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PL roundup: Saints go marching up; Chelsea close in on 4th

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A roundup of all of Saturday’s action in the Premier League…

[ MORE: Southampton a point from safety | Chelsea two points back of 4th ]

Southampton 2-1 BournemouthFULL RECAP

If Southampton are to stave off relegation this season, Saturday’s south coast derby triumph over Bournemouth will likely be remembered as the turning point. Saints entered the weekend in 19th place, four points behind 17th-place Swansea City. Thanks to Dusan Tadic‘s brace (WATCH HERE) at St. Mary’s Stadium, and Swansea’s narrow defeat to Chelsea, Southampton now occupy 18th place and trail the Swans by a single point. On May 8, the next-to-last game of the season for both sides, Swansea host Southampton.

Liverpool 0-0 Stoke CityFULL RECAP

One could call Liverpool’s scoreless draw with 18th- (now 19th-)place Stoke a hangover after the emotional toll of Tuesday’s Champions League semifinals first-leg thrashing of Roma, but in truth the Reds were their typically dominant selves, only without the precision and final touch which have come to define their campaign. Having out-shot the Potters by a margin of 20-5, Liverpool managed just two shots on target (1 for Stoke) while holding more than 72 percent of the game’s possession. Jurgen Klopp‘s side sits third, four points clear of Tottenham Hotspur, who now have two games in hand.

Swansea City 0-1 ChelseaFULL RECAP

Cesc Fabregas scored the game’s only goal, in the 4th minute, as fifth-place Chelsea continued their mini-revival (three straight wins) and their bid to reel in Tottenham and realize an unlikely top-four finish. The gap between the London powers is just two points, though Spurs have a game in hand, which they’ll play at home against Watford on Monday (Watch live, 3 p.m. ET, on NBCSN and NBCSports.com), on the Blues.

Crystal Palace 5-0 Leicester CityFULL RECAP

Either Claude Puel‘s Leicester players are already on a beach for the summer (a top-10 finish is all but mathematically guaranteed), or Roy Hodgson convinced his Palace players that every team below them in the PL table would win every game they play for the rest of the season thus they needed one more (truly emphatic) victory to secure their top-division status for next season (they now sit 11th, six points clear of the drop zone). Either way, the Eagles made light work of the 10-man Foxes, courtesy of five different goalscorers delighted the Selhurst Park faithful.

Burnley 0-0 Brighton & Hove AlbionFULL RECAP

Burnley’s bid to usurp Arsenal for a top-six finish likely came to an end on Saturday. It was already a long shot (four-point deficit to make up, having already played one more game), thus a scoreless draw with Brighton leaves Sean Dyche‘s men three points behind the Gunners with only two games left to play (Arsenal have four).

Huddersfield Town 0-2 EvertonFULL RECAP

Huddersfield are probably safe, given the fact that both Swansea and Southampton would have to make up two- and three-point gaps in order to leapfrog them and see the Terriers to fall to 18th, but a point (or all three) at home against Everton would have put to bed any lingering fears. Alas, Cenk Tosun and Idrissa Gueye scored to all but lock the Toffees into an eighth-place finish following a disastrous start to the season which looked headed for a relegation battle for a number of months.

Newcastle United 0-1 West Bromwich AlbionFULL RECAP

West Brom beat Newcastle to delay the inevitable, their relegation to the Championship, courtesy of Matt Phillips‘ 29th-minute winner. Even still, the Baggies are five points from safety with just two games left to play. The next time they drop two points (or Swansea win two), they’ll be gone.

Sunday’s PL schedule

West Ham United vs. Manchester City — 9:15 a.m. ET, on NBCSN and NBCSports.com
Manchester United vs. Arsenal — 11:30 a.m. ET, on NBCSN and NBCSports.com

Monday’s PL schedule

Tottenham Hotspur vs. Watford — 3 p.m. ET, on NBCSN and NBCSports.com

West Brom 1-1 Swansea: Swans grab a point

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  • West Brom have 1 win in last 33 PL games
  • Darren Moore draws first game in caretaker charge
  • Swansea without a win in three

West Brom drew 1-1 with Swansea City at the Hawthorns on Saturday as they remain bottom of the table.

