rediff.com

NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  

Rediff News  All News 
Rediff.com  » Sports » EPL PHOTOS: Chelsea cruise to victory, Burnley up to fourth

EPL PHOTOS: Chelsea cruise to victory, Burnley up to fourth

December 13, 2017 13:38 IST

Images from the English Premier League matches played on Tuesday.

Chelsea return to winning ways

IMAGE: Chelsea's players celebrate after Pedro scored the third goal. Photograph: Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Third-placed Chelsea put in a determined performance as they returned to winning ways with a comfortable 3-1 win at Huddersfield Town in the Premier League on Tuesday.

Goals from Tiemoue Bakayoko, Willian and Pedro put Chelsea 3-0 ahead after 50 minutes before Huddersfield got a late consolation through substitute Laurent Depoitre.

The win put Chelsea level on 35 points with second-placed Manchester United and 11 points behind leaders Manchester City, with both Manchester clubs playing on Wednesday.

 

After losing to West Ham United on Saturday, Chelsea needed to quickly get back on track and David Wagner’s promoted Huddersfield side provided little resistance.

Chelsea manager Antonio Conte left regular skipper Gary Cahill on the bench and in the absence of the injured Alvaro Morata played with Eden Hazard as the central striker with Willian and Pedro providing the attacking width.

Huddersfield had beaten Manchester United at the John Smith's Stadium but Wagner’s gameplan, from the outset, was for his team to defend deep and try to frustrate the champions.

That gave Chelsea space and time on the ball in midfield which they accepted gleefully and took a firm grip on the game.

After an early Pedro effort was rightly ruled out for offside, Chelsea went in front after 23 minutes when a poor clearance from Huddersfield keeper Jonas Lossl put the home defence under pressure. Hazard flicked the ball to Willian who found Bakayoko who fired home confidently.

Chelsea doubled their lead two minutes before the break when Marcos Alonso's fine cross from the left was met by Willian at the back post, the Brazilian powering his header past Lossl.

It was hard to see a way back into the game for the Yorkshire side, who lacked the dynamism and drive they have shown in other home games, and any lingering hope of a fightback vanished five minutes after restart.

Willian kept his marker at bay to lay-off an Alonso cross to Pedro who superbly curled a side-foot shot into the far corner.

Pedro went close again in the 68th minute, the Spaniard driving wide at the end of a swift counter-attack after he was cleverly set-up by a delightful touch from Hazard.

The Belgian was then taken off, with Michy Batshuayi filling his place in the Chelsea attack.

Huddersfield, who are 12th on 18 points, got an added time consolation through substitute Depoitre's fine glancing header.

Barnes winner blasts Burnley up to fourth

IMAGE: Stoke City's Joe Allen, left, tries to get the ball past Charlie Taylor of Burnley. Photograph: Phil Noble/Reuters

Burnley's Ashley Barnes fired a last-gasp winner as his off-colour side climbed to the heady heights of fourth in the Premier League with a fortuitous 1-0 win over struggling Stoke City on Tuesday.

There was little to warm the home crowd on a wet and windy night but those who braved the wintry weather were celebrating in the 89th minute as Barnes seized on a ricochet off team mate Scott Arfield and thumped a shot past Stoke goalkeeper Jack Butland.

Burnley moved above Tottenham Hotspur, Arsenal and Liverpool -- all of whom play on Wednesday -- and are the highest they have been in the top flight since 1975.

Sean Dyche's side have played much better this season, but despite managing only two shots on target all night against the team with the worst defence in the Premier League, they found a way to get their ninth win from 17 games.

"Tonight was a different style of getting a result. It was an ugly game at times in harsh conditions," Dyche said.

"We found a way to win and a real fine goal. Sometimes that's football. We're not the real deal, we're a side that are improving. We're having a real go at what we can achieve this season. The fans and the town have got to enjoy these times."

Stoke's form has been in direct contrast to Burnley's and the pressure was starting to mount on manager Mark Hughes after his side's second-half capitulation in a 5-1 defeat by Tottenham at Wembley on Saturday.

That left them with 16 points from 16 games, which represented their worst start to a Premier League season, but they could count themselves unlucky not to return to the Potteries with at least a point on Tuesday.

Only a post prevented Peter Crouch giving the visitors an early lead while Kurt Zouma wasted another good chance and Mame Diouf fired an effort into the side-netting.

Hughes was jeered when he took off the creative Xherdan Shaqiri in the 84th minute but there was worse to come when Barnes produced a rare moment of quality to plunder the win.

"I thought the lads were fantastic and matched everything Burnley threw at us," Hughes said.

"I thought when we were able to get the ball down, we were the team trying to create openings in wide areas and get good balls in. It's hard to take, Burnley didn't deserve to win."

Stoke are three points above the drop zone with second-from-bottom West Ham United visiting on Saturday.

Palace produce grandstand finish to beat Watford

IMAGE: Crystal Palace's James McArthur celebrates scoring their second goal. Photograph: Andrew Couldridge/Reuters

Crystal Palace scored two late goals to earn a precious 2-1 win over Watford that moved Roy Hodgson's side out of the Premier League relegation zone on Tuesday.

Palace's five-match unbeaten run seemed set to end and leave them bottom when Bakary Sako and James McArthur scored in quick succession after Watford's Tom Cleverley was sent off.

Having lost their opening seven league games without scoring -- an English top-flight record -- Palace have been rejuvenated since Hodgson, 70, took charge and are now in 17th place on 14 points and out of the bottom three for the first time.

"We've got an awful long way to go but we are making a fist of it, former England manager Hodgson, who replaced the sacked Frank de Boer in September, said.

"I am really pleased with how hard the players are trying even when things aren't going our way.

"When you win a game in the last minute it says a lot for the players' character and it's great for the fans. They go home as happy as we are."

It was actually one of the worst Palace displays under Hodgson and Watford will be kicking themselves for not wrapping up the points before halftime.

The visitors went ahead after three minutes when Daryl Janmaat was given far too much space to head in Richarlison's chipped cross at the back post.

Brazilian Richarlison was a menace throughout the first half and set up Troy Deeney with a gilt-edged chance before halftime but the striker somehow failed to make it 2-0.

Palace were better after the break but still not really threatening until Cleverley was sent off for a foul on Jeff Schlupp and the Selhurst Park faithful began to roar.

Wilfried Zaha had a hand in both of Palace's goals, the first scored when Sako shinned the ball in after it came back to him from Watford keeper Heurelho Gomes's close-range save.

Zaha then tricked his way past Janmaat on the left side of the box before picking out McArthur to score with a low shot.

Palace are now unbeaten in their last six league games and a point above the drop zone while Watford, who are in ninth place on 22 points, have taken one point from their last four matches.

Source:
© Copyright 2018 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Reuters content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Reuters. Reuters shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.