ALEXIS SANCHEZ JOINS MANCHESTER UNITED”S RACE FOR SILVERWARE
Welcome to Manchester, Alexis Sanchez.
After a hard fought 1-0 win Saturday over Burnley, which briefly cut the lead at the top of the table to nine points and increased the gap to fourth place Liverpool to six points (before those teams took the pitch), the news got even better for Manchester United fans.
Sanchez, who had a move to Manchester City shot down in the final minutes of the summer transfer window, has now found himself headed to the red half of Manchester to join the Red Devils.
The move, which had been in advanced talks all week, has been completed according to numerous sources pending Sunday’s medical. Henrikh Mkhitaryan will move the other way in the deal to Arsenal.
Sanchez joins a Manchester United team that has started to regain its form after a festive period wobble. The Red Devils will travel to Yeovil Town Friday, for a F.A. Cup fourth round match, and play Sevilla in the UEFA Champions League round-of-16.
David De Gea kept his 14th clean sheet of the season for United Saturday, which is the most for a keeper in all European leagues, while Anthony Martial got the game winner with his 10th goal of the season.
PREMIER LEAGUE SCORES
Brighton 0-4 Chelsea
Arsenal 4-1 Crystal Palace
Burnley 0-1 Man. United
Everton 1-1 West Brom
Leicester 2-0 Watford
Stoke 2-0 Huddersfield
West Ham 1-1 Bournemouth
Man. City 3-1 Newcastle
Southampton 1-1 Tottenham
MARCO SILVA SHOWN THE DOOR AT WATFORD
When Marco Silva was hired in May to take over Watford, he was the ninth manager to take charge of the Hornets since 2012.
Now, they are looking for their 10th.
Silva was fired Sunday, with the Watford hierarchy blaiming a poor run of form (one win in 11) and the failed Everton approach for Silva earlier in the season, for the sacking. He was the eighth Premier League manager to be sacked this season.
Watford wasted no time naming Silva’s successor, hiring Javi Gracia, who left Russian club Rubin Kazan in June, Sunday night.
ARE PROMOTED TEAMS NOW IN TROUBLE, AFTER GOOD FIRST HALF?
Huddersfield Town was one of the non-Manchester City stories of the first half of the Premier League season.
The Terriers, who came up from the EFL Championship along with Brighton & Hove Albion and Newcastle, started the campaign off strongly. Huddersfield got seven points from its first three matches, just like Hull City last year, and lost just once in its first six matches.
But it has all gone sideways of late for the Terriers. They have lost three straight matches in the league, and are winless in six, to drop to 14th in the table on 24 points. Huddersfield has Liverpool (H), Manchester United (A), and Tottenham (A) in its next five matches.
Brighton is now in 16th on 23 points, with Newcastle on spot ahead in the table on the same points. With a F.A. Cup weekend coming up, any of the teams could find themselves in the relegation zone by the time the next two rounds of Premier League play are completed on February 5.
EDEN HAZARD SHOWS HIS CLASS FOR CHELSEA
The 2014-15 Premier League Player of the Year has not been prolific in front of net for the Blues this year, but on his day, the player can be world class.
Saturday was one of those days.
Hazard had two goals in Chelsea’s 4-0 win over Brighton, to move his team up to third in the table. His first goal was sublime, and when he is playing at his best, the Blues are as well.
The big question now becomes, will Hazard sign a new deal, or will Real Madrid come calling this summer? According to reports, it looks like the Belgian will extend his stay in London.
GAME OF THE WEEK
The cup competitons return this week, with the Carabao Cup semifinals in the midweek, and the F.A. Cup fourth round on the weekend.
The showcase match comes on Wednesday, as Arsenal hosts London rivals Chelsea in the second leg of the Carabao Cup. The teams drew 0-0 two weeks ago, and with a trip to the final in the balance, the match should be a battle.
Written by Sean Miller (@TheProdigalSean)