Connect with us

English Premier League

Bournemouth 1 – 3 Chelsea

Published

on

Bournemouth 1 - 3 Chelsea

Bournemouth 1 – 3 Chelsea. Two late goals against Bournemouth finally gave Frank Lampard his first win since his return as Chelsea’s interim manager.

The Blues had lost all four Premier League games since Lampard’s return in April, but had led through Conor Gallagher’s early header.

Matias Vina levelled for Bournemouth, but Benoit Badiashile and Joao Felix struck inside the last 10 minutes.

Relegation remains a possibility for the Cherries with three games left, while Chelsea are 11th in the table.

With Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Raheem Sterling among five players left out from the side that had lost 3-1 at Arsenal in their previous outing, Chelsea were much improved with 21-year-old Noni Madueke a particular threat on the right-hand side.

Bournemouth’s best spell came early in the second half when Vina missed a chance for a second and Dango Ouattara headed over from close range, but Gary O’Neil’s side still have a good chance of avoiding a quick return to the Championship with games against Crystal Palace, Manchester United and Everton to come.

They are currently nine points clear of the bottom three, although some teams still have four matches to play.

Chelsea’s recent record made for grim reading, with defeats to Real Madrid in both legs of their Champions League quarter-final to go alongside the losses in the league and just two goals scored in those six outings under Lampard.

But Lampard’s tweaks to the side that had gone 3-0 behind after just 34 minutes against Arsenal paid off, with Gallagher looking lively throughout after his deft, glancing header diverted N’Golo Kante’s fine cross from the right in the ninth minute.

Madueke found the side netting in the first half, as well as posing problems for Bournemouth when cutting inside from the left with some fine runs.

Badiashile, another of Lampard’s changes from midweek, also impressed in giving Chelsea a much more solid feel at the back and he thoroughly deserved his first goal since his arrival from Monaco in January with a poke from close range to Hatem Ziyech’s free-kick.

Felix finished off a cute exchange of passes with Sterling, on as a substitute in the second half, to give a comfortable-looking gloss to the scoreline.

But even after the relief of his first win, Lampard knows he still faces a tricky end to the season.

Chelsea face relegation-threatened Nottingham Forest next, before a daunting final trio of games against clubs currently in the positions Chelsea fans would expect to be contesting: Manchester City, Manchester United and Newcastle United.

Thomas Tuchel was still Chelsea’s manager when Gary O’Neil replaced Scott Parker in late August in the wake of the Cherries’ disastrous 9-0 loss at Liverpool, but while the German lasted only just over a week more, O’Neil has repaid the faith shown in him despite some dips in form since his appointment.

A run of six wins in nine games prior to Chelsea’s visit has lifted Bournemouth from the very foot of the table in early March to the cusp of safety, and even this defeat still leaves them nine points clear of Leicester, Leeds and Forest below them.

Astute business in January has been key to their revival under O’Neil with Vina, on loan from AS Roma, grabbing his second goal inside a month after an excellent move that also involved the impressive Ryan Christie.

Cutting in from the left and quickly exchanging passes with Christie and Dominic Solanke, Vina then opened up his body and curled the ball high past Kepa Arrizabalaga for a brilliant equaliser.

Vina should arguably have had another in the second half, but Kepa was equal to the Uruguay international’s near-post shot to his right.

Ouattara, who had also arrived in January on a permanent deal from Lorient, should have hit the target with his header from inside the six-yard area and the impressive Burkina Faso midfielder’s miss proved vital when Chelsea subsequently stretched away.

source – BBC

English Premier League

Luton Town 1-2 Manchester United

Published

on

Luton Town 1-2 Manchester United

Luton Town 1-2 Manchester United. Rasmus Hojlund scored for the sixth successive Premier League game as Manchester United survived a Luton Town display of fierce determination to stay in contention for the top four with victory at Kenilworth Road.

United’s £72m summer signing from Atalanta has hit a red-hot streak after early struggles in front of goal and scored twice in the first seven minutes to set up a fourth successive league win for Erik ten Hag’s side.

The 21-year-old pounced on Amari’i Bell’s error after only 37 seconds to round keeper Thomas Kaminski and score, adding a second in the seventh minute, instinctively diverting Alejandro Garnacho’s shot into the net.

Luton Town, in an uproarious atmosphere, responded with defiance and character, Carlton Morris swiftly giving the Hatters hope with a header as United struggled to cope with the intensity of the home side, especially in the opening half.

United lost defender Luke Shaw to injury before the interval, while Harry Maguire and Casemiro also went off at the break, but for all Luton’s second-half endeavour it was the visitors who created the better chances, Kaminski denying Garnacho, Bruno Fernandes, Rashford, and a Hojlund hat-trick.

However, there was one more nervous moment for the visitors in stoppage time when Ross Barkley’s glancing header clipped the top of the crossbar.

The win means United are now only five points behind fourth-placed Aston Villa.

United needed leaders to see them through an encounter that became an ordeal for long spells, especially in the opening half, and they emerged from unlikely sources as another important three points were secured.

While experienced players such as Casemiro, so lucky to avoid a second yellow card, Maguire and Raphael Varane struggled and were exposed by the sheer energy of Luton’s approach, it was match-winner Hojlund and outstanding 18-year-old Kobbie Mainoo who stepped up.

