Premier League wrap: Liverpool see off Sheffield United on Chris Wilder’s return

Brighton see off Brentford; Palace lose at home to Bournemouth; Fulham heap the pressure on Nottingham Forest

Sheffield United 0 Liverpool 2

Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk scored a first-half volley to put his side on course for a 2-0 Premier League victory over Sheffield United on Wednesday, handing new Blades boss Chris Wilder a losing start on his return to the club.

The Liverpool captain volleyed home his first goal of the season in the 37th minute as the home side’s soft-centred defence left him completely unmarked from a corner to deftly side-foot the ball into the net.

Blades keeper Wes Foderingham pulled off two superb second-half saves to deny Mohamed Salah and Darwin Nunez, but he was finally beaten again deep into second half stoppage time as Dominik Szoboszlai rifled the ball home.

The win lifts second-placed Liverpool to 34 points, two behind leaders Arsenal, while Wilder faces an uphill battle after taking over Sheffield United on Tuesday as they remain rooted to the bottom of the table on five points after 15 games.


Brighton & Hove Albion 2 Brentford 1

Jack Hinshelwood saved on the line and then headed a winning first Premier League goal for Brighton & Hove Albion as the south coast side came from a goal down to beat visitors Brentford 2-1 on Wednesday.

The 18-year-old academy product put the Seagulls ahead in the 52nd minute, after the two sides had been 1-1 at the break, when he nodded into the bottom left corner off a cross from captain and man of the match Pascal Gros.

Moments earlier Hinshelwood had made a block on the line from substitute Yoane Wissa after Neal Maupay also had a shot stopped.

Brighton moved up to seventh on 25 points with Brentford 11th on 19.

The visitors took the lead through a 27th-minute penalty after their first meaningful attack, with top scorer Bryan Mbeumo coolly stroking home for his seventh goal of the season as Jason Steele dived the wrong way.

Vitaly Janelt had won the penalty when he surged into the area and was pulled down by Jan Paul van Hecke.

Brighton levelled four minutes later when Gros shot left-footed into the bottom corner off a pass from Japanese winger Kaoru Mitoma.

Mbeumo went down and had to be helped off in the 37th in a big blow for the Bees, with Wissa coming off the bench to replace him.

Crystal Palace 0 Bournemouth 2

Resurgent Bournemouth climbed further away from the Premier League relegation zone with a comfortable 2-0 victory at Crystal Palace courtesy of goals by Marcos Senesi and Kieffer Moore on Wednesday.

Senesi headed in from a corner in the 25th minute and Bournemouth were rarely put under any prolonged pressure by a disappointing Palace side who were booed after substitute Moore wrapped things up in stoppage time with a header.

The closest the hosts came to an equaliser was just after halftime when former Bournemouth player Jefferson Lerma struck a right-footed shot that thudded against the post.

Andoni Iraola's Bournemouth have now gone four games unbeaten in the league and are up to 15th place in the table with 16 points from 15 games, nine points clear of third from bottom Everton.

Palace, who are now winless in their last four games, are in 14th place, also with 16 points, and face Liverpool and Manchester City in their next two matches.

Fulham 5 Nottingham Forest 0

Fulham mowed down Nottingham Forest in a 5-0 win on a freezing Wednesday night in west London, dropping the visitors closer to the Premier League relegation zone and piling pressure on their manager Steve Cooper.

Forest have now lost four games in a row and won only once in their last 11, and their defeat at Craven Cottage saw them drop to 16th in the table, while the home side climbed provisionally to 12th.

Fulham took the lead on the half-hour with Willian whipping in a cross from the left and Alex Iwobi leaping forward to tap the ball in past Forest ‘keeper Odysseas Vlachodimos.

Raul Jimenez doubled the lead four minutes later, latching onto a quick-fire pass from Andreas Pereira on the edge of the box and flicking his shot up and over Vlachodimos into the top right corner.

Fulham continued to swarm forward at the start of the second half and the pressure paid off in the 54th minute when Jimenez muscled his way past Forest defender Ola Aina and skipped sideways past Vlachodimos before back-heeling the ball into the net.

Iwobi got his second in the 73rd minute, lashing in a cross from substitute Harry Wilson, before captain Tom Cairney made it 5-0 in the 86th, running forward and coolly slotting the ball past the hapless Vlachodimos