Sheff Utd Cruise Past Chelsea, Liverpool’s Record Bid Hit By Burnley

Sheffield United's English-born Irish striker David McGoldrick (R) scores his second goal during the English Premier League football match between Sheffield United and Chelsea at Bramall Lane in Sheffield, northern England on July 11, 2020. (Photo by Shaun Botterill / POOL / AFP)
Sheffield United’s English-born Irish striker David McGoldrick (R) scores his second goal during the English Premier League football match between Sheffield United and Chelsea at Bramall Lane in Sheffield, northern England on July 11, 2020. (Photo by Shaun Botterill / POOL / AFP)

 

 

Sheffield United dealt a major blow to Chelsea’s chances of a Premier League top-four finish by thrashing the Blues 3-0 at Bramall Lane, while Liverpool’s long winning run at Anfield came to an end in a 1-1 draw with Burnley on Saturday.

Manchester City did guarantee their presence in the top four for a 10th successive season with Raheem Sterling scoring a hat-trick in a 5-0 win at Brighton.

However, they will have to wait for the outcome on Monday of their appeal against a two-season ban from European competitions to see if they will play Champions League football.

Norwich will be playing in the Championship after Michail Antonio’s four-goal blitz confirmed the Canaries’ relegation in a thumping 4-0 win for West Ham that should seal the Hammers’ top-flight status for another season.

Sheffield United have long since achieved that feat in their first season in the Premier League for 13 years and the Blades are still eying the top four themselves as they moved within five points of fourth-placed Leicester.

Chelsea remain in third, but could end the weekend down in fifth if Leicester and Manchester United beat Bournemouth and Southampton respectively.

The Blues have already reinforced their attack for next season with the signings of Timo Werner and Hakim Ziyech, but Frank Lampard was again shown it is at the other end his side desperately need to improve.

David McGoldrick’s long wait for a first Premier League goal came to an end when he was quickest to react after Kepa Arrizabalaga saved Oli McBurnie’s deflected shot.

More slack defending from the visitors then allowed McBurnie a free header to double the hosts’ lead.

Lampard sent on Antonio Rudiger at the start of the second-half, but the German international did little to improve Chelsea’s defending as his attempted clearance from Lys Mousset’s cross only teed up McGoldrick to score his second 13 minutes from time.

“They were better than us, physically, in the mind and with the ball. So you lose the game,” said Lampard.

– Liverpool held -For the first time since January 2018, Liverpool failed to win a Premier League game at Anfield as an inspired performance by Nick Pope in the Burnley goal and Jay Rodriguez’s equaliser to cancel out Andy Robertson’s first half header gave Burnley a share of the spoils.

Jurgen Klopp’s men now need to win their remaining three games to be surpass the record total of 100 points in a Premier League season set by City two years ago.

“We left the door open, we didn’t close it. We should have scored two, three, four goals at least,” said Klopp.

City scored four or more goals for the fourth time in six league games at Brighton.

Sterling’s treble took his best ever season’s tally to 27, while Gabriel Jesus and Bernardo Silva also netted in another rout for a pleased Pep Guardiola.

– Norwich relegated –
At Carrow Road, a seventh successive league defeat condemned Norwich to relegation as Antonio’s ruthless display boosted West Ham’s own survival bid.

“We wanted to beat the odds again but when the dust settles the outcome is more or less what was expected. It doesn’t take anything away from the fact that we are disappointed,” manager Daniel Farke said.

West Ham’s second win in four games opens up a six-point cushion over the bottom three.

The early signs were ominous for Norwich as West Ham took the lead in the 11th minute through Antonio’s close-range volley.

Antonio struck again in first-half stoppage-time, glancing his header into the far corner from Mark Noble’s free-kick.

He completed his hat-trick in the 54th minute with a looping header and his fourth came in the 74th minute from Ryan Fredericks’ cross.

Watford also moved to the brink of survival as two Troy Deeney penalties beat Newcastle 2-1 to move level with West Ham on 34 points.

