Friday, 20 July 2018

Pre-Season: Reds Run Over Rovers 0-2

Sports - Football - Pre-Season - BRFC 0-2 LFC

Liverpool ended comfortable 2-0 winners against Blackburn Rovers on Thursday night at Ewood Park thanks to second-half goals from Lazar Markovic and Daniel Sturridge.


As in the other three pre-season friendlies, Jürgen Klopp fielded a different team each half, giving youngsters some play time as well as coupling experienced players with newbies, as the World Cup stars are not joining the side in training till end of the week.

And the match kicked off in glorious sunshine, Dominic Solanke being awarded a penalty after just five minutes when challenged by keeper David Raya Martin trying to reach Ben Woodburn’s pass.

But the Rovers keeper made up for his error pushing away James Milner’s spot kick and keeping the scoreline at 0-0.

The Reds did have the ball in the net with just under half an hour gone, Divock Origi tapping in Alberto Moreno’s cross after Adam Lallana’s blocked shot, but the flag was up.

Loris Karius denied the newly promoted Championship side by blocking a nice drill by Dominic Samuel, a little confidence booster after the German keeper’s Champions League nightmare.

Lallana hit the woodwork before seeing Charlie Mulgrew clear his goal-bound shot off the line seconds later, two chances, zero goals, the two teams went into the break deadlocked, 0-0.

Ten changes were made after the interval for the Premier League team - keeper Karius the only survivor, the Reds continued dominating play and chances.

The game was refreshed, boosted, especially long awaited Naby Keita impressing with his play and interplay for Klopp’s men, setting up Sturridge, creating chance after chance.

The latter collected the ball and spotted Markovic’s fine run, who netted the number 15's accurate pass with a fine touch and effort to make it 0-1 to the visitors after 64 minutes, not long after the home side had made nine changes.

Red academy midfielder Rafael Camacho’s chance beat sub keeper Jayson Leutwiler but was cleared off the line by Paul Downing minutes later.

With just over quarter of an hour to go, Keita’s force was felt again and his run and pass was finished off by Sturridge this time, making up for earlier misses and doubling the Reds’ lead.

Leutwiler denied Camacho before the full-time whistle, ending a nice dominant run out for the Reds before they head off on to their US Tour where they will face Klopp's former side Dortmund (22/07), champions Manchester City (26/07) and bitter rivals Manchester United (28/07).

And it was all topped up not long after the match with the official announcement of Alisson Becker having completed his medical and joining from AS Roma to replace under-fire Karius and out-of-favour Simon Mignolet after a long media-frenzy and speculation, breaking the transfer world record for a keeper.


All in all the Reds can be happy with their progress, in the pre-season matches, the transfer market, general dealings and wheelings, and team spirit, general optimism felt all round, despite the bad news of the week of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain confirmed to be missing most of the season through injury.

Liverpool Goals: Markovic 63’ & Sturridge 73’.

Match Stats: BRFC 0-2 LFC
Possession: 30.3%-69.7%
Shots: 4-16
On target: 2-6
Corners: 1-3
Offsides: 2-1
Fouls: 13-7

Blackburn Team: 1 Raya; 3 Williams, 14 Mulgrew* (c) (45’), 26 Lenihan, 2 Nyambe; 8 Rothwell, 31 Bennett, 6 Smallwood, 29 Evans* (45’), 9 Samuel; 23 Dack. 4-5-1

2nd half substitutes 60’: 25 Downing, 18 Davenport, 11 Whittingham, 13 Leutwiler, 17 Bell* (45’), 28 Tomlinson, 32 Conway, 34 Wharton, 27 Travis* (45’), 37 Fisher, 24 Nuttall.

Liverpool Team: 1 Karius* (59’); 18 Moreno, 17 Klavan, 32 Matip, 2 Clyne; 20 Lallana, 7 Milner (c), 58 Woodburn; 29 Solanke, 27 Origi, 54 Ojo. 4-3-3

2nd half substitutes 45’: 3 Fabinho, 4 Van Dijk, 8 Keita, 12 Gomez, 15 Sturridge, 26 Robertson, 47 Phillips, 48 Jones, 50 Markovic, 64 Camacho, 62 Kelleher* (59’).

