West Ham swim out of relegation zone, City run down Spurs as EPL gather steam

By Editor on 16/12/2017

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Pep with his wards

West Ham climbed out of the relegation zone after striker Marko Arnautovic returned to haunt his troubled former club Stoke.

David Moyes’ improving Hammers celebrated their first away victory of the season but the pressure will build further on Potters boss Mark Hughes, who has now won just one of his last eight games.

On his 300th league appearance, West Ham captain Mark Noble gave his side the lead from the penalty spot before Arnautovic doubled their lead.

BBC reports that the Austria international should have had a hat-trick, hitting the woodwork twice in the second half before finally finishing with his right foot into the bottom corner after a deft exchange of passes with Manuel Lanzini.

Substitute Diafra Sakho compounded Stoke’s woes when he collected Lanzini’s through ball and slotted coolly past keeper Jack Butland.

Kick-off was delayed by an hour at the Bet 365 Stadium because of a power outage, but many home fans left early as West Ham supporters sang “You’re getting sacked in the morning” to a grim-faced Hughes.

A hugely improved rearguard and Arnautovic’s persistence were key for the visitors, who beforehand had the top-flight’s worst defence along with Stoke.

They were thankful too that most of Stoke’s best chances fell to captain Ryan Shawcross, who could not get a string of headers on target.

One of deadly strike from West Ham Player

Meanwhile, Manchester City crushed Tottenham Hotspur 4-1 on Saturday to register a record-extending 16th consecutive Premier League victory.

The Belgian maestro scored City's second goal, after Ilkay Gundogan had opened the scoring, and Raheem Sterling added two more in a thumping win that provisionally sent Pep Guardiola's men 14 points clear at the summit.

Victory embellished the record for consecutive English league wins City had set in Wednesday's 4-0 win at Swansea City and the breathtaking manner of it was further evidence of their apparent invincibility.

Guardiola, who also saw substitute Gabriel Jesus miss a penalty, has equalled the run of 16 straight league wins he engineered with the great Barcelona team that won a La Liga and Champions League double in 2011.

He is now three wins short of his own record for Europe's five major leagues, which he set with Bayern Munich in 2013-14.

Spurs were left to lick their wounds after a fifth defeat of the campaign -- one more than in the entirety of last season -- which sent them slithering down the table to seventh.

It could have been even worse for Mauricio Pochettino's men, who replied through Christian Eriksen, had referee Craig Pawson not shown only yellow cards to Harry Kane and Dele Alli for two ugly second-half fouls.

The absence of David Silva due to what City described as "personal reasons" opened the door for Gundogan and the Germany midfielder seized the opportunity by scoring his first goal of the season in the 14th minute.

Leroy Sane fired in a corner from the left with pace and dip and with Spurs distracted by Fernandinho's near-post charge, Gundogan stole in unmarked to send a stooping header past Hugo Lloris.

Pochettino had opted for a midfield diamond in a bid to deny City space in the middle of the pitch, but De Bruyne still found room to spring his team forwards with trademark piercing passes.

The visitors gave their opponents only one moment of discomfort in the first half, Kane shaping a shot fractionally wide from the edge of the box.

 

Source Agency Report

Posted on December, 16 2017

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