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Wednesday, Nov 26th

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Courtois cleared by hospital, Chelsea handling criticized by McCabe

Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, who was forced to leave the field yesterday after a collision with Arsenal forward Alexis Sanchez, has been released from hospital today after having been kept overnight for observation.

The young Belgian was surprisingly left on the field despite having been stunned from his accidental collision with Sanchez, but came off a few minutes later after struggling in the game.

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Van Gaal: "We haven't defended well"

Manchester United Manager Louis van Gaal was upbeat after his side beat Everton 2-1 at Old Trafford yesterday with goalkeeper David de Gea producing a masterclass in between the sticks for the Red Devils.

Van Gaal's side has finally climbed into the Champions League places, a minimum requirement for him to achieve this season after United finished in 7th place in the last campaign. The Red Devils haven't played very well so far this season, but back to back wins against West Ham United and Everton at home has got Van Gaal dreaming of better days ahead.

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Mertesacker: Chelsea are still better

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Arsenal skipper on the day Per Mertesacker was disappointed to be on the losing side of today's London derby with Chelsea, but like most of the other Arsenal players on the day had last season's heavy defeat on the back of his mind and it showed in his press conference, as he seemed almost relieved to have not got another hammering from the Blues.

Mertesacker shared in an interview, "We were more competitive than last year but overall we have to admit we were good but not good enough in certain areas, particularly the final third. We had a couple of decent possibilities, but we could not find the final pass or touch."

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Mourinho and Wenger both explain touchline scrap

Chelsea Manager Jose Mourinho masterminded another derby win against Arsenal, much to the delight of the Stamford Bridge faithful, but drawing as much attention as the result was the touchline fracas between the two managers with Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger surprisingly putting his hands on Mourinho and shoving him out of the way when Gary Cahill executed a rash tackle on Alexis Sanchez, possibly as retribution for the Chilean striker's collision with Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois early in the piece.

Wenger was far from happy with Cahill's lunge on Sanchez and was incensed with the referee's decision not to send off the Chelsea centre back for the two footed full blooded tackle. That resulted in an altercation between the two managers with saw Mourinho admonishing Wenger for stepping out of his technical area and Wenger hitting back at his arch nemesis by pushing him out of the way.

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Chelsea 2-0 Arsenal: Player Ratings

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This match had everything - goals, flying tackles, yellow cards and brawls between the players and even the managers. Arsenal came to Stamford Bridge, trying not to replicate their horrible performance of last year whereas Jose Mourinho wanted to continue his unbeaten record against Arsenal. Even though Chelsea didn’t run riot like last time they completely dominated the match with a strong performance. Arsenal didn’t look threatening enough to penetrate the Chelsea defence. The Blue lions led through a confident penalty from Eden Hazard after he himself earned it with a beautiful run down the middle. The match was killed off by a sumptuous chip late in the second half from the man-in-form Diego Costa.

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Chelsea ease past timid Arsenal with Hazard and Costa on target

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Chelsea re-established their 5 point cushion over Manchester City in the Premier League standings with a comfortable 2-0 win over Arsenal at Stamford Bridge. Arsenal came into this game seeking revenge for their 6-0 hammering at the hands of the Blues here last season, but were timid in possession and poor in their approach play and were done in by a goal in either half from Eden Hazard and Diego Costa. Hazard scored from the penalty spot after he was fouled in the box by Laurent Koscielny, while Costa showed good pace and physical prowess to make the most of a Fabregas punt out from the back to beat two Arsenal defenders and then chip Wojciech Szczesny to seal a win for the ultra-professional Blues.

Both teams lined up in predictable fashion with Jose Mourinho picking an attacking line-up featuring former Arsenal skipper Cesc Fabregas and his Spanish national teammate Diego Costa, who was starting his third game in 9 days for the Blues despite his recent hamstring woes. Andre Schurrle and Oscar, both of whom scored against Arsenal last season, were named in the starting line-up, with Hazard the third of the attacking midfield trio.

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Manchester United 2-1 Everton: Player Ratings

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Manchester United came to Old Trafford today to face their sternest test yet and they responded well with a 2-1 victory Everton. The Toffees came into the match with the memory of last year’s victory at the Theater of Dreams but they couldn’t produce the resilience that was there last time. United started of proceedings with Angel Di Maria’s beauty from the edge of the box. The Toffees equalised through Steven Naismith but not before Leighton Baines scuffed his penalty which was well saved by David de Gea. Monaco loanee Radamel Falcao then scored his first goal in a United shirt to put the Red Devils in front. Despite some heavy bombardment from Everton in the last 15 minutes, the Red Devils were able to secure the all important three points thanks to the excellence of De Gea in goal, who denied the Toffees a share of the spoils.

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