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Report: Tottenham prepare $70 million summer bid for Zaha

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In a statement of intent, Tottenham is reportedly preparing to bring in one of the Premier League’s most electrifying wingers.

The Times in London reports that Spurs are set to offer Crystal Palace a $70 million transfer fee to sign Wilfried Zaha, bringing the Ivory Coast international back to a big six club for the first time since 2014. Zaha famously was the last signing of Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United, but by the time the now-25-year-old arrived, David Moyes was the manager and Zaha never found a place in the Man United first team.

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Since returning, Zaha has found his form and this season has four goals and an assist for Crystal Palace in 20 Premier League matches as the club is now treading water above the relegation zone. Last season, Zaha scored seven goals and dished out nine assists in 34 starts in the league.

Zaha’s potential signing likely means either a change in formation or the departure of either or both Son Heung-min and Erik Lamela, both who play on Zaha’s preferred left side regularly.

The report states that the signing could be a way to galvanize some of the supporters for next season in which the club will play in the re-built White Hart Lane.

PL roundup: Citizens crack 70 points, Spurs grab North London Derby

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Get caught up on all seven of Saturday’s Premier League fixtures…

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Manchester City 5-1 Leicester CityFULL RECAP

Raheem Sterling gave the Citizens a lead inside three minutes, but it was Sergio Aguero’s second-half outburst that paced Man City to their league-leading 23rd win of the year. The Argentine international netted on four separate occasions after halftime to extend the lead to 5-1, after Jamie Vardy had temporarily cancelled out Sterling’s opener. Pep Guardiola‘s side now sit 16 points above second-place Manchester United with 11 matches remaining.

 

Tottenham 1-0 ArsenalFULL RECAP

At the moment, Mauricio Pochettino‘s side have gone third in the PL courtesy of Harry Kane‘s header. The Englishman has now scored seven goals in as many matches during the last seven North London Derbies.

Everton 3-1 Crystal PalaceFULL RECAP

The Toffees climbed to within two points of seventh-place Burnley behind an offensive outburst from the hosts. Gylfi SigurdssonOumar Niasse and Tom Davies all scored after halftime to bring Sam Allardyce‘s men up to 34 points on the season at Goodison Park. Palace’s lone goal on the day came through Luka Milivojevic, who converted a penalty kick late on after Ashley Williams conceded the spot kick via a handball.

West Ham United 2-0 WatfordFULL RECAP

The Hammers are now unbeaten in seven of their last eight, and have climbed up to 12th place after Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez and Marko Arnautovic found the back of the net on Saturday. Meanwhile, Watford is level on 30 points with West Ham, despite the Hornets boasting a superior goal differential through 27 rounds of play.

Stoke City 1-1 Brighton & Hove Albion — FULL RECAP

Xherdan Shaqiri helped capture a point for the Potters at the bet365 Stadium, after Jose Izquierdo had given Brighton the lead early on after a beautifully-executed team goal from the visitors. Stoke remains in 18th place on 25 points, while Brighton sits three points clear of a tightly-contested relegation battle.

Swansea City 1-0 Burnley — FULL RECAP

The Swans benefitted from Ki Sung-Yueng‘s second-half finish to go 15th place, while Burnley remains in seventh place despite the club having gone winless in their last 10 matches.

Everton 3-1 Crystal Palace: Toffees keep climbing

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  • Palace outshoots victors 16-11
  • Mangala leaves match injured
  • Sigurdsson, Niasse duel for Man of the Match

Gylfi Sigurdsson, Oumar Niasse, and Tom Davies scored second half goals as Everton climbed into ninth place with a 3-1 win over Crystal Palace at Goodison Park on Saturday.

The Toffees’ 34 points are two back of seventh place Burnley, who lost to Swansea City.

Luka Milivojevic converted a penalty for Palace’s lone goal. Roy Hodgson‘s Eagles are 14th, two points clear of the drop zone.

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Clever work from Sigurdsson eaned him space to rip a 25-yard shot across goal that just missed the far post.

New signing Alexander Sorloth started a play in Everton’s end that finished with a Luka Milivojevic bullet wide of the near post.

Sigurdsson then slipped Oumar Niasse on goal, but the Senegalese striker couldn’t finish his chance. And Sigurdsson missed a chance to shoot from the back post when Joel Ward dove to push a cross out for a corner kick.

Idrissa Gana Gueye forced a fine diving save from Wayne Hennessey with a dipping effort from distance.

Theo Walcott drew a free kick from Timothy Fosu-Mensah after dribbling through three or four Eagles in the 28th minute.

Yohan Cabaye forced Jordan Pickford into a save, and Christian Benteke was offside when he scored off the ensuing corner kick.

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Everton fittingly found its opener through Sigurdsson moments after halftime. James Tomkins gave the ball away with a poor clearance and then saw Sigurdsson’s shot off a Niasse feed deflect off him and into the goal.

Niasse made it 2-0 when Cuco Martina chipped a cross toward the penalty spot and the Senegalese headed across the goal into the side netting.

Davies was in the catbird seat to score a 76th minute insurance goal after Sigurdsson’s tight angle pass bounded off Hennessey and onto his path.

Ashley Williams gave away a harsh penalty when he handled a close-range shot in the box. Pickford got both hands on Milivojevic’s attempt, but it carried into the goal.

