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Heroes and Villains: Hurri-Kane strikes and miserable Merseyside derby

| 09.02.2015

It was certainly an intriguing weekend in the Premier League with Harry Kane firing Tottenham to victory in the north London derby, Nigel Pearson losing control and Manchester United resorting to long ball tactics to snatch a draw at Upton Park. Check out who made our list of Heroes and Villains!

Harry Kane
Spurs sealed a crucial comeback over rivals Arsenal thanks to a delightful double from in-form Kane, netting his 21st and 22nd goals of the season. The sensational striker was again Mauricio Pochettino’s match-winner, helping overturn a one goal deficit to shoot past Arsene Wenger’s Gunners and go fifth in the league table. Kane has proved he can do it against the top-flight’s big teams, with a call-up to Roy Hodgson’s England squad now imminent following a fantastic purple patch.

With fellow top four hopefuls United drawing at Upton Park, the high-flying Saints are now up to third again, after a 93rd-minute winner from Sadio Mane helped Ronald Koeman’s men to a last gasp triumph over managerless QPR. This was magnificent Mane’s fifth goal of the campaign, and he has now netted in each of his last four league starts for Southampton, with the Senegal star proving to be a superb summer signing at St Mary’s. Saints stopper Fraser Forster was also key to his team’s latest win, making super saves to deny Joey Barton and Mauro Zarate before Mane’s injury-time effort.

Jose Mourinho secured his first ever win at Villa Park, as league leaders Chelsea extended their gap the top of this season’s Premier League table. Brilliant Belgian Eden Hazard slotted in early, but it took a Branislav Ivanovic strike in the second-half to overcome Paul Lambert’s Villans, after Jores Okore had equalised on 48 minutes. Title rivals Manchester City were lucky to grab a point against Hull City, with the Blues now stretching their lead to seven points.

Nigel Pearson
The Foxes boss was in the spotlight following a bizarre clash with Crystal Palace’s James McArthur, as he held the player down and grabbed his shirt following an accidental collision on the sideline. Pearson’s relegation strugglers stumbled to a narrow 1-0 defeat to the Eagles and have now been bottom of the table since November. After the King Power Stadium meeting, speculation gathered that Leicester City’s boss had been sacked, although the club have since denied such a decision. However, Pearson faces a tough task of changing his side’s form and fortune this term as the drop looms large.

Merseyside derby
In what was probably Steven Gerrard’s last ever Merseyside derby appearance, Everton and Liverpool played out a miserable meeting at Goodison Park. The 224th derby was the only league clash to end goalless over the weekend, with the Reds now unbeaten in eight league games and the Toffees having claimed just one victory in eight outings.

Manchester United
Dutch midfielder Daley Blind halted West Ham United delivering a hammer blow to United’s top four chances, as his injury time strike secured a point for his side at Upton Park. Louis van Gaal’s Red Devils remain in fourth spot, but were criticised by Hammers manager Sam Allardyce for resorting to “long ball” tactics. The Old Trafford outfit toiled in front of goal throughout the clash, with Robin van Persie and Radamel Falcao both missing great chances, as Marouane Fellaini was introduced in an effort to help his team’s direct route style.



Lee Gormley

Lee joined the Coral team in 2014 after studying at Leeds Trinity University, having moved across the water from Ireland, and has plenty of industry experience from his time with various news outlets in both England and Northern Ireland. After graduating with a BA Honours degree in Sports Journalism, he has since become an important member of the talented sports desk, passionately covering boxing, football and snooker, among many other sports. Lee is also a massive Manchester United and Republic of Ireland fan, but curbs any bias during his work, and outside of his job can be found regularly taking part in sport himself, such as boxing, GAA and football.