BPL Recap: Wenger’s 1000th Game Ruined, Liverpool Keep Scoring, More

IMAGE, ARSENAL.COM

BY MATTHEW LEVINE
Staff Writer

The build up to the Arsenal-Chelsea match was focused on Arsene Wenger‘s 1,000th game in charge of the Gunners.

The milestone match wound up being a game he would much rather forget, dropping a 6-0 decision to Chelsea and personal rival, coach Jose Mourinho.

It’s not the first time this season Arsenal has failed to turn up. In the City and Liverpool games previously, the Gunners leaked goals and lacked any type of intensity or sharpness. In those three games, they have been outscored 17-4.

The trouble for Arsenal began early on and continued throughout the match. Samuel Eto’o started the scoring for the Blues in the 5th minute. Andre Schurrle drove at the Arsenal defense and picked out Eto.o. The Cameroonian striker cut past Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and curled the ball in at the far post. After being dispossessed in midfield, Chelsea broke and Schurrle’s shot went through Laurent Koscielny‘s legs and to the far corner to double the Blues lead in the 7th minute.

The lead was at three less than 20 minutes in after Eden Hazard converted a penalty kick. Hazard’s shot from inside the box beat Wojciech Szczesny, but Oxlade-Chamberlain was behind him and used his hand to help the ball out of play.

However, Oxlade-Chamberlain was not the one sent off. In a case of mistaken identity, Kieran Gibbs received his marching orders.

Before the halftime whistle could be blown, Chelsea had a fourth. Fernando Torres, who subbed on for an injured Eto’o, picked out Oscar. The Brazilian finished from inside the six-yard box.

Oscar had his second goal of the match with a shot from just outside of the box in the 66th minute. Mohamed Salah completed the rout with Chelsea’s sixth in the 71st minute.

With the loss, Arsenal’s title hopes just about slipped away. The FA Cup trophy is now a must for the Gunners if they hope to achieve any honors this campaign. For Chelsea, they keep their top spot in the table and with more performances like the one at the weekend, the Blues could very well hoist the trophy at the end of the season.

Here are the match highlights (or lowlights — depending where you stand on the matter):

Other Premier League Results

1. Suarez Hat-trick In Pool’s Six Goal Special– The Liverpool game plan continues to be “offense is the best defense.” The Reds posted six goals on struggling Cardiff this weekend. Even after falling behind twice, the Reds attack never fails to disappoint, highlighted by Luis Suarez‘s hat-trick.

The Premier League strugglers had the lead after nine minutes through Jordan MutchFrazier Campbell played the ball to Mutch at the top of the box. He then dove towards the middle of the box and fired his shot past Simon Mignolet.

The lead was short-lived as Suarez equalized seven minutes later. Glen Johnson‘s cross picked out Suarez, who had an easy tap-in.

Cardiff would get back ahead in the 25th minute with a goal from Campbell. He danced around Martin Skrtel in the box and found the back of the net.

Skrtel made amends adding the first of his two goals four minutes from halftime. Philippe Coutinho sent in a cross from the right hand side and Skrtel steered it goalwards to level the match at two. He would then add his second of the match in the 54th minute with a header off of a Coutinho corner.

After clever passing in the box from Liverpool, Suarez added his second of the game in the 60th minute. Daniel Sturridge would add Liverpool’s fifth in the 75th minute with a tap-in after a low cross from Suarez.

Cardiff had a small fight back with an 88th minute goal from Mutch, but Suarez added his third in stoppage time.

Liverpool now sit in second place in the table, while Cardiff sit just above last in the Premier League table.

2. Man City Fiver Against Fulham– Manchester City looks to catch Chelsea at the top of the table, and in doing so, have to win the games you’re expected to. City made it look easy posting five goals against cellar-dwelling Fulham.

The first for City came from the penalty spot. Alvaro Negredo went up to collect a James Milner long ball and was kicked from behind by Fernando AmorebietaYaya Toure stepped up to convert his first of two from the penalty spot and first of his three goals on the day.

Amorebieta was involved again, taking down David Silva in the box and receiving a red card. That is when the floodgates opened for City.

Toure converted the penalty in the 54th and then added his third of the day in the 65th minute with a magnificent strike from distance. Fernandinho beat Fulham keeper David Stockdale at his near post, giving City their fourth in the 84th minute. Martin Demichelis capped off the five goal display from City, notching in the 88th minute.

City now nestle into third in the table, still having their three games in hand.

3. Wonderful Wayne Leads Red Devils– The Red Devils may not be playing well this season in the Premier League, but they still have players who can produce moments of magic. Wayne Rooney did just that against West Ham.

