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Rampant Chelsea smash five past Swansea

 

 

SWANSEA – Chelsea extended their lead over Manchester City at the top of the Premier League to five points after hammering an abject Swansea City.

The visitors led after just 50 seconds thanks to Oscar’s 18-yard strike, before Diego Costa scored twice in 15 first-half minutes.

Oscar completed his brace moments later, before Andre Schurrle finished the rout in the second-half.

Swansea, who stay in ninth place, are now winless in four league games.

Manchester United were rescued by their substitutes as they battled to a 2-0 win at QPR on Saturday.

Marouane Fellaini volleyed the visitors in front on the hour before James Wilson secured the victory in stoppage time, firing home the rebound from his own low effort.

Rob Green produced a superb double save to deny Radamel Falcao, while the hosts had chances of their own as Charlie Austin was twice denied by United goalkeeper David De Gea.

Falcao then missed a simple tap-in at the far post before bringing out another excellent stop from Green, but the visitors took the victory – their first in four Premier League outings – to keep Harry Redknapp’s side in the bottom three.

Bobby Zamora was given the nod up front with Austin by Harry Redknapp as Adel Taarabt dropped to the bench, while Falcao led the line for the visitors in place of Robin van Persie, who failed to shake off an ankle problem picked up in the defeat to Southampton.

United looked nervous in the early stages, especially in possession as they failed to cause QPR that many problems inside their own half.

Van Gaal’s men had the first big chance of the game, though, as Juan Mata fired a superb ball beyond the defence before Falcao drew an excellent double save from Green, drilling a volley at the goalkeeper and then seeing his rebound kept out.

Former Barcelona striker Bojan produced a moment of magic to end Leicester’s chances of climbing off the bottom for the first time in two months.

The 24-year-old spun and shot left-footed past Ben Hamer from 16 yards to give Stoke a fourth away win.

Leicester boss Nigel Pearson surprised many by starting with £9m record signing Andrej Kramaric and eight-goal top scorer Leonardo Ulloa on the bench.

Anthony Knockaert came close for the Foxes but Stoke had the better chances.

 

Meanwhile, Liverpool increased the pressure on Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert by beating his struggling side to secure a third away league win in succession.

The threat of a pre-match protest by Villa fans did not materialise but the home side went behind when Fabio Borini prodded in a Jordan Henderson cross.

Christian Benteke had a chance to level but his powerful strike was saved.

The Reds survived a number of scares before striker Rickie Lambert arrowed in an 18-yard shot to secure victory. – BBC

 

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