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EPL PIX: Liverpool down Chelsea, West Ham down United

September 23, 2019 00:32 IST

Photos from the Premier League matches played on Sunday

Leaders Liverpool stay perfect with 2-1 win at Chelsea

Liverpool's Roberto Firmino celebrates with teammates after scoring his team's second goal against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge

IMAGE: Liverpool's Roberto Firmino celebrates with teammates after scoring his team's second goal against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. Photograph: Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Leaders Liverpool maintained their perfect start to the Premier League season as first-half goals from Trent Alexander-Arnold and Roberto Firmino secured a 2-1 win at Chelsea on Sunday that left them five points clear at the summit.

It was a sixth straight league win from the start of the campaign for Juergen Klopp's European champions and extended their club-record streak to 15 in total.

 

Chelsea, who put up a spirited fight back in the second half, pulled a goal back with a superb effort from N'Golo Kante but a second defeat of the season left them 10 points adrift in 11th.

Liverpool took the lead in the 14th minute when Alexander-Arnold rifled the ball into the top corner after Mohamed Salah backheeled a free kick into his path on the edge of the box.

Chelsea had been a clear second best in the early stages but were denied an equaliser by VAR after 26 minutes when Cesar Azpilicueta bundled the ball in only for replays to show that Mason Mount had strayed a fraction offside in the build-up.

Liverpool made the most of the reprieve as four minutes later Andy Robertson's cross from the left was headed powerfully into the net by the unmarked Roberto Firmino.

Chelsea's Jorginho clashes with Liverpool's Jordan Henderson 

IMAGE: Chelsea's Jorginho clashes with Liverpool's Jordan Henderson. Photograph: Eddie Keogh/Reuters

Kante pulled one back in spectacular fashion, turning midfielder Fabinho, before attacking the heart of the visitors' defence and curling the ball into the far corner, but Mount and substitute Michy Batshuayi missed late chances to equalise.

Liverpool began the match at a frenetic pace as the intensity of their pressing game kept Chelsea pegged firmly against the ropes, struggling to keep possession or build any momentum and it was not long until the pressure told.

Salah backheeled a free kick to Alexander-Arnold, who let fly with his right foot, drilling the ball past goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga.

Despite being second best for much of the first half, Chelsea still had their moments.

Azpilicueta bundled the ball home after 26 minutes, but the home crowd's raucous celebrations were swiftly curtailed when replays showed Mount was inches past the last defender.

Salt was then rubbed into the wound when Liverpool doubled their lead four minutes later.

Alexander-Arnold tapped a free kick on the left to Andy Robertson, whose cross was met by Firmino and he powered his header home from close range.

Liverpool should have added to their advantage early in the second half when Firmino was left unmarked at the far post but he scuffed his volley and the Brazilian's effort was parried away by Arrizabalaga before Chelsea began to find their feet.

After Kante pulled a goal back with his solo effort, they looked the more likely to score again, but chances came and went.

Batshuayi headed wide after 88 minutes and Mount scooped a Marcos Alonso cross over the bar at the death to leave the home side rueing their missed opportunities.

Dismal Manchester United overpowered by West Ham

Manchester United's Jesse Lingard looks dejected

IMAGE: Manchester United's Jesse Lingard looks dejected after Aaron Cresswell scores West Ham United's second goal at London Stadium. Photograph: David Klein/Reuters

West Ham United beat a toothless Manchester United 2-0 at home on Sunday to move into fourth place in the Premier League as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side ended the game without an established striker after Marcus Rashford came off injured.

Ukrainian forward Andriy Yarmolenko put West Ham ahead at the end of a drab first half with a confident first-time finish into the bottom corner and Aaron Cresswell sealed victory with an outstanding free kick in the 84th minute.

The visitors, who were missing Paul Pogba, Anthony Martial and Luke Shaw through injury and lost teenage striker Mason Greenwood to illness, looked sluggish throughout the game and lacked spark and creativity.

United created no chances of note before the interval but Juan Mata missed a glorious opportunity early in the second half when he missed the target from close range, while Harry Maguire was later thwarted by West Ham keeper Lukasz Fabianski.

