Agency, 27 December : Manchester City’s bid to retain the Premier League title suffered a major blow as the champions crashed to a shock 2-1 defeat at Leicester on Wednesday.
Just days after their surprise home loss to Crystal Palace, Pep Guardiola’s side took the lead through Bernardo Silva’s early goal. But Marc Albrighton equalised for Leicester and Ricardo Pereira’s 81st-minute rocket handed City a third loss in their last four league games.
City are now seven points behind leaders Liverpool and drop to third place below Tottenham.
The problems are mounting up for Guardiola as Liverpool extended their lead at the top to leave City ruing a week either side of Christmas that threatens to see the trophy prised from their grasp.
Liverpool thrash Newcastle to go six clear
Liverpool showed the form of champions as they increased their lead at the top of the Premier League to six points by hammering an abject Newcastle United 4-0 at Anfield.
Goals from Dejan Lovren, Mohamed Salah, Xherdan Shaqiri and Fabinho did the damage as Liverpool’s chances of a first English top-flight title since the 1989-90 season were boosted by Manchester City’s 2-1 defeat at Leicester.
Tottenham are now Liverpool’s closest challengers with City dropping seven points off the pace in third.
Even with Liverpool visiting the Etihad on January 3, their form as they extended an unbeaten home run in the Premier League that stretches back to April 2017 is beginning to make that lead in the standings look decisive.
Pogba double gives Solskjaer second win as Man Utd boss
Paul Pogba scored twice as interim coach Ole Gunnar Solskjaer marked his first home match in charge of Manchester United with a 3-1 win over bottom club Huddersfield in the English Premier League on Wednesday.
Solskjaer, whose first match in charge on Saturday was a 5-1 victory at Cardiff, received a warm reception from the crowd as he returned to Old Trafford 11 1/2 years after representing them as a player.
The feelgood factor in the ground was evident from the start, but it was Huddersfield that was on top early on.
Sixth-placed United, though, gradually grew into the game and went in front after 28 minutes. Victor Lindelof’s powerful header from a Marcus Rashford corner was cleared off the line by Elias Kachunga, only for the ball to fall kindly for Nemanja Matic to score from close range.
Spurs hammer Bournemouth 5-0
Tottenham’s claim to be genuine contenders for the Premier League title was reinforced by a 5-0 thrashing of Bournemouth on Wednesday that saw them climb above champions Manchester City and into second place.
Mauricio Pochettino’s side did not put in a particularly scintillating display as speculation continues to swirl around the Argentinian and the Manchester United job that becomes vacant at the end of the season.
But it was more than enough to swat aside opponents who last beat them back in 1957 and keep a squad that also has an eye on Champions League glory believing that anything is possible.
Christian Eriksen’s opening goal required a hefty deflection but Bournemouth crumbled as Son Heung-min and Lucas Moura added to the tally before the break, and Harry Kane and Son bolstered the scoreline further afterwards.
Hazard double takes Chelsea back up to fourth
Eden Hazard scored both goals as Chelsea regained fourth spot from Arsenal with a 2-1 win over Watford at Vicarage Road.
The match remained goalless until the first minute of first-half stoppage time, Hazard rounding Ben Foster to score. However, Watford went into the break level thanks to Roberto Pereyra, who met a corner with a volley that arrowed into the bottom right corner from 19 yards.
Hazard restored Chelsea’s lead with a 58th-minute penalty after he was fouled by Foster in the area.
The visitors had chances to extend their lead with N’Golo Kante and Jorginho both firing wide. But two goals were enough for Chelsea to move on to 40 points, two clear of Arsenal. Watford slip to ninth with 27.