Referee: Jonathan Moss
Ground: Ewood Park

Click here for my previous LFC match report.

All pictures, facts and stats were taken from the LFCTV matchday coverage and Sky Sports App and website.

Friday, 29 June 2018

Word Cup In Russia - So Far So OMFG!!!

Sports - Football - World Cup - OMFG!!!

And breath. The group stage is over and we have a day to recover from a crazy, unpredictable, just different World Cup in Russia. AND ENGLAND ARE THROUGH!!! Germany are not. That’s a first since 1938! My cheeky fiver on Egypt went down the drain very quickly as well (poor Momo)! So, anyway, I just thought to scribble down the main talking points and my thoughts on them - the best form of therapy for such a traumatic and shocking experience. ;-)

VAR

Love it or hate it, it is looooong overdue and definitely makes a difference. Good or bad, in the end it’s always better when you can double-check and it’s up to the ref = still all subjective in the end, so, it is impossible to get everything and everyone 100% and happy. Nearly every other sports have a review system - cricket, rugby, tennis, ... - and it definitely adds to the post-match talking points. But there is still one thing that annoys me most about football and has to change, which brings me to my next point:

Cut the drama!

The players’ attitudes to the game have to change! The way they playact and roll around as if they have been hit by a bullet, or two or three, and in the next breath they jump up and are in the ref’s face - SHOW SOME RESPECT! YOU CALL YOURSELF MEN! STAY UP AND PLAY THE GAME, YOU’RE ON CAMERA FFS!!! And the ref is a (hu)man as well, so, treat him like one and in the end he decides the game, so, like in the other sports - cricket, rugby, tennis, ... - BE PROFESSIONAL ABOUT IT, I mean, come on, the soccer stars get paid enough for it!!! 

The fans

What has entertained and impressed me most is what has been going on off and around the pitch. The fans have been awesome! The costumes, the songs, the unity. It is not often you get Koreans and Mexicans partying together. The Senegalese players dancing. The famous Icelandic shout and clap. Iranian fans partying hard and loud. That's how and why I love football, bringing everyone together! Russia has, so far so good, positively surprised me as the hosts! And their team hasn’t done too bad either! After thrashing Saudi Arabia 5-0 in the opening match, Stanislas Cherchesov's men could not have asked for a better start. It is the first time since 1986 the biggest country in the world has qualified past the group stage, which takes me to the next bit:

The records

The stats kept rolling in, every match, every twist, every turn, records tumbling here, there and everywhere. There have already been 24 penalties and that is (more than) double than in the last three completed world cup tournaments, and we're only just at the end of the group stage! Thanks very much to the VAR for that! 
We watched 38 gripping thrillers with goals galore until France and Denmark shared a comfortable goalless draw, the most matches of all world cups without deadlocks (in the 32-team version = since 2002). 
It was the worst World Cup for Africa in 36 years after Senegal's exit on Thursday, with no side from the continent in the knockout stage for the first time since 1982.
And there have been plenty of blunders, wtfs and late late late drama and goals, including England's Harry Kane's winning header against Tunisia and Cristiano Ronaldo's equaliser to make it 3-3 for Portugal against Spain (who sacked their manager Jule Lopetegui just two days before the tournament kicked off for them), headache but also late saviour for Messi and co, not forgetting Maradona's middle fingers. And of course most recently South Korea's winner(s) against Germany, crashing out Joachim Löw's men. 
I could go on and on, here's a good article I read earlier with more on that, including pics and videos.

Last and least, predictions...

Ha! They went out the window a long time ago and I won’t even try it from here! For the first time there is a general feeling of anything can happen and anyone can win (or lose) it! As much as I’m an England fan and want Gareth Southgate and co to win, I love the idea of a surprise winner, the underdogs, against all odds, the OMG moments! And there have been plenty of those already!!!

Click here for my previous article.

All pictures, facts and stats were taken from the BBC website,this article and match reports, Twitter and beIN sports coverage.

