EPL

Sheffield United 3-3 Manchester United: McBurnie seals point for Blades in thriller

By Sports Desk November 24, 2019

Manchester United were denied a stunning win against Sheffield United as Oli McBurnie's 90th-minute goal sealed a 3-3 draw in a Premier League classic at Bramall Lane on Sunday.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side were largely wretched against Chris Wilder's men and found themselves 2-0 down after 52 minutes courtesy of goals from John Fleck and Lys Mousset.

They produced a stirring fightback, though, with goals from Brandon Williams, Mason Greenwood and Marcus Rashford in the space of seven minutes appearing to set them up for a scarcely deserved three points.

However, substitute McBurnie had other ideas and his last-minute strike was given after a length VAR review for a potential handball. 

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  • Premier League Review: Arsenal hold Chelsea in dramatic derby, Aguero bails out Man City Premier League Review: Arsenal hold Chelsea in dramatic derby, Aguero bails out Man City

    Chelsea failed to make the most of their numerical advantage as they were held to a 2-2 draw by Arsenal at Stamford Bridge in a thrilling London derby that included a late goal from either side.

    Much of the pre-match focus was on the two managers, with Frank Lampard beginning to come in for a bit of criticism after a difficult run, while Mikel Arteta has been accused of doing little to improve Arsenal's fortunes since coming in.

    And there were plenty of hints as to why the sides are out of form, with the two sets of defences failing to inspire a great deal of confidence. 

    Manchester City avoided dropping points, however, with a substitute sparing their blushes in a 1-0 win at Sheffield United, while there was plenty of drama at the bottom of the table.

    DAVID LUIZ SEES RED BUT ARSENAL CLING ON

    It was an unhappy return to Stamford Bridge for former Chelsea defender David Luiz, who was given a frosty reception and then sent off for a cynical foul that led to a penalty.

    From that spot-kick, Jorginho opened the scoring in the 28th minute, suggesting Chelsea were set to cruise.

    But a wonderful solo effort from Gabriel Martinelli restored parity just after the hour, leaving Lampard looking a little nervous.

    Chelsea retook the lead with what they thought was a winner from Cesar Azpilicueta, the captain turning in a left-wing cross.

    But Hector Bellerin's well-placed left-footed effort from the edge of the box found the bottom-left corner and secured the Gunners a share of the spoils, a commendable achievement given their disadvantage. The draw moves Arsenal up to 10th, while Chelsea go six points clear of fifth-placed Manchester United.

    AGUERO THE DIFFERENCE FOR CITY

    City handed Aymeric Laporte his first appearance since August at Bramall Lane, the Frenchman having recovered from a serious knee injury.

    But he was given some rough treatment by the Blades – with Muhamed Besic catching him with a heavy challenge early on.

    City did enough in the first half to take the lead, but Dean Henderson was in excellent form between the United posts, making several impressive saves and keeping out Gabriel Jesus' penalty.

    But the visitors' persistence paid off. Sergio Aguero came off the bench to get the winner 17 minutes from time, finishing clinically after a glorious pass from Kevin De Bruyne.

    That moves them six clear of Leicester City in third, though the 13-point gap behind leaders Liverpool remains daunting.

    CHERRIES STOP THE ROT

    After six matches – five of which ended in defeat – without a victory, Bournemouth finally got back to winning ways against Brighton and Hove Albion on Tuesday.

    Harry Wilson got the ball rolling with a driven effort from the edge of the box after Dominic Solanke teed him up in the 36th minute.

    Pascal Gross then put past his own goalkeeper just before the break, diverting in after a Bournemouth corner caused havoc in the visitors' box.

    Callum Wilson then wrapped up a comfortable win 16 minutes from time, rounding Mat Ryan and slotting in unchallenged, with Aaron Mooy's late effort a mere consolation in a 3-1 defeat for the Seagulls.

    It was not enough to move Bournemouth out of the bottom three, though – Aston Villa's last-gasp 2-1 win over fellow strugglers Watford decisive in that sense, as Tyrone Mings got the all-important clincher.

    NEWCASTLE STUN EVERTON WITH COMEBACK

    Everton looked to be easing to a 2-0 win over Newcastle United – but it all went wrong in stoppage time.

    Moise Kean initially put Everton in front in the 30th minute with his first Premier League goal, though he required a little luck, as he capitalised on Newcastle's inability to clear the ball and then shot under Martin Dubravka, who probably should have done better.

    The in-form Dominic Calvert-Lewin got his 10th top-flight goal of the season early in the second half, but that two-goal cushion was insufficient.

    Florian Lejeune was Newcastle's hero, first scoring with an acrobatic attempt after a Jordan Pickford error, then restoring parity with a volley that just about found its way over the line amid a scramble in the penalty box, both goals coming in stoppage time.

    There was no such drama at Selhurst Park, however, as Southampton managed to hang on to their 2-0 lead in an ill-tempered affair, moving them into the top half of the table.

    Palace's Wilfried Zaha might find himself in danger of retrospective action as well, after television cameras caught him poking James Ward-Prowse in the face during a half-time altercation.

  • Arteta needs new defence to take Arsenal forward - what's Lampard's excuse? Arteta needs new defence to take Arsenal forward - what's Lampard's excuse?

    After 95 enthralling minutes at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea and Arsenal were left to share the spoils: two goals and one point apiece, and clear problems to solve over the remainder of the season.

    For the neutrals, this was a fabulous encounter, a heady blend of slapstick errors, fine finishes and furious endeavour creating a brilliant advert for the quality of the Premier League product, if not necessarily the teams themselves.

