Hull add to problems for Roberto Martinez and Everton

Newcastle and Burnley in six-goal thriller; Alan Pardew watches Palace stalemate

 

Premier League round-up: Goals from Ahmed Elmohamady and Nikica Jelavic ensured Everton’s festive flop continued with a fourth straight defeat at strugglers Hull won 2-0 at the KC Stadium.

Toffees boss Roberto Martinez was looking to banish recent defeats by Southampton, Stoke and Newcastle but instead saw his team brushed aside by opponents who had won just once in their last 12 matches, with a late red card for Antolin Alcaraz rubbing salt into the wounds.

Prior to this 2-0 success – a scoreline that might easily have been doubled – Hull had won just one Premier League game at the KC Stadium all season.

But Everton are an increasingly obliging prospect, with Gareth Barry hopelessly exposed in an unfamiliar back-three position.

Barry’s fish-out-of-water efforts were the most jarring, but an Everton side that welcomed back key men Phil Jagielka, Kevin Mirallas, Steven Naismith and Ross Barkley were second best at every turn.

Abel Hernandez excelled for the Tigers from start to finish without finding the net but there was a rare headed opener from Elmohamady and a neatly taken sixth of the season from Jelavic, who reminded his former club of his finishing prowess.

George Boyd completed a second remarkable fightback inside five days as Burnley left Newcastle with a point following a 3-3 draw.

The visitors trailed three times at St James’ Park and looked to be heading for defeat when Moussa Sissoko put the Magpies 3-2 ahead with just 12 minutes remaining.

But Sean Dyche’s men refused to be beaten and Boyd’s 86th-minute strike denied John Carver, standing in for Alan Pardew as he watched prospective new employers Crystal Palace in action at Aston Villa, the victory he craved as he attempted to state his case to replace the 53-year-old.

Virtually everything that could have gone wrong did go wrong for the visitors during a first half in which they lost three men to injury and found themselves 2-1 behind, with Steven Taylor and Jack Colback scoring for the Magpies either side of Paul Dummett’s own goal.

But having come from 2-0 down at Manchester City to draw on Sunday, they turned in a stunning second-half display which was rewarded when Danny Ings headed them level after 66 minutes, and that proved scant reward for their efforts on an afternoon when they hit the woodwork on no fewer than four occasions.

With time running down, Sissoko gave the bulk of crowd of 51, 761 what they wanted, but once again, his side could not hang on to their lead.

Aston Villa and Crystal Palace fought out a bore 0-0 draw in front of the watching Pardew.

The 53-year-old is expected to become the new Palace boss after the Eagles agreed compensation with Newcastle for their former midfielder.

And he watched from the stands as Yannick Bolasie wasted the visitors’ best chance when he hit the bar with just Brad Guzan to beat.

Julian Speroni saved well from Alan Hutton and Christian Benteke but it was a dour game between two limited sides.

It continued Villa’s goal worries – Paul Lambert’s side having scored just 11 times in 20 games – but Pardew would have been pleased by Palace’s gritty outing.

The point could not lift them out of the drop zone while Villa, who have won just twice in 16 games, moved up to 12th.

Wilfried Bony came off the bench to score a dramatic injury-time equaliser and ensure Swansea took a share of the spoils in a 1-1 draw at QPR.

A stunning first-half strike from Leroy Fer looked to have sealed another valuable three points for QPR at home but Bony scored his ninth goal of the season two minutes into injury-time to salvage a hard-earned point for the visitors.

QPR were lucky not to be reduced to 10 men early on when Rob Green handled outside the area but it was Swansea who finished with a man less after Wayne Routledge was sent off with four minutes to play.

Harry Redknapp’s side, unbeaten at Loftus Road since mid-October, are now two points above the relegation zone while Swansea sit ninth, three points off the top six.

New West Brom manager Tony Pulis watched from the stands as his side battled to a 1-1 draw at West Ham.

The former Crystal Palace and Stoke boss has signed a two-and-a-half year contract at The Hawthorns to replace Alan Irvine, who was sacked on Monday.

The Baggies, who had started the day in 16th place and just a point off the dropzone, had to recover after falling behind to an early goal from Diafra Sakho, but went into half-time level after Saido Berahino equalised on the break.

West Ham, who had lost both their Christmas fixtures so far against Chelsea and then Arsenal, were unable to up the tempo in the second half, as the Baggies showed Pulis should have a solid base on which to plot their safe passage up the table.

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