Sunday, 27 May 2018

Karius Howlers Hand Real 13th CL Cup

Sports - Football - Champions League - RMA 3:1 LIV

Liverpool keeper Loris Karius was in tears after giving away two howlers and watching substitute Gareth Bale's stunning smacker of a goal, seeing his side fall 3-1 against Real Madrid at the Olympic Stadium in Kiev on Saturday night, handing the great Spanish side and their manager Zinédine Zidane their third consecutive Champions League trophy, 13th European Cup overall.



The score does not reflect the match in the slightest, it was no real competition, as in Real have been handed a very generous result for a mediocre performance thanks to the Red number 1.

Jürgen Klopp's men were dominant and in control in the first half, no real sign of Cristiano Ronaldo and co apart from one offside goal, Karim Benzema denied on the rebound after Karius saved the number seven's header.


The first and biggest blow for the Reds came after Real skipper Sergio Ramos clashed and fell with LFC star man and top scorer Mohamed Salah.

The great Egyptian landed awkwardly on his shoulder and arm, the pain reflected in his tears and devastation having to come off and be replaced by Adam Lallana with only half an hour gone.

Ramos' actions and reactions looked very calculated and menacing, close to ridiculing his opponent, no respect whatsoever, shame on the Spaniard. (A petition against him and his actions has collected over 150,000 signatures!!!)

A few minutes later Daniel Carvajal was forced off as well due to injury, replays showing his ankle giving way, Nacho replacing him.


It remained goalless at the break, both teams trying to cope and reset after receiving injury blows. It was all to play for.

Benzema was handed the opener six minutes after the restart, Karius throwing the ball against the French striker in protest of the player not keeping his distance, to watch the ball ricochet off the man and into the back of the net. 1-0 out of nowhere, like a bad comedy outtake clip!

But the Reds fought back, Sadio Mané equalizing four minutes later, prodding in Dejan Lovren's header off James Milner's corner and taking his total of the season to 20 goals. Game on.

Then came the decisive substitution, Bale on for Isco with just over an hour gone, and three minutes later the former Tottenham striker thanked his manager with an absolute stunner, overhead kick into the back of the net. Wow. 2-1


Liverpool were still in the game, and their Senegalese forward had a couple of chances including hitting the woodwork, until seven minutes from time when Bale gave it a try with a shot from distance for Karius to softly glove the stoppable attempt into the back of his own net. Ouch.

The Welsh striker is only the second Brit to score a brace in a European Cup/Champions League final after Bobby Charlton for Manchester United in 1968, the first player ever to do so coming off the bench.

It was absolutely heart-breaking to watch as an LFC fan with players like Andy Robertson and youngster Trent Alexander-Arnold having played their hearts out and owned the opposition throughout the 90 minutes, to be beaten and broken in such embarrassing manner.


It was Klopp's sixth final defeat out of seven, third with Liverpool, whilst Zidane joins Bob Paisley and Carlo Ancelotti having won the European trophy three times - the (in)famous Frenchman being the only one to have done it in three consecutive seasons.

The Reds fans kept singing on, despite the result, proud of their side and full of hope that they learn from their mistakes and come back even better and stronger next season!!!!! WALK ON!!! XxXxX YNWA!!!

Real Madrid Goals: Benzema 51', Bale 64' & 83'.

Liverpool Goal: Mané 55'.


Match Stats: RMA 3-1 LFC
Possession: 66%-34%
Shots: 14-13
On target: 5-2
Corners: 9-5
Fouls: 5-18
Yellow cards: 0-1

Real Madrid Team: 1 Javas; 12 Marcelo, 4 Ramos (c), 5 Varane, 2 Carvajal (6 Nacho 37'); 8 Kroos, 14 Casemiro, 10 Modrić; 22 Isco (11 Bale 61'); 7 Ronaldo, 9 Benzema (20 Asensio 89'). 4-3-1-2
Subs not used: 14 Casilla, 15 Theo Hernàndez, 17 Lucas Vázquez, 23 Kovačić.
Manager: Zinédine Zidane

Liverpool Team: 1 Karius; 26 Robertson, 4 van Dijk, 6 Lovren, 66 Alexander-Arnold, 5 Wijnaldum, 14 Henderson (c), 7 Milner (23 Can 73'); 19 Mané (booked 82'), 9 Firmino, 11 Salah (20 Lallana 30'). 4-3-3
Subs not used: 22 Mignolet, 2 Clyne, 17 Klavan, 18 Moreno, 29 Solanke.
Manager: Jürgen Klopp

Referee: Milorad Mazic
Man of the match: Gareth Bale
Ground: Kiev Olympic Stadium
Attendance: 61,561

Click here for my last LFC match report.

