Chelsea 5-0 Huddersfield: Gonzalo Higuain & Eden Hazard both score twice


Higuain scored eight goals in 22 games while on loan at AC Milan earlier this season

Maurizio Sarri says Gonzalo Higuain and Eden Hazard are “suitable” to play with each other, as the pair both struck twice in Chelsea’s dominant victory over Huddersfield, which moved the Blues back into the top four.

It was Higuain’s first goals since signing on loan from Juventus in the January transfer window.

“Higuain is improving,” said Sarri. “He wasn’t physically at the top when he arrived, because he had a back problem and wasn’t involved, so only played a few matches.

“He is a great player. Apart from the goals, he is really very suitable to play very close to Eden.”

Argentina international Higuain opened the scoring in the 16th minute at Stamford Bridge.

N’Golo Kante played him in with a delightful reverse pass to beat the offside trap and the striker finished first time, lashing his shot in at the near post.

Just before half-time Elias Kachunga nudged Cesar Azpilicueta over and referee Paul Tierney awarded a penalty, although replays suggested the foul occurred outside the penalty area.

Hazard stepped up to smash in the penalty and score his first league goal since 26 December.

The Belgium international made it 3-0 on 66 minutes, rounding Terriers keeper Jonas Lossl and slotting in from a tight angle.

And just three minutes later Higuain got his second, curling in a shot from the edge of the area, with the help of a deflection.

David Luiz added a fifth in the closing minutes, with a powerful header from a corner that was deflected into his own net by Kachunga.

The win ended a troubled week for Sarri, following Wednesday’s 4-0 loss to Bournemouth – their heaviest league defeat in 23 years.

Chelsea are now fourth, three points ahead of Arsenal, who play Manchester City on Sunday (16:30 GMT).

But it is an 11th defeat in 12 league games for the Terriers, who remain bottom of the league and 13 points from safety.

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Goals finally flow for Chelsea

Chelsea came into the game having lost successive league matches against Arsenal and Bournemouth.

In recent weeks Sarri has questioned their motivation and Wednesday’s defeat led to an angry dressing room inquest.

His players gave the perfect response against Huddersfield, with a free-flowing attacking performance in what felt like a must-win game.

Chelsea had failed to score in three of their past four league games going into Saturday’s match, which was why Sarri brought in Higuain.

The 31-year-old, who had scored just eight goals in 22 appearances for AC Milan in the first half of the season, showed Chelsea exactly what he can bring to the side with clinical finishing.

Higuain played under Sarri while at Napoli in 2015-16, equalling the Serie A goalscoring record with 36 goals.

He continued his remarkable scoring record under Sarri on his home league debut, with his 37th and 38th goals in 37 league games for the Italian.

Sarri has previously said Hazard “has to do more” and the 28-year-old put in a performance to please his boss.

He was a constant menace in attack, terrorising the Terriers’ defence as he was given the run of Stamford Bridge and taking his goal tally to 15 for the season.

Sarri said: “Today is all positive, we played a full 90 minutes, defended very well, so it was a very good match but we need consistency now, we have to continue to play with the same mentality in all the matches.

“I hope in the future we will not need to lose a match to find the right mentality.”Sarri wants consistency from Chelsea

Blunt Terriers fail to fire again

This was Jan Siewert’s first away game in charge since succeeding David Wagner as Terriers boss and he was able to welcome back Aaron Mooy and Philip Billing.

But a change in manager has not solved their biggest problem, which is a lack of a goalscorer.

Stuck on just 13 league goals this season, they never looked like adding to that tally at Stamford Bridge, registering just two shots on target from five attempts.

Mooy had the best effort, heading over in the seventh minute, but that was as good as it got.

They also struggled in defence and were outclassed by Hazard, Higuain and Kante.

With just two wins all this season, they seem destined for a return to the Championship.

“I don’t feel well at the moment because we lost 5-0 and we cannot compete with Chelsea,” said Siewert.

“I think when you look at the game we had the first chance then conceded early and the penalty came at the wrong moment. I’m not sure if it was a penalty.

“We will not talk about these decisions because we lost 5-0 and this doesn’t feel good. We had the first chance and had several moments but missed our shots. We have to be more aggressive in the box to go for our goals.”Huddersfield cannot compete with Chelsea – Siewert

Man of the match – Eden Hazard

Hazard has now been directly involved in 201 goals in his top-flight league career (117 goals, 84 assists), with 130 of those coming for Chelsea

Stats – Stamford Bridge becomes a fortress

  • Chelsea have only lost one of their past 16 home Premier League games (won nine, drawn six)
  • Huddersfield have failed to score in a league-high 13 different Premier League games this season.
  • Chelsea scored five goals in a Premier League game for the first time since December 2017, when they beat Stoke 5-0 at Stamford Bridge
  • Higuain became the first Chelsea player to score twice on their home league debut for the club since Mario Stanic v West Ham in August 2000
  • Kante provided two assists in a single league match for the first time in his top-flight career.

What’s next

Chelsea travel to reigning champions Manchester City on Sunday, 10 February (16:00 GMT), while Huddersfield host Arsenal next Saturday (15:00 GMT).

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England in West Indies: Tourists collapse again as hosts seal series win..,


West Indies captain Jason Holder bowled superbly in claiming 4-43

Second Test, Sir Vivian Richards Stadium, Antigua (day three)
England 187 (Moeen 60, Bairstow 52, Roach 4-30)& 132 (Holder 4-43, Roach 4-52)
West Indies 306 (Bravo 50) & 17-0
West Indies won by 10 wickets

England collapsed in dismal fashion yet again to lose the second Test by 10 wickets as West Indies sealed the series with a match to spare.

