Once again the Premier League showed why it is the most exciting league in the world with a superb weekend of action. With late goals, moments of controversy and some huge results.
Chelsea Remain Top of Premier League After Costa Strike
Chelsea reinforced their Premier League victory aspirations with a hard fought 1-0 beating of West Brom at Stamford Bridge. The Baggies put up a quality defensive performance that thwarted the home side for 75 minutes, but football is a game of 90-plus minutes.
And, with so many brilliant players at their disposal, it just takes a moment of brilliance to score … and that is what happened.
Diego Costa is always prepared to run the hard yards, close down defenders, make himself a right nuisance.
It was a one on one out wide against Gareth McAuley which McAuley was favourite to win, but Costa bustled him off the ball, strode into the box and from an acute angle hit a blistering shot wide of Ben Foster in the visitors’ net.
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) December 11, 2016
A class hit which got him the man of the match award. West Brom manager Tony Pullis immediately turned to his substitute’s bench in a bid to go on the offensive, but it was all too late to make a difference.
Instead, with spaces now opening up, Chelsea, full of confidence and belief, might even have nicked a second.
Liverpool Slip Up Again As West Ham Snatch Point At Anfield
At Anfield another defensive wobble by Liverpool as the Merseysiders could only draw 2-2 with West Ham.
After conceding four in last weekend’s giveaway loss at Bournemouth, Liverpool gave away more poor goals to Dimitri Payet and Michail Antonio.
Adam Lallana put Liverpool ahead inside five minutes but the visitors were level when error-prone goalkeeper Loris Karius was beaten by a Payet free-kick which he got a hand to.
A scruffy goal from Antonio followed with Karius caught in no man’s land. But West Ham were in generous mood too with goalkeeper Darren Randolph dropping a cross into the path of Divock Origi to gift Liverpool the equaliser.
Just a point for Liverpool. Not good enough. Somehow, they have to sort out their defence. Play some of the promising reserves like Trent Alexander-Arnold and the fit again Joe Gomez.
Manchester United Shut Out Spurs at Old Trafford – While Rivals Manchester City Are Battered By Premier League Champions
All three points for Manchester United with a 1-0 win over Tottenham.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan was the hero with his first Premier League goal but was later carried off injured. Mkhitaryan latched on to Ander Herrera’s through ball and smashed the ball into the roof of the net.
Spurs had the opportunities, fired in some purposeful shots, but it just wasn’t their day.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) December 11, 2016
Leicester City were singing in the rain as first Jamie Vardy and then Andy King clipped the ball home against a Manchester City side which seemed confused as to what was expected of them.
With possibly their two best players, Sergio Aguero and Fernandinho suspended, City were at sixes and sevens.
When Vardy made it 3-0 on 20 minutes, sliding through the porous City defence, it had already become a betting punter’s nightmare.
Pep Guardiola, with just a jacket on against the downpour, was gesticulating furiously.
But soggy City didn’t seem to fancy it. Goalkeeper Claudio Bravo was at his most hopeless, with playing out from the back in regular chaos.
As commentator Trevor Francis said: “I hope children aren’t watching this.”
Vardy completed his hat-trick by intercepting a misplaced John Stones pass and finishing from a narrow angle. Aleksandar Kolarov, with a free-kick, and Nolito scored late consolations.
Arsenal Keep Pressure On Chelsea With Comfortable Victory
Arsenal predictably beat Stoke at the Emirates Stadium. They have steamrollered the Potteries side at home since 1980s Highbury days.
However, the visitors took the lead through Charlie Adam’s penalty after Granit Xhaka elbowed Joe Allen. Theo Walcott turned in Hector’s Bellerin’s cross just before half-time for his 100th club goal.
And, don’t faint, but Mesut Ozil scored with a header over Lee Grant before substitute Alex Iwobi sealed it with a side-footed third.
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