Monday 26 October 2015

Happy Hammers see Chelsea meltdown

Week 1 - The Premier League began with a low-key win for Manchester United over Tottenham thanks to an own goal, but with Chelsea being held to a 2-2 draw at home to Swansea and recent Charity Shield winners Arsenal suffering a shock 2-0 defeat to West Ham at the Emirates the following day, the Red Devils were smiling. Though not as much as Leicester City who claimed top spot with a 4-2 win over Sunderland followed by Crystal Palace who won 3-1 at Norwich and West Ham after their victory over Arsenal until Monday night when 3 goals without reply for Manchester City at West Brom took them to the top of the table at the end of week one. In other matches Watford drew 2-2 at Everton and there were 1-0 wins for Aston Villa at Bournemouth and Liverpool at Stoke City.

Week 2 - Leicester City brought hosts West Ham down to earth with a 2-1 win while another single goal gave Manchester United all 3 points at Aston Villa and Arsenal returned from Crystal Palace with a 2-1 win. Everton put 3 past Southampton on their travels and Sunderland lost 3-1 at home to Norwich while Bournemouth lost 1-0 at Liverpool. Tottenham had to do with a point as they let their 2 goal lead slip at home to Stoke while Newcastle lost 2-0 at Swansea and there were no goals between Watford and West Brom, but Manchester City continued their stampede at the top with 3 goals at home to reigning champions Chelsea.  
 Week 3 - West Ham United suffered another home defeat losing a 4-3 to new boys Bournemouth with Callum Wilson bagging a hat-trick for the Cherries while Chelsea won 3-2 at West Brom and leaders Manchester City were 2-0 winners at Everton. Crystal Palace defeated Aston Villa 2-1 at Selhurst Park while Leicester City finally lost points in a 1-1 draw at home to Tottenham and there were also 1-1 draws for Stoke at Norwich and Swansea at Sunderland. Manchester United could only draw 0-0 at home to Newcastle in Saturday's lunch time match and there were goalless draws for Southampton at Watford on Sunday and Liverpool at Arsenal on Monday evening.

Week 4 - Crystal palace travelled across London to shock champions Chelsea 2-1 and Liverpool were hammered 3-0 at home to West Ham while Manchester United lost 2-1 at Swansea. A single goal at Newcastle gave Arsenal 3 points while Southampton put 3 past their visitors from Norwich and Tottenham played a goalless match at home to Everton. Manchester City continued their perfect run with 2 goals at home to Watford and West Brom scored the only goal to win at Stoke while Leicester City drew 1-1 at Bournemouth and Sunderland drew 2-2 at Aston Villa.             
Week 5 - Chelsea suffered another defeat, losing 3-1 at Everton and Liverpool lost by the same scoreline at Manchester United while Arsenal won 2-0 at home to Stoke and Manchester City kept up their unblemished record with a goal in stoppage time at Crystal palace. Bournemouth lost 3-1 at Norwich and there were 1-0 wins for Tottenham at Sunderland and Watford at home to Swansea while Southampton drew 0-0 at West Bromwich Albion and Leicester came from 2 goals down to enjoy a 3-2 home win over Aston Villa. On Monday evening Newcastle lost 2-0 at West Ham with Dimitri Payet scoring both goals for the Hammers.

Week 6 -  Chelsea battled to a 2-0 victory over 9-man Arsenal in a controversial match at the Bridge while Manchester City conceded for the first time this season losing 2-1 to West Ham United who claimed yet another big scalp on their travels moving into 3rd place in the process. Leicester drew 2-2 at Stoke and Everton played out a goalless match at Swansea while West Bromwich Albion won by a single goal at Aston Villa and Watford were 2-1 victors at Newcastle. Sunderland lost to 2 early goals at Bournemouth while on Sunday Norwich drew 1-1 at Liverpool, Crystal Palace lost 1-0 at Tottenham and Anthony Martial scored twice to help Manchester United into 2nd place with a 3-2 win at Southampton.     