Jay Rodriguez gave the Baggies the lead but Tammy Abraham equalized in the second half.

West Brom remain bottom and have 21 points, nine points from safety. Swansea have 32 points from 32 games.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

A quiet first half played out at the Hawthorns as the only real chance of note was from Chris Brunt who forced Lukasz Fabianski into a fine stop.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

Ahead of half time the best chance of the first half arrived as Sam Clucas found Andre Ayew but he put his effort wide when he should have scored.

Moments before the half time whistle Rodriguez was then denied by a brilliant stop from Fabianski.

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

The Baggies took the lead early in the second half as Matt Phillips‘ cross was flicked on by Salomon Rondon and Rodriguez tapped home. 1-0.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Swansea came roaring back after they went behind and Abraham nodded home an equalizer.

The Chelsea loanee rose above Jake Livermore from Clucas’ corner to make it 1-1 and grab a point for the Swans in their relegation battle.

West Brom 1-2 Huddersfield Town: Terriers climb

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  • Van la Parra gives Terriers lead
  • Mounie makes it 2-0
  • Dawson pullback not enough

Rajiv Van la Parra and Steve Mounie scored second half goals to boost Huddersfield Town four points clear of the drop zone with a 2-1 win over West Bromwich Albion at the Hawthorns on Saturday.

Craig Dawson scored to give the Baggies hope of a comeback, but it was deflated and West Brom is now seven points back of safety with 10 matches to play.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

West Brom saw an early chance fall to Salomon Rondon, but the Venezuelan blazed over the bar.

Huddersfield were unlucky with a chance produced by Florent Hadergjonaj, as an Alex Pritchard shot caught a teammate in the face and the Terriers couldn’t clean up the loose ball.

Matt Phillips provided a typical fine cross to James McClean near the halftime whistle, but the Irish attacker belted it high.

Town took the lead after halftime, as Van la Parra’s mishit cross was rescued by Collin Quaner and sent into the goal by the same man who bungled the cross.

And Mounie made West Brom’s short-term and long-term fate look dim by putting down a second Town marker off an assist from club record signing Pritchard.

Hold on, though.

Dawson had an answer for the hosts off a Chris Brunt cross, and it was nearly level when Jonas Lossl denied Brunt late on.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

West Brom 1-1 Arsenal: Late NYE drama

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  • James McClean own goal put Arsenal ahead
  • Jay Rodriguez scores 89th minute penalty
  • West Brom without a win in 19

Arsenal and West Bromwich Albion both scored late on New Year’s Eve at the Hawthorns in a 1-1 draw, with Arsene Wenger left fuming on the day he set a new record for the number of games (811) managed in the Premier League.

Alexis Sanchez’s free kick, which deflected off James McClean and went down as an own goal, put Arsenal ahead late on but Jay Rodriguez’s controversial penalty one minute from time grabbed a point for the Baggies.

With the point Arsenal move up to fifth but are three points off the top four, while West Brom move off the bottom of the table.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ] 

Early on Rodriguez headed Matt Phillips‘ cross on target but Petr Cech saved fairly easily as West Brom started well.

Cech then failed to deal comfortably with a high ball into the box but Arsenal broke superbly and Lacazette saw his deflected effort fly just wide.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Alex Iwobi then found plenty of space on the edge of the box but he curled his effort over the bar.

West Brom held firm defensively and Arsenal were frustrated in the first half.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

On the hour mark Lacazette raced into the box but Foster denied him as the Gunners pushed hard for the opener as the Frenchman tapped just wide soon after.

Lacazette and Sanchez almost unlocked West Brom’s defense soon after but the latter was denied by a heroic block as the Baggies dropped deeper and deeper late on.

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Rodriguez forced Cech into a smart save after a rare West Brom attack but soon after Arsenal were ahead. Sanchez won a free kick and then his effort deflected off McClean and in as it went down as an own goal. 1-0 to the Arsenal and that’s how it looked to be finishing…

Then referee Mike Dean awarded West Brom a penalty kick for a handball on Calum Chambers after Kieran Gibbs hit the ball towards him from close range and it brushed the arm of the Arsenal defender.

