Bony’s brace sees Swansea add to Newcastle’s woes
Crystal Palace secure top-flight football after win over West Ham
Swansea’s Wilfried Bony fires home an injury-time penalty to score his second and the winning goal against Newcastle in the Premier League clash at St James’ Park. Photograph: Owen Humphreys/PA
Premier League round-up: Wilfried Bony’s injury-time penalty snatched a vital 2-1 victory for Swansea as Newcastle succumbed to a fifth successive Premier League defeat .
The Ivorian, who had earlier cancelled out Shola Ameobi’s opener, struck from the penalty spot in the second minute of stoppage time at St James’ Park after substitute Marvin Emnes had been tripped by Cheick Tiote.
Bony’s double secured just a second league win in 10 attempts and could hardly have been more timely with the Swans sitting just three points clear of the drop zone before kick-off.
But defeat piled further pressure on Newcastle boss Alan Pardew, whose side has lost seven of its last nine home games and 12 of its last 17 anywhere.
They took the lead against the run of play as Ameobi ended their six-hours-and-23-minutes-wait for a goal.
However, Bony struck from a Ben Davies corner in first-half injury time and then completed the job from 12 yards at the death.
It was perhaps no more than Garry Monk’s side deserved after enjoying the better of the game for long periods, and Pardew’s critics among a crowd of 51,057 were predictably less than impressed.
Mile Jedinak’s second-half penalty secured Crystal Palace a gutsy 1-0 victory at West Ham and guaranteed the Eagles’ survival in the Premier League for another season.
If the league began when Tony Pulis took over in November, Palace would have started the game eighth in the table and this win meant they now sit 13 points clear of the relegation zone with three matches to play.
Only Chelsea have a meaner defence than Palace since the turn of the year and West Ham appeared increasingly bereft of attacking ideas in front of a home support that jeered all three of Sam Allardyce’s substitutions and greeted the final whistle with a chorus of boos.
Peter Whittingham’s second-half penalty gave Cardiff a precious point in their scrap for survival but the Welsh club still have it all to do after a 1-1 draw at home to Stoke .
Whittingham’s 50th-minute goal cancelled out a Marko Arnautovic penalty – the first spot-kick Cardiff have conceded this season – that was converted during the dying seconds of an otherwise forgettable first period.
It appeared to be a harsh decision by referee Howard Webb, who punished Kim for his challenge on former Cardiff player Peter Odemwingie, while Cardiff also saw a later Juan Cala effort ruled out for offside.
While Stoke can reflect on just one defeat in their last eight league games, Cardiff remain stuck in the relegation zone, currently two points adrift of possible safety with only three games left.
Cardiff head to fellow relegation candidates Sunderland next weekend, before visiting Newcastle and then ending their season at home against title-chasing Chelsea.
Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer could not have asked for more from his players in terms of effort, but the final pass let them down too often and they are left still facing a Herculean task to avoid making a quickfire Championship return.
Aston Villa ended a difficult week with a welcome point against Southampton after a 0-0 draw at Villa Park.
A run of four Premier League defeats in a row had sucked Paul Lambert’s team backed towards the relegation zone.
Today’s draw provided some relief for Lambert, who was without his long-time assistants Ian Culverhouse and Gary Karsa following their suspension by the club.
The Villa boss, who was helped out by Gordon Cowans and Shay Given, refused to give any details on the situation at his press conference this week, citing the ongoing investigation.
Southampton are also in a poor run of form having lost three of their previous four games and this match will not live long in the memory.