Week 7 - Manchester United moved to the top of the table after a 3-0 home win over bottom side Sunderland, overtaking Manchester City who were taken apart 4-1 at Tottenham having led until just before the break while Leicester City lost the only unbeaten record of the Premier League when they were thumped 5-2 at home to Arsenal as Alexis Sanchez claimed a hat-trick. West Ham salvaged a point with a goal in stoppage time to draw 2-2 at home to Norwich and occupy 3rd spot ahead of Arsenal on goal difference while Chelsea came from 2 down to draw with 2 late goals at Newcastle and Sturridge netted a brace to help Liverpool to a 3-2 win at home to Aston Villa. Swansea had their wings clipped 3-1 at Southampton and Bournemouth lost 2-1 at Stoke while on Sunday Crystal Palace scored the only goal of the match at Watford and on Monday evening Everton came from 2 down to win 3-2 at West Bromwich Albion with Lukaku netting twice to take the Toffees into 5th place.    

Week 8 - Sergio Aguero ran riot in Manchester scoring 5 goals as City came from a goal down to thump Newcastle 6-1 while Chelsea took the lead at home to Southampton but ended up 3-1 losers and Sunderland surrendered their 2 goal advantage to draw 2-2 at home to West Ham United with Dick Advocaat handing in his resignation the following day. Leicester City won 2-1 at Norwich and Stoke won by a single goal at Aston Villa while Crystal Palace struck twice at home to West Brom and Watford drew 1-1 at Bournemouth. On Sunday Arsenal blew Manchester United away with 3 goals in the first half with a brace from Sanchez to overtake the Red Devils into 2nd place while Christian Eriksen scored from 2 free kicks to earn Tottenham a 2-2 draw at Swansea and Liverpool parted company with manager Brendan Rodgers after their 1-1 draw away to Everton. 
Week 9 - A Sterling hat-trick kept Manchester City at the top as they thumped their visitors from Bournemouth 5-1 while the red side of Manchester enjoyed a 3-0 win at Everton and Arsenal won by the same scoreline at Watford to stay in 2nd place between the 2 Manchester sides. West Ham United triumphed 3-1 at 10-man Crystal Palace with 2 goals in the last 2 minutes to move into 4th place while Leicester City came from 2-0 down to draw at Southampton and Liverpool drew 0-0 at Tottenham in J├╝rgen Klopp's first match in charge of the Reds. Chelsea defeated Aston Villa 2-0 at the Bridge and Sunderland, with Sam Allardyce in charge for the first time, lost 1-0 at West Brom while on Sunday Wijnaldum knocked in 4 goals as Norwich City were tranced 6-2 at Newcastle United and on Monday evening a single goal gave Stoke City a win in Swansea.       

Week 10 - West Ham United moved into 3rd place after a 2-1 home win over 10-man Chelsea while the Manchester derby ended goalless at Old Trafford. Arsenal are just behind leaders Manchester City on goal difference after beating Everton 2-1 at home while Jamie Vardy  scored the only goal at Leicester to give the host a win over Crystal Palace and Harry Kane netted a hat-trick as Tottenham cruised to a 5-1 victory at Bournemouth. Sunderland enjoyed a 3-0 win at home to Newcastle in Sam Allardyce's second match in charge of the Black Cats while Liverpool picked up another draw under Klopp, drawing 1-1 at home to Southampton. Swansea came from behind to send Aston Villa to the bottom of the league with a 2-1 win at Villa Park which resulted in the dismissal of Villa Manager Tim Sherwood  while there were also away wins for Watford who won 2-0 at Stoke and West Bromwich Albion who scored a goal at Norwich City.  

