Brighton boost hopes of Premier League survival

Norwich City’s midfielder Kenny McLean clashes with Brighton’s striker Neal Maupay during Saturday’s match. (AFP)
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Updated 04 July 2020

Brighton boost hopes of Premier League survival

  • Saturday’s result leaves Norwich in grave danger of relegation

LONDON: Norwich manager Daniel Farke conceded his side are heading for relegation after Leandro Trossard fired Brighton to a 1-0 win at Carrow Road on Saturday.

Trossard netted in the first half to move Brighton nine points clear of the relegation zone before the bulk of the weekend’s matches.

Brighton’s second win in four games since the restart puts them in position beat the drop, but the picture is much bleaker for Norwich.

With five matches left, Norwich are seven points from safety after losing all five games following the coronavirus hiatus.

Farke knows Norwich’s chances of avoiding an immediate return to the Championship are almost over, especially with games against Chelsea and Manchester City still to come.

“It was more or less our last chance to get back in the mix and we are disappointed,” he said.

“The story of our game was the story of our season, we didn’t find the cutting edge and we then make a big mistake.

“After a few losses, we don’t have the right to make any fighting messages or to make any unrealistic claims.

“We are not naive, let’s show our pride. It is important we learn for the future. I will pick them up.”

Farke dropped Teemu Pukki and Todd Cantwell, even though the pair had scored 68 percent of his team’s goals this season.

The move was criticized by some Norwich fans, but Finland forward Pukki, who had netted 11 times this term, was without a goal in 10 games dating back to January.

Norwich started brightly with their changed lineup and Onel Hernandez fired over from long-range after an incisive break.

But Brighton wrestled back control and had a penalty appeal turned down by VAR when Trossard tumbled under pressure.

Brighton made the most of their dominant spell as Trossard struck in the 25th minute.

Aaron Mooy whipped over a low cross from the right and Trossard made a perfectly timed run to the near post, where the Belgian midfielder slotted past Tim Krul for his fourth goal of the season.

Norwich had lost all 19 Premier League games this season in which they have conceded first.

The y were the only team in the top-flight yet to pick up a point from a losing position and their frustration mounted as Hernandez miscued wide.

Brighton almost put the came beyond their reach when Mooy’s free-kick hit team-mate Dan Burn and deflected narrowly wide.

Norwich’s Josip Drmic shot straight at Mat Ryan from a good position before Farke sent on Pukki and Cantwell with 23 minutes left.

There was no lack of effort from Norwich, but their luck was out in stoppage-time when Adam Idah glanced a header against the inside of the far post and Brighton cleared the danger.


Chiefs rout Broncos 43-16 as Mahomes barely breaks a sweat

Updated 26 October 2020

Chiefs rout Broncos 43-16 as Mahomes barely breaks a sweat

DENVER: On a freezing afternoon in the snow, Patrick Mahomes barely broke a sweat.
The Kansas City Chiefs routed the Broncos 43-16 for their 10th consecutive win over Denver despite failing to convert a single third down (0-for-8) and getting just 200 yards and at touchdown from their star quarterback.
The Chiefs got a pick-6, a kickoff return for a TD, two rushing TDs, including one from his backup, and three field goals to more than make up for Mahomes’ pedestrian numbers.
“I deal with him every day and all he wants to do is win,” Chiefs coach Andy Reid said. “It’s crazy. You know how he’s wired. But that’s what’s real every day. He wants to rip your heart out when he’s out there playing. He wants to do well and do all that. But when other people are scoring, he’s jumping up and down, likewise. He just wants to win. That’s the beauty of him.”
“Whenever you feel like you don’t play a great game offensively and you win by 27 it’s a good feeling,” Mahomes said. “A win’s a win.”
And for Denver, a loss is a loss. Again.
“I can play a whole lot better, and I’m going to,” said Broncos QB Drew Lock, who threw for 254 yards with no TDs and two interceptions.
Mahomes completed 15 of 23 passes but said he only worries about results, not statistics.
“A young Patrick would’ve probably tried to force it and thrown a ball and maybe made a bad interception or something like that,” Mahomes said, relaying a conversation he had with teammate Tyrann Mathieu. “Whereas, now, seeing the way the defense was playing and knowing it’s not there, just kind of either taking the sack or not completing the pass and throwing it away” is the way to go.
“You have to learn ways to win in this league,” Mahomes said. “It’s not always going to be 400 passing yards or 200 rushing yards or whatever it is. It’s going to be finding ways to win. I think this team is doing a great job of doing that.”
The Chiefs (6-1) found other ways to dominate Denver (2-4) on a snowy afternoon that began with a temperature of 14 degrees at kickoff, the coldest October game in Broncos history.
Kansas City took a 24-9 halftime lead even though Mahomes completed just one pass in the second quarter and had only 99 yards through the air in the first half.
Mahomes finally extended his NFL-leading streak to 17 consecutive games with a touchdown throw when he hit Tyreek Hill from 10 yards to make it 37-9 with 11 minutes remaining in the fourth quarter.
Mahomes’ lone TD throw followed the Chiefs’ fourth takeaway, an interception by Mathieu when rookie KJ Hamler let Lock’s pass bounce off him and right into the arms of the Chiefs star safety.
A week after the Chiefs ran more times than they threw it for the first time in Reid’s eight seasons in Kansas City, it was K.C.’s ground game, special teams and defense that did the damage in Denver in the NFL’s first snow game of 2020.
In the first half, the Chiefs scored touchdowns on Byron Pringle’s 102-yard kickoff return and Daniel Sorensen’s 50-yard interception return to go with Clyde Edwards-Helaire’s 11-yard run in which he broke five tackles.
“You’re not going to beat a team like Kansas City doing that,” lamented Broncos coach Vic Fangio, whose team has been outscored 96-25 in three games against the Chiefs.
Edwards-Hilaire carved his way through a wall of Denver defenders to open the scoring on a snowy, freezing afternoon.
Running up the middle, the rookie plowed through linebacker Alexander Johnson and defensive backs Kareem Jackson, Bryce Callahan, Justin Simmons and Michael Ojemudia like a bowling ball knocking down pins.
The Broncos responded with Lock’s first career touchdown run, from 2 yards, but Brandon McManus missed the extra point, leaving Kansas City ahead 7-6, and the Chiefs would never trail.