All pictures, facts and stats were taken from the BBC match report and Sky Sports app, Twitter and BT and beIN sports coverages.

Monday, 14 May 2018

Premier League Picks Of The Week 38

Sports - Football - Premier League - Week 38

The 38th week of the Premier League action saw:

31 goals - most by Tottenham = 5
247 shots - most by Swansea = 26
93 on target - most by Liverpool & Swansea = 11 each
98 corners - most by Man City = 12
193 fouls - most by Burnley = 14
22 yellow cards - most by Man United = 4.
0 red cards
1 penalty - 0 scored

What a game! Leicester and Tottenham could just not stop scoring. The two sides shared NINE GOALS between each other!!! What a comeback it was by the London side, trailing three times, 3-1 down at the break to lead 4-3, see Gazza dancing, the Foxes equalising and Harry Kane netting his second and the match winner - not enough to clinch the Golden Boot though. With Erik Lamela’s double and Christian Fuchs’ own goal, it ended 5-4 at a very entertained Wembley and with a very happy Mauricio Pochettino seeing his side end up third. Jamie Vardy’s brace, together with Riyad Mahrez and Kelechi Iheanacho all on the scoreboard, was still not enough and just another defeat at the end of a disappointing season for the 2016 champions. Claude Puel called the match crazy, which it was, but it cannot hide the fact that finishing 9th after their 15th defeat is just not good enough and it remains to be seen who will be the boss and stay part of the team at the King Power Stadium next season.

What a team! Newcastle took Chelsea apart with the great help of Ayoze Pérez’s brace, two goals in four minutes, after Dwight Gayle’s header from close range gave the home side the lead at St James’ Park. The little chance the Blues had of sneaking into the top four was blown away by the Magpies, manager Antonio Conte taking the blame for such a disappointing campaign. The Londoners still have the FA Cup final to play next weekend, but either way, no matter how that ends, I would be very surprised to see the Italian still at the Stamford Bridge helm next season, given their Russian owner's managerial record, not exactly the patient one... Newcastle on the other hand would love for their boss Rafa Benítez to stay after the Spaniard guided their side back up into the PL and up to 10th, but his relationship with the hierarchy puts doubt on that as well...
The miracle of a 10-goal swing was not to be for Swansea, no matter how much they tried at the Liberty Stadium (26 shots!). After taking the lead early on thanks to Andy King, the Welsh side fell behind Stoke after Badou Ndiaye's equaliser and Peter Crouch's winner turned the game around within ten minutes, all in the first half. And it could have been worse, the visitors missing a penalty in Wales, Martin Olsson penalised for handball, Xherdan Shaqiri’s spot kick saved by Łukasz Fabiański in the bottom left corner. Just like their run under Carlos Carvalhal, 17 points from the first 9 games, to only three from the last 8, the Swans’ run went from top to flop, just not good and consistent enough to stay up.

What a man! Will the 3-1 defeat and plenty of bubbles for Everton at West Ham put another nail in Big Sam’s coffin? The Hammers moved up two places to finish 13th after this fine win, inspired by Manuel Lanzini once again with two goals and Marko Arnautović adding to the Toffees misery and making Oumar Niasse’s goal count for nothing. David Moyes’ men ended a very topsy turvy campaign on a high, finishing 13th after beating his former side who appointed Allardyce on a slide and fall of their own. The big boss will point out the blue side of Liverpool have finished in 8th, top half of the table, much better than expected after their nightmare start, but I will be very surprised to see him still in the same job in August.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang once again like in their last home game last weekend served Arsène Wenger with a perfect send-off, this time at Huddersfield, his goal completing the Gunners’ first away win in 2018. It was a nice touch by the Terriers to display "Merci Arsène" and join in the standing ovation after 22 minutes to celebrate the Frenchman’s 22 years at the London club, a reign of 1,235 matches (707 wins, 280 draws, 248 defeats). The John Smith’s Stadium was the 48th different ground Wenger has won at in the PL - a record (breaking Sir Alex Ferguson’s 47). Who will dare to fill those shoes I wonder...
Roy Hodgson meanwhile was celebrated at Crystal Palace after a comfy 2-0 win against already relegated West Brom, pulling the side out of trouble and much higher than anyone would have expected after their pointless and goalless start to the season, losing their opening seven games. But the ex-England boss was still sad to see his former side Albion go down, especially after their impressive resurgence under caretaker manager Darren Moore, this being their only defeat in his six matches in charge. The Baggies still finished bottom, for a record 10th season in the top flight and second time in the Premier League era (also 2008-09).

