By Ryan Moran
- Jurgen Klopp claims first win as Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea have only won one of their last five.
- Manchester City and Arsenal three points clear at the top of the league.
- Watford end West Ham United’s impressive away record.
Jurgen Klopp earns his first Premier League win as Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea have only managed four points out of the last 15 available. Everton record an impressive win against Sunderland while Arsenal right their wrongs at the Liberty Stadium.
Chelsea 1-3 Liverpool
Two goals from Philippe Coutinho and a Christian Benteke effort saw Liverpool come from behind to pile the pressure on Mourinho. Ramires had put Chelsea ahead after a Cesar Azpilicueta cross found the Brazilian to head Chelsea into the lead. With four points from their last five Premier League games, there is cause for concern at Stamford Bridge with their Portuguese manager, for once, keeping his cards close to his chest.
After taking the lead three minutes into the game, the home side went in at half time with the scores level as Coutinho’s left footed drive from outside the box found the bottom left corner to dent Chelsea’s hopes of a much needed win. The away side then took the lead when the Brazilian playmaker once again found himself in a dangerous position, firing into the top right corner from a headed Benteke pass. The Belgian striker only added to Chelsea’s misery, converting a third to condemn Chelsea to a third defeat in five games.
Everton 6-2 Sunderland
On the day Goodison Park remembered Howard Kendall, Everton produced a performance worthy of paying tribute to an Everton hero. An Arouna Kone hat-trick summoned Sunderland to their seventh loss of the season. However Jermaine Defoe and Steven Fletcher had pulled the away side level at 2-2 after trailing 2-0 thanks to goals from Gerard Deulofeu and hat-trick hero Kone.
Adam Johnson and Patrick Van Aanholt struck the post early on as the Black Cats had chances to take the lead. However it was the Toffees who took the lead when a Kone ball over the top was controlled and finished by winger Deulofeu. The Ivorian then scored his first of three goals as the home side edged towards half time with a two goal cushion only for Defoe to give his side a lifeline and push the momentum in his side’s favour.
Fletcher drew Sam Allardyce’s side level after half time with a header five minutes into the second half from a Van Aanholt cross. Sebastian Coates’ own goal handed the opposition a 3-2 lead in a seven minute window that put Roberto Martinez’s side out of sight. An individual goal from Lukaku and Kone’s second opened up a three goal lead to put the game beyond their opposition only to add to their misery 15 minutes later with a header to complete his first hat-trick since the striker’s move from Wigan in 2013.
The result puts Everton in ninth, four points off of a definite Europa League spot and one point from sixth place as a close race for those desired positions continues. As for Allardyce, defensive mistakes and full backs high up the field were punished by the opposing wingers as a lot of work is still needed to pull Sunderland out of trouble, two points from safety.
Swansea 0-3 Arsenal
It was a welcome return for Arsenal to the Liberty Stadium having turned their fortunes around at a ground the Gunners suffered a loss at last season. In a goalless first half, an Olivier Giroud header put the away side ahead in a half where goals from Lauren Koscielny and Joel Campbell kept Arsene Wenger’s side level on points with Manchester City at the top of the table.
Swansea’s best chance fell to Bafetimbi Gomis, whose goal drought continues. Koscielny capitalised on an error by former teammate Lukasz Fabianski to double his side’s lead. Campbell was given a first Premier League start and took it with both hands, netting a Mesut Ozil cross to confirm the three points were going back to London.
An injury hit Arsenal side still managed to keep up the pace with City at the top, however with an inferior goal difference, Wenger’s side sit second. Four points from Swansea’s last five games warrants room for improvement in a season that started so well for the Welsh side, now six points above the relegation zone.
Manchester City 2-1 Norwich
Manchester City snatched victory as a late Yaya Toure converted penalty denied Norwich City a point at the Etihad Stadium. In a turn of events that saw Russell Martin sent off for handball, Toure dispatched the resultant penalty to retain top spot over Arsenal who picked up three points at Swansea.
A Nicolas Otamendi header had given the home side the lead only for a rare Joe Hart mistake to be pounced on by Cameron Jerome, stabbing the ball into the net. However it was the last moments of the game that sparked the drama as Martin was sent off for handball as the Canaries fell a goal behind, with Robbie Brady also bringing down Raheem Sterling seconds later for another penalty.
Aleksandar Kolarov could not extend his side’s lead from the spot but City held on as their superior goal difference kept the Manchester outfit at the top of the pile. The away side sit two points above Newcastle who are in the first of three relegation places, with only Bournemouth separating the Magpies and Norwich in what is likely to be a five team relegation scrap come the end of the season.
