Player ratings: Who impressed in Chelsea’s win at Arsenal?

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Chelsea beat Arsenal 1-0 at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday as Per Mertesacker‘s early red card and Diego Costa‘s instinctive finish were the two defining moments of the match.

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The Blues remain unbeaten under interim boss Guus Hiddink, while Arsenal’s title hopes took a hit.

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Here’s a mark out of 10 for the players involved in this London derby.


Arsenal 

Petr Cech – 7 -Made a smart stop at his near post early on and then saved from Costa at the near post

Hector Bellerin – 5 – Failed to get going in attack with Azpilicueta pushing forward, but solid enough defensively.

Per Mertesacker – 3 – Sent off for taking out Costa as the last man. Got caught wrong side and lack of pace exposed. No complaints.

Laurent Koscielny – 4 – Gave the ball away early which led to a chance for Oscar. Couldn’t handle the physicality of Costa.

Nacho Monreal – 5 – Supported Walcott whenever he could but defensively he was slow to get out to Ivanovic who crossed for Costa’s opener.

Aaron Ramsey – 5 – Struggled to impact the game from a deeper central role.

Mathieu Flamini – 6- Had two glorious chances, especially the second, but at least he was making surging runs into the box.

Mesut Ozil – 5 – Some clever balls early on but his influence evaporated as the game wore on.

Joel Campbell – 4 – Put in a shift but missed a good chance early on as he rushed his finish.

Theo Walcott – 5 – Captain for the day, Walcott looked dangerous with his darting runs in-behind but Arsenal’s midfield never found him.

Olivier Giroud – 3 – Subbed out for Gabriel after Mertesacker’s red card. Had few touches when he was on the pitch, but JT had him locked down.

Subs: Gabriel (on for Giroud, 22 mins) – 6 – dealt with Costa’s physical play better; Alexis Sanchez (on for Campbell, 57 mins) – 6 – On his return from injury more tracking back than attacking but made a difference. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (on for Walcott, 75 mins) – 5 – Little time to make an impact.


Chelsea

Thibaut Courtois – 6 – Flapped at crosses twice in the second half, but Chelsea escaped. Kicking a little off but, overall, didn’t have much to do.

Branislav Ivanovic – 7 – Terrific cross for Costa’s goal and one of his better displays defensively this season.

John Terry – 7 – Led the defense superbly. Attacked balls in the air and totally nullified Giroud early on.

Kurt Zouma – 7 – Like Terry, a solid display. Vital block in the second half as a goalmouth scramble fell to Gabriel.

Cesar Azpilicueta – 6 – One of Chelsea’s most consistent performers this term. Dealt with threat of Campbell easily.

Nemanja Matic – 6 – Solid display in midfield and made a few forays forward to support Fabregas.

John Obi Mikel – 6 – Mr. Dependable once again. Kept the ball and broke up plays. Slots in with Matic well.

Oscar – 6 – Not his best display on the ball but lively early on and forced the issue.

Cesc Fabregas – 7 – Always wanted the ball and despite being booed by the home fans he clipped some great balls in-behind Arsenal’s defense.

Willian – 7 – Lovely through-ball for Costa in the red card incident and always looking forward.

Diego Costa – 9 (Man of the Match) – A constant pest. Costa showed Mertesacker a clean set of heels and got the Arsenal man sent off, plus he instinctively tucked home the only goal of the game. Fired up from the get-go and Arsenal, once again, couldn’t handle him. Subbed out with what looked like a slight hamstring issue.

Subs: Loic Remy (on for Costa, 68 mins) – 5 – Lead the line well after Costa was replaced. Eden Hazard (on for Oscar, 77 mins) – 5 – Was at the heart of a few counters on his return from injury.

Watch Live: Arsenal v. Brighton, Sheffield Utd v. Newcastle

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Matchweek 15 of the 2019-20 Premier League season wraps up on Thursday, with two more midweek clashes featuring two mid-table sides, and two more from much nearer to the relegation zone, in action.

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First up, PL new boys (and 9th-place side) Sheffield United will host 14th-place Newcastle United, who sit just two points outside the relegation zone ahead of kickoff. 45 minutes later, 10th-place Arsenal will host 16th-place Brighton & Hove Albion in Freddie Ljungberg’s first home game as Arsenal interim manager.

