Tottenham take control of Champions League spot as rivals slip up

Tottenham take control of Champions League spot as rivals slip up

Tottenham Hotspur’s Premier League top-four hopes were given a massive boost on Saturday as they won 4-0 at Aston Villa thanks to a hat-trick from Son Heung-min as Manchester United and Arsenal suffered damaging defeats.

Chelsea, meanwhile, bounced back from their Champions League loss with an emphatic 6-0 win at Southampton.

Manchester United went down to a 1-0 loss at struggling Everton at Goodison Park while Arsenal were handed a surprise 2-1 home defeat by Brighton & Hove Albion.

The results left Tottenham on 57 points, three ahead of Arsenal, who have a game in hand.

West Ham United and Manchester United are both on 51 points.

Spurs’ fourth win a row was testament again to the effectiveness of Antonio Conte’s attacking trio of Son, Harry Kane and Dejan Kulusevski.

South Korean Son fired Tottenham ahead in the third minute, blasting in off the post after a blocked shot from Kane fell to him on the edge of the box.

Villa dominated the first half but wasted several chances and came up against Spurs keeper Hugo Lloris in top form.

Kane created the second, five minutes after the break, flicking a long ball into the path of Kulusevski who burst into the box and beat Emiliano Martinez with a low shot.

Another clever assist from Kane helped make it 3-0 as he headed a long ball into the stride of Son who ran clear and made no mistake with his finish.

Son completed his hat-trick in the 71st minute after a smart exchange with Kulusevski.

Arsenal suffered a second straight loss as Brighton ended their seven-match winless run with Zambian midfielder Enock Mwepu scoring one goal and creating another.

Brighton opened the scoring when a long ball found Mwepu on the flank and he picked out Leandro Trossard who curled past Aaron Ramsdale.

Arsenal made tactical shifts that showed signs of turning the game around but they were dealt a decisive blow when Mwepu drilled home a half-volley from the edge of the box.

Martin Odegaard provided a late slither of hope in the 89th minute with a long-range shot that took a wicked deflection and looped over goalkeeper Robert Sanchez to give Arsenal a lifeline, but Brighton held on.

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel was furious with his team’s performance in their 3-1 loss at home to Real Madrid in the Champions League but get the desired reaction from his players.

Two goals each by Timo Werner and Mason Mount and first- half strikes by Marcos Alonso and Kai Havertz sealed a 6-0 demolition job at St Mary’s Stadium.

Chelsea went up 1-0 in the eighth minute as Alonso ran on to a deft flick by Mount and blasted in his first league goal since the opening day of the campaign.

Mount, Chelsea’s leading scorer in the league this season, equalled his tally of nine goals from the previous campaign with a superb shot from outside the box after Southampton’s shaky defence failed to deal with Ruben Loftus-Cheek’s cross.

Werner made up for earlier misses by beating Jan Bednarek for pace before rounding Fraser Forster and finishing into an empty net and Havertz swept in Chelsea’s fourth.

A relentless Chelsea were rewarded again after the break as Werner tapped in a rebound from N’Golo Kante’s effort which was saved by Forster and Mount completed the rout.

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