke then missed a close range effort that should have gone in, Coutinho got the hosts back all square though three minutes prior to half time. Bakary Sako should have scored midway through the second half, Bolasie producing a world class ball across the goalmouth but Sako could only guide his effort wide of the target. Dann confirmed that Palace would be going back to London with maximum points in the 82nd minute, his second attempt with his head flew into the net and the away fans went crazy.

Arsenal 1-1 Tottenham Hotspur.

The North London derby ended in a score draw thanks to goals from Harry Kane and Kieran Gibbs. Eric Dier had a good chance to open the scoring, unmarked header that he could only direct wide of the goal. Danny Rose then produced what had to have been ball of the weekend to unleash Kane, who did not need asking twice to open the scoring. Spurs were constantly playing with a high tempo throughout the game and deserved more than their only goal. Arsenal were level in the 77th minute when Gibbs popped up at the back post and slotted home. Arsenal would have gone on to win the game too if Olivier Giroud was not so wasteful, not his most productive game in front of goal to say the least.




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