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EPL: Chelsea, Man Utd Win To Keep Top 4 Hope Alive

(AFRICAN EXAMINER): Chelsea returned to action in style, ending a run of five winless Premier League matches with a comfortable 2-0 victory over AFC Bournemouth. A goal and assist from Kai Havertz was enough to see the Blues take three points, and close what was a widening gap behind the European qualification berths.

Chelsea’s first PL goal since October was met with suitable volume around Stamford Bridge, and Graham Potter’s men doubled their lead soon after.

Chelsea were also denied a third on several occasions, as Travers firstly thwarted Mount, before Kalidou Koulibaly headed narrowly wide. Although they were unable to extend their advantage, it was a good night at the office for the home side, and they will now look to build up momentum. Bournemouth, meanwhile, have now lost six of their last seven PL matches, leaving new permanent manager Gary O’Neill with an uphill task going into 2023.

While in the late kick off match Marcus Rashford continued his recent Manchester United renaissance, with a deadly goal and assist combo before HT on the way to a 3-0 landslide victory, which kept Nottingham Forest embedded in the Premier League bottom three while putting the Red Devils within a point of fourth-placed Tottenham.

With fitness in mind, United duo Antony and Martial were withdrawn for Donny van de Beek and teenager Alejandro Garnacho. Boosted by fresh legs, the pair combined to set up Rashford, who was denied impressively by Hennessey. Late substitute Fred had the last laugh on 87 minutes though, applying a cool finish to Casemiro’s inch-perfect ball, after the midfielder had shrewdly intercepted Emmanuel Dennis’ attempt to launch a Forest counter.

Forest’s first PL away win in 23 years remains elusive, and with the team’s sole league goal on hostile turf still dating back to a 1-1 draw at Everton in August, their odds for an instant relegation will stay painfully short going into 2023. United, meanwhile, will be confident of overhauling Spurs, as they have a game in hand on the North Londoners and can even leapfrog Antonio Conte’s charges temporarily with a win at Wolves on Saturday.


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