 

 

AFP

Dismal Chelsea Humbled In Blades Battering

Chelsea players leave the pitch after the English Premier League football match between Sheffield United and Chelsea at Bramall Lane in Sheffield, northern England on July 11, 2020. (Photo by Rui Vieira / POOL / AFP)
Chelsea players leave the pitch after the English Premier League football match between Sheffield United and Chelsea at Bramall Lane in Sheffield, northern England on July 11, 2020. (Photo by Rui Vieira / POOL / AFP)

 

 

Chelsea suffered a setback in their bid to qualify for the Champions League as Sheffield United rekindled their own European ambitions with an impressive 3-0 win on Saturday.

Frank Lampard’s side were punished for some dismal defending at Bramall Lane as David McGoldrick struck twice, either side of Oli McBurnie’s goal.

The Blues remain third after a second defeat in their last four games.

They will be down to fifth place by Monday evening if Leicester beat Bournemouth and Manchester United defeat Southampton.

It was another alarmingly sloppy display from Chelsea, whose other defeat since the restart was a defensively shambolic 3-2 loss at lowly West Ham.

With games against Norwich, Liverpool and Wolves left in the league, Chelsea will hope second-placed Manchester City’s two-year European ban is upheld on Monday.

In that case, finishing fifth would guarantee Champions League qualification.

The Blades are now unbeaten in their last four games, with Chelsea their latest scalp after impressive wins over Tottenham and Wolves.

Chris Wilder’s team are up to sixth place and are firmly in the hunt to qualify for the Europa League at the end of a remarkable first season back in the top flight.

Lampard made two changes as Jorginho came in for Billy Gilmour, who had knee surgery after Tuesday’s win at Crystal Palace, and Tammy Abraham started in place of Olivier Giroud.

– Naive mistake –
In contrast with what was to follow, Chelsea made a bright start and Ross Barkley tested Dean Henderson before Christian Pulisic headed over from Reece James’ cross.

It was United who took the lead in the 18th minute as their high-tempo pressing force a naive mistake from Mason Mount.

The Chelsea youngster was caught in possession as he tried to dribble out of his own penalty area and George Baldock crossed back into the box.

McBurnie met the delivery with a volley that deflected off Barkley, forcing Kepa Arrizabalaga into a awkward save that only pushed the ball out to McGoldrick and he slotted home from close range for his first Premier League goal.

Conceding such a messy goal knocked Chelsea out of their stride and the Blades doubled the lead in the 33rd minute after more sloppy defending from the visitors.

The fragility of Chelsea’s defence has been their fatal flaw several times this season and they were prised open far too easily when McBurnie got in front of Kurt Zouma to meet Enda Stevens’ cross with a powerful header past Kepa.

James’ long-range effort forced a good save from Henderson, but the visibly frustrated Lampard replaced Mount and Andreas Christensen with Marcos Alonso and Antonio Rudiger at half-time.

Abraham should have given Chelsea a lifeline midway through the second half, but the striker poked over.

McGoldrick put Chelsea out of their misery in the 77th minute.

He started the move on the halfway line and played a perfectly-weighted pass to Lys Mousset.

Mousset cut it back into the penalty area and when Rudiger made a complete hash of clearing, McGoldrick was on hand to blast into the roof of the net.

 

 

AFP

Tottenham’s Champions League Dream Suffers Setback After Sheffield Defeat

tottenham
Sheffield United’s French striker Lys Mousset (C) scores their second goal during the English Premier League football match between Sheffield United and Tottenham Hotspur at Bramall Lane in Sheffield, northern England on July 2, 2020. Oli SCARFF / POOL / AFP

 

Tottenham’s dreams of securing a UEFA Champions League spot was dealt a major blow on Thursday after they lost 3-1 to Sheffield United.

Sander Berge’s strike gave the Blades the lead in the first half of the encounter at Bramall Lane.

Although Harry Kane equalized later for Spurs, it was cancelled by VAR for a handball against Lucas Moura.

Lucas seemed to have kicked the ball against his arm in the build-up to the goal, leaving Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho angry.

Mourinho’s men suffered more infliction as Lys Mousset and Oli McBurnie scored after the half-time break.