Tuesday 26 May 2015

Crossing the Bridge

Week 31 Liverpool are virtually out of contention for a Champions League place after being blown away 4-1 at Arsenal with the Gunners moving into 2nd place. Manchester City failed to reclaim 2nd spot when they lost 2-1 at Crystal palace on Monday evening and are now behind Manchester United who enjoyed a 3-1 home win over Aston Villa. The other big winners were Queens Park Rangers who thumped their hosts 4-1 at West Brom and picked up a further point in a 3-3 thriller at Aston Villa one Tuesday evening, but bottom team Leicester City were also winners when they rallied to a 2-1 win at home to West Ham and Burnley earned a point in a no-score bore draw at home to Tottenham. Charlie Adam scored from 66 yards but Stoke lost 2-1 at leaders Chelsea and a single goal gave Sunderland an important win over neighbours Newcastle United. A single goal was also enough to give Everton all 3 points against Southampton and Hull are in imminent danger of being sucked into the relegation zone after losing 3-1 at Swansea.
Week 32 Manchester City scored an early goal at Old Trafford but were taken apart 4-2 by Manchester United who extended the gap in 3rd place ahead of their neighbours. Arsenal picked up their 8th win in a row with a single goal at Burnley while a late goal at Queens Park Ranger broke the deadlock to give Chelsea another 3 points as they march on at the top. Sunderland fell apart in front of their home fans as Crystal Palace struck 4 times in 14 minutes to smash the Black Cats 4-1 with Yannick Bolasie grabbing an 11-minute hat-trick while Leicester City scored in stoppage time to come from behind and win 3-2 at West Bromwich Albion. Tim Sherwood took Aston Villa to his old club Tottenham where they won 1-0 with another Benteke goal. There were 1-1 draws for Everton at Swansea and Stoke City at West Ham United while Southampton put 2 past their visitors from Hull as did Liverpool against Newcastle on Monday evening.
 Week 33 Chelsea took another strep towards the league title with a solitary goal at home to Manchester United while Manchester United moved within a point of their neighbours with 2 home goals against West Ham. Leicester City gave their home supporters hope with a 2-0 win against Swansea City as they moved off the bottom and were replaces by Burnley who fell to a single goal at Everton while Crystal Palace lost 2-0 at home to West Brom and Newcastle were swept aside 3-1 by Tottenham at St James' Park. With Arsenal, Aston Villa and Liverpool on FA Cup duty the only other league match was played at Stoke where the Potters came from behind to inflict a 2-1 loss on Southampton.

