Tom Huddlestone

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Chelsea skates through in FA Cup; Spurs held; Palace upset

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Premier League sides didn’t have a particularly elementary journey through Saturday’s FA Cup schedule, and it didn’t look any easier on Sunday as all four teams in play through the early slate had difficulties.

Chelsea got by a pesky Nottingham Forest side 2-0, but Tottenham Hotspur was held to a 1-1 draw, Crystal Palace was dumped out by Derby County, and Sheffield United had a nervy finish against a far inferior opponent.

[ FA CUP: Roundup of Saturday’s action ]

The Blues got going in a hurry as Callum Hudson-Odoi put the Blues 1-0 up just seven minutes in on a beautiful set of one-touch passing that ended with the 19-year-old cutting in on his left and slicing a low shot into the bottom corner. Pedro had a chance on the break to double the lead, but was unable to get by his defender despite the two-on-one advantage. That nearly proved costly as Forest earned a 23rd minute penalty, but VAR wiped it off for offside.

Chelsea remained the better attacking side, and they profited past the half-hour mark with Ross Barkley turning in a rebounded Hudson-Odoi shot. The initial effort was parried by Nottingham Forest goalkeeper Jordan Smith who pushed it the other way, but right to the feet of Barkley who barely had time to react on the doorstep, just barely keeping his feet to turn the ball into the net. Ryan Yates headed in for Nottingham Forest in the 67th minute but it was ruled out as the flag went up.

Tottenham dominated the match against Middlesbrough but failed to create much throughout the first half, with a cross to the far post for Ryan Sessegnon the best chance, although the former Fulham youth product failed to get a touch to Serge Aurier‘s delivery. Spurs’ lack of creativity would come back to haunt them as Middlesbrough came out of halftime firing, and former Manchester United youth product Ashley Fletcher found the back of the net to put the hosts 1-0 up at Riverside Stadium. It didn’t last long, though, as Jose Mourinho rang the changes, bringing on Giovani Lo Celso and Erik Lamela, and it paid instant dividends. Lucas Moura headed in from a deep Aurier cross that the Middlesborough defense misread.

Spurs had chances to win the game, none better than Aurier’s slash with two minutes to go. The shot was from a tight angle, but with acres of space to shoot, he rifled the ball miles over the bar instead of testing Middlesbrough keeper Tomas Mejias. They instead will return to Tottenham Hotspur Stadium for a replay after the scoreline finished level.

10-man Crystal Palace was upset at Selhurst Park by Derby County, falling 1-0 on a goal by Chris Martin just past the half-hour mark. The task was tougher after Luka Milivojevic was sent off in the second half a nasty kick out at Tom Huddlestone, spotted by VAR.

Sheffield United got more fight than expected from non-league side AFC Fylde, but snuck through by a 2-1 final with Callum Robinson and Leon Clarke on the scoresheet. Robinson’s strike came just eight minutes in and came benefit of a deflection off his mark Neill Byrne. Fylde marked the day with a goal in the 78th minute, but couldn’t find what would have been a shocking equalizer.

Jordan Hugill scored a brace as Queens Park Rangers hammered Swansea City 5-1. Bright Samuel, Lee Wallace, and Josh Scowen tacked on the additional scores, while George Byers picked up a consolation for the visitors.

Kenneth Zohore‘s 32nd minute strike gave West Brom a 1-0 victory at Charlton Athletic. Zohore played a fabulous one-two with Kyle Edwards, receiving the ball back at the near post and poking it through the legs of a charging Dillon Phillips.

Conor Chaplin gave Barnsley a 3-1 road victory over Crewe Alexandra with a 75th minute header that wrong-footed goalkeeper William Jaaskelainen.

Barnsley and Coventry City will require a replay after a 2-2 draw. A 52nd minute own goal saw Coventry City draw level shortly after the second-half restart, and neither side could find a winner.

League Two side Northampton Town advanced after putting four past Burton Albion in a 4-2 victory. They held a 3-1 lead at halftime and cruised from there, advancing past their League One opposition.

Premier League Power Rankings: Man Utd up, Arsenal slides

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Leaps for Leicester City, Manchester United, and Bournemouth highlight our Power Rankings heading into this international break.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s PL coverage ]

TEAM RANKING
source:
20 (20) Sunderland: Jermain Defoe says he needs to play in the Premier League to represent England, which means the Black Cats would be hit extra hard by relegation.
200px-Middlesbrough_crest 19 (19) Middlesbrough:¬†Finally scored a goal against Manchester United… but allowed three.
Hull City logo 18 (18) Hull¬†City:¬†Once Tom Huddlestone was sent off, the Tigers essentially quit against Everton. That’s troubling for manager Marco Silva.
source: 17 (15) Swansea City:¬†A disappointing loss that threatens to halt Swans’ momentum toward safety.
source: 16 (11) Watford:¬†Losers of three in four, and by almost any manner possible. The latest? Troy Deeney‘s pinpoint header into his own goal.
source: 15 (16) Crystal Palace:¬†Another win! But it’s a bit alarming that it took an own goal for Palace to finish the job against Watford.

