Premier League giants Chelsea are almost clear to lift the title after seeing off Bournemouth away on Saturday.
A shocking loss at home to Crystal Palace on the first day of this month had opened up possibilities for late season drama. However, with back to back victories against Manchester City and now Bournemouth, the Blues seemed to have sealed their grip on the title.
Chelsea defeated the Cherries 3-1 to maintain their seven points lead over closest rival Tottenham Hotspur. The entertaining affair was one the Antonio Conte-led side were desperate to see off following a victory for Spurs against Watford.
Diego Costa was denied from booking his name on the scorers’ list as his attempt was converted to an own goal by defender Adam Smith. Within three minutes of the goal, an impressive N’GoloKante slipped through his attackers to send a long pass to an equally impressive Eden Hazard. The Belgium international beat goalkeeper ArturBoructo get the second goal.
Bournemouth had an attempt hit the post but their resilience paid off in the later stages of the first half when Joshua Kings’s effort made it 2-1. After the break, the hosts pushed for an equalizer but Chelsea proved why they are atop the league. Marco Alonso’s 68th minute brilliant free kick put the game beyond Eddie Howe’s men.
“I thought it was a tight game and we were well in it. It doesn’t help going 2-0 down and it took a worldie free kick to win the game. I have to compliment Chelsea, they’re an outstanding team and their system works very well for them,” Howe said after the clash.
King’s goal followed his fine form. Aside RomeluLukaku and Harry Kane, he is the highest goal scorer in the league in 2017 – a very big improvement from his record last year.
Marcos Alonso is the third highest goalscoring defender in the league with his five goals. He would play a critical role as Chelsea face Man United next Sunday. Bournemouth face a cracker as they visit White Hart Lane a day earlier.