Week 34 Chelsea picked up a point in a goalless draw at Arsenal who fell below Manchester City into 3rd place on goal difference after the Blues scored a last-minute winner having relinquished a 2 goal lead at home to Aston Villa while Manchester United were beaten 3-0 at Everton. Southampton and Tottenham shared 4 goals at St Mary's failing to catch up with Liverpool who drew 0-0 at West Brom. Newcastle suffered their 7th defeat in a row, losing 3-2 at home to Swansea while Sunderland drew 1-1 at Stoke City. Queens Park Rangers missed a penalty as they drew 0-0 at home to West Ham while Burnley's penalty miss at home was immediately punished by Leicester City who scored the only goal of the match at the other end. An N'Doye brace at Crystal Palace secured a 2-0 win for Hull City who further enhanced their chances of survival with a vital goal at home to Liverpool on Tuesday evening while on Wednesday Chelsea came from behind to win 3-1 at Leicester and leave themselves a win away from the league title.
Week 35 A gaol at Stamford Bridge against Crystal Palace secured the Premier League title for Chelsea with 3 matches to go. Newcastle United ended the match with 9 players as they suffered their 8th straight defeat with Ulloa netting a brace to help hosts Leicester City to a 3-0 win moving them within a point of the Magpies while 10-man Queens Park Rangers lost 2-1 at Liverpool with Gerrard heading the late winner having earlier missed a penalty and Burnley who were controversially reduced to 10 men lost to a spot kick at West Ham. West Bromwich Albion celebrated a 1-0 victory at Manchester United while a single goal gave Manchester City a win at Tottenham and Southampton, who were reduced to 10 men, lost 2-1 to 2 Jordi Gomez penalties at Sunderland. Everton lost 3-2 at Aston Villa and Stoke were defeated 2-0 at Swansea with both losing sides having a player sent off while on Monday evening Arsenal scored 3 goals in the first half to win 3-1 at Hull.       
Week 36 Sunderland took a step towards safety with a 2-0 win at Everton and Newcastle finally earned a morale-boosting point drawing 1-1 at home to West Bromwich Albion, while Burnley's 1-0 win at Hull City was not enough as they became the first Premier League side to be relegated this season dragging their hosts into the bottom 3 in the process. A day later in Manchester, Queens Park Rangers were dumped into the Championship by a rampant City side who put 6 past the hapless Hoops. Mahrez scored 2 early goals as Leicester City continued to move in the right direction with a 2-0 home win over Southampton while West Ham lost to a single goal at Aston Villa and Tottenham were brushed aside 3-0 at Stoke. Manchester United won 2-1 at Crystal Palace while Liverpool drew 1-1 at newly crowned champions Chelsea and on Monday evening Arsenal suffered a huge blow in their attempt to finish 2nd when they lost 1-0 at home to Swansea City.
 Week 37 Sadio Mane grabbed a hat-trick for Southampton in just under 3 minutes to break a Premier League record as the Saints thrashed Aston Villa 6-1 at St Mary's while Steven Gerrard said goodbye to Anfield in Liverpool's 3-1 defeat to Crystal Palace. Hull City remained on the brink of relegation after a 2-0 loss at Tottenham while Newcastle lost 2-1 at Queens Park Rangers and Sunderland earned a point in their 0-0 draw at home to Leicester City. Stoke could only draw 0-0 at relegated Burnley and Everton won 2-1 at West Ham while on Sunday Swansea City came back from 2 down, but lost 4-2 at home to Manchester City with Yaya Toure netting a brace for the visitors while in Manchester Arsenal drew 1-1 with United and on Monday evening Berahino scored twice as champions Chelsea were beaten 3-0 at West Brom. On Wednesday evening Sunderland secured their Premier League survival with a goalless draw at Arsenal that cemented 2nd place for Manchester City.
Week 38  Having already secured the title, Chelsea lifted the Premier League trophy at Stamford Bridge after their 3-1 win over Sunderland with Loic Remy netting twice for the Blues, while at the other end of the table Newcastle United celebrated survival with a 2-0 win over West Ham United at St James' Park sending Hull City down after their goalless draw at home to Manchester United who had Marouane Fellaini sent off. Frank Lampard scored in his last match in England as Manchester City ended the season with a 2-0 home win over Southampton while Steven Gerrard, also bowing out of English football, scored as Liverpool were taken apart 6-1 at Stoke who struck 5 times in the first half. Theo Walcott scored a first-half hat-trick in front of his home crowd as Arsenal triumphed 4-1 over West Brom and relegated Queens Park Rangers were outclassed 5-1 at Leicester while Burnley bid farewell to the Premier League with a 1-0 win at FA Cup finalists Aston Villa. Harry Kane scored the only goal of the match at Everton to secure Tottenham the 5th spot and Crystal Palace ended their season on a high with a 1-0 win at home to Swansea City.

On Monday Norwich City followed Bournemouth and Watford into the Premier League with a 2-0 win over Middlesbrough at Wembley.

The final standings were 1- Chelsea  2- Manchester City 3- Arsenal  4- Manchester United 5- Tottenham 6- Liverpool 7- Southampton 8- Swansea City 9- Stoke City 10- Crystal Palace 11- Everton 12- West Ham United 13- West Bromwich Albion 14- Leicester City 15- Newcastle United 16- Sunderland 17- Aston Villa 18- Hull City 19- Burnley 20- Queens Park Rangers