Hojlund has really come to the fore in recent weeks, now getting the goals all his hard work – even early in the season when they were in short supply – deserve, his first a composed piece of work and his second quick thinking as United established early control.

The Denmark forward showed commendable hold-up play, a willingness to engage in the physical exchanges with Luton’s defence, and was only denied a treble by Kaminski’s block before he departed to a standing ovation from United’s away support.

Mainoo, meanwhile, rose above the blood and thunder with rare composure for one so young. United have a gem on their hands.

The visitors improved after the break and even though Luton pressed, they were the more dangerous side, Kaminski and Albert Sambi Lokonga denying Rashford before a combination of the goalkeeper and Bell thwarted Garnacho.

In the end, Hojlund’s early goals were enough as United extended their winning run.

Luton lost another home game to one of the Premier League’s big guns but once again more illustrious visitors to Kenilworth Road were made to fight every inch of the way.

United joined Manchester City and Arsenal in chalking up a narrow wins while Liverpool were held to a draw – and it is no surprise when Luton’s approach in this wonderfully hostile environment is taken into account.

The Hatters could have been forgiven for thinking their day was done when they conceded two goals in only seven minutes but, galvanised by the home support, Rob Edwards’ side responded superbly and were right back in it after Morris’ goal.

The reborn Barkley prompted from midfield with confidence while Lokonga was one of the game’s outstanding performers.

Luton faded after the break but showed enough to suggest they can make a real fight of things before the relegation places are decided, the standing ovation at the final whistle merited for their efforts.

Barkley almost snatched a point when his header glanced off the bar in the closing seconds but it was not to be for battling Luton.

source – BBC

Continue Reading

English Premier League

Sheffield United 0-5 Brighton

Published

on

Sheffield United 0-5 Brighton

Sheffield United 0-5 Brighton. Brighton thrashed 10-man Sheffield United, who stayed bottom of the Premier League and conceded five goals at home for the third consecutive game.

The game swung in the 12th minute when United’s Mason Holgate caught Kaoru Mitoma in midfield with a horrific challenge just below the knee.

The Everton loanee was shown a yellow card, but the decision was upgraded to a red after intervention from the video assistant referee (VAR).

Against 10 men, Brighton attacked at will, taking the lead through Facundo Buonanotte, who bundled in a corner.

Danny Welbeck doubled the advantage, firing in a rebound after keeper Wes Foderingham denied Mitoma.

The hosts thought they had pulled a goal back just before the break through Ben Osborn, but his hooked volley has ruled out for offside.

Brighton got a deserved third midway through the second half when United defender Jack Robinson diverted Mitoma’s cross into his own net.

Simon Adingra added two late goals, burying Pascal Gross’ cutback and benefiting from a looping deflection.

Sunday’s victory was only Brighton’s second in the league in 2024, although they have won twice in the FA Cup, including a 5-2 triumph over United at Bramall Lane in the fourth round.

Even before Holgate’s sending-off Roberto de Zerbi’s side were routinely carving forward.

Adingra, back from winning the Africa Cup of Nations with Ivory Coast, had a cross deflected off Anel Ahmedhodzic and narrowly kept out by a diving Foderingham.

At 2-0, Yasser Larouci twice cleared off the line for United, denying Mitoma and Gross from close range. Foderingham also smartly kept out Welbeck and Mitoma either side of half-time.

Brighton’s win is their biggest away from home in the top flight, and they have scored four or more goals seven times in all competitions this season.

Seventh-placed Brighton face teams from the bottom half of the table in their next five games.

They host Everton on Saturday, a game De Zerbi will expect to win.

source – BBC

Continue Reading

English Premier League

Manchester City 1-1 Chelsea

Published

on

Manchester City 1-1 Chelsea

Manchester City 1-1 Chelsea. Rodri dramatically rescued a point with a late leveller for Manchester City to deny Chelsea victory and maintain his side’s long unbeaten home record.

City still lost ground in the title race after seeing Liverpool and Arsenal both post emphatic wins earlier on Saturday, but this has to go down as a point gained given how close they came to defeat.

Raheem Sterling had given Chelsea the lead just before half-time, finishing off a brilliant counter-attack by meeting Nicolas Jackson’s cross, cutting inside Kyle Walker and curling his shot home.

The visitors looked threatening on the break all game, with Jackson earlier spurning an even better chance from Malo Gusto’s cross when a heavy touch allowed Ederson to smother his shot, and City’s keeper also denied Sterling a second from point-blank range.

City were racking up the chances too, but seemed unable to take any of them, or even seriously test Chelsea goalkeeper Dorde Petrovic despite piling on the pressure in the second half.

Erling Haaland was the main culprit, with his worst miss coming when he somehow headed wide from a delicious Kevin de Bruyne cross.

The defending champions were facing their first home league defeat since November 2022, until Rodri struck with seven minutes to go.

After Walker’s shot was deflected into his path on the edge of the box, Rodri fired in a ferocious first-time strike that was going in anyway but took a touch off Chelsea substitute Trevoh Chalobah on its way into the net.

The draw sees City drop to third in the table, four points behind leaders Liverpool but with a game in hand – they can close the gap, and leapfrog second-placed Arsenal, if they beat Brentford here on Tuesday.

Chelsea, who were minutes away from a third successive away win, stay 10th, but head to Wembley for next weekend’s Carabao Cup final on the back of one of their best displays of an erratic campaign.

source – BBC

Continue Reading

Trending