    For all their faults, you cannot accuse Chelsea or Arsenal of being boring. But the faults are there. The worry is how Frank Lampard or Mikel Arteta go about fixing them to keep their respective seasons meaningful.

    On the evidence of Tuesday's comeback, Arteta has got Arsenal fighting in a way not seen for some years in north London, but the state of their defence means any hope of finishing in the top four remains forlorn. For Lampard, the excuses are not so clear.

    After the loss to Newcastle United, Lampard blamed a lack of goalscorers for not putting the visitors out of sight at St James' Park before Isaac Hayden's stoppage-time slap in the face.

    "We know we have problems at the top of the pitch in terms of we don't get enough goals," he said. "If you don't score, you are always liable for a sucker punch, and they got it.

    "We can't work any more in training on finishing. You need to have that killer instinct in front of goal. We need to score more goals from front-line areas if we are going to get to where we want to be."

    It's true they could have been more ruthless against the Gunners. Tammy Abraham sent two headers into Bernd Leno's hands and Michy Batshuayi made a mess of a late chance.

    Given Arsenal scored from their only two shots of the match, you could understand Lampard if he rails against his side for not killing off a team who played a man light after David Luiz forever ingrained himself in Chelsea folklore by getting sent off 26 minutes into his latest return.

    Goalscoring looked artfully simplistic for Lampard the Chelsea player, but his concerns as their coach are more complex.

    Gabriel Martinelli's equaliser came straight from a Chelsea corner and a slip by N'Golo Kante, a sequence of buffoonery only overshadowed by Shkodran Mustafi, Leno and David Luiz earlier turning an errant backpass into a circus act.

    Hector Bellerin's leveller, three minutes after Cesar Azpilicueta looked to have won the game, was the result of Chelsea failing to play a spot of keep-ball against 10 tiring opponents. These are passages of play that a top side should know how to navigate.

    Suggesting Lampard's job should be under threat would be nonsense, but the fact remains Chelsea have lost six matches and won only four in the Premier League since beating Crystal Palace in mid-November.

    He has faced nowhere near the lambasting of Manchester United and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, despite Chelsea losing more matches this term. Beat Burnley on Wednesday and the Red Devils will be just three points behind fourth-place Chelsea in the table.

    Arteta has evidently impacted both Arsenal's mental fortitude and a previously alienated fan base, and this was a stirring performance in the circumstances, but there is little more to expect from a team with a defence such as theirs. They are still 10 points off the top four and only seven above the bottom three, which is a frank but fair reflection of their quality at the back.

    With their transfer ban over (not even that is a wholly satisfying excuse – they knew they had £58million winger Christian Pulisic to bring into the side even during the previous window), Chelsea will almost certainly be exploring the market in the next 10 days. Edinson Cavani would be a worthwhile addition to bring those killer goals Lampard craves, and alternatives will surely be pursued.

    Arsenal are also expected to make signings, with Jerome Boateng tipped to bolster the defence. Whether the Bayern Munich centre-back is still of the required calibre remains to be seen, but you can certainly imagine Arsenal's results improving quickly under Arteta once top-class defenders are in place, be that in January or at the end of the season.

    How Chelsea kick on under Lampard is harder to answer.

  • Lampard laments Chelsea's 'basic errors' in Arsenal draw Lampard laments Chelsea's 'basic errors' in Arsenal draw

    Frank Lampard was frustrated "basic errors" saw Chelsea twice surrender the lead against 10-man Arsenal to draw 2-2 at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday.

    Jorginho opened the scoring from the penalty spot in the 28th minute after David Luiz was shown a red card for sending Tammy Abraham, who had pounced on a slack backpass from Shkodran Mustafi, to ground in the box.

    Gabriel Martinelli sprinted from well inside his own half to score a classy counter-attacking goal after the hour mark, but Cesar Azpilicueta looked to have clinched all three points when he turned home Callum Hudson-Odoi's cross with six minutes remaining.

    However, Hector Bellerin, making his first start in over six weeks, got the better of a hobbling Abraham and found the bottom-left corner in the 87th minute.

    "I am disappointed given the situation of the game. We completely deserved to go 1-0 up. For a little bit after that we were getting used to them with 10 men," Lampard told BT Sport.

    "We created enough in the second half, it was the same story for us that we don't finish our chances and we made errors to give them two goals on the break. It probably shows where we are at. These sort of things don't lie.

    "We work hard but basic errors when you should control the game can end up losing you points.

    "It's not the slip from N'Golo [Kante], that can happen, it's that they get away from the edge of our box. That's a moment sleeping, people should know their jobs.

    "And then the last goal, so easy to cut back. It's the sort of goal you see over the park, a right-back that moves it slowly onto his left foot and rolls it in the far corner. That can't happen."

    Mikel Arteta moved Granit Xhaka to centre-back after David Luiz's dismissal and believes the spirit his team showed can help them close a 10-point gap to Chelsea and challenge for the Champions League places.

    "Time will tell [if it's a turning point], but at least I saw a reaction. I demand from the players that they never give up, the circumstances don't matter, we have to keep playing with the spirit we showed in every game," Arteta said.

    "I'm so proud of the team and how they reacted, how they stepped up when a team-mate makes a mistake, someone gets sent off, and they have to have their back.

    "We thought about taking everybody off because the energy was going down and every five minutes somebody was cramping, so we changed our mind a few times. But it's a good point in the end considering the circumstances of the game.

    "We are hoping to fight to stay in the race for the Champions League until the end and if you want to do that you have to come here and to win and they way they did it was brilliant."

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