Palace loses Zaha ahead of brutal run of fixtures

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There’s a bit of good news when it comes to Crystal Palace’s Wilfried Zaha: The Ivorian attacker won’t miss the rest of the Premier League season with a knee injury suffered and played through in Sunday’s 1-1 draw with Newcastle United at Selhurst Park.

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Zaha, 25, could be out for a month with the injury, which the Palace web site says is similar to one that sidelined him for eight games earlier this season.

That may have been the biggest reason for Palace’s miserable early season, so some fans are understandably alarmed with any absence for their best player.

Here’s Roy Hodgson, from CPFC.co.uk:

“We don’t know how long he is out for, that is the bottom line and it’s amazing he was able to play so long in the game with the injury. The good news for us is that he is a very quick healer, he and the medical staff will work very hard to get him back on the field as soon as possible and we know he will definitely not play against Everton, that’s for sure, and it might even take a week or two more than that.

Palace has 27 points, three points clear of the drop zone. The Eagles face Everton, Spurs, Manchester United, and Chelsea over the next month, so points were always going to be at a premium.

So we supposed the injury coming in February, when Palace has so few matches remaining in the month, is the second bit of good news.

Relegation race: The fixtures that matter in the Premier League

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The bottom half of the Premier League table is a 10-team relegation scrap.

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That could feel more like nine should Watford upset Chelsea at Vicarage Road on Monday, but we’ll play the odds and keep the Hornets very much in play.

Forget the places assigned to the names, this is a better idea of where the clubs stand with a dozen or fewer matches to play:

27 points — Watford, West Ham, Brighton, Crystal Palace
26 points — Southampton
25 points — Newcastle
24 points — Swansea, Stoke, Huddersfield Town
20 points — West Brom

Watford (13 fixtures left)

Home: Chelsea, Everton, West Brom, Bournemouth, Burnley, Palace, Newcastle
Away: West Ham, Arsenal, Liverpool, Huddersfield, Spurs, Man Utd

The key: Four scrappers head to Vicarage Road. The Hornets should be fine if they avoid losing those. Including the 13th match against Chelsea, Watford is one of the bunch to face five of the Top Six.

West Ham United

Home: Watford, Burnley, Man Utd, Southampton, Stoke, Man City, Everton
Away: Liverpool, Swans, Chelsea, Arsenal, Leicester

The key: The Irons play three-straight home matches in March, with Burnley, Man Utd, and Southampton dancing into the London Stadium. Those three represent 60 percent of their remaining home dates. In total, the Hammers face five of the Top Six.

Brighton and Hove Albion

Home: Swans, Arsenal, Leicester, Huddersfield, Spurs, Burnley, Man Utd
Away: Stoke, Everton, Man City, Palace, Liverpool

The key: Be safe before the final four fixtures, which include Spurs, Man Utd, and Liverpool sides sure to still be concerned about table standing. Also face five of the Top Six.

Crystal Palace

Home: Spurs, Man Utd, Liverpool, Brighton, Leicester, West Brom
Away: Everton, Chelsea, Huddersfield Town, Bournemouth, Watford, Stoke

The key: Get to April alive — The Eagles will face Spurs, Man Utd, Chelsea, and Liverpool amongst their next six fixtures. It’s much easier the rest of the way.

Southampton

Home: Liverpool, Stoke City, Chelsea, Bournemouth, Man City
Away: Burnley, Newcastle, Swansea City, West Ham, Arsenal, Leicester, Everton

The key: Saints have a three-match March road swing through fellow relegation battlers Newcastle, Swans, and West Ham. A little bit fortunate that Saints’ home finale versus Man City will feature probably pre-occupied City already having clinched the league.

Newcastle United

Home: Man Utd, Southampton, Huddersfield, Arsenal, West Brom, Chelsea
Away: Bournemouth, Liverpool, Spurs, Leicester, Everton, Watford

The key: Be safe before the finale versus Chelsea. March home dates with Saints and Huddersfield will be huge in the noisy north. Five of the Top Six remaining on the schedule.

Swansea City

Home: Burnley, West Ham, Southampton, Everton, Chelsea, Stoke
Away: Brighton, Huddersfield, Man Utd, West Brom, Man City, Bournemouth

The key: It’s very much in Swans’ hands, facing six of the current bottom half and only three of the Top Six. At least four points in their next two — Burnley and Brighton — feel as important as anything, and the final match versus Stoke City could be colossal.

Stoke City

Home: Brighton, Man City, Everton, Spurs, Burnley, Palace
Away: Leicester, Southampton, Arsenal, West Ham, Liverpool, Swans

The key: How massive might that finale at Swansea be to both team’s fortunes? The list looks manageable for the team with the most goals conceded in the Premier League (by six).

Huddersfield Town

Home: Bournemouth, Swansea, Palace, Watford, Everton, Arsenal
Away: West Brom, Spurs, Newcastle, Brighton, Chelsea, Man City

The key: Three of Town’s last four come versus Chelsea, Man City, and Arsenal. Even with City likely to have the title sewn up, that’s no cakewalk. Plus the fourth match is Everton. So gets points quick, especially with Bournemouth and West Brom next on the league docket.

West Bromwich Albion

Home: Huddersfield Town, Leicester, Burnley, Swans, Liverpool, Spurs
Away: Chelsea, Watford, Bournemouth, Man Utd, Newcastle, Palace

The key: Wins, not draws; The Baggies have more ground to make up than any other team. The points are certainly there for them.