IMAGES from English Premier League matches played on Sunday.
IMAGE: Liverpool’s Luis Diaz, Thiago Alcantara and Jordan Henderson celebrate their second goal scored by Divock Origi against Everton at Anfield in Liverpool. Photograph: Phil Noble/Reuters
Liverpool closed the gap at the top of the Premier League standings to one point after a hard-fought 2-0 win over Everton in a feisty Merseyside derby on Sunday.
With Manchester City opening up a four-point lead over Liverpool at the top with a 5-1 demolition of Watford on Saturday, Juergen Klopp’s side struggled to break down Everton in a bad-tempered first half at Anfield.
Everton continued to hold their own in a raucous derby atmosphere until, with the first shot on target from either side in the match, Scottish fullback Andy Robertson headed his team in front in the 62nd minute.
Demarai Gray then went within inches of a stunning equaliser before substitute Divock Origi finally ended all hope of an Everton comeback with a goal five minutes from time to put the game to bed.
A 12th win in their last 13 league games, which was much tougher to come by than many expected, moved Liverpool on to 79 points from 33 matches, one behind City, who must slip-up if Liverpool are to win back their Premier League crown.
Everton can take heart from a spirited performance, but finish the day in the relegation zone, two points behind Burnley after their victory over Wolverhampton Wanderers saw them climb to 17th.
IMAGE: West Ham United’s Andriy Yarmolenko in action with Chelsea’s Cesar Azpilicueta during their match at Stamford Bridge, London. Photograph: Peter Cziborra/Action Images via Reuters
Chelsea tightened their grip on third place in the Premier League with a 1-0 victory over 10-man West Ham on Sunday, with Christian Pulisic’s 90th-minute winner at Stamford Bridge making up for his team mate Jorginho’s missed penalty.
Substitute Pulisic arrived in the box at the right time to guide home a superb pass by Marcos Alonso shortly after Jorginho had wasted his chance from the spot, firing straight at West Ham keeper Lukasz Fabianski.
West Ham defender Craig Dawson, one of their best players in a much-changed side, was shown a red card after a check by the Video Assistant Referee following a clumsy foul on substitute Romelu Lukaku which resulted in the penalty.
Thomas Tuchel’s side ended a run of two straight defeats at home — against Brentford and Arsenal — but it is their forward line rather than defence that will concern the German manager ahead of their final few matches.
“He (Tuchel) just said to make a difference; to combine and make opportunities. It feels good to be more secure in the top four,” Pulisic, who replaced Timo Werner in the 76th minute, told Sky Sports.
“We needed a win at home and it feels great in front of our fans. We need to finish the season strong… some good league games and then a final (FA Cup against Liverpool). I needed to come in and make a difference and show I want to be playing.”
Seventh-placed West Ham made six changes to their starting line-up with an eye on Thursday’s Europa League semi-final first leg against Eintracht Frankfurt, a competition that offers them their best chance of reaching next season’s Champions League.
They looked on course to secure a point after N’Golo Kante’s deflected effort and Trevoh Chalobah’s rocket from distance drew saves from Fabianski, before Werner fired wide from a tight angle in the second half of a game that had few clear chances.
Victory meant Chelsea went five points clear of fourth-placed Arsenal, with a match in hand against Mikel Arteta’s side. They can consolidate their position with a victory over struggling Manchester United on Thursday.
Ward-Prowse double ensures Southampton share spoils at Brighton
IMAGE: Southampton’s James Ward-Prowse scores their second goal past Brighton & Hove Albion’s Robert Sanchez at The American Express Community Stadium, Brighton, Britain. Photograph: Andrew Couldridge/Action Images via Reuters
A goal in each half from captain James Ward-Prowse helped Southampton to rescue a point at Brighton & Hove Albion with a 2-2 draw in an entertaining Premier League contest at the Amex Stadium on Sunday.
Brighton made a lightning start and led with two minutes on the clock through Danny Welbeck, who tapped into an empty net after visiting goalkeeper Fraser Forster fumbled Marc Cucurella’s low cross into the box.
With half-time approaching, Brighton’s Leandro Trossard drilled a ball towards Welbeck which was awkwardly prodded home by Southampton defender Mohammed Salisu into his own net, seemingly giving the visitors a mountain to climb.
Ward-Prowse single-handedly dragged Southampton back into the game late in the first half, whipping a trademark free-kick through the Brighton wall and past goalkeeper Robert Sanchez after Cucurella had fouled Nathan Tella.
Oriol Romeu backheeled a ball into the path of Ward-Prowse around 10 minutes into the second period, and the England midfielder fired straight into the far corner to bring Southampton level.
Brighton’s Pascal Gross had a goal disallowed for offside after a VAR check with some 10 minutes remaining and Southampton held on to deny the hosts their first home victory of the year.
Revitalised Burnley move out of bottom three with win over Wolves
IMAGE: Burnley’s Matej Vydra celebrates scoring their first goal against Wolverhampton Wanderers at Turf Moor, Burnley. Photograph: Peter Powell/Reuters
Burnley climbed out of the Premier League relegation zone and pushed Everton into the bottom three after Matej Vydra grabbed the 62nd minute winner in a tense 1-0 win over Wolverhampton Wanderers at Turf Moor on Sunday.
The Clarets have now claimed seven points from three games since sacking long-term manager Sean Dyche and move to 31 points from 33 games while Everton, who face Liverpool later on Sunday, have 29 points from 31 games.
Czech international Vydra slotted home the winner after Dwight McNeil’s perfect pass found Wout Weghorst and the Dutchman squared for a first-time finish from his strike partner.
Burnley, desperate for the three points in their bid for survival, then battled ferociously to hang on to the lead and despite Wolves enjoying plenty of possession, they did so with a degree of comfort.
In the eight days since Burnley chairman Alan Pace sacked Dyche and put Under-23 coach Mike Jackson in temporary charge, Burnley have drawn at West Ham United and then beaten Southampton and Wolves to give the Lancashire club a fighting chance of a seventh straight season in the top flight.
The home side had started slowly and Bruno Lage’s Wolves, eighth in the table, looked confident on the ball with Nick Pope doing well to keep out a Jonny Otto drive.
McNeil — one of the Burnley players who looks reborn since Dyche’s departure – then cut inside from the right and tested Jose Sa with a fiercely struck left-foot shot.
Pope had to be alert again after the break to keep out a Nelson Semedo effort following a strong break from deep by South Korean midfielder Hwang Hee-Chan.
Burnley also had the ball in the net when a Vydra shot saved by Sa ricocheted in off Conor Coady, but the Czech was ruled offside.
Vydra was able to celebrate though after his clinical first-time finish, and the Burnley fans then roared their team on until the final whistle.