Premier League Data Diary: Raheem Sterling’s late shows and Wayne Rooney’s treble
Manchester City toasted a familiar hero, while Wayne Rooney lauded it over another Goodison Park returnee as Everton thrashed West Ham United.football Updated: Nov 30, 2017 16:20 IST
For the second time in as many games, Raheem Sterling came to Manchester City’s rescue with an injury-time winner to preserve the leaders’ eight-point advantage at the top of the Premier League.
Southampton were the England winger’s victims on this occasion as Pep Guardiola’s men extended their winning run to 12 matches and maintained the comfortable buffer between themselves and Manchester United, who were 4-2 winners at Watford.
There were resounding wins for Arsenal and a Mohamed Salah-inspired Liverpool over Huddersfield Town and Stoke City respectively, while Wayne Rooney arguably produced the story of the matchweek with a stunning hat-trick as Everton demolished David Moyes’ West Ham 4-0 in front of incoming manager Sam Allardyce.
Meanwhile, as we look back over the midweek action with the help of Opta data, Mauricio Pochettino’s Tottenham must try to find a remedy for their prolonged wobble of one win in five league matches.
RAHEEM’S DREAM RUN CONTINUES
Sterling has now scored winning goals for City in four games this season in the 84th minute or later. The earliest of those came in last week’s 1-0 win over Feyenoord, while he also struck deep into injury time at Bournemouth in September.
The former Liverpool man has been directly involved in 12 goals in his past 13 competitive appearances for Manchester City (10 goals, two assists), while Kevin De Bruyne’s involvement in the winner carried a sense of inevitability.
De Bruyne’s free-kick deflected home off Virgil van Dijk to open the scoring and he the assumed his favoured role of provider for Sterling at the death. Since making his City debut in September 2015, the Belgium star has had a hand in 51 goals (17 goals, 34 assists), which is more than any other midfielder in the competition.
THE YOUNG OF OLD
Watford can be forgiven for failing to properly account for the goal-scoring prowess of transformed wing-back Ashley Young, whose first half brace on Tuesday was his first double at Vicarage Road since he was a 21-year-old winger for the Hornets in October 2006.
Romelu Lukaku would surely have been envious as he missed out on marking his 200th Premier League appearance with a goal. However, the Belgian can console himself in the knowledge that only 10 players have scored more than his 93 in the same timeframe.
The Red Devils’ four-goal haul improved their tally to 32 scored and just eight conceded in the Premier League this term. Impressively, their goal difference of +24 is their best at this stage of a top-flight campaign since 2000-01, when they won the title (+26).
And they were always likely to enjoy a visit to Watford, who have lost more games against Manchester United (eight) than against any other Premier League opponent.
ROONEY ENSURES UNHAPPY RETURN FOR MOYES
Moyes was still Everton manager the last time Rooney went home with a Premier League matchball, 2273 days ago for Manchester United in a 5-0 win over Bolton Wanderers in September 2011.
No player has scored more often in the Premier League era against West Ham than the former England captain (14), whose seven goals in 12 top-flight games for Everton this term already outstrip five in 25 for United last time around.
Rooney’s opener came on the rebound after Joe Hart saved his 18th minute penalty. It was the ninth miss of his Premier League career and only Teddy Sheringham (10) and Alan Shearer (11) have missed more. Manuel Lanzini’s miss from the spot after half-time meant this was the first time both teams missed penalties in the same game since Manchester City v Tottenham in October 2014.
5 - Wayne Rooney has scored as many Premier League goals in his 12 games this season, as he did in his 25 games for Man Utd last season. Reboot. pic.twitter.com/suv4wnBvcM— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) November 29, 2017
Moyes has now lost all five of his league meetings with Everton since leaving the club, with the aggregate score standing at 12-0.
RECORD FOR SALAH AS OZIL AND GIROUD LINK AGAIN
Salah’s flying start for Liverpool now stands at 12 goals in 14 Premier League games – a club record – after the 3-0 win over Stoke.
Sadio Mane was on target for the first time in six league games, his longest such drought for the Reds, and Jurgen Klopp’s men boast five wins, four draws and a solitary defeat from their past 10 matches.
Alexandre Lacazette opened the scoring with his fifth goal on home turf in Arsenal’s 5-0 win over Huddersfield Town before departing with a groin injury.
That cleared the way for supersub Olivier Giroud to get involved and the Frenchman’s brace means he has 16 Premier League goals from the bench. Only Jermain Defoe (23), Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Nwankwo Kanu (both 17) have more.
Mesut Ozil now has 14 assists for Giroud in his Arsenal career. Robert Pires to Thierry Henry (17) and Henry to Freddie Ljungberg (15) stand as the Gunners’ most profitable link-ups.
First Published: Nov 30, 2017 16:20 IST