Liver­pool in Pre­mier League driver’s seat

Manch­ester teams crash: United and City both lose on the same day

The Peterborough Examiner - - SPORTS -

MANCH­ESTER, ENG­LAND — Liver­pool might never have a bet­ter chance to end its long wait for a Pre­mier League soc­cer ti­tle.

Leader Liver­pool is en­joy­ing an eight-point ad­van­tage over de­fend­ing cham­pion Manch­ester City af­ter its clos­est ri­val stum­bled go­ing into the in­ter­na­tional break.

Sun­day went badly wrong for Manch­ester teams, with United and City los­ing on the same day for the first time in more than six years.

Man United en­tered the late match at New­cas­tle with its worst seven-game start to a league sea­son in 30 years, and dropped to 12th af­ter Matthy Longstaff scored in a 1-0 win for the hosts.

City had a shock de­feat at home to Wolver­hamp­ton Wan­der­ers with Adama Traore scor­ing twice in the clos­ing stages for a 2-0 win.

It was the first loss at home for Pep Guardi­ola’s team in any com­pe­ti­tion since a 3-2 de­feat to Crys­tal Palace in the league last De­cem­ber.

City’s chances of reel­ing in Liver­pool are be­ing ham­pered by in­juries in de­fence and the loss of Kevin De Bruyne, who is in­jured again af­ter a run of prob­lems last sea­son.

City had dom­i­nated pos­ses­sion but failed to re­ally trou­ble Rui Pa­tri­cio in the Wolves goal. David Silva struck the post with a free kick but it was as close as City was go­ing to get be­fore Traore fin­ished off a break started by Raul Jimenez in the 80th.

Traore grabbed his se­cond in sim­i­lar fash­ion in in­jury time af­ter Wolves with­stood the home side’s des­per­ate at­tempts to equal­ize.

It left Guardi­ola con­tem­plat­ing the side’s se­cond de­feat of the sea­son and the third game in which it has dropped points.

Liver­pool main­tained its per­fect start with a late 2-1 win over Le­ices­ter on Satur­day. Liver­pool has not won the league ti­tle since the 1989-90 sea­son.

Guardi­ola said, “When one team is eight points in front it is bet­ter not to think too much about that. It is bet­ter to think about what is next.”

City next plays at Crys­tal Palace on Oct. 19, one day be­fore Man United hosts Liver­pool.

Sol­sk­jaer un­der pres­sure

Man United man­ager Ole Gun­nar Sol­sk­jaer is un­der pres­sure af­ter his side’s third league de­feat left it just two points above the rel­e­ga­tion zone.

The 19-year-old Longstaff, who clipped the cross­bar in the first half, sealed a dream de­but with the win­ning goal in the 72nd minute. Jetro Willems ran at the static United de­fence and cut the ball back for Longstaff, who let fly from out­side the penalty area past the help­less David De Gea in the United goal.

The vis­i­tors were with­out the likes of Paul Pogba, An­thony Mar­tial and Jesse Lin­gard.

“We do lack quite a few key play­ers but that’s no ex­cuse now,” Sol­sk­jaer told Sky Sports. “The play­ers work hard, they ran their socks off, at the mo­ment we’re in a po­si­tion we’re not used to.”

Coun­ter­part Steve Bruce en­joyed his first home win as New­cas­tle man­ager — and his first win as a coach over his for­mer side United at the 23rd at­tempt across all com­pe­ti­tions.

Chelsea wins again

Chelsea beat Southamp­ton 4-1 away to stretch the team’s win­ning run to four games across all com­pe­ti­tions un­der Frank Lam­pard.

Tammy Abra­ham, Ma­son Mount and N’Golo Kanté scored in the first half, be­fore Chris­tian Pulisic bril­liantly set up fel­low sub­sti­tute Michy Bat­shuayi for Chelsea’s fourth goal in the 89th minute. Pulisic had only come on in the 80th for his first ap­pear­ance in the league since Aug. 31. The U.S. mid­fielder dinked the ball in be­hind the Southamp­ton de­fence for for­mer Borus­sia Dort­mund team­mate Bat­shuayi to com­plete the scor­ing.

The win lifted Chelsea to fifth place, just be­hind Le­ices­ter on goal dif­fer­ence.

Ar­se­nal third

For­mer Chelsea defender David Luiz helped Ar­se­nal move up to third with his first goal for the Gun­ners in a 1-0 win over Bournemout­h.

Luiz headed home off a cor­ner from Ni­co­las Pepe with only nine min­utes gone.

RUI VIEIRA THE AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

Wolver­hamp­ton Wan­der­ers’ Adama Traore, cen­tre, cel­e­brates with team­mates af­ter scor­ing in an English Pre­mier League soc­cer match against Manch­ester City at Eti­had Sta­dium on Sun­day. The Wan­der­ers won the con­test, 2-0.

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