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Barclays Premier League Wrap-up Week 11

 Posted by on November 25, 2014 at 8:49 pm  EPL
Nov 252014
Premier League

Chelsea 2 – 0 West Bromwich Albion

The Blues get an easy win over the Baggies as they roll on toward the BPL Trophy. This one was one of those Jose Mourinho signature matches. “The Special One” has a philosophy that is his signature coaching method. Score early, and then defend the lead for the rest of the match. This doesn’t make for exciting football. But it’s what has brought the Chelsea boss his success and his winning reputation. It was exactly those tactics that the Blues got going on Saturday and Diego Costa got the early goal in the 11th minute when he scored from an Oscar assist. The second goal came in the 24th minute when Eden Hazard scored from Cesc Fabregas’ assist from a corner kick. That was all the offense the Blues needed and they proceeded to “park the bus” in front of their goal. Things got really easy for the BPL leaders in the 28th minute when Baggies’ midfielder Caludio Yacob was sent off for a horrible tackle on Costa. That pretty much ended the match as a contest as the Blues dominated possession and successfully kept the Baggies from getting anything of quality on goal. So, since it would seem that the BPL is theirs to lose, one wonders what sort of records Chelsea will set this season.

Everton 2 – 1 West Ham

Leon Osman’s second half goal gets the win for the Toffees. This was Hammers striker Andy Carroll’s first match of the season. He had finally gotten over the injuries that had kept him sidelined since the end of last season. He nearly scored in the 11th minute when he headed an Aaron Cresswell free-kick just wide of the goal. It was the home side who would open the scoring in the 25th minute when Romelu Lukaku would poke in a loose ball from a Ross Barkley shot that the Hammers’ defense failed to clear. Carroll had a chance to level the score right as half-time approached, but his shot from a Kevin Nolan assist missed the goal off to the left. The Hammers would draw level in the 55th minute when Mauro Zarate scored from a Morgan Amalfitano assist. Amalfitano nearly grabbed the lead for the visitors in the 68th minute when his shot from a Carroll header was blocked by the Toffees’ defense. But Osman scored the go-ahead goal for the home side in the 73rd minute when he finished off a counter-attack that was started by Samuel Eto’o after Everton successfully defended a West Ham corner-kick. Toffees’ keeper Tim Howard came up big in the 75th minute when he saved a James Collins left-footed shot from a Matthew Jarvis assist. That was good enough to get three valuable points for Everton and moved them into the top ten. The loss moved West Ham down to sixth place in the BPL. So fortune might be hiding from them again.

Leicester City 0 – 0 Sunderland

The Foxes fail to score for a fifth successive match. They really have fallen down since beating Manchester United 5-3 back in September and taking seventh place in the BPL table. They have not won any of their last seven matches and boss Nigel Pearson is a bit concerned about his side’s form. As well he should be. The Black Cats, on the other hand, are unbeaten in three matches and have moved four places above the bottom three while the Foxes are third from the bottom. The match itself didn’t have a lot to write about. Jeffrey Schlupp and Matty James each had chances to score for the Foxes and Steven Fletcher had a chance to score for the Black Cats. So, while the Foxes didn’t need this result, Black Cats’ boss Gus Poyet is more than happy with the scoreless draw.

Manchester City 2 – 1 Swansea

Yaya Toure wins the match for the Champions at the Etihad Stadium. This was a win that Citeh badly needed. They’re falling behind league leaders Chelsea and boss Manuel Pellegrini knows that if his side are to retain the BPL Trophy they can’t have mediocre results like they had last week. Oddly enough, not enough of the Citeh players understand this and they fell behind in the eighth minute when Nathan Dyer caught the home defense napping and found Wilfried Bony with a brilliant through pass which the striker knocked home for the opening goal. The Champions were able to equalize in the 18th minute when Stevan Jovetic was able to score from a Jesus Navas cross. Swans’ keeper Lukasz Fabianski was quite the busy man for the rest of the first half as he made saves from Sergio Aguero, Gael Clichy, and twice from Jovetic. When the second half got underway, it was the Swans who started out better as they forced Citeh keeper Joe Hart to save from Jefferson Montero and Gylfi Sigurdsson in the first five minutes of the second half. But just when it looked like the Champions would miss out on another win, Toure got them the lead in the 61st minute. Fernandinho set the midfielder up with a fine pass right in front of the Swans goal and Toure was able to tuck it in for the winner. In the 73rd minute Sigurdsson had a chance to get Swans back level. But his free-kick shot on goal missed off to the left. The result leaves the Champions in third place, eight points behind league leaders Chelsea.