Friday 27 March 2015

The final push

With eight matches left in the Premier League there is still plenty to play for as the European hopefuls chase Chelsea at the top and the battle at the bottom hots up.
Chelsea continue to lead the way with a game in hand. After their rare 5-3 home loss to Tottenham and 5-0 success at Swansea they have had three 1-1 home draws against Manchester City, Burnley and Southampton and picked up narrow wins in the rest of their matches.
Manchester City suffered a setback losing 2-0 at home to Arsenal and were held 1-1 at home by Hull City. A 2-1 defeat at Liverpool and a 1-0 loss at Burnley put daylight between them and the leaders.
Arsenal lost 2-0 at Southampton and 2-1 at Tottenham, but won 2-0 at Manchester City and with 6 wins in a row are tightly sandwiched between the two Manchester clubs.
Manchester United lost 1-0 at home to Southampton and 2-1 at Swansea, but seem to be going in the right direction with 4 wins in their latest matches including an easy 3-0 win at home to Tottenham and a 2-1 victory in Liverpool.
Liverpool began the new year with a 2-2 draw at home to Leicester but since then had only dropped points in a goalless draw at Everton until Manchester United arrived and dealt a blow to their European hopes with a 2-1 win.
Southampton showed they were serious contenders for Europe with a 2-0 home win over Arsenal followed by a 2-1 victory at Manchester United, but home defeats 1-0 to Swansea and 2-0 to Liverpool and a goalless draw at home to West Ham has left them slightly below their desired position despite a 1-1 draw at Chelsea.
Tottenham enjoyed home wins over their London rivals, Chelsea 5-3 and Arsenal 2-1, but lost 2-1 at Crystal Palace and drew 2-2 at home to West Ham. After losing 3-0 at Manchester United a 4-3 win at home to bottom team Leicester keeps Tottenham among the top teams.
Swansea City who were thrashed 5-0 at home to Chelsea have a 2-1 home victory over Manchester United to their name, but are 10 points behind their nearest rivals.  
West Ham United had only won once this year until their recent 1-0 home win over Sunderland, but a 1-1 home draw against Manchester United and draws at Southampton 0-0 and Tottenham 2-2 have kept the hammers at the top half of the table.
Stoke City held visiting Manchester United to a 1-1 draw but where easily beaten 3-0 at Arsenal and 4-1 at home to Manchester City. The Potters recently enjoyed a 2-0 home win against Everton before losing 1-0 at West Brom and 2-1 at home to Crystal Palace to find themselves at the mid point of the table.
Crystal Palace have steered clear of the relegation zone with a 2-1 home victory over Tottenham and 3-1 wins away to West Ham and at home to QPR followed by a 2-1 win at Stoke.
Newcastle United have been losing too many matches before picking up points. Wins against lower sides, such as 3-0 at Hull and 1-0 at home to Aston Villa, have kept the Magpies away from the immediate drop zone.
Everton have underachieved and are sitting uncomfortably in 13th place, but after losing 2-0 at Arsenal and Stoke have picked up 2 wins in a row for only the second time this season 3-0 at home to Newcastle and 2-1 at Queens Park Rangers.
West Bromwich Albion have won 3 home matches in a row, since their 3-0 defeat to Spurs, including 1-0 over high flyers Southampton and with 4 away draws this year the Baggies are just above the relegation zone.
Hull City drew 1-1 at Manchester City and have picked up points against some of the troubled teams, but are perilously close to the drop zone.
Aston Villa slid down the table with 7 straight defeats, but since the appointment of manager Tim Sherwood have picked up a 2-1 home win against West Bromwich Albion and smashed Sunderland 4-0 at the Stadium of Light.
Sunderland are only one point above the relegation zone and with home defeats 2-0 to troubled Queens Park Rangers and 4-0 to lowly Aston Villa presenting them huge concerns, Dick Advocaat was called in to save the black Cats from the dreaded drop.
Burnley are still in the bottom three but a 1-1 draw at Chelsea and a 1-0 win at home to Manchester City should give them the confidence to battle for survival.
Queens Park Rangers are 2nd from bottom and with only one win and one draw in their last ten matches are in serious danger of relegation.
Leicester City are bottom of the table and despite starting the year with a 2-2 draw at Liverpool and a 1-0 win at home to Aston Villa have picked up 2 more draws and seem to need something of a miracle to stay up.