What a goal! Dominic Solanke finally opened his account for Liverpool with a smacking finish and thanks to an unselfish Mohamed Salah setting him up with his pass in the box after he had scored the opener - his record 32nd goal of the season, most by any player in a 38-game PL season. Much-criticised defender Dejan Lovren rose to head in the third, his celebration showing how much it meant to him. And Andrew Robertson scored his first for the Reds as well to make it 4-0. It was the great Egyptian of course who collected all the records and awards after the match, but it was an exemplary team display. Brighton were left watching in awe, Jürgen Klopp’s men all over them, just what the Merseyside’s doctor ordered before their Champions League final in 13 days.
Marcus Rashford showed how to tap it in and win it for Manchester United against Watford, there was not much else notable that happened in the match. Like the rest of the season, the Red Devils weren’t much to watch but still got the points, typical José Mourinho - who had made nine changes for this match. United ended the season in second place on 81 points, their highest finish since Fergie retired in 2013. I’m sure their current Portuguese boss will underline, frame and point that out to anyone who dares to criticise him and his less-entertaining style.

What the hell?! If that was not typical Manchester City, Gabriel Jesus whacking in the winner Agüero-style in the dying seconds of added time (94’) at Southampton as the commentators were already lauding the point and draw. But it ended 0-1 at St Mary’s, three points and the full century of points for Pep Guardiola’s men, a record 100 points from 38 games, 50 at home, 50 away, muchas gracias!!! What an achievement! And the Saints were still happy too, nice and safe after the Swans’ defeat, mentioned above.
And Jermain Defoe set up Bournemouth’s last-second winner in injury time as well, unselfishly serving Callum Wilson the goal to make it 1-2 at Burnley after Joshua King’s delicious curling equaliser levelled Chris Wood’s opener. Sean Dyche can still be happy with his side’s best league finish since 1973-74 and Europa League qualification in 7th place, returning to European football for the first time in 51 years.

My Predictions - Actual Results
Burnley 1:1 Bournemouth - 1:2
Crystal Palace 2:1 West Brom - 2:0
Huddersfield 1:0 Arsenal - 0:1
Liverpool 3:0 Brighton - 4:0
Man United 1:0 Watford - 1:0
Newcastle 1:1 Chelsea - 3:0
Southampton 2:4 Man City - 0:1
Swansea 2:1 Stoke City - 1:2
Tottenham 3:1 Leicester - 5:4
West Ham 1:2 Everton - 3:1

Click here for last week’s Premier League Picks.

All pictures, facts and stats were taken from the BBC match reports, Twitter and SFR coverage.

Sunday, 13 May 2018

Premier League Picks Of The Week 37

Sports - Football - Premier League - Week 37

The 37th week of the Premier League action saw:

19 goals - most by Arsenal = 5
241 shots - most by Man United & Arsenal = 16 each
76 on target - most by Watford & Arsenal = 8 each
110 corners - most by Bournemouth = 11
205 fouls - most by Stoke = 18
43 yellow cards - most by Stoke = 5
1 red card - Yoshida for Southampton 
0 penalties

What a game! The scenes at the Hawthorns! Jake Livermore netted the injury time winner for West Brom against his former side Tottenham, scruffy scramble over the line, but they won’t care! The win took them off the bottom and fighting on to the last week - depending on other results, especially games in hand, see below. Caretaker boss Darren Moore stayed very quiet and controlled on the sideline, they may still go down, but still, what a job he has done! 10 points from 5 games (in contrast to Alan Pardew's 8 points from 18 games)! Wow! Swansea’s 1-0 defeat at Bournemouth added to the Albion’s party. And after the Saints conceded a late late late late equaliser at Everton, you never know... Huddersfield earned a hard-fought and deserved point at Manchester City, whose title celebrations were long overdue, party for both sides. The crucial relegation crunch battle was the game in hand between Southampton and Swansea... See below.

