Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 13th 2015 Contents A47
December 13, 2015 www.guardian.co.tt Sunday Guardian
MANCHESTER---First it was criticism of Man-
chester United s playing style. Then came the
team s limp exit at the Champions League
group stage. Yesterday, it was a loss to tiny
Bournemouth in one of the Premier League s
The problems are stacking up for under-
pressure United manager Louis van Gaal in his
second season in charge of England s biggest
United---depleted by a wretched run of
injuries to senior players---conceded directly
from a corner in the second minute on its way
to a humbling 2-1 loss at Bournemouth, the
latest shock result in a season of surprises in
the Premier League.
Earlier, Manchester City had needed a huge
deflected goal just to get a 2-1 home win over
Swansea, which is without a manager and on
one of the worst run of results in the league.
City went top on goal difference, for one day
Bournemouth s first season in the top flight
is starting to get better and better. The little
coastal club that almost dropped out of the
country s professional leagues six years ago
beat Chelsea 1-0 away last weekend for what
ranked as the biggest win in its 116-year his-
Saturday s win may just top the result at
Stamford Bridge --- although some will say it s
no shock, given United s recent struggles and
its extensive injury list. But that won t stop a
deluge of criticism toward Van Gaal.
"It s a matter of belief, if you believe in the
manager or not," said the Dutchman, who said
Friday that United had to get used to no longer
being one of Europe s superpowers after its
elimination from the Champions League this
In front of 11,500 fans in Bournemouth s
cramped and atmospheric Vitality Stadium,
United went behind when Junior Stanislas
curling corner kick sailed directly into the far
corner. Marouane Fellaini equalised but more
embarrassment for United at a 54th-minute
corner handed Bournemouth victory, with Josh
King finding himself in lots of space to turn
in a shot from a pre-planned corner routine.
"For us, it s a brilliant week," Bournemouth
manager Eddie Howe said. This time six years
ago, Bournemouth lost 5-0 to Morecambe in
a fourth-tier match.
For all its worries, United is still very much
in the title race and only three points behind
City, which is still failing to convince.
Yaya Toure s shot in the second minute of
injury time struck young substitute Kelechi
Iheanacho and looped into the net as City
escaped with a win from an unconvincing
display against Swansea at Etihad Stadium.
Swansea couldn t have picked a much
tougher game following the firing of Garry
Monk on Thursday, but looked set to leave
with a point after Bafetimbi Gomis equalised
in the 90th minute. Wilfried Bony, who left
Swansea for 25 million pounds ($38 million)
in January, put City in front with a 26th-
"We really didn t play well in the game,"
said City manager Manuel Pellegrini, who
blamed the lackluster performance on a come-
down after the team finished top of its Cham-
pions League group in midweek.
City, however, finds itself top --- at least
until Arsenal, which started the weekend in
second place and a point ahead of City, plays
Aston Villa on Sunday. Leicester looks to
retain its surprise lead by beating Chelsea on
Elsewhere, Romelu Lukaku scored for the
sixth league game in a row for Everton in a
1-1 draw at Norwich and another in-form
striker, Odion Ighalo, grabbed Watford s winner
in a 1-0 victory at Sunderland. It was Ighalo s
10th goal of the season, while Lukaku has 12.
Crystal Palace beat Southampton 1-0 thanks
to France midfielder Yohan Cabaye s first-half
goal, while West Ham and Stoke drew 0-0.
BERLIN---Robert Lewandowski broke Ingol-
stadt s resistance as Bayern Munich won 2-
0 to go provisionally eight points clear in the
Ingolstadt, which frustrated the home side
with tenacious tackling and constant pressure,
was left to rue missed chances when
Lewandowski scored in the 65th minute, and
Bayern captain Philipp Lahm wrapped up the
result 10 minutes later.