Tottenham were to later get a consolation goal from Kane’s last minute strike, with the loss leaving them nine points behind Chelsea in fourth.

They are seven points adrift of fifth placed Manchester United after their first defeat since the restart.

On the other hand, the win is the Blades’ first in five matches since the resumption of the Premier League action.

The victory take them two points ahead of Tottenham into seventh place, keeping their hopes of making it to Europe alive.

– Sloppy defending –

Tottenham responded when Eric Dier flashed a header just wide, with Moussa Sissoko stretching in vain to reach it at the far post.

Kane couldn’t hit the target from Steven Bergwijn’s pass and Tottenham were punished as Berge put the Blades ahead in the 31st minute.

After spreading the ball wide to Chris Basham, Berge broke into the Tottenham area, collected the return pass and drilled his low shot into the far corner.

It was the Norway midfielder’s first goal since his January move from Genk.

Tottenham thought they had equalised two minutes later as Lucas sprinted forward and, despite being pushed over, managed to knock the ball onto Kane, who cut inside and fired home.

Kane’s celebrations were curtailed when VAR disallowed the goal for a handball by Moura, who had the ball kicked against his arm as he tumbled under pressure from several United players.

Mourinho was disgusted with what appeared to be an extremely harsh decision and his mood wasn’t improved when already-booked United midfielder Oli Norwood escaped a red card for elbowing Son Heung-min.

Tottenham were struggling to find their rhythm and United nearly doubled their lead when David McGoldrick shot into the side-netting early in the second half.

Ben Osborn was making his first Premier League start and the United midfielder had a key role as they struck again in the 69th minute.

Breaking into the area, Osborn’s deft pass picked out Enda Stevens and he squared for the unmarked Mousset to slot home from close-range for his first goal since December.

McBurnie put the result beyond doubt when he tapped in from Berge’s cross in the 84th minute after more sloppy Tottenham defending.

Kane had scored against 28 of 29 teams he has played against in the Premier League, with United the only ones to hold him in check.

He got off the mark against them with a simple finish from Son’s pass, but his 199th career club goal was far too late to avoid a painful defeat.

Wilder Fumes After Goalline Technology Mistake Denies Blades

Aston Villa’s English midfielder Jack Grealish (L), Sheffield United’s English manager Chris Wilder (2nd L) and Sheffield United’s English-born Northern Irish midfielder Oliver Norwood (3rd L) tap hands after the English Premier League football match between Aston Villa and Sheffield United at Villa Park in Birmingham, central England on June 17, 2020. CARL RECINE / POOL / AFP

 

 

Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder admitted he didn’t know whether to “laugh or cry” after a goalline technology blunder forced his side to settle for a damaging 0-0 draw at Aston Villa on Wednesday.

The Hawk-Eye system failed to award a goal when Villa keeper Orjan Nyland clearly carried Oliver Norwood’s first-half free-kick over the line.

Referee Michael Oliver and his officials were unable to intervene and VAR offered no help, leaving Wilder fuming over a decision that dented his team’s bid to qualify for the Champions League.

It was a controversial way for the Premier League to return in the first game since the top-flight was halted in March due to the coronavirus.

Hawk-Eye Innovations, which run the technology, issued a statement apologising for the error, claiming the fact Nyland, Villa team-mate Keinan Davis and the post were in the way meant no camera saw the ball cross the line.

But Wilder insisted it was clear the ball was over and said VAR should have come to the rescue.

“It was in the Holte End, the goalkeeper was in the Holte End and eight rows back. Everyone knew it, saw it and felt it,” he said.

“I don’t know whether to laugh or cry. Already the jokes have started. It’s all going to come out but we’re pretty disappointed and we’ve got to get on with it.

“I believe a decision should have been made from Stockley Park (the VAR centre). For someone to tell me with seven cameras and this is the first time it’s happened in over 9,000 games it’s a difficult one to take.

“We’ve got Chris Kavanagh (fourth official), one of the best referees in the Premier League and Michael Oliver possibly one of the best referees in Europe and if you ask them they’ll be scratching their heads over how this situation occurred.

