Football Leicester too hot for Newcastle, Villa pick up vital win

Leicester too hot for Newcastle, Villa pick up vital win

Brighton's Alireza Jahanbakhsh equalises against Chelsea. Photo: Getty
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Leicester City cut Liverpool’s lead at the top of the English Premier League to 10 points after a 3-0 win at Newcastle on New Year’s Day.

Ayoze Perez, James Maddison and Hamza Choudhury scored the goals as Brendan Rodgers’ side continued their fine form.

Perez put the Foxes in front nine minutes before halftime with the opener against his old club.

Maddison then slammed in a brilliant left-foot strike three minutes later and with Newcastle down to 10 men through injury, Choudhury added a superb third. Liverpool hosts Sheffield United on Thursday.

“We played very well in the first half with a new system,” said Rodgers, who rested striker Jamie Vardy.

“The players had great fluency. We pressed really hard. We worked them in the second half, stretched the game and it led to the third goal.”

Champions Manchester City are still in the title race after a 2-1 win at Everton. Two Gabriel Jesus goals were enough to give City victory, who remain third, one point behind Leicester.

“We played top,” City manager Pep Guardiola said.

“I was absolutely delighted about the performance. Normally teams in this situation (so far behind, almost conceding the title) give up.”

West Ham beat Bournemouth 4-0 in David Moyes’ first match back in charge to move out of the bottom three while bottom side Norwich are seven points adrift after a 1-1 draw with Crystal Palace.

Aston Villa won 2-1 at Burnley as Wesley and Jack Grealish scored to earn a rare away win.

“It was massive, we’ve only had one away win all season before this,” Grealish told BBC Sport.

“To come here, one of the hardest places in the league, it was well deserved and well-needed.”

Watford claimed a 2-1 win over Wolves, their third victory in four matches, thanks to goals from Gerard Deulofeu and Abdoulaye Doucoure, but remain in the bottom three.

Alireza Jahanbakhsh scored with a stunning overhead kick as Socceroos Aaron Mooy and Mat Ryan’s Brighton drew 1-1 with fourth-placed Chelsea, lifting the home side up to 14th.

Having scored his first goal for the Seagulls on December 28, Jahanbakhsh was left on the bench at home to Chelsea, who took the lead through Cesar Azpilicueta after just 10 minutes.

But six minutes from time, Jahanbakhsh leapt and sent an overhead kick back into the opposite corner to earn his side a deserved point.

“It is an amazing feeling,” the Iranian said.

“When I saw the ball, I just tried to hit it as hard as I could and the bicycle kick was the only option. I’m going to watch it a couple more times.”

Chelsea manager Frank Lampard was left frustrated after his side lost more ground on the top three.

“In the first half, the game was there to be won,” he said.

“We weren’t ruthless enough. We got the goal and we had the possession. But we just didn’t kill the game off.”

Tottenham’s top-four hopes suffered another blow with a 1-0 defeat at Southampton, Danny Ings scoring his 20th goal for the Saints in 45 matches and lifting his side to 12th.

Fifth-placed Manchester United play at Arsenal in the day’s late match.