Watford 2-0 West Ham United
Manchester City, Arsenal and Liverpool failed in their attempts to break West Ham United’s impressive unbeaten away record but an Odion Ighalo double ended the Hammer’s streak and handed Slaven Bilic only his third defeat in the league.
A low cross from Chelsea loanee Nathan Ake set up Ighalo who finished after the Dutch defender dispossessed Andy Carroll six minutes before half time. Three minutes after half time, Watford doubled their lead as Ighalo doubled his goal tally in the game after Ikechi Anya’s cut back. Enner Valencia was gifted an opportunity as a Craig Cathcart back pass was pounced on by the striker who could only strike the post. On a day that dismissed the Hammers away record, James Collins was also dismissed for a foul on Ighalo to add to his side’s misery.
The Hornets picked up their second consecutive victory in the league as the home side currently sit 11th in the table, five places above Norwich and six places above Bournemouth, eight points ahead of the Cherries. The loss moves West Ham down from third to sixth, one point away from fourth placed Manchester United in the first of four Champions League places.
Tottenham Hotspur 3-1 Aston Villa
With new boss Remi Garde watching from the stands, Aston Villa suffered their ninth defeat of the season. An early goal from Mousa Dembele gave the visitors the worst possible start before Dele Alli doubled the lead before half time. Jordan Ayew halved their opponent’s lead before Harry Kane followed on from last week’s hat-trick against Bournemouth.
Dembele was given time and space to beat Brad Guzan and did exactly that as questionable defending handed Tottenham the lead three minutes into the game. Villa looked a side lacking in confidence, the first goal only epitomising their decline with Alli increasing the damage two minutes into stoppage time with a strike from the edge of the box.
In the second half, the away side looked full of fight and got their reward with a goal on 80 minutes, Ayew’s second in two games from 18 yards. Kane spoilt the party, adding a third to defeat Garde’s new side with the ex-Lyon manager looking on from the stands.
Villa sit bottom of the league, four points from safety while Tottenham move up to fifth, with a better goal difference than West Ham.
West Bromwich Albion 2-3 Leicester City
Leicester City couldn’t add to their one clean sheet of the season but were able to produce the goals to see off West Bromwich Albion. Jamie Vardy scored for the eighth consecutive game while Riyad Mahrez continued from his early season scoring form with a brace to cancel out Salomon Rondon’s opener and a late Rickie Lambert penalty.
Tony Pulis’ side took the lead through Rondon’s header at the near post slightly against the run of play Vardy had hit the post seven minutes into the game and were punished for not being clinical enough in front of goal. In the second half, the away side made up for their early pressure by converting the chances that fell to them in the second half. A Marc Albrighton cross was met by Mahrez at the back post to level the scores. Albrighton was once again vital in the build-up, swinging in another dangerous cross which was deflected towards Mahrez, sliding the ball home from close range to hand his side the lead.
A passing move between Danny Drinkwater and England striker Vardy ended in the striker firing low past Boaz Myhill to open up a two goal deficit as Pulis’ side sparked into action. Nathan Dyer hand the home side a way back into the game with seven minutes to play, bringing down Calum Mcmanaman giving Lambert the opportunity to halve the deficit. The ex-Liverpool striker made no mistake but the home side could not force another break through as three points went back to Leicester.
Southampton 2-0 AFC Bournemouth
The Saints continued their impressive form, picking up another three points to stay unbeaten in their last five. Goals from Steven Davis and Graziano Pelle gave the south coast outfit a two goal cushion in the first half. It wasn’t all plain sailing as Victor Wanyama for a second yellow card.
In a dominant first half, the home side took advantage with Davis opening with a volley from a Ryan Bertrand cross. Five minutes later the south coast tie fell in favour of the St Mary’s outfit as Pelle headed in Dusan Tadic’s cross. The second half proved a much harder test as the Cherries rallied to find a way back into the game. Wanyama received a second yellow for a foul on Lee Tomlin but his side held on for their third win in five games and a clean sheet. The loss moves the away side one point closer to relegation zone thanks to Newcastle’s draw.
In the weekend’s other fixtures:
Newcastle United 0-0 Stoke City
Crystal Palace 0-0 Manchester United
A bottom of the table clash features as the lunchtime kick off with Newcastle United travelling to the Vitality Stadium, taking on an AFC Bournemouth side just one point in front of them in the league.
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