Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Midweek Premier League Madness: United actually exciting, Villa actually win

AFC Bournemouth 1-3 West Ham
West Ham entered the match unbeaten in seven Premier League matches, but the streak has been littered with draws as they have been unable  to find many winners over the past month or so. It was the Cherries striking first in this one. Harry Artem's low long distance shot put Bournemouth in front in the 17th minute as they looked to score another win against superior opposition. The second half was allWest Ham, though. Dmitri Payet got the Hammers back on terms in the 67th and Enner Valencia giving them the lead in the 74th. Valencia's second of the match put the finishing touches on the win in the 84th. West Ham leaps over boring Manchester United into fifth place in the Premier League. They have now won three straight and are without a defeat in eight matches.

Aston Villa 1-0 Crystal Palace
Two teams that can't exactly score goals got together as Villa continued their march towards relegation and Palace looked to put pressure on a spot in Europe for next season. Not surprisingly, no goals came in the first half for either side. It was Aston Villa coming through early in the second half. Joleon Lescott was the man giving the Villians an unlikely lead in the 58th minute. It was a rare win for Aston Villa, their first since the opening week of the season. They are still in last place however, with only 11 points. Palace remains in seventh place with the loss.

Newcastle 3-3 Manchester United
Boring, boring Man United got off to a better than boring start on the road in Newcastle. Wayne Rooney was able tos core from the spot under ten minutes in after a slight handball in the box sent him there. Newcastle did have chances. One, courtesy of Giorginio Wijnaldum collecting a low cross near the top of the penalty area, signified the beginning of more control of possession in the later stages of the first half. However,  a quick counter attack led to United's second goal in the 38th minute. Wayne Rooney sprung the move in the Newcastle half. When it looked like the captain would shoot, he instead slipped a pass to Jessee Lingard to slip it past Robert Elliot. It was Wijnaldum getting the home team on the board in the 42nd, however. A one touch volley to cut the Manchester lead was the end result of his darting run into the penalty area.The goal ended a Newcastle scoreless streak that had lasted more than five full matches.

Although Lingard should have scored his second goal early in the second half, it was the Magpies asking a few questions leading up to the hour mark. They were rewarded for their pressure at the stroke of 65 minutes when Chris Smalling wrestled down Aleksander Mitrovic on a Newcastle corner. It was the first penalty awarded to Newcastle on the season and Mitrovic slotted it home with ease to level the score at two. The goal provided plenty of momentum. Manchester United's back line was firmly pinned against the ropes for the next ten minutes or so with little sign of reprieve.

Thankfully for United, Wayne Rooney has been in the best form we have sen in years. He hammered home the winner in the 80th minute to give his squad an exciting lead. They had a chance to stretch it back to two goals when Marouane Fellaini was gifted a wide open header on an 84th minute counter attack that he drilled right into Elliot's chest. They would come to rue that miss in the final minute of the 90. Paul Dummett blasted a shot off of Chris Smalling, the official goat of the match for United, and into the top corner of the net.

United drops to sixth thanks to the West Ham win in Bournemouth. Newcastle stays in 18th, a point back of safety.

Updated Premier League Table

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