Chelsea still cruis­ing, Man City keep up

The Myanmar Times - - Sport -

CHELSEA fought back for a 2-1 win over Tot­ten­ham Hot­spur that ce­mented their place on top of the Premier League, while ti­tle ri­vals Manch­ester City and Liver­pool kept pace with the lead­ers on Novem­ber 26.

An­to­nio Conte’s Chelsea had been knocked out of pole po­si­tion by City’s 2-1 win at Burn­ley and Liver­pool’s 2-0 suc­cess against Sun­der­land ear­lier in the af­ter­noon.

But they re­gained their one-point lead over sec­ond-placed Liver­pool, who are level on points with third­placed City, thanks to a gritty Lon­don derby suc­cess at Stam­ford Bridge that made it seven suc­ces­sive league wins for the Blues.

Chelsea hadn’t con­ceded a league goal since Septem­ber 24, but Chris­tian Erik­sen fired Tot­ten­ham ahead in the 11th minute with a fe­ro­cious long-range strike.

De­spite be­ing out­played for much of the first half, Chelsea went back to the dress­ing room on level terms thanks to a sub­lime curl­ing ef­fort from Pe­dro just be­fore the in­ter­val.

In the 51st minute, Diego Costa picked out Vic­tor Moses at the far post and his shot was de­flected into the net off Jan Ver­tonghen as Chelsea ended Tot­ten­ham’s 12-match un­beaten league run.

“These games are dif­fi­cult. It was a tough game with a lot of in­ten­sity,” Conte said.

“It’s im­por­tant to con­tinue in this way and im­prove the con­fi­dence. It’s too early to talk of the ti­tle. This league is very tough.”

Tot­ten­ham man­ager Mauri­cio Po­chet­tino added, “If we an­a­lyse the game, we were bet­ter. All the stats are for us but foot­ball is not just about stats. You need to be clin­i­cal and score.”

Ear­lier, Ser­gio Aguero scored two scruffy goals as City saw off Burn­ley and Liver­pool fol­lowed suit by down­ing Sun­der­land with goals from Divock Origi and James Mil­ner af­ter los­ing Brazil­ian play­maker Philippe Coutinho to a wor­ry­ing in­jury.

“It was an in­tense game for us and a de­served win at the end,” said Liver­pool man­ager Jur­gen Klopp.

“It [Coutinho’s in­jury] is an an­kle in­jury, but we can’t say any more un­til we see a scan.”

Swansea City claimed an ex­tra­or­di­nary 5-4 win over fel­low strug­glers Crys­tal Palace, while cham­pi­ons Le­ices­ter City nar­rowly avoided a sev­enth de­feat of the cam­paign in a 2-2 draw with Mid­dles­brough.

Hav­ing seen City pre­vail at Turf Moor in the early game, Liver­pool were un­der pres­sure to pro­duce the goods against a Sun­der­land team who had won their two pre­vi­ous matches.

In the first half, the in­flu­en­tial Coutinho was stretchered off with his right an­kle in a brace af­ter hurt­ing him­self in a chal­lenge by Di­dier Ndong.

Origi took the Brazil in­ter­na­tional’s place and he gave Liver­pool a re­ward for their dom­i­nance in the 75th minute with his first league goal of the sea­son.

Jordan Hen­der­son picked the Bel­gian for­ward out on the left and he cut in­side onto his right foot and swept a shot in­side the far post.

Mil­ner com­pleted the vic­tory from the penalty spot in the first minute of in­jury time.

Burn­ley took a shock 14th-minute lead against City when Dean Mar­ney met Ni­co­las Ota­mendi’s headed clear­ance with a thump­ing 25-yard volley that nes­tled in the bot­tom-left cor­ner.

Pardew woe But Aguero equalised in the 37th minute, stab­bing home af­ter Burn­ley failed to clear a cor­ner, and the hosts’ luck con­tin­ued to desert them as both Mar­ney and Jo­hann Berg Gud­munds­son went off in­jured.

A de­fen­sive mix-up al­lowed City to net the de­ci­sive goal on the hour, with Fer­nand­inho’s cross strik­ing Aguero and go­ing in af­ter Ben Mee and Stephen Ward had got in each other’s way.

“We are so sat­is­fied for the points and the performance, es­pe­cially two days af­ter the Cham­pi­ons League,” said City man­ager Pep Guardi­ola, whose side host Chelsea next week­end.

“All of the play­ers showed huge char­ac­ter and a lot of per­son­al­ity.”

Swansea upped the pres­sure on Palace man­ager Alan Pardew by con­demn­ing the south Lon­don club to a sixth straight de­feat in a mad­cap game that gave Bob Bradley his first win since be­com­ing man­ager.

Palace led 1-0, fell 3-1 down, fought back to go 4-3 up, but even­tu­ally suc­cumbed cour­tesy of a re­mark­able brace of in­jury-time goals from Span­ish striker Fer­nando Llorente.

“Crazy, at 3-1 I thought we were in con­trol. That’s one we won’t for­get,” Bradley said.

“I’m go­ing to give the play­ers all the credit to­day. They fought un­til the end.”

The vic­tory took Swansea off the foot of the ta­ble, where they were re­placed by Sun­der­land, and left Palace above the bot­tom three on goal dif­fer­ence.

Hull City and West Bromwich Al­bion drew 1-1. –

Photo: AFP

Chelsea’s Brazil­ian-born Span­ish striker Diego Costa (right) tries to block Tot­ten­ham Hot­spur’s Dan­ish mid­fielder Chris­tian Erik­sen (left) dur­ing the English Premier League foot­ball match be­tween Chelsea and Tot­ten­ham Hot­spur at Stam­ford Bridge in Lon­don on Novem­ber 2.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Myanmar

© PressReader. All rights reserved.