Newcastle 1 – 0 Queens Park Rangers

Moussa Sissoko’s second half strike gets the win for the Magpies. It’s hard to imagine this side was at the bottom of the BPL table on September 22. They’ve now won five matches in a row and have moved up to fifth place. The fans at St. James’ Park who wanted to get rid of Alan Pardew, now love the Newcastle boss. QPR, on the other hand are still struggling with their form. They drew with Manchester City in their last match and were hoping to build on that momentum on Saturday. They should have scored in the 13th minute, but Charlie Austin’s long range effort missed the goal off to the left. Magpies’ midfielder had a chance in the 21st minute, but his shot from a Remy Cabella assist was saved by QPR keeper Robert Green. That was all that either side could manage in the first half. The Magpies had the better of possession, but just couldn’t get anything on goal. It was the same story for the second half as both teams were working hard not to give up anything easy. Sissoko’s goal came in the 77th minute when he was able to slot Sammy Ameobi’s pass into the bottom right corner of the goal. It was then all about defending for the Magpies. QPR had a chance in the 86th minute when Junior Hoilett hit a pass from Yun Suk-Young off to the right of the goal. Joey Barton had a change to level deep into stoppage time, but his shot was blocked by the Magpies’ defense. The result sees QPR back on the bottom of the table and has most folks thinking that QPR probably won’t be back in the BPL next season.

Stoke 1 – 2 Burnley

Danny Ings’ two first half goals get Burnley their first away win and lifts them off the bottom of the BPL table. The Clarets are feeling a bit happier since Saturday. They got their first away win of the season and their second win in a row. They took the lead in the 11th minute when Ings hit a great shot from distance into the middle of the goal to open the scoring. He scored again in the 13th minute when he right-footed in a cross from Michael Kightly. The Potters did manage to get a goal back in the 32nd minute when Jonathan Walters headed in a Bojan corner kick. But Potters’ boss Mark Hughes just couldn’t come up with anything for his side to do to get back in the match. Striker Peter Crouch, who had come on for Mame Biram Diouf had a couple of chances, but each try was nowhere near the goal. So try as they might, the Potters couldn’t replicate the success they had last week against Tottenham. While the win doesn’t get the Clarets out of the bottom three, it does give them a bit of hope.

