The Roar
The Roar


Manchester divided as ten Hag pressure mounts, Ange-ball pays off again as Spurs sink Everton, Arsenal top for Christmas

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23rd December, 2023

Goals from West Ham’s Jarrod Bowen and Mohammed Kudus extended Manchester United’s miserable run in the English Premier League.

Bowen bundled home at the second attempt in the 72nd minute, his 11th league goal this season, and Kudus struck his fourth goal in as many games to settle matters.

It was another worrying setback for manager Erik ten Hag as United suffered a 13th defeat in 26 games in all competitions.

Manchester United legend Peter Schmeichel lashed the team’s lack of a plan and blasted them for looking slow against the Hammers.

“It was just in many ways irrelevant. There was no plan to it,” he said. “West Ham got an easy win which is a little bit silly to say.

“When I look at the team, I don’t know what the identity of the team is. What is the style of play, what’s the plan?

“He needs to take a step back, ten Hag, and say what do I need to do with these players I have available in order to first of all stop leaking goals, because that’s a problem, and secondly, score goals – how do I get the next goal? Four games without a goal, it’s a long time.”


Ten Hag tried to put a positive spin on the performance by claiming to BBC that they were the better side before the first goal.

“I think it was a decent 72 minutes where we didn’t take our chances. We should’ve gone in the lead but we didn’t and then it was one moment of switching off,” he said.

“At this moment we are not top, but we have seen last week against the top of this league we were head-to-head. We didn’t score, we had the best opportunities of the game.

“There we defended very well for 90 minutes, that has to be always our standard like what we did there. You have to bring that to every game on the pitch.”

Liverpool and Arsenal played out a thrilling 1-1 draw at Anfield that ensures the London side will top the English Premier League on Christmas Day.


Arsenal led through defender Gabriel’s fourth-minute header from Martin Odegaard’s free kick on Saturday (local time), but Mohamed Salah beat David Raya at his near post to level in the 29th. 

Liverpool came closest in the second half and hit the woodwork twice, through Trent Alexander-Arnold and substitute Harvey Elliott.

Mikel Arteta’s team go into Christmas a point clear of Liverpool and third-placed Aston Villa.

Liverpool defender Kostas Tsimikas broke his collarbone when he collided with Jurgen Klopp on the sideline.

Tsimikas was challenged by Arsenal forward Bukayo Saka and stumbled into Klopp, who fell on top of him.

Klopp said Tsimikas’ collarbone was “definitely broken”, adding he will be “out for a long time.”

Andros Townsend headed the winner for Luton Town as they beat  Newcastle United in their first match since captain Tom Lockyer suffered a cardiac arrest agasint Bournemouth a week earlier.


Richarlison scored for a third consecutive match against his old club Everton as Ange Postecoglou’s Tottenham ensured they would be in the EPL top four at Christmas after a hard-fought 2-1 home win.

Sean Dyche’s visitors crucially had a Dominic Calvert-Lewin effort ruled out by VAR in the 51st minute which could have changed the complexion of the match.

Son Heung-min added to Richarlison’s opener and Andre Gomes scored a later consolation for Everton.

Burnley took all three points with a deserved 2-0 victory over hosts Fulham as Rebecca Welch became the first female referee to take charge of an EPL match.

Wilson Odobert and Sander Berge scored to lift Burnley off the bottom of the table.

Dominic Solanke scored a hat-trick to earn Bournemouth a 3-2 win at Nottingham Forest and ruin Nuno Espirito Santo’s first game in charge at the City Ground.


Forest, who scored through Anthony Elanga and Chris Wood, had defender Willy Boly controversially sent off in the first half. 

They were level until Solanke headed home in the fifth minute of stoppage time.