EPL Round-up | Chelsea end Arsenal's title challenge; Lukaku scores four
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Chelsea have put one more step forward in the Premier League by defeating Arsenal 3-1 at Stamford Bridge whereas inspired by the four goals of Romelu Lukaku, Everton continued their unbeaten Premier League run. Liverpool suffered a shock defeat against Hull City to continue their new-year downfall.
Chelsea 3 - 1 Arsenal
Chelsea continued their rampant run in the English Premier League as Marcos Alonso, Eden Hazard, and Cesc Fabregas scored one goal each to defeat Arsenal 3-1 at the Stamford Bridge to consolidate their lead at the top of the table.
It was Alonso, who opened the scoring for the Blues in the 13th minute to give them a 1-0 lead in over their chief title rivals. When Diego Costa's header looped up off the crossbar, Alonso pounced on it to score.
Belgian international Hazard scored the goal of the season so far in the 53rd minute to take Antonio Conte’s team to a 2-0 lead. He went past three Arsenal players in a run that started from his own half before finding the back of the net.
Arsenal's former midfielder Fabregas scored another goal in the 85th minute to add it to the visitor's woes. Olivier Giroud pulled one back for the Gunners, but that was never sufficient as the game ended at 3-1 in the end.
Everton 6 - 3 Bournemouth
Romelu Lukaku presented a single-handed 6-3 victory to Everton as his four goals helped the team defeat Bournemouth at the Goodison Park to extend their unbeaten Premier League run to seven games.
Lukaku started the game with an exquisite opener just after 30 seconds to equal the record for the fastest league goal of the season set by Chelsea's Pedro against Manchester United.
He set up the second goal for Everton as James McCarthy found the net in the 24th minute. The Belgium striker scored another goal when a suicidal back pass from Simon Francis provided him an opportunity to loft the ball over Artur Boruc for a 3-0 half-time lead.
Although Joshua King scored two goals to give Bournemouth hope of a comeback, Lukaku scored two more in no time to earn his second hat-trick of the season.
This defeat saw Bournemouth drop within six points of the relegation zone.
Hull City 2 - 0 Liverpool
Like Arsenal, Liverpool have been on a downfall recently, and that run was extended with a shock defeat against Hull City. The Reds have now won only one of their last 10 matches in all competitions. Alfred N’Diaye opened the scoring for the home side at the end of the first half, and the goal arrived from a corner where the Liverpool defense lost their concentration.
The visitors missed a host of chances in the second half to equalize. On another day, Philippe Coutinho could have scored a hat-trick. Eventually, in the 84th minute, Hull sealed the win with a fantastic counter-attacking goal. Andrea Ranocchia released Oumar Niasse with a lovely ball over the top after winning the ball at the back. Niasse beat Simon Mignolet with a calm finish to extend Liverpool’s winless run to five games in all competitions.
Tottenham Hotspur 1 - 0 Middlesbrough
Tottenham seem like the only team who can harbor hopes of catching Chelsea at the top of the table at the moment. Spurs hosted Middlesbrough at home, and it was Harry Kane’s penalty which separated the two sides at the end.
Middlesbrough have been a solid defensive unit so far this season, and they put up another fighting display at the White Hart Lane. However, they were undone by a defensive mistake by Bernardo, who brought down Son Heung-Min inside the penalty box with a rash challenge. Kane stepped up to convert the spot-kick and scored his 14th Premier League goal of the season. That turned out to be the winner as Tottenham extended their unbeaten run, in all competitions, to 11 matches.
Crystal Palace 0 - 4 Sunderland
Southampton 1 - 3 West Ham United
Watford 2 - 1 Burnley
West Bromwich Albion 1 - 0 Stoke City