Premier League: Late goal earns Manchester United win as City stumble to Saints

Marcus Rashford wheels away after tucking home Manchester United’s goal. Picture: STUFF SPORTS.

Marcus Rashford scored in the third and final minute of stoppage time to earn Manchester United a 1-0 win over West Ham that lifted the team above its opponent into fourth place in the Premier League.

Meanwhile, Manchester City’s long winning run in the Premier League ended at 12 matches after a 1-1 draw at Southampton, which took points off the leaders for the second time this season.

Rashford, on as a second-half substitute, tapped in a cross from fellow replacement Edinson Cavani on Saturday (Sunday NZ time) in one of the few clear-cut chances created in a lacklustre match at Old Trafford.

The move also involved a third sub, Anthony Martial, as manager Ralf Rangnick’s bold decision to finish the game with four forwards paid off.

“All were involved,” Rangnick said. “That makes it even more important.”
It completed a good week for United, which also won 3-1 at Brentford on Wednesday, as the league heads into a two-week winter break.

For Rashford, too, with the England forward scoring in back-to-back league games for the first time in a season that has been interrupted by injury and poor form.

“It is obviously an important goal and such late on is an amazing feeling,” Rashford said. “We have to use that winning feeling.”

Cristiano Ronaldo, who overcame a neck problem to start, was kept on for the full match this time but didn’t come close to scoring.

The Portugal forward was disgusted at being substituted midway through the second half of the game at Brentford and made his feelings clear to manager Ralf Rangnick.

There were just four shots on target in the whole match, with only one coming from West Ham.

“To be naïve like that and give away a goal in the last 20 seconds is devastating,” said Declan Rice, who was imperious in West Ham’s midfield.

“When they were pushing players forward, we are such a counterattacking side we still had the energy to go forward. It was a real kick in the teeth to concede that late.”

Manchester City needed a 65th-minute header by Aymeric Laporte to earn a point at St. Mary’s, after Southampton took the lead through Kyle Walker-Peters.

Pep Guardiola’s team had won every game in the league since a 2-0 home loss to Crystal Palace on October 30.

Kevin De Bruyne, who supplied the cross for Laporte’s goal, and substitute Gabriel Jesus hit the same post in the second half for City, for whom Raheem Sterling had a gilt-edged chance from close range saved by Fraser Forster before halftime.

Southampton’s players defended stoutly after the break, just like they did when collecting a 0-0 draw at Etihad Stadium in September.

Chris Wood’s Newcastle United claimed just their second Premier League win of the season by beating Leeds United 1-0 in a big boost to its ambitions of avoiding relegation.

Jonjo Shelvey’s low free kick flew past a slew of outstretched legs in the area and squeezed into the far corner of the net in the 75th minute at Elland Road.

The victory wasn’t enough to lift Newcastle out of the relegation zone but the Saudi-owned team is only one point from safety with a game in hand on fourth-to-last Norwich, which won at Watford on Friday.

Eddie Howe’s side was under pressure for long spells against Leeds, which was seeking a third straight win to move further clear of the bottom three. Marcelo Bielsa’s team is now looking back over its shoulder after being punished for failing to cash in on its dominance.

Leeds were denied an 11th-minute lead when Newcastle defender Fabian Schar produced a last-ditch tackle on Dan James after Raphinha’s clever cut-back.

Newcastle went close in the 28th minute when Shelvey’s thumping volley was well saved by Illan Meslier.

Raphinha caused Newcastle left back Paul Dummett lots of problems and set up another chance for Leeds that was wasted, before Newcastle forward Joelinton limped off just before halftime.

Leeds stayed in control at the start of the second half, with Dan James and Raphinha both cutting through the visitors’ defence only for the final ball to eluded their teammates.

Another injury for Newcastle saw defender Jamaal Lascelles limp off – Dummett had already been replaced by Javier Manquillo by then – but Howe’s side gave warning it was not done. Sean Longstaff fired narrowly wide from 20m and the visitors then silenced the home crowd with Shelvey’s goal.

Wolverhampton Wanderers beat Brentford 2-1 after Ruben Neves’ stoppage time goal in a game interrupted for almost 20 minutes after a drone was spotted hovering above the Brentford Community Stadium pitch.

Aston Villa had a 1-0 win at Everton in a match marred by a fan striking Villa’s former Everton left back Lucas Digne with a bottle hurled from the stands.

Emiliano Buendía got Villa’s winner in added time at the end of the first half.

On Friday (Saturday NZ time), American forward Josh Sargent scored his first two Premier League goals Friday to help lift Norwich out of the relegation zone with a 3-0 win over 10-man Watford.

Watford’s Emmanuel Dennis was shown a second yellow card soon after for a high foot on Max Aarons, to leave the Hornets to see out the final 12 minutes with 10 men.

The game was temporarily halted in the 60th minute when a section of the floodlights went out. After an 11-minute delay while the lights flickered on briefly, referee Mike Dean allowed play to continue without the full lights.

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