14 (14) Burnley: The Clarets haven’t won since the tail end of January.
logo_westham 13 (12) West Ham United:¬†Slaven Bilic‘s future has to be in question as the Irons have regressed to below even Sam Allardyce era levels.
source: 12 (17) Bournemouth: Winners of consecutive PL matches¬†for the first time since March 2016, and not a moment too soon for Eddie Howe‘s Cherries.
11 (13) Leicester City: Six points clear of safety and facing Atletico Madrid in the UEFA Champions League quarterfinals.
source: 10 (10) Southampton: Lost to a fine Spurs side after winning two-straight, and probably was good enough to get a point.
source: 9 (8) Stoke City: A gut punch to lose late to Chelsea.
source: 8 (5) Arsenal: Matches-in-hand keep Top Four dreams in play, but the Gunners have been awful.
source: 7 (9) West Bromwich Albion: Beating Arsenal after a pair of losses is the definition of rebounding in style.
source:
6 (3) Liverpool:¬†An Adam Lallana missed sitter away from a much improved feeling, but that’s the Liverpool season in a nutshell.
5 (6) Everton:¬†Given a remaining Merseyside Derby and the inconsistent play of both Liverpool and Arsenal, the Top Five isn’t out of the question.
Logo_Manchester_City 4 (4) Manchester City: Looked very much like a team nursing UCL wounds in the 1-1 draw against Liverpool, but it sure could have been worse.
source: 3 (7) Manchester United: Last Premier League loss? October 23.
source: 2 (2) Tottenham Hotspur:¬†Scrapped a 2-1 win against tricky Southampton. Virtually identical season as Chelsea in terms of goals, goals conceded… just not wins.
source: 1 (1) Chelsea: Have won 10 of 15 on the road in league play after wins at Stoke and West Ham.

Everton 4-0 Hull City: Toffees tatter 10-man Tigers

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  • Calvert-Lewin makes memory
  • Toffees win second in a row
  • Lukaku bags stoppage brace
  • Hull remains 18th

Dominic Calvert-Lewin‘s first Premier League goal gave Everton a lead it wouldn’t sacrifice, as the Toffees beat Hull City 4-0 at Goodison Park¬†on Saturday.

Romelu Lukaku added his Premier League-leading 20th and 21st goals in stoppage time, and Enner Valencia scored Everton’s other marker¬†to push the Toffees above Manchester United and into sixth (though United has played three less matches).

Hull remains in the drop zone, three points behind Swansea City.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Barkley played Tom Davies in with a gorgeous through ball that Davies cut back for Calvert-Lewin to finish for a ninth-minute opener. The 20-year-old arrived from Sheffield United in August and debuted in December.

Lukaku had a goal pulled back for offside in the 24th minute as the Toffees worked to make the result academic.

Tom Huddlestone made Hull City’s chances even slimmer when he slid into Idrissa Gueye in the 73rd minute to earn a straight red.

Lukaku assisted Valencia within five minutes of the sending off to make it 2-0, and added his 20th of the season with a stoppage time finish.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Hull City 2-1 Swansea City: Super sub Niasse the hero

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  • Niasse jumps off bench to score twice
  • Hull within one point of safety
  • Tigers have beat Swans three times this season
  • Swans just three points above the drop

Hull City beat Swansea City 2-1 at the KCOM Stadium on Saturday as Oumar Niasse played the hero from the bench.

The on loan Everton striker scored twice in the second half to clinch three valuable points for Hull against their relegation rivals as Marco Silva’s men have given themselves a fighting chance of staying up. Swansea dominated large chunks of the game but poor finishing from Wayne Routledge cost them dear and Alfie Mawson‘s late goal was nothing more than a consolation.

With the win Hull have 24 points and move up to 18th place and are one point from safety, while Swansea are on 27 points and remain in the thick of the relegation battle.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ] 

Swansea got in-behind Hull’s defense early in the game as Routledge was set free but in-form goalkeeper Eldin Jakupovic produced a fine save to keep the scores level.

Hull then forced the issue but Swansea almost went ahead when Sigurdsson’s free kick was almost deflected into his own net by Tom Huddlestone but Jakupovic again came to the rescue.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ] 

Before half time Swansea were forced into two substitutions as Angel Rangel was replaced by Jordi Amat and Fernando Llorente came off with Jordan Ayew coming on.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ] 

In the second half the Swans continued to press and a ball across goal from Tom Carroll found Routledge but he hit his shot over when he should’ve done better.

Jakupovic then saved superbly from Sigurdssons’s free kick and then saved again from the resulting corner as Hull’s defense was under siege.