"Unfortunately the only thing we won today
was respect," Ingolstadt coach Ralph Hasen-
huettl said as Bayern ensured it will be leading
at the halfway stage of the season for the fifth
On 17 of the 20 previous occasions Bayern
achieved the feat, the club finished as cham-
Borussia Dortmund can reduce the gap to
five points with a home win over Eintracht
Elsewhere, Hertha Berlin won 4-0 at Darm-
stadt to move to third, ahead of Borussia
Moenchengladbach, which lost 5-0 at Bayer
Leverkusen for its first league defeat in 11 games
under coach Andre Schubert.
"It s hard. A very big defeat. We didn t play
as we imagined we would. We played a good
series, but you could see that it was costing a
lot of energy," said Schubert, who pointed to
the absence of in-form United States interna-
tional Fabian Johnson as a factor.
Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez scored a hat
trick in Leverkusen s rout, while Stefan Kiessling
had a hand in the opening four goals.
The former Germany international opened
the scoring with a diving header to Karim Bel-
larabi s cross in the first half, and set up Her-
nandez, who danced past Andreas Christensen
and slotted inside the left post an hour in, two
minutes before Kiessling claimed his second
with a powerful header to Hakan Calhanoglu s
Kiessling set up Hernandez to score with a
curling shot inside the right post in the 75th,
a minute before Bellarabi crossed for Hernandez
to become the first Mexican to score a hat trick
in the Bundesliga.
Wolfsburg salvaged a 1-1 draw at home with
Hamburger SV, Werder Bremen drew 1-1 with
visiting Cologne, and Hoffenheim defeated
Hannover 1-0 to move off the bottom thanks
to Jonathan Schmid s first-half header.
"We made it very difficult for ourselves at
the start and then scored out of the blue," Huub
Stevens said after his first victory as Hoffenheim
Bayern was missing Franck Ribery, Arjen
Robben, David Alaba, Mario Goetze, Douglas
Costa, Medhi Benatia and Juan Bernat through
injury but could still send out a side the envy
of most in Germany.
Ingolstadt had no household names, yet cre-
ated the game s best chances before
Lewandowski broke the deadlock. Manuel Neuer
denied Stefan Lex in a one-on-one just before
halftime, then again before the hour mark. It
was the Bayern keeper s fourth save of the
game, more than he made in any other half in
the league this season.
But Jerome Boateng s long ball provided the
key for Lewandowski to score his 15th goal of
He took the ball past Ingolstadt keeper
Ramazan Oezcan and slotted in from a closing
Lahm then swept the ball inside the far post
after Thomas Mueller did well to set him up.
"A huge compliment to my team but also to
Ralph and Ingolstadt for this courageous game.
We played against the best team that we ve
faced this season," said Bayern coach Pep
Guardiola, whose side fell to its first league
defeat of the season last weekend at
Hertha s impressive season continued at pro-
moted Darmstadt. Vedad Ibisevic put the visitors
ahead early, a Marvin Plattenhardt free kick
made it 2-0 by halftime, Ibisevic claimed his
second soon after the interval, and Salomon
Kalou completed the scoring.
Wolfsburg pushed hard to cancel Nicolai
Mueller s early opener for Hamburg and
deservedly equalised in the second half when
Vieirinha crossed for Maximilian Arnold to
poke home from close range.
Jannik Vestergaard headed Bremen into a
fourth-minute lead against Cologne, which had
to wait till the 79th for Dusan Svento s equaliser.
United stunned by Bournemouth
...piles pressure on Van Gaal
Lewandowski helps Bayern top Ingolstadt 2-0
Bournemouth's Joshua King, centre, celebrates after scoring a goal during the English Premier
League football match between Bournemouth and Manchester United at the Vitality Stadium
in Bournemouth, England, yesterday. Bournemouth won 2-1. AP PHOTO
Bayern's Robert Lewandowski kicks the ball during the German Bundesliga football match
against FC Ingolstadt 04 at the Allianz Arena stadium in Munich, Germany, yesterday. Bayern
won 2-0. AP PHOTO
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