Saturday, January 2, 2016

It Happened in England: Arsenal now two points clear at the top, United end skid

West Ham 2-0 Liverpool
West Ham have had some trouble finding goals over the last month, but they got an early one today after controlling the beginning of the match. A tenth minute header from Michail Antonio was set up by a picture perfect cross from Enner Valencia put the home team in front. Liverpool was then able to get forward and press their attack, but the final ball was simply never there in the first half. They took plenty of shots, but never forced a save out of Adrian.

Any progress Liverpool had made in the first half was undone ten minutes into the second. Andy Carroll connected on a Mark Noble cross for a well placed header to double the West Ham lead. It almost got worse for the Reds when Carroll was gifted another free header that had to be cleared off the line twice. Liverpool had a chance stopped at the last possible moment as well. A 78th minute chance was rescued by West Ham's defense to keep the final score at 2-0.

Arsenal 1-0 Newcastle
Right from the start this one was all Arsenal all the time, at least as far as attacking pressure was concerned. The Gunners controlled the run of play, but couldn't find a first half goal. Although Newcastle was pretty potent on the counter attack in the second half, it was Laurent Koscielny's boot giving Arsenal the well deserved lead in the 73rd minute. That would be all for Arsenal. Newcastle and their best road defense in the Premier League prices a tough nut to crack, but they managed to win and stay in first.

Manchester United 2-1 Swansea City
United were in desperate need if a win and struggling Swansea is just the club they needed to see in order to get it. After a scoreless first half, Anthony Martial got United in front by heading home a cross in the 47th minute. Swansea was able to bake back, though. Gylfi Sigurdsson was able to float a header by David de Gea as the clock hit 70 minutes. The recently quiet Wayne Rooney rescued United with a cheeky backheel flick off a low Marital cross in the 77th minute to win it.

Leicester City 0-0 AFC Bournemouth
With the other table toppers facing lesser opposition, Leicester knew they needed a win to keep pace. The Foxes had a great chance to go in front in the 58th after Simon Francis took down Jamie Vardy when he was through on goal. The defender was sent off for his efforts, but he got away with the crime insofar as the normally reliable Riyad Mahrez missed the ensuing penalty. Leicester were impotent against their ten man opposition and had to settle for a 0-0 draw and a drop to second place, two points back of Arsenal.

Norwich City 1-0 Southampton
Southampton have been beginning to come alive heading into this road clash with Norwich. The action picked up in the 71st minute when Victor Wanyama delivered a malicious tackle and was sent off straight away for his efforts. Five minutes later, Alexander Tettey scored four Norwich to give them the full three points.

West Bromwich Albion 1-0 Stoke City
Stoke have quietly been one if the hottest trans in the Premier League of late, but it was Stephane Sessegnon giving West Brom the lead at the hour mark. Jonathan Walters equalized for the visitors in the 81st minute, but it was all four naught in the end. Two minutes after the goal, Geoff Cameron was shown straight red for an out of line shove away from the play. West Brom find their winner deep in stoppage time from Jonathan Evans. 

Sunderland 3-1 Aston Villa
Patrick Van Aanholt's deflected long shot gave Sunderland the leg up in this battle or relegation candidates. Last place Villa was able to level through Carles Gil in the 63rd minute. That would not get the Black Cats to go away quietly. Jermaine Defoe find a 72nd minute winner for them. Defoe put the finishing touches on Aston Villa's misery with his second in stoppage time. Both sides still occupy the bottom two places in the league, though.

Watford 1-2 Manchester City
Odion Ighlao has been on fire fir Watford, but he wood need to be at his best for the Hornets to have a chance against Manchester City. But this Watford dude are a tricky bunch. They hung with the Citizens for the entire first half and were gifted a reward early in the second. In the 55th minute Aleksander Kolarov headed a corner into his own goal and the Hornets were out in front. Watford continued to pressure the City goal with the lead. They had numerous chances, especially one from Ettienne Capoue that involved him nutmeging Kolarov, but ending in a shot wide. The match flipped on its head in the final ten minutes. Yaya Toure was around to play savior. In the 82nd minute he slipped a corner insider the near post to get on level terms. Sergio Aguero's head provided the winner in the 85th to rescue a win. City stats in third place, three points back of Arsenal, while Watford remains in ninth.

No comments:

Post a Comment