Premier League Game Week 14 – Saturday Review

Premier League Game Week 14 - Saturday Review

Gameweek 14 of the Premier League went underway on the weekend and produced some fine football which lived up to the usual standards of the reputed English League. 


Here we look at the Premier League highlights of the day.

 

Southampton 2 – 2 Manchester United 

Manchester United struggled to come back from two goals down to secure a point but their Premier League troubles extended with a 2-2 draw at Southampton.

All of the goals came in the first half of the game on Saturday. Southampton took the early lead as Stuart Armstrong netted his 3rd goal in 2 games. He struck a robust effort past David de Gea and into the far corner after being played in by Michael Obafemi in the 13th minute. A stunning free-kick from Cedric Soares gave the hosts a two-goal cushion in the 20th minute.

Southampton’s festivities somewhat dampened when Romelu Lukaku latched onto Rashford‘s through ball before striking the ball into the top corner to claim his first goal for the club since 15th September. Ander Herrera brought United back on level terms just six minutes later. Rashford once again providing the final ball for Herrera to flick past Alex McCarthy.

The momentum had swayed back in United’s favor after the inspiring comeback, however, after the break, they failed to carry on that tempo. With time running out, Southampton looked to be the stronger of the two sides as they held on for a valuable point to move up to the 18th position in the league and relieve the pressure on manager Mark Hughes. United, on the other hand, move up to 7th but remain without a win in three Premier League games.

 

Manchester City 3 – 1 Bournemouth

Manchester City maintained their unbeaten Premier League run with a hard-fought 3-1 victory over Bournemouth at the Ethiad.

City got the lead when Bernardo Silva shot through a crowded box and into the net in the 16th minute. Bournemouth got a deserved equaliser just before the break as Callum Wilson‘s excellent header from Simon Francis‘ cross found the top corner to take the striker’s tally up to 8 goals this season.

Raheem Sterling got his 9th goal of the season in the 57th minute as he thumped home from close range after Begovic had spilt Danilo‘s effort. Leroy Sane, who caused Bournemouth’s defence problems throughout the game, finally got an assist as he fired a low cross from the byline for Gundogan to tap into the net.

The result puts Manchester City 5 points clear at the top of the Premier League while Bournemouth move down to the 9th position.

 

In other news

Junior Hoilett‘s exceptional strike helped Cardiff make a comeback against Wolves to beat them 2-1 at home.

Andros Townsend‘s astonishing goal was crucial as Crystal Palace ended a run of 8 games without a victory with a 2-0 triumph over Burnley.

Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez scored a brace as West Ham ended Newcastle‘s winning run with a comfortable 3-0 victory at St James’ Park.

Jamie Vardy and James Maddison both found the net in the first half to give Leicester a 2-0 win over Watford.

Brighton came from a goal down against Huddersfield to win the match 2-1 after Steve Mounie‘s controversial red card saw the hosts play with 10 men.

FIFA World Cup 2018: Injury scare over two young superstars

Kylian Mbappe Marcus Rashford

With the World Cup now hours away, the participating teams are under pressure to keep their players fit while having vigorous training sessions. A difficult combo to say the least and sadly a couple of young players have fallen victim to the cause.  Marcus Rashford & Kylian Mbappe have injury concerns with England & France respectively. Here, we take a closer look at the issue.

Marcus Rashford – England

Gareth Southgate recently revealed that England striker Marcus Rashford has sustained a “slight knock” in training just before the start of the World Cup. He hurt his knee during a training game at St George’s Park on Tuesday and the Manchester United striker was still concerned about his soreness when the squad arrived in St Petersburg, for their first look at the training base for the tournament. The 20-year old forward is set to be examined by England’s medical staff on Wednesday to assess any doubts about his involvement in the team’s opening game of the World Cup finals, against Tunisia

The England Manager said that his squad is relishing the opportunity to represent their country on the world stage. “We are representing our country in the greatest sporting tournament there is. We are very proud to do that and we want our country and our fans to recognize that we see that responsibility,” said Southgate.

Rashford, who was named the man of the match in England’s final warm-up game against Costa Rica, is expected to recover soon and claim his spot in the team. The England squad are due to have their first training session at Zelenogorsk on Thursday but Rashford’s involvement is still in doubt, with the priority being to make sure that he is fit for England’s opening game of Group G on Monday.


Kylian Mbappe – France

Kylian Mbappe had to leave France’s training ground on Tuesday after a clash with Adil Rami. The incident comes just a few days before the start of the World Cup. Didier Deschamps‘ players begin their campaign in Russia with Saturday’s match against Australia. The squad was taking part in an open training session at the Glebovets Stadium in Istra when Paris Saint-Germain forward Mbappe went down following a challenge with defender Adil Rami. The 19-year-old was pictured laying on the floor holding his left ankle before being helped to his feet by staff.

If Mbappe is deemed unfit to compete in Russia, Deschamps will have until 24 hours before France’s opening fixture to replace him in his 23-man squad. Possible replacements would be Alexandre Lacazette or Anthony Martial from his reserve list.

The 19-year old crumpled to the floor after the challenge from Rami and remained on the ground for several minutes as the medical staff assessed the injury. The incident would have caused panic among France fans with the country’s first game of the World Cup taking place on Saturday against Australia. But the young Frenchman has provided a promising update and also sent a reassuring message to Rami. Mbappe took to Twitter after the incident, saying: “I’m fine, it’s just a hit so it doesn’t matter but thanks for your messages. PS: And let my friend Adil Rami be it was not nasty” 

Mbappe has been a pivotal player for France over the last year and has started each of the last seven friendlies, getting 3 goals and 4 assists in that run. Deschamps will hope that the 19-year old sensation gets back to full fitness before the World Cup progresses.