“We believe it should have been referred (to VAR).”

A statement from the Professional Game Match Officials Board explained why VAR did not intervene when the technology failed.

“Under the IFAB protocol, the VAR is able to check goal situations, however, due to the fact that the on-field match officials did not receive a signal, and the unique nature of that, the VAR did not intervene,” they said.

That was no consolation for Wilder, whose team are now sixth, four points behind fourth-placed Chelsea when the gap could have been closer.

It was a narrow escape for second bottom Villa and boss Dean Smith admitted they had been lucky to avoid defeat.

“We got away with one, certainly, with the technology not working. But I’ve been in the other position where technology has not been good for us at times,” Smith said.

“There’s always going to be some error, we have human error from officials and we have to accept that.

“There’s going to be errors in technology as we’ve seen with VAR this season and now for the first time ever with Hawk-Eye. We just have to accept it and move on, there’s nothing else we can do.

“We’re the ones who go away disappointed even with that controversy. The fact that we are just shows that the performance was good. We need to maintain that level.”

The return of top-flight football in England also gave players a platform to back the Black Lives Matter movement following the death of George Floyd.

Just before kick-off at Villa Park Oliver blew his whistle and all 22 players and the officials went down on one knee for around 10 seconds.

Both teams were also wearing shirts with players names replaced by the Black Lives Matter slogan, a gesture that will be replicated across the Premier League for the first 12 games.

Sheffield Force Arsenal To Draw At Emirates Stadium

Arsenal's Brazilian striker Gabriel Martinelli (L) shoots but fails to score during the English Premier League football match between Arsenal and Sheffield United at the Emirates Stadium in London on January 18, 2020. DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS / AFP
Arsenal’s Brazilian striker Gabriel Martinelli (L) shoots but fails to score during the English Premier League football match between Arsenal and Sheffield United at the Emirates Stadium in London on January 18, 2020. DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS / AFP

 

Arsenal’s faint hopes of a top-four finish in the Premier League suffered another blow as John Fleck’s late equaliser secured a valuable point for Sheffield United’s own European ambitions in a 1-1 draw at the Emirates.

Gabriel Martinelli had filled the void left by the suspended Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang by opening the scoring for the Gunners on the stroke of half-time.

But Mikel Arteta’s men were devoid of inspiration for most of the match and paid for one moment of poor defending as Fleck drove high past Bernd Leno eight minutes from time.

Arsenal have still lost just once in six games since Arteta took charge, but have won just one of five in the Premier League to remain 10 points off the top four in 10th.

The visitors remain four points ahead of the Gunners and move to within a point of the European places in seventh.

A bright start by the Blades showed why they are surpassing all expectations on their return to the top flight.

However, their lack of a predatory finisher was shown as Lys Mousset twice headed over good chances in the first 10 minutes before Arsenal settled down.

Martinelli has made an impressive impact in his debut season in England and the 18-year-old was Arsenal’s major threat in the absence of Aubameyang.

With the hosts’ first attack, Alexandre Lacazette fed the speedy Nicolas Pepe and the Ivorian’s cross picked out Martinelli, who could only volley across goal and wide.

The Gunners were banking on a much bigger impact from Pepe when they paid Lille a club record £72 million for his services in August, but his confidence is growing with every game and another slick pass teed up Martinelli to fire wide.

Martinelli could not have been handed an easier finish at the third time of asking seconds before half-time as Bukayo Saka’s cross looped kindly into his path to tap home his ninth goal of the season.

“Gabi’s gonna be a superstar,” tweeted an impressed Aubameyang. “Not because of the goal, because of the attitude, energy and mindset.”

Chances were few and far between after the break as Arsenal seemed to be keeping the visitors at bay bar a threat from set-pieces.

Oli McBurnie saw a goalbound header cleared by Granit Xhaka before the Scotland striker headed straight at Leno from another corner.

However, Sheffield United went nearly a year unbeaten away from home prior to visits to Manchester City and Liverpool over the festive period and showed the resilience on the road to claim a point seven minutes from time.