Arsenal 1 – 2 Manchester United

The Red Devils get a critical win at the Emirates Stadium and move up to fourth place on the BPL table. It was their first away win under Louis van Gaal’s management after seven tries. It was a match that former Red Devil Danny Welbeck was expected to get his measure of revenge against his former team. He nearly did so in the fifth minute when his shot from an Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain pass missed the goal off to the left. Welbeck had another chance in the eighth minute from another Oxlade-Chamberlain cross. This time the Arsenal striker’s header was over the goal. The Gunners continued their early domination and should have scored in the 12th minute when Jack Wilshire’s shot from a Aaron Ramsey pass was saved by United keeper David De Gea. Keeper De Gea came up big again in the 13th and 14th minutes when he saved from Welbeck and Wilshere respectively. United suffered a setback in the 15th minute when defender Luke Shaw had to be replaced by Ashley Young due to a leg injury. But they nearly scored in the 20th minute when Wayne Rooney tried to curl a free-kick that missed off to the left. Keeper De Gea had to come up big again in the 22nd minute when he made a fine save from Oxlade-Chamberlain after the midfielder was sent through on goal by Alexis Sanchez. De Gea made another great save in the 34th minute when he saved Sanchez’s shot from distance. He came up big again in the 49th minute when he saved a right-footed shot from Welbeck. United hit a stroke of luck in the 55th minute when midfielder Antonio Valencia’s shot deflected off Gunners’ defender Kieran Gibbs and rolled into the net past the reach of Gunners’ keeper Wojciech Szczesny. Things got worse for the Gunners when Szczesny had to be replaced by Damian Martinez due to a concussion when he collided with Gibbs. United keeper De Gea showed he was man of the match from that point as he made key saves from Sanchez and Santiago Cazorla. United midfielder Angel Di Maria help seal the match in the 84th minute when he started a counter attack from a Sanchez free-kick. He was able to find Rooney with a square pass and he was able to waltz past keeper Martinez and roll the ball into the empty net for United’s second goal. Although substitute Olivier Giroud was able to get a goal back in second half stoppage time, there was no way back for the Gunners. They have slipped down to eighth place and some are wondering if it’s time to replace Arsene Wenger.

Crystal Palace 3 – 1 Liverpool

Palace gets the better of the Reds again at soggy Selhurst Park. What on earth is going on with the Reds? This is a match they should have won! They scored in the first minute when Rickie Lambert hit Adam Lallana’s pass into the bottom left corner of the Palace goal. But then, they lost their collective minds from that point forward. Dwight Gayle leveled the score in the 16th minute when he knocked home a loose ball from a Yannick Bolasie shot that had hit the goal post that the Reds defense failed to clear. Palace defender Joel Ward nearly scored right at half time when his shot from a Bolasie assist was saved by Reds’ keeper Simon Mignolet. In the 47th minute, Reds captain Steven Gerrard tried to take matters into his own hands when the Reds won a free-kick in the attacking third. But his free-kick was well high and wide of the goal. The Reds looked like they were going for the draw from that point forward. If that was Brendan Rodgers’ strategy, it didn’t work. In the 77th minute, midfielder Joe Ledley scored from a Bolasie cross to put Palace into the lead. Mile Jedinak ensured the victory in the 81st minute when he curled his free-kick into the top right corner of the goal. Toward the end of the match, Fabio Borini tried to get a goal back for the Reds, but his shot went way over the bar. The result sees the Reds slip down to 12th place on the table. What a huge change from last season.

Hull City 1 – 2 Tottenham

Spurs come from behind to beat ten-man Tigers. Tigers’ boss Steve Bruce was not happy about Sunday’s result. His side took the lead in the seventh minute when Jake Livermore was able to hit a shot from distance into the bottom left corner of the goal. But they couldn’t do any better and in the second half, midfielder Gaston Ramirez was sent off for an altercation with the Spurs players after he was penalized for a foul on Spurs midfielder Jan Vertonghen. In the 60th minute, midfielder Harry Kane leveled the score for Spurs with a shot into the bottom left corner of the goal. It was only a matter of time when Spurs would get the winner and it came in the 89th minute when Christian Eriksen’s shot from distance found the net. So Spurs are back to winning ways and the hope is back with the fans that they can build on that win.

Aston Villa 1 – 1 Southampton

It’s all even between the Villains and the Saints at Villa Park. Monday’s match will be considered as three much needed points lost by Villains’ fans. They really needed to win this match as they hadn’t had a win since mid-September. The Saints are on such a fine run so far this season. Their one loss is so far this season makes them one of the surprise sides and they were not going to be easy to beat. The Villains did score in the 29th minute when Gabriel Agbonlahor’s left-footed shot found the bottom right corner of the goal. As the match continued, it looked like the Villains might just be able to pull off the upset win over the second place Saints. That hope died in the 81st minute when Nathaniel Clyne’s right footed shot from a Ryan Bertrand cross found the goal. The result leaves the Saints six points behind league leaders Chelsea, but two points ahead of the Champions who lie in third place.

Lanny Short

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