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The schedule for Thursday’s two games is below and you can stream each game live by clicking on the links.


2:30 p.m. ET: Sheffield United v. Newcastle United [STREAM]
3:15 p.m. ET: Arsenal v. Brighton & Hove Albion [STREAM]

Marco Silva fired by Everton

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Marco Silva has been fired as manager of Everton, making him the fourth Premier League manager to lose his job in the last 16 days.

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Silva reported for a regular day’s work at Everton’s training ground on Thursday, a day after suffering a 5-2 defeat to local rivals Liverpool, all while a conference call was expected to take place involving the relevant figures: owner Farhad Moshiri, chairman Bill Kenright, chief executive Denise Barrett-Baxendale and director of football Marcel Brands.

15 games into the 2019-20 PL season, the Toffees currently sit 18th in the league table with less than a point per game — relegation territory — on the back of three straight losses and just four wins all season. Silva’s only victory since mid-October came against fellow bottom-four side Southampton nearly a month ago.

[ MORE: Ole gushes over “the best performance Rashford has had under me” ]

It’s not just the number of losses for Everton (now up to nine) on the season thus far, but many of the sides to which they’ve lost (newly promoted Aston Villa, 12th-place Bournemouth, newly promoted Sheffield United, 11th-place Burnley, 16th-place Brighton & Hove Albion and 19th-place Norwich, to name a few) that forced them further and further down the table and made relegation a semi-serious threat, at least for the time being.

Atleti escapes major punishment for fans’ Griezmann threats

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MADRID (AP) Atletico Madrid escaped major punishment Wednesday after its fans made threatening chants against former player Antoine Griezmann during last weekend’s La Liga match against Barcelona.

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The Spanish league had denounced the club after some fans chanted “Die Griezmann” in Sunday’s match, won by Barcelona at Wanda Metropolitano Stadium in Madrid.

The Spanish soccer federation said it would fine Atletico $333 because the game was disrupted, but it did not cite the chants against Griezmann. The fine was prompted mainly because fans threw objects — including an umbrella — onto the field.

The Spanish league had denounced the club to the federation’s anti-violence committee, saying about 2,000 fans from Atletico’s “ultras” section made the chants for about 20 seconds before the start of the second half, and again later in the game.

[ MORE: Ole gushes over “the best performance Rashford has had under me” ]

Griezmann left Atletico for Barcelona at the end of last season in a transfer worth more than $132 million.

The France forward was jeered nearly every time he touched the ball at the Metropolitano on Sunday. It was his first match at Atletico’s stadium since leaving the club.

Klopp to take first team to Club World Cup, leave youth for EFL Cup

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Jurgen Klopp has chosen his strongest possible Liverpool squad to take to the Club World Cup later this month, leaving a reserve- and youth-laden team behind to compete in the EFL Cup during the same period.

[ MORE: Lampard: Pulisic can reach “top level of world football” ]

Liverpool will head to Doha, Qatar, for the Club World Cup, where they’ll play their semifinal fixture against one of Monterrey (Mexico), Al-Saad (Qatar) or Hienghene Sport (New Caledonia) on Dec. 18. The day prior, on Dec. 17, the Reds will also play away to Aston Villa in the quarterfinals of the League Cup. With the club’s star-studded first team in Qatar, progression to the semifinals of the League Cup will be down to a team full of teenage prospects.

Only defender Joel Matip and midfielder Fabinho, both of whom are currently injured and unavailable, were left out of the Club World Cup squad.

[ MORE: Ole gushes over “the best performance Rashford has had under me” ]

Players suffering from illness or injury prior to Liverpool’s first Club World Cup game can be replaced in the squad up to 24 hours before kickoff.

Liverpool’s Club World Cup squad

Goalkeepers: Alisson, Adrian, Andy Lonergan

Defenders: Virgil Van Dijk, Dejan Lovren, Joe Gomez, Andrew Robertson, Trent Alexander-Arnold

Midfielders: Georginio Wijnaldum, James Milner, Naby Keita, Jordan Henderson, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Adam Lallana, Curtis Jones, Harvey Elliott, Neco Williams

Forwards: Firmino, Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah, Xherdan Shaqiri, Rhian Brewster, Divock Origi