Arsenal cruised to a seventh successive Premier League win as they put six past a dreadful Sheffield United side at Bramall Lane.

The Gunners were 3-0 up inside 13 minutes and led 5-0 at half-time against the league’s bottom side.

Martin Odegaard, Gabriel Martinelli, Kai Havertz, Declan Rice and Ben White scored – with an own goal from Jayden Bogle – for Mikel Arteta’s team.

The win ensures Arsenal move two points behind leaders Liverpool.

It keeps the Gunners in the thick of the title race, while in contrast Sheffield United are 11 points from safety with just 11 games remaining.

Arsenal scored after five minutes, with the only surprise being that it took them so long. They carved United open down the left, before the ball was cut back for Odegaard – unmarked 10 yards out – to slot home.

The lead was doubled in the 13th minute – Bukayo Saka’s low cross was deflected into his own net by Bogle, who got his legs in a tangle with the ball deflecting off his ankle – and was quickly extended when Martinelli fired in via a deflection after Jakob Kiwior’s cut back.

As fans once again streamed out of Bramall Lane during the first half, Havertz made it 4-0 by tucking into the bottom corner following a Martinelli through ball.

Arsenal cut through United at will, and another slick move of short passes on 39 minutes ended in Rice finishing low past the beleaguered home keeper Ivo Grbic.

The visitors did not ease up after the break, as another well-worked move ended in right-back White firing powerfully past Grbic with his left foot.

The Gunners have become the first English league side to win three consecutive away games by a margin of five or more goals, while United – seemingly doomed to relegation – are the first English league side to lose four consecutive home games in all competitions while conceding five or more goals.
With 98 minutes played at the City Ground it seemed Liverpool were set to drop two crucial points in the Premier League title race but Darwin Nunez struck a last-gasp winner to secure a 1-0 win at Nottingham Forest on Saturday.

It was the 18th time Liverpool have scored a winner beyond 90 minutes in the Premier League since Juergen Klopp took charge but few felt more important as the Reds maintained the relentless pressure at the top of the table.

Klopp’s side’s eighth win in nine league games left them on 63 points from 27 games, four points ahead of champions Manchester City who host Manchester United on Sunday and five ahead of Arsenal who play Sheffield United on Monday.

Fifth-placed Tottenham Hotspur came from behind to beat Crystal Palace 3-1 and keep the pressure on fourth-placed Aston Villa, who held off a spirited second-half comeback from Luton Town in Saturday’s late game to win 3-2.

Timo Werner struck the equaliser, his first goal for Tottenham, with Cristian Romero and Son Heung-min wrapping up the points for Ange Postecoglou’s side.

Everton’s relief at having four points handed back to them in midweek after they appealed against a 10-point sanction for breaking Premier League financial rules was soured as they went down 3-1 at home to West Ham United.

Chelsea fought back to earn a point against Brentford in a 2-2 draw after defender Axel Disasi headed an 83rd-minute equaliser in the West London derby.

Fulham and Newcastle United had 3-0 home wins against Brighton and Hove Albion and Wolverhampton Wanderers respectively.

Nunez, who started on the bench after recovering from a thigh injury, kept Liverpool’s title destiny firmly in their own hands as he glanced in Alexis Mac Allister’s cross to spark wild scenes on the away bench and away end.

Relegation-threatened Forest had worked tirelessly to keep Liverpool at bay and were furious when the final whistle sounded with coach Steven Reid shown a red card.

Forest remained in 17th place and their despair was in stark contrast to Liverpool’s joy.

“Pretty special afternoon. It’s been a tricky schedule,” Klopp, whose injury-hit side won the League Cup final last weekend and who face Manchester City next week, said.

“This game didn’t go easy for us. We didn’t have a great rhythm and the boys felt the intensity for the first time. It’s pretty special what the boys did. To get to that points tally was a big fight. It never was easy.”

Phil Foden kept Manchester City’s Premier League title challenge bang on track with a superb second-half double as his side hit back to clinch a 3-1 home win over Manchester United on Sunday.

Marcus Rashford’s eighth-minute thunderbolt gave United the lead against the run of play and it looked like the visitors might put a dent in City’s hopes of a fourth successive crown.

But Pep Guardiola’s side remained patient, dominated possession and were eventually rewarded with Foden again proving how indispensable he now is for City.

Foden arrowed a sublime effort into the top corner in the 56th minute and the England forward then produced a clinical finish with 10 minutes of normal time remaining.

Erling Haaland, who missed a golden first-half chance, secured the points with a late strike.

Reigning champions City, whose unbeaten run in all competitions now stands at 19, moved to 62 points, one behind leaders Liverpool who they visit next weekend.

United, who suffered their 11th league defeat of the season, remain in sixth place with 44 points.

Rashford’s bolt from the blue might have floored lesser sides but Erik ten Hag’s United could have few complaints at the way City turned things around — coming from behind to win a Premier League derby for the first time.

City had 74% possession and 27 efforts on goal compared to United’s three but for all the global talent on display, it was local boy Foden who found the key to the lock

The 23-year-old was given a standing ovation as he walked off after taking a knock in stoppage time — City’s fans buoyant at keeping the pressure right on Liverpool and Arsenal.

“That’s my aim, to turn up in the big games,” Foden, who has now matched his record of 11 league goals in a campaign, said. “This season I’m proving that.”

City camped in United’s half in the opening minutes but were stunned when from the visitors’ first foray forward Bruno Fernandes rolled a pass back into the path of Rashford who instantly launched a 25-metre effort that crashed off the underside of the bar and into the net.

Rashford had other chances too, miss-controlling after being sent clear soon after and later failing to connect with a volley at the far post when well-positioned.

City probed United’s defence continually and eventually opened it up only for Haaland to somehow sidefoot over the bar from Foden’s headed cross with halftime approaching.

It was an incredible miss from such a lethal striker but there was no sense of panic and the pattern continued after the break with City penning United into their own half.

It looked like it might need some magic to crack United’s resistance and Foden provided it.

Receiving the ball on the right, just outside the area, Foden skipped inside and struck a fierce left-foot shot that was equally as spectacular as Rashford’s effort.

It relieved the tension and City kept pressing and Foden put them ahead in the 80th minute with a low left-foot shot across Andre Onana after being played in by Julian Alvarez.

Haaland would not be denied his goal and got in on the act in stoppage time with a trademark left-foot finish to emphasise the gulf in class between the two sides.

On the title race, Guardiola said: “We can’t control what Liverpool or Arsenal, Aston Villa or other contenders do, it is about us. We do what we have to do to win today, next Wednesday and Sunday. This team is legendary.”


Leave a Reply