Their slim hopes of getting back into the game were rocked when Rashford came off with a groin injury, leaving winger Daniel James to operate as a lone striker for the final half an hour.

West Ham, meanwhile, were happy to soak up the pressure for most of the second half although Felipe Anderson had a chance to double their lead but was denied by a trademark save with the legs from David de Gea.

The visiting keeper was powerless to stop Cresswell's sizzling free kick, however, which confirmed a second defeat of the season for Manchester United, who were also beaten on their last visit to West Ham when Jose Mourinho was in charge.

West Ham have 11 points after six games, the same as third-placed Leicester City, while Manchester United are eighth on eight points.

West Ham United's Jack Wilshere and Manchester United's Fred vie for possession 

IMAGE: West Ham United's Jack Wilshere and Manchester United's Fred vie for possession. Photograph: Andrew Couldridge/Action Images via Reuters

Solskjaer defended his side's display, saying the match hinged on key moments.

"When you lose a game you're always disappointed but it's a game that can go both ways. This is always a difficult ground to go to and we just didn't take the chances we made," he told a news conference.

"We didn't create enough chances but we created big moments that we didn't make the most of. It's a good group to work with, they are determined although sometimes along the road you'll hit some bumps.

"They want to do what we're working on in training, but today key moments tipped the game in West Ham's favour. We made some bad final passes and lacked quality in decision making, execution."

The Norwegian coach added that he expected Rashford to be "out for a while" with the groin injury he sustained, but said Martial and Greenwood should return in time for next Monday's game at home to Arsenal.

In contrast to Manchester United's nosedive in form since beating Chelsea 4-0 on the opening day of the season, West Ham have made considerable progress since they were hammered 5-0 by Manchester City in their first game.

"I think we deserved the three points today, I'm happy with everything we did, we should aim to play like this every week," said coach Manuel Pellegrini.

"We played consistently throughout the game, we didn't allow them to create chances. It's always important when you beat a team like Manchester United, and it's what we deserve for how hard everyone is working from the coaching staff to the players.

"We'll see how far we can go but we think we'll have the chance to achieve something big."

Jota's late goal earns Wolves a point at Palace

Wolverhampton Wanderers' Diogo Jota in action with Crystal Palace's Joel Ward during their match at Selhurst Park in London

IMAGE: Wolverhampton Wanderers' Diogo Jota in action with Crystal Palace's Joel Ward during their match at Selhurst Park in London. Photograph: Ian Walton/Reuters

Diogo Jota's last-gasp equaliser earned Wolverhampton Wanderers a 1-1 draw at Crystal Palace on Sunday as their wait for a first Premier League win of the season continued.

A mistake by Palace's Joel Ward five minutes into stoppage time allowed Jota to score from close range, earning Wolves a fourth draw from their six games.

They had to do it the hard way though as they played the final stages with 10 men after Romain Saiss was shown a second yellow card for needlessly pulling back Wilfried Zaha.

Palace, who could have gone sixth with a win, took the lead a minute after halftime when Ward's powerful shot was deflected into his own net by Leander Dendoncker.

Wolves had been the better side in the first half but Palace were on top after the break and had chances to make the points safe with Christian Benteke going close.

But the visitors, already playing their 13th match of the season in all competitions, never gave up.

With the home fans whistling for full-time, Adama Traore crossed into the box and when Ward lost balance and stumbled, Jota scooped the ball home past Vicente Guaita.

Wolves remain second from bottom with four points but manager Nuno Espirito Santo praised the spirit in his side.

"We showed the heart and the character to believe until the end. The boys were running up and down and tired," Espirito Santo, whose side lost to Braga in the Europa League on Thursday, said. "We have done it before.

"In the Championship we managed to win games in the last second. I think we can do better in the first half."

Palace manager Hodgson was left frustrated as his side stayed in 12th spot.

"It is very hard to take. I am bitterly disappointed," he said. "You could argue we should have been further ahead.

"It gave (Wolves) a point which after the first half they deserved but after the second we deserved the three.

"Every time you get three points it is a great and every time you don't, especially when you concede late, it becomes a defeat and it feels like a defeat here."

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