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BPL: United Lose, Lallana Settles Liverpool Thriller



Adam Lallana plundered a 95th-minute winner as Liverpool edged Norwich City 5-4 in a dizzying Premier League encounter on Saturday, while Manchester United crashed 1-0 against Southampton.
Jamie Vardy ended a seven-game scoring drought as Leicester City beat Stoke City 3-0 to move three points clear at the top of the table above Arsenal, who host Chelsea on Sunday.
Charlie Austin marked his debut with an 87th-minute winner as Southampton silenced Old Trafford, but the game of the day was at Carrow Road, where Liverpool and Norwich played out a Premier League classic.
“If you win 5-4 it’s a funny story, but it’s not that funny. We have to solve it,” said Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp, who lost his glasses in the touchline celebrations that followed Lallana’s winner.
“I usually have a second pair of glasses, but I can’t find them because it’s hard to find glasses without glasses!”
After Roberto Firmino had put Liverpool ahead from James Milner’s pass in the 18th minute, Norwich hit back with a Dieumerci Mbokani back-heel, a goal by debutant Steven Naismith and a Wes Hoolahan penalty.
But goals from captain Jordan Henderson and Firmino brought Liverpool level and although Milner’s 75th-minute strike was cancelled out by Sebastien Bassong’s drive in the 91st minute, Lallana had the final word.
Liverpool’s supporters had even more reason to celebrate Lallana’s goal as United’s sixth defeat of the campaign allowed Klopp’s men to close to within three points of their Champions League qualification rivals.
United were booed off after £4 million ($5.7 million, 5.2 million euros) striker Austin gave Southampton victory by converting James Ward-Prowse’s right-wing free-kick with a header.
In a further blow to manager Louis van Gaal, right-back Matteo Darmian was forced off after a second-half collision with Shane Long, exacerbating United’s defensive injury crisis.
United remain fifth, but are now five points below Tottenham Hotspur, who strengthened their grip on fourth place by coming from behind to beat London rivals Crystal Palace 3-1 thanks to a stunning Dele Alli goal.
Palace took a 30th-minute lead when Jan Vertonghen turned Wilfried Zaha’s cross into his own net.
But Harry Kane equalised in the 63rd minute by heading in Nacer Chadli’s cross before Alli struck in the 84th minute, flicking the ball over a defender’s head and volleying home from the edge of the box.
Chadli added a third goal from long range in stoppage time for Mauricio Pochettino’s side, who are now two points below local rivals Arsenal.
Danny Drinkwater’s deflected 42nd-minute strike put Leicester 1-0 up at home to Stoke and the midfielder later set up Vardy to round Jack Butland and roll in his first goal in eight appearances.
Leonardo Ulloa sealed victory in the 87th minute, poking in a pass from Riyad Mahrez.
The division’s top scorer, Vardy now has 16 league goals to his name and his side have a three-point lead, but Manchester City can trim the gap to a point if they win at West Ham United later on Saturday.
Newcastle United remain in the bottom three after losing 2-1 at Watford, who prevailed through goals from Odion Ighalo and Craig Cathcart, with Jamaal Lascelles reducing the arrears.
Sunderland are also still in the relegation places, but they inched closer to safety after Patrick van Aanholt cancelled out Benik Afobe’s headed opener in a 1-1 home draw with Bournemouth.
Elsewhere, bottom club Aston Villa drew 0-0 at West Bromwich Albion.

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