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ] 

Hull went for it late on as Niasse came on to make a difference. Kamil Grosicki had a shot cleared by a Swans defender and soon after Hull were ahead.

A long ball forward found Niasse in the clear and he calmly slotted past Lukasz Fabianski to make it 1-0 to the home team.

Despite late Swansea pressure, Hull again broke free with Niasse finishing superbly to score his and Hull’s second of the game as he breathed new life into Hull’s survival bid.

Mawson scored late on but it was nothing more than a consolation goal.

Premier League Saturday roundup: Drama central

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What. A. Day. Late winners, red cards, controversy, upsets.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

The seven Premier League games on Saturday produced just about everything.

[ MORE: PL standings |  Schedule ] 

Below is a look back at all the action from Saturday’s seven games in the PL.


Manchester United 1-1 BournemouthRECAP

1-1 doesn’t even go close to telling the story of this game. United led through Marcos Rojo‘s first Premier League goal but Bournemouth scored a penalty kick via Joshua King. Then, things got tasty. Tyrone Mings and Zlatan Ibrahimovic were going at it the whole game and the former looked to stamp on Zlatan’s head while he was on the floor, then Zlatan connected with an elbow on Mings’ head moments later. In the melee which ensued Andrew Surman was shown a second yellow card as Bournemouth played the entire second half with 10 men.

[ LISTEN: 2 Robbies on Saturday’s action¬†]¬†

Zlatan had the chance to the be the hero, once again, but his penalty kick was saved by Artur Boruc and United were held to a seventh draw in their last 11 PL home games. Frustration for Jose Mourinho as his men lost ground in the top four race, while Ibrahimovic and Mings could well get retrospective bans.


Liverpool 3-1 ArsenalRECAP

Alexis Sanchez was left on the bench and it backfired badly for Arsene Wenger as Liverpool secured victory. First half goals from Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane set Jurgen Klopp‘s side on their way and even though Sanchez jumped off the bench at half time to spark life into Arsenal and set up Danny Welbeck‘s strike, Wenger’s men lost for the third time in four games as Georginio Wijnaldum scored late on.

Liverpool again rose to the occasion against a top four rival as they remain unbeaten against the top six this season, while Arsenal’s top four hopes are in real jeopardy with Liverpool leapfrogging them in the table.


Watford 3-4 SouthamptonRECAP

What. A. Game. Watford took the lead through Troy Deeney early on but Saints came roaring back as Dusan Tadic first scored and then set up Nathan Redmond to make it 2-1. Then Stefano Okaka equalized late on but Manolo Gabbiadini made it 3-2 (he’s now scored six goals in four games for Saints) and Redmond added another to make it 4-2 before¬†Abdoulaye Doucoure scored a late consolation for the Hornets. Claude Puel‘s Saints have now scored 10 goals in their last three games and have put their EFL Cup final heartbreak firmly behind them.


Leicester City 3-1 Hull CityRECAP

What a difference one week makes. Leicester have won back-to-back PL games for the first time this season as they continue to prove life is just fine after Claudio Ranieri. Caretaker boss Craig Shakespeare has overseen two-straight 3-1 wins against Liverpool and now Hull but the Foxes had to fight back from 1-0 down. In fact, it’s the first time this season that Leicester have won after going behind as Sam Clucas put Hull ahead. However, Christian Fuchs made it 1-1 at half time and then second half goals from Riyad Mahrez and a late¬†own goal from Tom Huddlestone sealed the win. The reigning champs are finally pulling away from the relegation zone.


Swansea City 3-2 BurnleyRECAP

Another thriller took place at the Liberty Stadium as Paul Clement celebrated wildly thanks to Fernando Llorente’s late winner. The Swans went ahead through a Llorente header but then a controversial penalty kick was awarded to Burnley (Clarets striker Ashley Barnes handled the ball but referee Anthony Taylor gave a spot kick) and Andre Gray made it 1-1 before adding another in the second half to make it 2-1. Martin Olsson made it 2-2 with 20 minutes to go and then Llorente popped up in stoppage time to hand Swansea a fifth win in nine¬†games under Clement. Swansea now have 27 points and some breathing space from¬†the bottom three.


West Brom 0-2 Crystal PalaceRECAP

A simply massive away win for Palace as Sam Allardyce‘s men are out out of the drop zone. A goal in each half from Wilfried Zaha and Andros Townsend proved the difference for the Eagles against a West Brom side who had an off day after reaching 40 points after just 26 games. For Palace, they’re on 25 points and have given themselves hope ahead of a tough run of games.


Stoke City 2-0 MiddlesbroughRECAP

Routine win for the Potters as two first half goals from Marko Arnautovic saw them past goal-shy Middlesbrough. The Potters dominated from start to finish and Aitor Karanka‘s Boro, the lowest scorers in the PL, have now slipped into the relegation zone and are just three points off the bottom. As for Stoke, they’re up to ninth place and just five points behind West Brom in eighth.