Chelsea’s Alonso ruins Spurs’ Wembley house-warming

Tottenham Hotspur made a losing start to life as Wembley's full-time tenants after Marcos Alonso's double earned Premier League champions Chelsea a 2-1 victory on Sunday.

The Spaniard struck either side of a late Michy Batshuayi own goal to get Chelsea back to winning ways after their opening 3-2 loss at home to Burnley and end Spurs' club-record run of 14 successive home wins.

Spurs went unbeaten throughout their final league campaign at White Hart Lane, but struggled at Wembley in the Champions League and have now lost eight of the last 10 matches they have played there.

Mauricio Pochettino's men appeared to have avoided the worst when Batshuayi put through his own goal in the 82nd minute, only for Hugo Lloris's feeble attempt at a save to gift Alonso the winner two minutes from time.

For Spurs, who are playing at Wembley while White Hart Lane is rebuilt, it was a first home defeat in the league since a 2-1 loss to Southampton in May 2016.

Having endured a deeply trying start to the season, Chelsea manager Antonio Conte will hope victory over the team his side pipped to the title last season will bring some much-needed positivity back to Stamford Bridge.

The Italian celebrated Alonso's winner with characteristic abandon on the touchline, thoughts of his side's transfer window struggles and his long stand-off with want-away striker Diego Costa seemingly banished.

Chelsea's list of absentees -- suspended pair Gary Cahill and Cesc Fabregas, injury victim Eden Hazard and the exiled Costa -- moved Conte to adopt an unfamiliar 3-5-1-1 system, with David Luiz anchoring the midfield.

He also gave a debut to £40 million ($51.5 million, 43.8 million euros) new signing Tiemoue Bakayoko, who produced a leggy 90-minute showing in his first appearance since arriving from French champions Monaco.

- Kane hits post -

Alvaro Morata should have crowned his full Chelsea debut with an early goal, only to head wide from seven yards when Cesar Azpilicueta's cross picked him out unmarked, but in the 24th minute his side did go ahead.

Chelsea were awarded a free-kick after Dele Alli clipped Luiz and from a position 25 yards from goal, slightly to the right of centre, Alonso arced a magnificent shot into the top-right corner.

Harry Kane, Alli and Mousa Dembele had all threatened for Spurs prior to Chelsea's opener and after falling behind, they dominated the rest of the first half.

Kane bent a shot against the base of the right-hand post after cutting inside Andreas Christensen from Alli's pass, while Ben Davies saw a swerving effort from range clubbed away by the diving Thibaut Courtois.

The hosts could count themselves unfortunate to be behind, but they were also a little lucky to keep 11 men on the field after Eric Dier and Jan Vertonghen escaped with yellow cards for ugly fouls on Luiz and Victor Moses.

With Chelsea's back three becoming more of a back five, they successfully held Spurs at bay in the second half and came close to adding a second goal when Willian's low drive came skidding back off the post.

Spurs thought they had rescued a point with eight minutes remaining when Batshuayi, who had only been on the pitch for four minutes, inadvertently headed Christian Eriksen's free-kick into his own net.

But six minutes later, Alonso picked up a loose ball in midfield and swapped passes with substitute Pedro before drilling a low shot beneath Lloris to give Chelsea victory.

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‘It could have been me’: S.Leone struggles to recover from disaster

Gathered in a Freetown church, worshippers struggled Sunday to come to terms with the devastation wrought by the flooding and mudslide that struck the Sierra Leone capital six days ago, as the arduous search for bodies continued.

"I just close my eyes and imagine, I say, 'It could have been me'," says Angela Johnson, one of about 50 parishioners at St Paul's Catholic Church in Regent, the hilltop community that bore the brunt of the catastrophe.

"When I wake up to get up from my bed, I see darkness. It could have been me buried in that rubble, oh my God."

Outside, the hill that was once covered with trees bears the red-orange scar of the mudslide which struck last Monday after three days of rain, slamming into ramshackle homes and trapping families while they slept.

"It's a sermon of hope and consolation that we are one family," Father John Nat Tucker said after the mass.

"We must come together as Sierra Leoneans."

- Relying on stray dogs -

Recovery efforts in Sierra Leone, one of the world's poorest countries, are being hampered by logistical and technical constraints, and as the search drags on, many of the bodies being dug up are too mutilated or decomposed to identify.

"The only machinery we have at the recovery site are eight excavators," says Colonel Abu Bakarr Sidique Bah, who is leading the search, adding that the steep and muddy terrain was making it hard to operate the machines.

As a result, workers are tracking stray dogs when they try to dig up bodies to feed on, allowing them to identify areas where they can start digging.

"We do not have helicopters or sniffer dogs or trained forensic experts to do the work," Bah said.

"We are currently making do with what is available by using our bare hands and shovels to dig up the rubble in search of dead bodies in areas the excavators are not able to operate."

A Spanish forensics team has arrived to assist the search and recovery efforts, and a military disaster response team from Liberia arrived in Freetown on Sunday.

As of Sunday, 499 people had been buried, 156 of whom were children, technician Mohamed Sinneh Kamara said at Freetown's central morgue. The Red Cross did not immediately respond to a request from AFP to confirm the figure.

On Saturday, the official toll was 441, but emergency teams expected it to rise, given that several hundred people are unaccounted for.

Thomas Benson, an electrical engineer, said he used his hands to extract the bodies of his sister and niece, two of nine family members he lost in the early hours of Monday.

All that is left of his five-bedroom home, which had a grocery shop on the ground floor, are the iron sheets used for the roof.

But after seeing the piles of corpses at the Freetown morgue, he volunteered to help the burial team pack body bags.

Nearly a week later, "I'm still in shock for what has happened to my family," he told AFP.

- Aid trickles in -

Those who escaped have been told to evacuate the disaster zone, as the government worries about potential outbreaks of cholera, diarrhoea and other water-borne diseases as the water stagnates.

But that has left residents packing into makeshift shelters or with neighbours in the overcrowded capital of 1.2 million people, and the government has not yet said how it intends to relocate them.

Flooding is an annual menace in Sierra Leone, where rickety homes are regularly swept away by seasonal rains. In 2015, floods killed 10 people and left thousands homeless.

The Red Cross has issued an emergency funding appeal. Britain, the former colonial power in Sierra Leone, has pledged £5 million ($6.5 million, 5.5 million euros), while China has pledged $1 million (850,000 euros) and Togo $500,000.

International aide is starting to trickle in: A plane from Ghana arrived on Sunday to supply blankets, mattresses and clothing, followed by a plane from Morocco.

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Australian international Aaron Mooy's stunning second-half goal gave Huddersfield a 1-0 victory over Newcastle and maintained their 100 percent record in their maiden season in the Premier League on Sunday.

Huddersfield signed Mooy full-time from Manchester City in the close season after he inspired them to promotion whilst on loan.

And the 26-year-old struck in the 50th minute to condemn Newcastle to their second successive defeat, the first time since 1999 the Magpies have lost their opening two fixtures in the top tier.

Huddersfield, though, occupy the dizzying heights of second in the table equal on points with Manchester United but with an inferior goal difference -- only the third time a promoted side has won its first two games in the Premier League.

The hosts started brightly with Newcastle content to absorb the pressure and hit them on the counter-attack.

However, a dreadful clearance by the Magpies Christian Atsu fell to one of Huddersfield's close season buys Tom Ince, but whilst his shot was on target it was easily saved by Rob Elliot.

It was Newcastle who went closest to breaking the deadlock inside the first 20 minutes as from a counter-attack Matt Ritchie unleashed a fine curling effort which was goalbound till Jonas Lossl produced a superb save to deny him.

Mooy, though, deservedly gave the hosts the lead five minutes into the second-half with a stunning effort, curling it past Elliot after a neat exchange with Elias Kachunga.

The goal rounded off an astonishing 14 pass move, the most thusfar in the lead-up to a Premier League goal this term.

Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez reacted by removing Dwight Gayle -- who hadn't looked like maintaining his habit of scoring every time the two sides met -- and sending on new recruit Joselu.

The Spaniard -- a £5m signing from Stoke in midweek -- went close with his first shot on target but Lossl tipped it away for a corner.

His compatriot Ayoze Perez should have done much better from the ensuing corner but he sent it over the bar from close range.