Amid Arsenal’s complaints, Rodriguez kept his cool to slot home the equalizer and grab a point for his team.

PL Sunday preview: Can Man United, Liverpool keep pace?

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Highly unlikely to overcome 14- and 21-point deficits in the title race, respectively, Manchester United and Liverpool — along with the rest of the Premier League’s top-six — are merely in a race for second. West Bromwich Albion and Bournemouth — their opponents on Sunday, respectively — fear relegation.

[ PL ROUNDUP: Man City untouchable; Chelsea, Arsenal win narrowly ]

West Brom vs. Manchester United — 9:15 a.m. ET, on NBCSN and NBCSports.com

Try telling Jose Mourinho, the only man in the PL still refusing to concede the title to Manchester City, that the title race is over. The performances have often been ugly and ground out until the final whistle — especially in the absence of Paul Pogba, who’ll once again be unavailable through suspension — but Mourinho’s men have won five of their last six (the only defeat coming last weekend, to Man City) as they head into Sunday’s annual trip to the Hawthorns, where they’ll face 19th-place West Brom. The Baggies haven’t won in their last 15 PL outings (eight draws), a woeful run which dates back to the second week of the 2017-18 season.

While United have been nearly impenetrable defensively (11 goals conceded in 17 games), a pair of costly errors — each committed by star striker Romelu Lukaku — cost the Red Devils dearly against City, as did their recurring inability (against the PL’s top teams) to control the game through possession and create scoring chances with consistency. The same struggles reared their ugly heads in a 1-0 victory over Bournemouth on Wednesday.

As poor as the results have been over the course of four months, West Brom can hang their hat on a decent defensive record — just 22 goals conceded in 17 games, which puts them squarely in the middle of the table. If Alan Pardew‘s side sets out to defend for 90 minutes, the Baggies might just get something out of Sunday’s clash. Pardew was quite pleased by the improvements he saw during Wednesday’s 0-0 draw with Liverpool, and he’s hoping for a repeat performance against United.

“We kept them very quiet and created on transition better moments, in the limited number that we had, than we did at Swansea,” he said. “That’s an improvement, but still an area to work on. We had some really strong performances — and if you get four or five ‘eights’ in your team that normally constitutes points.”

INJURIES: West Brom — OUT: Nacer Chadli (hip), Matt Phillips (hamstring), Craig Dawson (knee), James Morrison (achilles); RETURNING: Gareth Barry (thigh)| Man United — OUT: Paul Pogba (suspension), Eric Bailly (ankle), Marouane Fellaini (knee), Michael Carrick (heart)


Bournemouth vs. Liverpool — 11:30 a.m. ET, on NBCSN and NBCSports.com

Every time Liverpool take a step or two forward, they take a step or two right back to where they began. Case in point: back-to-back wins over Stoke City and Brighton & Hove Albion, by a combined score of 8-1, which briefly vaulted them ahead of Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur in the race for the top-four; followed by back-to-back draws against bottom-half sides Everton and West Brom.

With that side, Jurgen Klopp‘s side is unbeaten in its last eight league games and boasts one of the league’s most potent attacking records (34 goals scored in 17 games — third-most behind the two Manchester clubs).

Cherries boss Eddie Howe was encouraged by his side’s performances in that narrow loss to United, and the 40-year-old can sense that better days are on the near horizon.

“We’re disappointed because we’ve been beaten, but I’m really pleased with the performance,” he said. “I thought we were very good today and were very disciplined out of possession. We were also very good with the ball and created numerous chances. We really did establish ourselves in the game very early and there were some really good individual performances today. The team functioned very well.”

INJURIES: Bournemouth — OUT: Tyrone Mings (back), Brad Smith (hip), Adam Federici (knee) | Liverpool — OUT: Alberto Moreno (ankle), Adam Lallana (fitness), Joel Matip (thigh), Nathaniel Clyne (back), Emre Can (suspensions); QUESTIONABLE: Daniel Sturridge (hamstring)