Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : March 23rd 2015 Contents straight to Abel Hernandez and the ball was immediately
stabbed into the net.
But Remy scored Chelsea s winner in the 77th, only
two minutes after replacing the injured Costa, with the
shot squirming through McGregor s hands.
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Monday, March 23, 2015
A moment of madness from Liver-
pool captain Steven Gerrard and a two-
goal burst from Juan Mata made it a
day to savour for Manchester United.
And as United s return to the Champi-
ons League moved a step closer, Chelsea
maintained its pursuit of the Premier
League title with a slender win at Hull
United was already leading at Anfield
when Gerrard produced a red-card stamp
only 32 seconds after coming off the
bench at the start of the second half.
Even with a man-advantage, United was
made to fight for its 2-1 victory. Juan
Mata added to his first-half goal with a
scissor-kick and Liverpool threatened a
comeback after striker Daniel Sturridge
But United held on to pull five points
clear of Liverpool to consolidate its grip
on the fourth and final Champions
League qualification place, prompting a
swift apology from Gerrard.
Last season those fans were dreaming
of the title before Liverpool finished run-
ners-up, but now it s a fight for fourth.
At the top, Chelsea remains six points
ahead of Manchester City with a game
in hand after edging Hull 3-2.
After Eden Hazard and Diego Costa
scored in the opening nine minutes for
Chelsea, Hull scored twice in 74 seconds
to draw level but Loic Remy grabbed a
second-half winner shortly after coming
off the bench.
Hull stayed three points above the rel-
egation zone, but Queens Park Rangers
moved closer to the drop with a 2-1 loss
to Everton after Aaron Lennon s winner.
Heading into the international break,
Man United will now be looking upward
in this season of recovery under Louis
van Gaal, with City only two points ahead
in second place and a Manchester derby
to come on April 12 at Old Trafford.
United took 14 minutes to stun the
home crowd at Anfield. Herrera threaded
a pass between Liverpool defenders
Alberto Moreno and Mamadou Sakho
for Mata to run onto and clip a shot past
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers
made a decisive change at halftime, taking
Adam Lallana off in favour of the expe-
rience provided by the 34-year-old Ger-
rard, who joins the Los Angeles Galaxy
at the end of the season.
But Gerrard s temperament boiled over
and the midfielder faces a three-game
ban for his stamp on Herrera straight
after a robust challenge on Mata.
The timing of Mata s second finish
was then exquisite, acrobatically volleying
into the net in the 59th after meeting a
reverse pass from substitute Angel di
Maria. But Sturridge beat United goal-
keeper David de Gea at his near post 10
minutes later to ensure a nervy end for
It was a storming start for Chelsea in
Captain John Terry and Costa com-
bined to setup Hazard s opener after 78
seconds, and Chelsea s lead was extended
in the ninth minute. Cesc Fabregas sent
the ball from the halfway line to Costa
on the left wing and the Spaniard cut
through the defense before curling the
shot past goalkeeper Allan McGregor.
Chelsea was cruising until the 26th
minute when Andrew Robertson burst
past Willian and Branislav Ivanovic before
crossing low for Hull winger Ahmed
Elmohamady to slot into the net.
Chelsea s defense was in disarray and
quickly conceded again. Ivanovic casually
passed the ball back to goalkeeper Thibaut
Courtois, whose slack clearance went
Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud is
targeting a perfect finish to the season
to pile the pressure on Barclays Pre-
mier League title contenders Chelsea
and Manchester City.
The Gunners kept up the heat on
leaders Chelsea and second-placed City
on Saturday evening following their
hard-fought 2-1 victory at Newcastle.
Two seasons ago, Arsene Wenger s
men responded to their Champions
League exit by putting together a run
of eight wins and two draws in their
final 10 league games and, having suc-
cumbed to Monaco last Tuesday
evening, Giroud is looking for a similar
surge towards the finishing line.
He told the club s official website
www.arsenal.com: "It s nice for the
team because we are on a really good
run, even if we were disappointed about
the Champions League. We want to
finish really strongly and finish in the
best position by winning every single
"There are still eight games to play,
so we need to focus on our games and
step by step we re going to see. First
we need to win every single game and
then after we need to see if City or
Chelsea miss one of these steps.
"You never know, you have to believe
in football and that s why we want to
win every single game."
The victory at St James Park extend-
ed Arsenal s winning league run to six
games and, while it looked as though
it would arrive in routine style after
Giroud s first-half double, they were
ultimately grateful for the excellence
of goalkeeper David Ospina, who pro-
duced a series of second-half saves to
keep the resurgent Magpies at bay.
United moves closer to Champions spot
Liverpool's Philippe Coutinho, centre, is run off the
ball by Manchester United's Wayne Rooney, left, and
Juan Mata during the English Premier League soccer
match between Liverpool and Manchester United at
Anfield Stadium, Liverpool, England, yesterday.
Giroud out to finish in style
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