Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : January 18th 2015 Contents A45
January 18, 2015 www.guardian.co.tt Sunday Guardian
LONDON---Chelsea routed Swansea 5-0
for the leader s biggest win of the Premier
League season yesterday, while Manchester
United produced only its third away success
of the campaign at Queens Park Rangers.
Diego Costa and Oscar both scored twice
before Andre Schuerrle completed Swansea's
home humiliation to go provisionally five
points ahead of Manchester City, which hosts
Arsenal on Sunday.
United labored through the first half at
QPR before a second-half turnaround saw
substitutes Marouane Fellaini and James Wil-
son clinch a 2-0 victory.
While United provisionally returned to
third place---ahead of Southampton's late
game at Newcastle---QPR remains in the rel-
egation zone after a fifth straight league
match without a win.
Tottenham moved up to fifth with a 2-1
victory over Sunderland, Liverpool won 2-
0 at Aston Villa, bottom-place Leicester lost
1-0 to Stoke and Crystal Palace came from
two goals down to beat Burnley 3-2, making
it two wins out of two under Alan Pardew.
There were also five goals in south Wales
but they were all scored by Chelsea---four in
the opening 36 minutes. And the first came
49 seconds into the match, with Oscar's 20-
yard (metre) shot.
Diego Costa added two more in the 20th
and 34th, before Oscar grabbed a second for
a 4-0 lead at halftime.
Substitute Schuerrle made it 5-0 in the
79th, three minutes after replacing Willian.
Jose Mourinho's side inflicted the worst
home defeat in 24 years on Swansea, which
sold top goalscorer Wilfried Bony to City
Gylfi Sigurdsson was dropped into a deeper
role with Portuguese striker Nelson Oliveira
handed his first start following his loan move
from Benfica, but the formation did not seem
to suit Sigurdsson as he gave away possession
in the opening minute.
Oscar strode forward with purpose and
lashed home a shot which flew past Lukasz
Fabianski in the Swansea goal and was offi-
cially timed at 49 seconds.
Cesc Fabregas' 15th assist of the league
season set up Diego Costa's first and the
Spain striker then seized on poor defending
to score his 17th goal of the campaign.
Costa's cut-back then allowed Oscar to
net Chelsea's fourth with ease. The only
surprise was it took Chelsea until the 79th
minute to net again, with Schuerrle tapping
Branislav Ivanovic's cross into an empty net.
By contrast, Man United has been strug-
gling to score. Fellaini's opener at QPR---
from Antonio Valencia's pass---was only the
team's second goal in six hours of league
The second at Loftus Road came in stop-
page time on the counterattack, when QPR
was pushing for an equaliser, with Wilson
netting from the rebound after first being
denied by goalkeeper Robert Green.
At White Hart Lane, there was no debut
goal from Sunderland striker Jermain Defoe
against his former club.
Jan Vertonghen's second-minute opener
for Tottenham was canceled out by Sebastian
Larsson's curled free kick but Christian Erik-
sen struck the hosts' winner in the 88th.
There was a fourth win in five games for
seventh-place Liverpool. Fabio Borini volleyed
in his first goal of the season before Rickie
Lambert's low strike at Villa, which has gone
nearly nine hours without scoring.
Chelsea's Oscar scores his side's fourth goal during the English Premier League match against
Swansea at the Liberty Stadium, Swansea, yesterday. AP PHOTO
Chelsea routs Swansea 5-0,
Man United beats QPR 2-0 in EPL
BATA, Equatorial Guinea --- Republic
of Congo snatched a late 1-1 draw
against host Equatorial Guinea in
the opening game of the African
Cup of Nations yesterday, muting
a packed stadium of red-shirted
home fans who thought they were
on their way to a surprise win.
Equatorial Guinea captain Emilio
Nsue scored in the 16th minute to
kick off the soccer celebrations at
Bata Stadium after the crowd had
already been treated to a performance
by American singer Akon during the
opening ceremony. But Thievy
Bifouma equalized with three min-
utes to go, sliding a low shot in from
a tough angle to spoil the host's
Worries over attendances at this
African Cup were temporarily pushed
aside as the supporters crowded in.
Equatorial Guinea stepped in to stage
the tournament at the last minute
in place of Morocco.
Its team had also initially been
disqualified for fielding an ineligible
player in qualifying, but was allowed
back in after stepping in as host late
Nsue rewarded the rowdy fans
early on when he slipped his shot
under Congolese goalkeeper
Christoffer Mafoumbi from close
range following a slick run and pass
from winger Kike Boula. Nsue sprint-
ed toward one section of supporters,
punching his chest and shouting out
in celebration, and some fans spilled
out onto the running track on the
edge of the field to join him.
Higher-ranked Republic of Congo
under veteran French coach Claude
Le Roy was expected to win the
opening game in Group A, but it
didn't find any rhythm in the first
half as the home team fed off its
Goalkeeper Felipe Ovono saved
Equatorial Guinea in the second
half when he dived and pushed
away a shot by Ladislas Douniama
that looked certain to be the equal-
izer. A late free kick from Republic
of Congo also rebounded off the
The equalising blow did come
for the home fans in the 87th
minute when Bifouma made the
late pressure from Republic of
Organizers expected a capacity
crowd of over 35,000 for the opener,
but it was probably more. With all
the seats taken, fans appeared to
be still flocking in. Many crammed
together to watch from the walk-
ways behind the seats. The president
of the country, Teodoro Obiang
Nguema, also attended to officially
open the 16-team, three-week
African soccer championship.
The crowd had cheered and
danced, waving bright orange inflat-
able hands as Akon performed on
the running track wearing a long
black coat in the sweltering Equa-
torial Guinea heat. They roared even
louder when Nsue scored.
Equatorial Guinea had chances
to stretch its lead, with Iban Edu
sending a swerving shot from 40
yards out that Mafoumbi scrambled
to stop late in the first half. Javier
Balboa had a golden chance to make
it 2-0 in the 61st as he broke clear
of the defense, then hit a low shot
straight at Mafoumbi.
Nsue also missed when one-on-
one with the 'keeper and had a goal
disallowed in the 73rd.
African Cup of Nations
winner to get $1.5 million
BATA, Equatorial Guinea---The
winner of the African Cup of
Nations will get $1.5 million, the
losing finalist will make $1 million
and every one of the 16 teams par-
ticipating at the tournament will
receive at least $400,000.
Tournament organizer the Con-
federation of African Football says
the total prize money on offer at
the continental championship in
Equatorial Guinea is $10 million,
compared to the more than $350
million FIFA gave out to teams at
the World Cup in Brazil. Germany
alone took home $35 million for
becoming world champion last year.
At the African Cup, the reward
for making the quarterfinals is
$600,000, and $750,000 for reach-
ing the semifinals.
This year's tournament kicks off
Saturday in Equatorial Guinea, a late
change in host country after Morocco
pulled out citing fears over Ebola.
African Cup of Nations
Equatorial Guinea, Republic of Congo draw 1-1
Equatorial Guinea team pose for photographers during their stadium visit ahead of the opening African Cup of
Nations Group A soccer match in Bata, Equatorial Guinea on Friday. AP PHOTO
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