In the 8th minute, Rooney struck the ball from just over midfield and left West Ham keeper Adrian back-pedaling and then falling over as Rooney’s strike from distance found the back of the net. It was a truly wonderful goal, but one that Adrian should be faulted for.

Rooney then added his second of the match in the 33rd minute. The English striker played the ball wide to Ashley Young, who ran with the ball down the right hand side. He sent his cross in and the ball was deflected into the path of Rooney by West Ham midfielder Mark Noble. Rooney finished the ball off from close range.

4. Stoke Breeze Past Villa– Although Stoke City went down early against Villa, they had a complete turnaround, putting four past Villa keeper Brad Guzan in a comfortable victory.

Christian Benteke scored in the first five minutes for Villa after being picked out by a Fabian Delph pass.

For Villa, that would be as good as it got.

Stoke leveled the match in the 22nd minute with a goal from Peter Odemwingie. The Nigerian striker fired the ball past Guzan after a knock-down from Peter Crouch. The Potters then had the lead a mere four minutes later with Crouch putting the ball in the back of the net from a Marko Arnautovic pull back.

Stoke pushed the lead to two goals just before halftime. Steven Nzonzi latched onto a deflected Arnautovic pass and beat Guzan with his shot. Stoke completed their easy victory with a 90th minute goal from American defender Geoff Cameron.

5. Everton Edge Past Swansea– Everton are still in the hunt for European football next season, sitting two points behind fifth place Spurs. The Toffees edged past Swansea 3-2 this weekend.  

Leighton Baines opened the scoring with a 20th minute penalty conversion. Swansea leveled 13 minutes later when Wilfried Bony tapped in Angel Rangel‘s cross.

Everton regained their advantage when Romelu Lukaku turned in a Kevin Mirallas cross in the 53rd minute. Five minutes later, the lead was doubled from a Ross Barkley header at the back post after a Mirallas corner.

Swansea was able to cut the lead to one goal with a goal from Ashley Williams in the 90th minute, but it was too little, too late.

6. Tottenham Fight Back To Steal Three Points Late– Tottenham are looking to hold onto their fifth place standing and push for a Top Four spot. With a spirited comeback over Southampton, Spurs keep their slim advantage over Everton in the table.

Southampton had a two goal advantage before a half hour was played. Jay Rodriguez chased down a goal-kick form Artur Boruc that was misplayed by Kyle Naughton. Rodriguez then beat Hugo Lloris with a right footed strike in the 19th minute. The Saints added their second in the 28th minute. Rickie Lambert played the ball into Adam Lallana‘s path, who coolly slotted the ball past LLoris.

Spurs then began to claw their way back into the game. Christian Eriksen finished a Naugthon cross of at the back post. It was Eriksen again, who leveled the match just after the halftime break as he tapped in Roberto Soldado‘s cross at the back post.

Spurs then snatched all three points in stoppage time. Gylfi Sigurdsson struck from distance to complete a famous comeback.

7. Norwich Inch Closer To Premier League Survival– Norwich and Sunderland both needed a win to aid their Premier League survival. It was the Canaries who came away with three crucial points.

A failed clearance by the Black Cats led to Norwich’s opener. Wes Brown failed to clear his lines and the ball fell to Johan Elmander, who picked out Robert Snodgrass. Snodgrass’s shot beat Vito Mannone in the 20th minute.

The Canaries then doubled their lead with a wonder goal from Alexander Tettey. John O’Shea‘s clearing header looped high into the air. Tettey waited under it and smashed a volley into the back of the net from distance.

Sunderland remain in the bottom three after the loss, while Norwich are in 13th, seven points clear of the relegation zone.

8. West Brom Still In Danger– West Brom needed a victory to push them further away from the bottom three, but a 2-0 loss to Hull keep them in the thick of relegation danger.

Laim Rosenior opened up the scoring in the 31st minute. Nikica Jelavic missed a penalty kick, but Rosenior followed up the rebound and headed home to give the Tigers a 1-0 lead.

Former Baggie Shane Long doubled the advantage seven minutes later from close range.

9. Newcastle Snatch Three Points At The Death– Crystal Palace need points to remain in the Premier League. It appeared they would at least take one point from Newcastle, but the Magpies snatch all three in the game’s dying moments.

Papiss Cisse scored the game’s only goal in the fourth minute of second half stoppage time. Hatem Ben Arfa lofted a pass over the Palace defense and Cisse headed home.

Palace are one place above the bottom three, while Newcastle are comfortable in 8th place.

Here is your current Premier League table: