Review

Leeds on brink of relegation as Brighton secure Europe

21 May 2023
LEEBHA composite

Loss at West Ham mean Sam Allardyce's team must win on final day and hope results go their way to stay up

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West Ham United came from behind to beat Leeds United 3-1 to put the visitors on the brink of relegation. 

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Leeds made a bright start and took the lead in the 17th minute, Rodrigo superbly volleying into the roof of the net from Weston McKennie’s long throw for his 13th goal of the season.

West Ham responded positively and levelled shortly after the half-hour mark.

Jarrod Bowen got in down the right and crossed for Declan Rice, whose shot bounced into the ground and looped in at the far post.

West Ham went close to going in front on the hour mark but Tomas Soucek’s header was tipped over by Joel Robles.

But the home side did take a deserved lead on 72 minutes, Danny Ings’s reverse pass finding Bowen, whose shot with the outside of his left foot crept in at the far post.

Luke Ayling produced a superb block to deny Pablo Fornals a third for the hosts, but the Hammers did make it 3-1 in stoppage time through substitute Manuel Lanzini.

Lucas Paqueta skilfully moved along the byline to set up Lanzini for a first-time finish.

No side have lost more points from leading positions this season than Leeds' 25, level with Nottingham Forest.

Leeds remain 18th on 31 points, two points off safety, and they could be overtaken by Leicester City, who play at Newcastle United on Monday.

See: Premier League 2022/23 relegation battle

Leeds will have to beat Tottenham Hotspur at home next Sunday to have any chance to staying up.

West Ham climb to 14th, with 40 points, as they look to hit form ahead of their UEFA Europa Conference League final.

Relegation battle

Position Pos Club Played Pl GD Points Pts
17 Everton EVE 38 -23 36
18 Leicester City LEI 38 -17 34
19 Leeds United LEE 38 -30 31
20 Southampton SOU 38 -37 25
Full table
Brighton confirm European spot

A first-half double for Evan Ferguson helped Brighton & Hove Albion on their way to a 3-1 victory over Southampton to confirm European football next season.

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Ferguson put the Seagulls ahead on 29 minutes, with Alex McCarthy unable to keep out his powerful low drive.

The 18-year-old, who has scored the most Premier League goals of any teenager this season, netted his second five minutes before half-time, slotting past McCarthy after Kaoru Mitoma’s impressive run from his own half.

Mohamed Elyounoussi pulled a goal back for Southampton just before the hour, flicking a header in at the near post from James Ward-Prowse’s corner.

Relegated Saints thought they had levelled moments later, but Theo Walcott’s strike was overturned after a VAR review for offside.

Pascal Gross restored Brighton’s two-goal lead in the 69th minute, cutting in from the right on to his left foot and drilling in a low shot inside McCarthy's left-hand post.

Brighton move on to 61 points in sixth and have guaranteed a place in at least the UEFA Europa Conference League next season. A point across their two remaining matches would seal a top-six finish and UEFA Europa League football in 2023/24.

Southampton stay bottom with 24 points.

See: Which teams can qualify for Europe?

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