What a team! Brighton secured their place in the Premier League for another season by beating Manchester United on Friday night. Thanks to goalline technology, Pascal Groß’ header that was cleared by Marcos Rojo but counted as it had just crossed the line, just, a centimetre or two. Chris Hughton’s men deserved the win, their first in eight games, outplaying a tired and forceless looking United, even José Mourinho conceded defeat in attitude as well as the match. It is the first time the Red Devils have ever lost away to three newly promoted clubs in a league season.
Leicester continued their poor end to the season as well, West Ham ending up comfortable 0-2 winners, guaranteeing their safety. So too Newcastle with their third straight defeat in the league, losing 2-1 at Watford, the Londoners ending their own run of seven league matches without a win and ensuring their own PL survival.

What a man! A speedy recovery and all the best to Sir Alex Ferguson and his loved ones, football rivalry aside, you do not wish such unwell on anyone. And if there is an undisputed football icon and legend no one can touch or even get close to, Fergie is the one and only.
Arsène Wenger got a nice Emirates farewell, Arsenal thrashing Burnley 5-0, giving their old boss a fine ending to his reign just as it started 7,876 days before, victorious. It’s the Frenchman’s 475th win in 826 Premier League games, 415th victory in 606 home games in all competitions, thanks to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s brace and Alexandre Lacazette, Sead Kolašinac and Alex Iwobi adding to the class and party. Merci Wenger.

What a goal! Xherdan Shaqiri’s free kick was a cracker to give Stoke the lead against Palace in the Saturday lunchtime kickoff, curling the ball off the wall and into the top right corner. But it was not to be, James McArthur and Patrick van Aanholt capitalising on gaps and slips in defence to turn the game around in the second half, condemning Paul Lambert’s men to relegation and ending their 10-year stint in the top league. It started so loud and bouncy but ended all silent and in tears at the bet365 Stadium. Such a shame. Roy Hodgson meanwhile can be very proud how his side have secured their safety and may finish on a club-record high.
Olivier Giroud’s header was enough for Chelsea to beat dominant but points-dropping Liverpool at Stamford Bridge. The Blues remain fifth but the game in hand keeping them in the fight for the top four. The Reds meanwhile, after knocking Manchester City out of the Champions League 5-1 on aggregate, keep dropping points with draws against West Brom and Stoke and this defeat, it would be disappointing for them to fall further down, so nothing else than a win is expected in the final week. Click here for my full match report.

What the hell?! The games in hand played midweek more or less decided the relegation battle and European spots, Southampton celebrating a huge win in Wales thanks to Manolo Gabbiadini’s strike, condemning West Brom down and out despite their strong form under their caretaker boss mentioned and lauded above and leaving Swansea on the brink thanks to goal difference. 
Huddersfield celebrated their safety like title winners after fighting out a point at Chelsea despite the Blues’ dominance. Leicester beat Arsenal for the first time in the Premier League since 1994, serving Wenger yet another away defeat in his penultimate game in charge of the Gunners, making it seven consecutive top-flight away defeats for the first time since 1966. 
League champions Manchester City broke more records by beating Brighton 3-1, scoring most goals in a single PL campaign = 105 and taking Pep Guardiola’s men to a record 97 points, the Spaniard eyeing and expecting his side to complete the century. 
Harry Kane sealed the win and Champions League spot with his 29th PL goal for Tottenham against Newcastle at Wembley, the London side overtaking Liverpool to third. 
Manchester United meanwhile secured their second place with a less impressive goalless draw at West Ham, Mourinho not happy being second-best of course and with the drop in points and belief, much in contrast to David Moyes, who’s more than content with the run of and point for his side. 
That just about finishes off a mad week of footy, all the ups and downs and in-betweens, literally!