After West Indies were bowled out for 306 – a lead of 119 – the tourists slipped from 35-0 to 132 all out, with Kemar Roach and Jason Holder taking four wickets each in Antigua.

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With West Indies chasing only 14, John Campbell wrapped up victory with a six.

A three-day victory gave them a 2-0 lead in the three-match series.

It is West Indies’ first Test series win over England since 2009 and their first at home against a side other than Bangladesh and Zimbabwe since 2012.

Holder’s impressive team have a chance to secure a whitewash when the third Test in St Lucia begins on 9 February.

Woeful England fail to learn

A reverse angle of England batsman Joe Denly getting bowled by West Indies bowler Alzarri Joseph after leaving the ball
Opener Joe Denly was one of four England batsmen to be bowled

This England side are not blessed with prodigious Test-match batsmen – only captain Joe Root and Ben Foakes average more than 40 and the latter has played just five matches.

But neither are West Indies, yet the hosts were able to adapt their game to eke out a vital lead on a challenging pitch, epitomised by Darren Bravo’s defiant 50 off 216 balls.

Bravo batted for 342 minutes – the third slowest fifty in Test history by time. England’s second innings lasted 270 minutes, the tourists having failed to learn from both their previous collapses in this series and the approach of their determined hosts.

Rory Burns cut a ball that was too close to him straight to third slip to depart for 16 and fellow opener Joe Denly – who was dropped on nought – was bowled for 17, leaving a delivery from Alzarri Joseph to end a nervy innings full of ill-advised shots.

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Jonny Bairstow made 14 before he was bowled through the gate trying to drive Holder down the ground. He has been bowled in nine of his past 18 innings and 29 times this decade – the most of any batsmen in Tests.

In total, four England batsmen were bowled, Ben Stokes dragging on when playing too far away from his body and Moeen Ali missing an attempted drive down the ground off a very full delivery, both off Roach.

Of the recognised batsmen, only Root, Foakes and perhaps Jos Buttler were undone by fine deliveries. The rest were down to poor decision-making.

Holder leads superb side in fine style

West Indies captain Jason Holder holds up a stump in celebration after beating England in the second Test
Holder’s side are the first West Indies team to win two Tests in a series against England in 21 years

England had the better of the morning session, bowling well to take the last four West Indies for 34 runs before Burns and Denly battled through to lunch.

With opening bowlers Shannon Gabriel and Roach dropping too short, Holder brought himself into the attack and struck with his first ball to remove Burns before dismissing Bairstow shortly after.

Joseph bowled beautifully in tandem with Holder, claiming 2-12 in a splendid seven-over spell, made all the more powerful given the 22-year-old was playing after his mother Sharon died in the early hours of Saturday.

Touching 90mph and finding sharp bounce, he knocked over Denly and had Root caught behind after Holder’s shrewd decision to call for a review, despite Joseph thinking it had only hit Root’s hip and not the glove as well.

Holder proved adept at using the decision review system again to help a revitalised Roach dismiss Foakes lbw for 13 – a ball that ducked in appearing to be sliding down in real time but shown on ball-tracking to be hitting leg stump.

Roach then trapped Stuart Broad in front and Holder had James Anderson caught by a diving Joseph at mid-on before raising his arms and yelling in celebration.

Holder dedicated the victory to Joseph and his family, a unified, spirited West Indies hoping this stunning series win is the start of a welcome resurgence.

‘England have a lot of uncertainty still’ – reaction

England captain Joe Root: “We’ve been outperformed once again and that’s quite hard to take. Scoring under 200 isn’t going to win you many games of cricket.

“West Indies know these conditions well and they’ve exploited them to their advantage. They’ve played some really good stuff at times and made it very difficult. They’re fully deserving of winning the series.”

England coach Trevor Bayliss on Sky Sports:“Our batting has been poor. Some of our shot selection was well below par. The first two dismissals today were very loose shots. That doesn’t set a great example for guys coming in.

We’ve got to be harder to get out. It’s a case of applying ourselves a little better. Our concentration and will to bat for a long period of time is the way forward.”

West Indies captain Jason Holder: “It’s difficult to describe my emotions.

“We wanted to do it for Alzarri’s mother. For him to come out, play and bowl the way he bowled, was a credit to him. This win is for him and his family.”

Man of the match Kemar Roach, who took 4-30 and 4-52: “It’s a special award. A series win at home against England, the third best team in the world, is fantastic. I’m proud of the guys.”

BBC cricket correspondent Jonathan Agnew on the BBC’s The Cricket Social: “This West Indies team is full of character – their resistance, the bravery, the stubbornness, the discipline to play for 131 overs compared to the way England went about their business. You couldn’t blame the pitch for many of England’s dismissals.”

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BREAKING: Helicopter carrying Osinbajo crash lands in Kogi state (photos)


Vice President of Nigeria Yemi Osinbajo

has just escaped death after the helicopter conveying him crash-landed in Kabba, Kogi State.

Reports say the incident happened during a campaign tour of the state.

According to an aide of the Vice-President, Laolu Akande, he’s confirmed that the VP and everyone involved int he crash is okay.

Laolu Akande said the vice president and the crew were unhurt.

“VP Osinbajo’s Chopper crash lands in Kabba, but he and the entire crew safe,” Akande tweeted. “He is continuing with his engagements and plans for the day in Kogi State.”

Osinbajo is President Buhari’s running mate in the presidential elections scheduled to hold on February 16, 2019.

More details later… But see photos below;

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