Monday, 18 March 2013

EPL 4-Match Review:

Hello and welcome to my latest blog post, where I have a review of all 4 EPL matches that were being played yesterday on Sunday, including Chelsea vs West Ham and Wigan vs Newcastle United.

Chelsea 2 West Ham 0:

This match was played at Stamford Bridge, as 4th placed Chelsea looked to move up above London rivals Tottenham into 3rd with a home win over fellow London rivals West Ham - provided Spurs lost at home against Fulham.

"Living legend" English midfielder Frank Lampard broke the deadlock in the 19th minute with a power header after Eden Hazard's chip into the box, into the top corner of the net away from goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainen to give the hosts a 1-0 lead and to score his landmark 200th Chelsea goal - 2 off the record.

12 for the season: Lampard heads Chelsea in-front at Stamford Bridge in the 19th minute.

Living legend: Frank Lampard celebrates his 200th goal for Chelea with his team-mates.

Loanee striker Andy Carroll was denied a goal in the 22nd minute after his shot beat Petr Cech into the net but the referee blew his whistle after an apparent foul on defender David Luiz (a slight push, I might add).

The Blues continued to look for the second goal, with shots from Victor Moses and Juan Mata coming close before half-time. 

Belgian winger Eden Hazard doubled Chelsea's lead in the 50th minute after some sublime play between him and Mata ending up with a chip over the defence before skilling up two West Ham defenders and finishing off with a low finish into the bottom corner of the net.  

Sublime finish: Hazard and Mata linked up well before the Belgian slotted the ball past Jaaskelainen into the net.

Electric: Hazard celebrates his 2nd screamer in two weeks after a stunning finish against United.

The hosts could have made it 3 or 4-0, but Jaaskelainen prevented the scoreline being embarassing for West Ham with some good saves.  

Sunderland 1 Norwich 1:

This was a relegation-battle match, with 17th placed Sunderland hosting 15th placed Norwich.

The hosts conceded the first goal in the 26th minute, when a corner was delivered at the near post for striker Kei Kamara to head back into the box for midfielder Wes Hoolahan to pop his head in.

Poke the head in: Wes Hoolahan heads the ball into the net to give Norwich a 1-0 lead.

Norwich goalkeeper Mark Bunn was controversially sent off after coming outside his box and apparently handling the ball after a shot. 

Controversy: Mark Bunn was sent off after handling the ball against Sunderland, while Norwich appeal.
Off: Norwich goalkeeper Mark Bunn walks off the pitch in disgust after getting sent off.

Lee Camp replaced him in goal, and Sunderland equalised in the 40th minute from the penalty spot thanks to midfielder Craig Gardner.   

Equaliser: Gardner slots the ball past Lee Camp into the net to make it 1-1.

Back in it: Gardner celebrates his 6th EPL goal of the season to equalise for Sunderland.

The match finished 1-1, with Norwich moving up to 12th and Sunderland up to 15th place. 

Tottenham Hotspur 0 Fulham 1: 

Spurs looked to cement their position in 3rd place after rivals Arsenal's 2-0 win against Swansea on Saturday put pressure on the hosts. 

This was not the case at White Hart Lane, despite the hosts dominating for many periods throughout the match, having all the possession and taking many shots. Jermain Defoe, Scott Parker and Gareth Bale all had shots, but were all denied by Mark Schwarzer.

No way through: Bale was not able to score against Fulham, despite flashes of brilliances.

Injury scare: Red-hot winger Gareth Bale recieved treatment for a knock during the match, but carried on

Fulham scored the only goal of the match in the 52nd minute, when a counter attacking break saw a cross by Sascha Reither find the boot of Dimitar Berbatov whose shot was mishit but span into the far corner of the net to give the visitiors a 1-0 lead thanks to former Spurs striker Berbatov.

Scruffy contact: Berbatov miskicked the ball, but it span awkwardly away from Lloris into the net to give Fulham the lead

Respect: Berbatov did not celebrate his goal against Spurs - the side his scored 27 goals for in 2 seasons.
The hosts felt hard done by that they were losing despite dominating, and continued to press, but Mark Schwarzer played well to deny any Spurs advances.  

Vital 3 points: Fulham celebrate Berbatov's winner against Spurs to move the London club up to 10th.

Wigan 2 Newcastle United 1:  

This match was played at the DW Stadium, as 18th placed Wigan hosted 13th placed Newcastle with both teams buzzing after their previous results in other competitions. Wigan were excited after their 3-0 win over Everton in the FA Cup which moves them into the semi-finals, while the away side progressed to the Europa League Last 8 against Benfica after a 1-0 win over Anzhi this past week. 

Newcastle defender Steven Taylor had a powerful header well saved by 22-year-old loanee goalkeeper Joel (from Atletico Madrid) within the first few minutes as Newcastle pressed for the breakthrough.   

However, the hosts broke the deadlock in the 18th minute, when Chilean winger Jean Beausejour slotted the ball past Rob Elliot into the net after a cross by young winger Callum McManaman was failed to be cleared by Santon before falling to Beausejour. 

Opener: Beausejour slots the ball past Elliot to make it 1-0 to Wigan in the 19th minute.

Newcastle winger Haidara was stretchered off the pitch in agony, after a horror tackle by McManaman saw him raise his studs into his ankle. Controversy arose, as many felt he should have been given a straight red card for the challenge, as he damaged the player badly, despite it being by accident and trying to win the ball at the same time. 

The Newcastle players protest to the referee to give McManaman a red card after the tackle (below)

Horror tackle: McManaman attempts to win the ball but misses completely injuring Haidara in the process.
The first-half ended with a clash between the Newcastle coach and McManaman before they had to be separated by the stewards

The Newcastle coach clashes with some of the Wigan players including McManaman at the end of the first half.

Newcastle equalised in the 72nd minute, with Italian full-back Davide Santon running on the counter attack before a ball fell to him and he finished off the shot from 12 yards out into the net

Bullet: Santon finishes off the counter attack with a neat strike to make it 1-1.

Making amends: Santon celebrates scoring his 1st goal for Newcastle - after failing to clear for Wigan's goal

Wigan scored in stoppage time to ensure the hosts took all 3 points, after a scrappy corner hit a player's hand before bouncing for Ivorian striker Aroune Kone who tapped the ball into the net for the late winner!  

Rather late than never: Aroune Kone celebrates scoring his 9th EPL goal of the season to give Wigan the lead.

Stroke of luck: Maynor Figueroa handles the ball in the air, bouncing it into the path of goalscorer Kone.

Thank you for reading my EPL Blog, and I hope that you enjoyed my latest blog post. Please spread the word to all of your friends and family that have an interest in football (or soccer in other countries around Europe and the Americas)
I will have a UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League Last 8 Draw Breakdown + Analysis in the next few days, and until then make sure to follow my blog for the LATEST updates when I post not to mention watching the International football that will be played over the next few days. 

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