Arsenal did not deal with a deep cross into their box and it dropped to Fleck, who got over the ball to keep his strike on target and saw it fly hight past the helpless Leno.

Chris Wilder’s men could even have taken all three points in the closing stages as McBurnie and Fleck had shots bravely blocked inside the box a minute from time.

 

AFP

Man City Overcome Fatigue To Blunt Sheffield United

Man City Overcome Fatigue To Blunt Sheffield United

 

Manchester City shrugged off a tight turnaround from defeat at Wolves to beat Sheffield United 2-0 on Sunday thanks to second-half strikes from Sergio Aguero and Kevin de Bruyne.

City boss Pep Guardiola had lambasted the scheduling that saw the English champions kick-off less than 48 hours after playing the majority of Friday’s 3-2 defeat at Molineux with 10 men.

Fatigue seemed to get the better of City in the first half as the Blades enjoyed the better of the chances and had a goal ruled out after a VAR review for offside

However, the greater individual quality at Guardiola’s disposal decided the game as De Bruyne teed up Aguero to smash into the roof of the net seven minutes after the break.

De Bruyne then rounded off another excellent display by scoring the second himself with a fine finish eight minutes from time to inflict United’s first defeat away from home for nearly a year.

Despite claiming the Premier League and broadcasters “don’t care” about player welfare given the schedule his side were handed over the festive period, Guardiola made just three changes to the side that started against Wolves.

City’s sluggish start should have punished by the visitors with Lys Mousset particularly wasteful.

The Frenchman spurned a glorious early chance to put United ahead when he get on the end of a floated Callum Robinson cross but headed wide.

The hosts were restricted to long-range efforts early on but De Bruyne, Rodrigo and Raheem Sterling were all unable to work goalkeeper Dean Henderson.

United thought they had claimed the lead on 29 minutes when Mousset raced onto a long ball from John Fleck and fired home.

City were furious because they thought Aguero had been fouled in the build-up but, while their complaints were brushed aside by referee Chris Kavanagh, VAR came to their aid by ruling Mousset was marginally offside.

It was a let-off for City but they were caught out by a long ball again as Oliver Norwood picked out Mousset from just outside his own box.

This time Mousset was onside but could only shoot into the side-netting.

The lack of a clinical finisher has been the only thing holding back a stunning return to the Premier League by Chris Wilder’s men and they got a lesson in taking their chances from City’s all-time record scorer soon after the break.

De Bruyne picked out the Argentinian with a fine through ball and Aguero blasted high past Henderson from a narrow angle.

Riyad Mahrez then teed up De Bruyne to wrap up the points in the closing minutes as the Belgian finished powerfully after taking a nice touch inside the area.

Billy Sharp went close to grabbing a late consolation but his header rebounded off the post.

Sheffield Hold Man Utd To 3-3 Draw In Dramatic Comeback

Sheffield United’s French striker Lys Mousset (L) celebrates with Sheffield United’s English midfielder John Lundstram (R) after scoring their second goal during the English Premier League football match between Sheffield United and Manchester United at Bramall Lane in Sheffield, northern England on November 24, 2019.
Paul ELLIS / AFP

 

Manchester United and Sheffield United shared the spoils after a dramatic 3-3 draw at Bramall Lane on Sunday, with the home side scoring a late equaliser after three goals from the visitors in seven minutes.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s team, outplayed for 70 minutes by the promoted side, trailed 2-0 after a first-half goal from John Fleck and a second-half effort from Lys Mousset.

Chris Wilder’s team were hungrier and more incisive but from nowhere United were back in the game, with 19-year-old Brandon Williams scoring in the 72nd minute.

Manchester United suddenly looked full of ideas and incisive running, with the game turned on its head.

READ ALSO: Lazio Remain Third In Serie A After Sassuolo Victory

Solskjaer threw on Mason Greenwood to replace Andreas Pereira, meaning they were now operating with an attacking quartet of Greenwood, Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and Daniel James.

Just five minutes after Williams’ strike, Greenwood equalised, finishing from close range after Rashford’s cross.

