Chelsea leapfrog Spurs to go third

Chelsea leapfrog Spurs to go third
Ruben Loftus-Cheek broke the deadlock for Chelsea at the beginning of the second half with a strong header.
London, May 5 (Agencies) | Publish Date: 5/5/2019 11:54:24 AM IST

Chelsea scored three goals in the second-half to beat Watford at Stamford Bridge and take control of the top-four race in the Premier League.

Strikes from Ruben Loftus-Cheek, David Luiz and Gonzalo Higuain gave Chelsea a crucial win in the chase for Champions League football.

Watford swarmed all over The Blues in a one-sided first-half but couldn’t find the opening goal. Gerard Deulofeu and Jose Holebas blasted over from dangerous areas and when the Hornets finally found their range Kepa Arrizabalaga pulled off a save of the season contender to thwart Troy Deeney.

The hosts emerged for the second-half as a different side and within six minutes of the restart they were almost out of sight.

Loftus-Cheek - a replacement for Kante who was injured with barely a quarter-of-an-hour on the clock - headed in from Eden Hazard’s back-post cross following a short corner routine. And three minutes later Watford were punished for switching off again from a corner, as Luiz was left unmarked to convert another Hazard delivery.

In a ruthless display, Higuain then put the gloss on an excellent 45-minute salvo with a lovely dink over Ben Foster after being released by a beautiful through-ball from Pedro.

The victory moves Chelsea up into third, leapfrogging Spurs.

Meanwhile, Manchester United saw their top-four hopes extinguished as lowly Huddersfield earned a spirited 1-1 draw on Renault Super Sunday.

United looked likely to continue their fight for a Champions League spot into the final game of the season after taking an early lead when Jonas Lossl tamely let in Scott McTominay’s shot after eight minutes.

But Isaac Mbenza equalised on the hour mark when Luke Shaw misjudged Lossl’s clearance, and Huddersfield’s 10th home goal of the entire league season left the Red Devils four points off a top-four spot with only a game left to play.

Liverpool strike late to go top

Divock Origi headed Liverpool back to the top of the Premier League despite losing Mohamed Salah to a head injury in a thrilling 3-2 win at Newcastle.

Liverpool’s thrilling title battle with Manchester City is now guaranteed to go down to the final day of the season as Jurgen Klopp’s men moved two points ahead once more at the top.

City have a game in hand, at home to Leicester, but Liverpool refuse to give up in their pursuit of a first title for 29 years.

Virgil van Dijk headed the visitors into an early lead at St. James’ Park, but Liverpool were fortunate when Newcastle levelled through Christian Atsu.

Liverpool right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold had handled Salomon Rondon’s effort on the goal line and could have conceded a penalty and been sent-off after just 20 minutes had Atsu not put home the rebound.

Alexander-Arnold was the creator as Klopp’s men quickly retook the lead through Salah.

However, Rondon levelled once more for Newcastle early in the second half.

Salah then had to be stretchered off with a head injury after clashing with Newcastle goalkeeper Martin Dubravka, which will make him a doubt for Tuesday’s Champions League semi-final, second leg against Barcelona. Yet, despite also missing Roberto Firmino through injury, Liverpool found a response four minutes from time when Origi flicked home Xherdan Shaqiri’s free-kick.


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