23 March 2003

Liverpool (2) 3 (Owen 12, Murphy 20, Gerrard 72)
Leeds United (1) 1 (Viduka 44)

Liverpool kept up their bid for a Champions League spot with a comfortable
victory over Leeds and new interim boss Peter Reid. Liverpool battered Leeds
early on and it was no surprise when they took an early lead. El Hadji Diouf
was the provider with a cross which was only half cleared, allowing Michael
Owen to drill the ball inside the near post. Eight minutes later, the lead
was doubled as Leeds seemed to switch off with John Arne Riise down injured
and as Sami Hyypia found Danny Murphy, the England midfielder let fly from
25 yards and found the top corner superbly. Remarkably, Leeds held firm
against further attacks and even more remarkably, pulled one back before
half time. Riise's poor clearance was volleyed across the area by Jason
Wilcox. Mark Viduka's header was saved well by Jerzy Dudek, however the
rebound fell to Viduka again and he rolled the ball over the line. The
second half was more even although Liverpool still created the better
chances, notably when Emile Heskey somehow blazed over a gaping net from ten
yards and Murphy's deflected effort struck the post. The points were secured
though when Owen found space to cross and Steven Gerrard volleyed into the
bottom corner crisply, leaving Leeds still looking anxiously over their

Arsenal (1) 2 (Cygan 8, Vieira 64)
Everton (0) 1 (Rooney 56)

Arsenal regained top spot in the Premiership with a hard fought and
controversial win over a battling Everton side at Highbury. The Gunners
began well and took an early lead when Pascal Cygan headed home a Thierry
Henry corner. Everton levelled matters early in the second half when Kevin
Campbell sent Wayne Rooney away down the right. The youngster ran straight
at Cygan and then cracked a shot just inside the far post from the edge of
the area. The winner came shortly afterwards when a long ball was headed on
by Patrick Vieira, Henry and Dennis Bergkamp, however when the ball dropped,
Everton felt that Bergkamp held back David Unsworth, allowing Vieira to
storm in and crash the ball into the net.

22 March 2003

Birmingham (0) 1 (Horsfield 90)
West Brom (0) 0

Birmingham left it late to win the second city derby, easing their
relegation fears whilst increasing those of West Brom. Geoff Horsfield was
the hero for the hosts, heading home in the fourth minute of stoppage time
after Clinton Morrison's shot had been blocked.

Man United (1) 3 (Van Nistelrooy (pen) 44, 68, 90)
Fulham (0) 0

A hat trick from Ruud vanb Nistelrooy went Manchester United to the top of
the Premiership for the first time this season as Fulham were swept aside
3-0 at Old Trafford. United had the better of the first half although they
didnt take the lead until the latter stages. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer tried to
turn Martin Djetou in the area and was held, the referee having no
hesitation in awarding a penalty. Van Nistelrooy, lethal from 12 yards, made
no mistake finding the bottom corner. Ironically, Djetou had earlier come as
close as anyone to opening the scoring when his 20 yard shot thumped off the
crossbar. Van Nistelrooy's second was a superb solo effort as he collected
the ball in the centre circle, beat five men in a surging run before finding
a neat finish to beat Maik Taylor, although Fulham were angered that he
elbowed Sylvain Legwinski early in the move as he attempted to clear himself
away from the shackles of the Fulham man. Late on, the Dutchman completed
his hat trick with a volley from a Ryan Giggs cross which beat the keeper
via a horrible deflection off of Jon Harley. United will stay top for at
least a day, although Arsenal will regain the position with a draw against
Everton tomorrow.

Chelsea (2) 5 (Hasselbaink 37, Terry 43, Stanic 58, Lampard 69, Gallas 79)
Man City (0) 0
RED CARD: Sun Jihai (Man City) 90

Chelsea kept up their bid for a Champions League spot with a crushing
victory over Man City at Stamford Bridge. The visitors held out until the
37th minute when Gianfranco Zola crossed for Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink to
volley in at the far post, although keeper Peter Schmeichel did get hands to
the ball. Shortly afterwards, John Terry headed a second from a Graeme Le
Saux corner before flicking on a Hasselbaink corner early in the second half
for Mario Stanic to tap in the third. Carlton Cole then set up Frank Lampard
to slot in the fourth goal and with ten minutes to go, Stanic turned
provider to flick on a long ball for William Gallas to lob Schmeichel and
then tap the ball into the empty net. City's misery was complete in stoppage
time when Sun Jihai was red carded for a foul on Lampard, his second
bookable offence.

Middlesbrough (0) 1 (Christie 57)
Charlton (1) 1 (Johansson 26)

Honours even at the Riverside as Middlesbrough came from behind to draw
against Charlton. The visitors took the lead when Kevin Lisbie set up
Jonaton Johannson who finished crisply from the edge of the area. Boro
earned a point when Malcolm Christie was on hand at the near post to turn in
a cross from Franck Queudrue.

Newcastle (1) 5 (Solano 24, Robert 61, Jenas 85, Gresko (og) 89, Bellamy 90)
Blackburn (0) 1 (Duff 54)

Newcastle keep the pressure on the two red machines at the top as they
destroyed Blackburn with a late goal blitz at St James Park. Nol Solano
opened the scoring, nodding in at the far post after good work by Laurent
Robert, however Damien Duff equalised with a stunning volley after David
Dunn's shot was blocked. Robert then restored the lead with a fine free kick
from the right edge of the area, however it was only in the final stages
when Newcastle really took command. With five minutes to go, Aaron Hughes
found Jermaine Jenas who found the net from 20 yards with a fine side footed
effort and shortly afterwards, it was 4-1 when Bratislav Gresko could only
divert a cross from Kieron Dyer into his own net. Craig Bellamy netted a
stoppage time fifth, finishing well from a Hugo Viana cross to complete the

Southampton (1) 2 (Beattie 40, Davies 90)
Aston Villa (2) 2 (Hendrie 30, Vassell 36)

Southampton came from two goals down for the second week in a row as Aston
Villa were pegged back at St Marys. Lee Hendrie gave the visitors the lead
with a fine shot from the edge of the area after Darius Vassell's effort was
blocked and minutes later, Vassell added a second, latching onto an underhit
backpass from Claus Lundekvam to slot home. James Beattie pulled one back
before half time, shooting in off the post after Villa failed to clear a
cross, however just like last week, it was a last minute goal which earned a
point. This time though, Antti Niemi had no part to play as Kevin Davies
took advantage of a sky-ed clearance by Ronny Johnson to volley in.

West Ham (1) 2 (Defoe 24, Kanoute 65)
Sunderland (0) 0

West Ham moved out of the bottom three - until Monday at least - with a
comfortable win over bottom club, and surely doomed, Sunderland. Jermaine
Defoe netted the opener, turning and shooting home after Les Ferdinand's
header set him up and the win was comfirmed in the second half when Freddie
Kanoute was sent clear by Michael Carrick and made no mistake with a
clinical finish.

Gary Dowden - Joint Admin Topica Premier-L list
Leeds United and Scotland and proud of it