With the home side rocking badly, United poured forward again and Rashford swept home.

But the drama was still not over, with Oliver McBurnie controlling the ball and firing past David de Gea to level at 3-3. The goal stood after a VAR check.

AFP

Liverpool Extend Lead With Hard-Fought Win At Sheffield United

Sheffield United’s Irish defender Enda Stevens (C) makes a clearance from Liverpool’s Senegalese striker Sadio Mane (R) and Liverpool’s Dutch midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum (2R) during the English Premier League football match between Sheffield United and Liverpool at Bramall Lane in Sheffield, northern England on September 28, 2019. Paul ELLIS / AFP

 

Liverpool moved eight points clear at the top of the table, but were made to work hard for a 16th straight Premier League win as Georginio Wijnaldum’s fortunate strike handed the visitors a 1-0 victory at Sheffield United on Saturday.

The European champions looked short on invention against the well-organised Blades until Wijnaldum’s shot from the edge of the box 20 minutes from time trickled between the legs of United goalkeeper Dean Henderson.

However, another vital three points moved Liverpool closer to a first top-flight title in 30 years as they opened up a sizeable advantage over Manchester City, who can cut the gap back to five points with victory later at Everton.

Chances began to come for Jurgen Klopp’s men towards the end of the first-half as Sadio Mane sliced horribly wide with just Henderson to beat and then hit the post when it seemed easier to score from Roberto Firmino’s pass.

Mane was unfortunate minutes into the second period, though, as he was taken out by John Lundstram as he broke into the box.

Referee Anthony Taylor was unimpressed and it was another example when VAR backed the official’s decision when it should have been overturned.

The hosts had their chances to spring a massive shock as Adrian turned behind a long-range drive from Oliver Norwood before Andy Robertson made a brilliant block to deny John Fleck the opener.

All of Sheffield United’s good work was undone with one mistake when Wijnaldum pounced on a loose ball 20 yards from goal, but his strike should have been easily handled by Henderson, who instead watched on with horror as the ball slipped under his grasp.

The Manchester United loanee made some amends 11 minutes from time when Mohamed Salah broke clean through, but could not beat Henderson with a low finish.

That save could still have salvaged a point had substitute Leon Clarke not blazed over with the goal at his mercy late on.

Instead, Liverpool held on to grind out the sort of win that could finally make them champions come May.

Sheffield United Fight Back To Share Points With Chelsea

Chelsea’s midfielder Christian Pulisic (C) jumps a challenge by Sheffield United’s midfielder Luke Freeman (L) during the Premier League football match at Stamford Bridge in London on August 31, 2019. Ian KINGTON / AFP

 

Chelsea and Manchester United lost further ground in disappointing draws with Sheffield United and Southampton on Saturday as Manchester City cruised to the top of the Premier League with a 4-0 win over Brighton.

Leicester moved up to third as the Foxes unbeaten start to the season continued in a 3-1 win over Bournemouth thanks to two goals from Jamie Vardy, while victories for Crystal Palace and West Ham take them into a share of fourth.

Blades blunt Chelsea

After scoring his first Chelsea goals away to Norwich last weekend, Tammy Abraham thought he had given the Blues all three points at home to newly-promoted Sheffield United by scoring twice more before the break.

However, the Blades hit back at the start of the second-half through Callum Robinson and Kurt Zouma’s own goal a minute from time earned the visitors an unlikely point in a 2-2 draw.

As United and Chelsea stumble, Leicester are the closest challengers to the top two so far as Jamie Vardy scored twice and teed up Youri Tielemans for his side’s other goal, but Brendan Rodgers’s men were also lucky Tielemans did not see red in another controversial VAR call.

Vardy opened the scoring in stunning fashion by lobbing Aaron Ramsdale from outside the box, but Bournemouth levelled thanks to a neat finish from Callum Wilson.

Tielemans tapped home Vardy’s low cross to restore Leicester’s lead, but the Belgian should have been sent-off for a high challenge on Wilson.

However, after a VAR review, the original decision to let Tielemans escape unpunished stood, and Vardy sealed the points 17 minutes from time.