My Predictions - Actual Results
Brighton 1:1 Man United - 1:0
Stoke City 1:2 Crystal Palace - 1:2
Bournemouth 2:1 Swansea - 1:0
Leicester 1:1 West Ham - 0:2
Watford 2:2 Newcastle - 2:1
West Brom 1:2 Tottenham - 1:0
Everton 1:1 Southampton - 1:1
Man City 4:0 Huddersfield - 0:0
Arsenal 3:1 Burnley - 5:0
Chelsea 3:1 Liverpool - 1:0 or my match report

Games in hand (see week 31 & *week 35*) saw 10 goals (*2*), 132 shots (*25*), 56 on target (*7*), 49 corners (*9*), 95 fouls (*17*), 16 yellow cards (*1*) & 1 red card (Mavropanos for Arsenal):
Swansea 0:0 Southampton - 0:1
*Chelsea 3:1 Huddersfield - 1:1*
Leicester 1:1 Arsenal - 3:1
Man City 5:1 Brighton - 3:1
Tottenham 1:1 Newcastle - 1:0
West Ham 2:2 Man United - 0:0

All stats not added to this week.


All pictures, facts and stats were taken from the BBC match reports and news updates, Twitter and SFR coverage.

Liverpool Fail 1-0 At Chelsea

Sports - Football - Premier League - CHE 1:0 LIV

Chelsea kept the pressure on Liverpool and Tottenham, still in fifth place but able to break into the top four with a game in hand and depending on the results in the last game of the season, after beating the Reds 1-0 at Stamford Bridge last Sunday.


Jürgen Klopp’s men dominated much of the game but were unable to capitalise, unlike Olivier Giroud who headed in Victor Moses’ cross to give the Blues the lead against the run of play with just over half an hour gone.

Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mané created more but just not enough, Thibaut Courtois doing well denying the latter a couple of times. 

Antonio Rüdiger on the opposite end saw his header ruled out for offside before Marcos Alonso put another chance inches wide, the home side doing well keeping control after going ahead.

Manager Antonio Conte was happy his side kept the fight up and going with this win, Cesc Fàbregas and Eden Hazard forming a danger factor on a regular basis, seeing the first time LFC have failed to score in consecutive Premier League games since their German boss took over. 

The Reds, after knocking Manchester City out of the Champions League 5-1 on aggregate to qualify for the final in Kiev, keep dropping points with draws against West Brom and Stoke and this defeat.

It would be very disappointing for the Champions League finalists to fall further down, so nothing else than a win is expected against Brighton in the final PL fixture.

After going unbeaten against the “big six” in the first eight league away games (W4 D4), Klopp has watched his side lose the last four out of five (D1).

Liverpool have only lost more Premier League games against Manchester United (28) than against Chelsea (20). 

Chelsea Goal: Giroud 32’.

FT Stats: CHE 1-0 LIV
Possession: 32%-68%
Shots: 12-10
On target: 4-5
Corners: 3-1
Fouls: 12-9
Yellow cards: 3-2

Chelsea Team: 13 Courtois (booked), 28 Azpilicueta, 24 Cahill, 2 Rüdiger, 15 Moses (booked) (21 Zappacosta 89’), 4 Fàbregas (11 Pedro 90’+3’), 7 Kanté, 14 Bakayoko, 3 Alonso (booked), 10 Hazard (22 Willian 86’), 18 Giroud.
Subs not used: 1 Caballero, 8 Barkley, 27 Christensen, 33 Emerson.

Liverpool Team: 1 Karius, 2 Clyne (booked) (14 Henderson 59’), 6 Lovren, 4 van Dijk, 26 Robertson (29 Solanke 74’), 66 Alexander-Arnold, 5 Wijnaldum, 7 Milner (18 Moreno 89’), 11 Salah (booked), 9 Firmino, 19 Mané.
Subs not used: 17 Klavan, 22 Mignolet, 28 Ings, 58 Woodburn.

Referee: Anthony Taylor
Man of the match: Olivier Giroud
Ground: Stamford Bridge
Attendance: 41,314

Click here for my last LFC match report.

All pictures, facts and stats were taken from the BBC match report.