Happy New Year everyone or as many people call today, Happy National Hangover Day!
Today’s games were the perfect start to the second half of the season as there was plenty of action. Liverpool finally saw a win after their back-to-back losses, Arsenal are still in first place with their win over Cardiff, and Manchester City are trying to get into to the top spot as they keep up their winning streak. 2014 is off to a great start in the EPL, here’s a couple recaps!
Liverpool (2) v (0) Hull City
Goals- LFC: Daniel Agger (35’) Luis Suarez (49’)
Back-to-Back losses had Liverpool out for blood, so to say, and they got it. Daniel Agger saw his first goal since April that put the Reds up 1-0 in the first half. Luis Suarez returned to his scoring form as he netted his 20th premier league goal this season, and it was a great one. The 26 year old has scored in every home match this season, seven in a row to be exact, after returning from his ten game suspension. Steven Gerrard made his return for LFC in the late minutes of the second half, which was a welcome sight to LFC fans. LFC didn’t start the first half off as well as Hull, but they made the most of what they had. Suarez had an early goal disallowed in the 30th minute, but it was only five minutes later that the first goal came for LFC. Daniel Agger met Coutinho’s corner with a perfectly placed header that beat McGregor and found the back of the net. It was a great ending to the first half, and gave LFC a confidence going into the second half. It only took four minutes in the second half for Luis Suarez to net a goal. Suarez was fouled by James Chester 25 yards away from goal, which set up the perfect opportunity for Suarez to state his claim. It was a stunner of a free kick that everyone is almost used to by now, but it was superb none the less. It was the final straw for Hull as the struggled to get their bearings back, thus Liverpool went on to win their first match of 2014.
Arsenal (2) v (0) Cardiff City
Goals- Nicklas Bendtner (87’) Theo Walcott (90 +2’)
It was a late showing for Arsenal as they beat Cardiff City today with two goals in the closing minutes of the second half. Both goals came in the final 5 minutes of the match when it looked like the game would end 0-0. It was a surprising game as Arsenal were expected to blow Cardiff out of the water. People were predicting 6 goal headlines since Cardiff are in the bottom three and have only won one game in their last ten games. It should also be noted that Cardiff are without a manager as Malky Mackay was sacked. This means that Molde boss, Solskjaer could be taking over as soon as Thursday. All of that aside, it was a weird game for both teams as they both wanted their first win of 2014. Olivier Giroud was absent for Arsenal due to an ankle problem, thus Theo Walcott had to step up and lead the attack. He had a chance in the 14th minute that went just wide, but it put Arsenal in gear and they held most of the possession for the 90+ minutes. Though they held possession they never really outplayed Cardiff. Both teams played scrappy and it wasn’t until the 87th minute that a goal was scored. As time was winding down, Nicklas Bendtner sealed a victory for Arsenal and Theo Walcott put the cherry on top in the 92nd minute. It was a hard earned victory that put Arsenal securely in first place going into the weekend.
Here’s the rest of the day’s results and standings!
Manchester City (3) v (2) Swansea City
Goals- MCY: Fernandinho (13’) Yaya Toure (57’) Kolarov (65’) SWC: Wilfried Bony (45’ 90’)
Tottenham (2) v (1) Manchester United
Goals- TOT: Emmanuel (34’) Eriksen (66’) MU: Danny Welbeck (67’)
Chelsea (3) v (0) Southampton
Goals- Fernando Torres (59’) Willian (70’) Oscar (81’)
Fulham (2) v (1) West Ham United
Goals- FUL: Sidwell (31’) Berbatov (65’) WHU: Diame (6’)
Aston Villa (1) v (0) Sunderland
Goals- Gabriel Agbonlahor (14’)
West Bromwich (1) v (0) Newcastle
Goals- Saido Berahino (86’ PK)
Everton (1) v (1) Stoke City
Goals- EVE: Baines (90’ PK) STC: Assaidi (48’)
Norwich City (1) v (1) Crystal Palace
Goals- NOR: Johnson (38’) CRP: Puncheon (43’ PK)
This wasn’t updated at the time of posting; Manchester United are in 7th place with 34 points, Tottenham are in 6th with 37 points.