Crystal Palace backed up their shock victory at Old Trafford last weekend with a 1-0 win over 10-man Aston Villa thanks to Jordan Ayew’s goal 17 minutes from time.

But Villa, who had Egyptian international Trezeguet sent-off early in the second-half, felt aggrieved as Henri Lansbury’s late goal was harshly ruled out for a dive before the ball reached the midfielder by Jack Grealish.

West Ham also have seven points from four games as goals either side of half-time from Sebastien Haller and Andriy Yarmolenko secured a comfortable 2-0 over Norwich.

Watford got their first point of the season, but remain bottom after a 1-1 draw at Newcastle.

United slump continues

How United must wish they had some of their local rivals firepower as Southampton clung on for a 1-1 draw at St. Mary’s despite playing the last 17 minutes plus stoppage time a man down after Kevin Danso’s red card.

Daniel James had given the visitors the perfect start with his third goal in four appearances for United, but Jannik Vestergaard headed home an equaliser just before the hour mark.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men have now failed to win in their last three games and won just one of their last 10 dating back to last season.

“We’ve been dominating, creating chances and just haven’t been clinical in front of goal to win the games,” said Solskjaer.

“It’s not a dip in form, (but) it’s a dip in results definitely.”

City win comes at a cost

Liverpool can move back above City should they continue the only 100 percent start left in the Premier League later at Burnley, but City were never in danger of dropping points at the Etihad as Kevin de Bruyne tapped home David Silva’s cut-back after just two minutes.

Victory came at a cost for Pep Guardiola’s men as Aymeric Laporte was stretchered off with a knee injury that looks certain to rule him out of winning a first cap for France in upcoming Euro 2020 qualifiers.

City may come to regret not buying a replacement for departed captain Vincent Kompany at centre-back as holding midfielder Fernandinho had to deputise at the heart of the defence for the final 52 minutes.

However, Aguero soon made the game safe by blasting high into the net just before the break and produced another sublime finish to curl into the top corner for his second 10 minutes into the second-half.

Substitute Bernardo Silva then rounded off the scoring for the champions.

AFP

Sheffield United Break Club Record To Sign Mousset

 

Premier League newcomers Sheffield United broke their club transfer record to sign France Under-21 striker Lys Mousset from Bournemouth on Sunday.

Mousset agreed a three-year contract with the newly-promoted Premier League side, who are reported to have paid £10 million to complete the deal.

“For the third time this summer, the Blades have smashed the club’s transfer record,” United announced on their official website.

“French striker Lys Mousset has signed a three-deal with the Blades after an undisclosed fee with AFC Bournemouth was reached for his services.”

Mousset joined Bournemouth from Le Havre in 2016 for £5.7 million but was mainly restricted to the role of substitute.

The 23-year-old, who scored five goals in 71 appearances for the Cherries, is the Blades’ fifth signing since winning automatic promotion to the Premier League last season.

They set a new transfer record by signing Callum Robinson from Preston earlier this month, having already broken it once to bring Luke Freeman to Bramall Lane from QPR.

United have also signed former Manchester United forward Ravel Morrison and Everton defender Phil Jagielka.

Wigan Stun Man City Again In FA Cup Win

Wigan beat Man CityDefending FA Cup champions, Wigan Athletic shocked Manchester City in the FA Cup for the second time in consecutive seasons after producing a remarkable 2-1 win at the Etihad Stadium.

Jordi Gomez put the Latics ahead from the penalty spot in the first half, and James Perch added a second after half-time with a finish at the back post.

Manuel Pellegrini’s team pulled one back through Samir Nasri but could not find an equalizer as Wigan defended with all they had.

Wigan also beat City in last year’s Wembley final and edged a pulsating tie at the Etihad after some heroic defending.

Wigan Athletic’s reward for their outstanding victory over Manchester City is a semi-final clash against Arsenal.

For the other semi-final game, Hull City has been drawn against Sheffield United. The Tigers eased to a 3-0 victory against Sunderland at the KC Stadium on Sunday.

The games will be played at Wembley over the weekend of April 12/13.