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EPL PIX: United down Forest; Arsenal draw at West Ham

Last updated on: April 17, 2023 00:31 IST
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IMAGE: Diogo Dalot celebrates after scoring Manchester United's second goal during the English Premier League match against Nottingham Forest at City Ground in Nottingham. Photograph: Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Manchester United's Antony scored and set up a Diogo Dalot goal to lead the injury-hit visitors to a 2-0 victory at Nottingham Forest on Sunday as Erik ten Hag's side climbed to third place in their quest for a berth in next season's Champions League.

United have 59 points from 30 games, three points in front of fourth-placed Newcastle United and six ahead of Tottenham Hotspur, who have played 31 matches.


Steve Cooper's struggling Forest side, who are now without a win in 10 consecutive league games, are third from bottom, level on 27 points with 17th-placed Everton.

Antony scored in the 32nd minute at the City Ground, sliding in to poke home a rebound after goalkeeper Keylor Navas's brilliant save kept out Anthony Martial's shot.

Dalot found the net in the 76th minute, scoring his first Premier League goal in his 100th appearance for United, running onto a pinpoint through ball from Antony.

"It was special. At that moment, the goal was important as well," Dalot told Sky Sports. "I think with 2-0 we were a bit more comfortable in the game. It's always special to score for this club but I'm more happy with the result."

United, who were already missing striker Marcus Rashford and defenders Raphael Varane and Lisandro Martinez, lost midfielder Marcel Sabitzer when he injured his groin in the warm-up.

Rashford and Varane are out for a few weeks, while Martinez will be sidelined the rest of the season with a foot injury.

"Inside the dressing room, I think we were calm," added Dalot. "We knew through the season that we weren't only 11 players. We've shown this in the past, this season, so today was one more game.

"Players get injured, this is football, but everybody was ready. And I think today we showed that we are a proper squad, and we are very happy with the game."

Christian Eriksen replaced Sabitzer, who scored twice in the 2-2 draw at home to Sevilla in United's Europa League quarter-final, first leg in midweek, and the Dane said he learned moments before kickoff that he would be starting.

Navas ensured the result was not more emphatic with a string of fantastic saves in a game dominated by United.

Bruno Fernandes did everything but score, missing numerous chances including a header seconds before halftime from a curling cross by Eriksen that he sent just wide of the post.

In the 56th minute, Fernandes hit a vicious shot on the run that Navas leapt to push out of danger before diving to keep out another shot by the Portugal midfielder four minutes later.

"The result is the most important for me," said Fernandes. "I want to get points because we want to be in the Champions League next season ... and I want to get my goals, but the team comes always first."

United can now focus on their Europa League quarter-final second leg in Seville on Thursday.

Arsenal squander two-goal lead at West Ham

IMAGE: Lucas Paqueta of West Ham United is fouled by Arsenal's Gabriel leading to a penalty during the English Premier League match at London Stadium on Sunday. Photograph: Alex Pantling/Getty Images

Arsenal dropped two more points in their quest for the English Premier League title in a 2-2 draw at West Ham United as for the second week in a row they threw away a two-goal advantage.

The leaders were two ahead and cruising towards restoring their six-point cushion over Manchester City with Gabriel Jesus tapping home in the seventh minute and Martin Odegaard doubling Arsenal's lead with a volley three minutes later.

But everything changed as they conceded a sloppy penalty that Said Benrahma tucked away in the 33rd minute.

West Ham, needing points themselves to stay away from the relegation zone, were transformed although Bukayo Saka had the chance to restore Arsenal's two-goal lead early in the second half only to blaze a penalty wide.

IMAGE: Arsenal's players celebrate after Gabriel Jesus scored the opening goal. Photograph: Alex Pantling/Getty Images

That miss looked even more costly moments later when Jarrod Bowen volleyed in West Ham's equaliser in the 54th minute.

Just as at Anfield last week when Mikel Arteta's team led 2-0 but ended up hanging on desperately for a 2-2 draw with Liverpool, there was a nervousness about Arsenal's play as the pressure of winning a first title since 2004 intensifies.

They have 74 points from 31 games with reigning champions Manchester City on 70 having played a game less.

The top two meet at The Etihad Stadium on April 26.

West Ham have 31 points from 30 games, four ahead of the relegation places.

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