12 April 2003

Birmingham (1) 2 (Hughes 43, Dugarry 60)
Sunderland (0) 0
RED CARD : Stewart (Sunderland) 82

Sunderland are relegated from the Premiership after a 2-0 defeat at the
hands of Birmingham - the Black Cats 10th successive league defeat and 15th
game without a win. The result was rarely in doubt after the hosts took the
lead just before half time when Brian Hughes lobbed Mart Poom from 25 yards
after the former Derby keeper had punched a cross weakly away. On the hour,
the lead was doubled when again Poom failed to clear his lines from a Stan
Lazaridis free kick, allowing Christophe Dugarry to nod the ball in.
Sunderland's frustration got the better of them late on when Marcus Stewart
was red carded for a wild hack at Stern John by the corner flag.

Blackburn (1) 1 (Duff 34)
Charlton (0) 0

Blackburn continued their hunt for a European spot after a narrow victory
over faltering Charlton. The only goal came just after the half hour mark as
a Brad Friedal goal kick was headed on by Hakan Sukur, allowing Damien Duff
to control and finish well.

Chelsea (0) 1 (Cole 58)
Bolton (0) 0

Chelsea remain in fourth place after a tight win over Bolton, who are now
just three points above the relegation zone. The winner came just before the
hour as Emmanuel Petit sent Carlton Cole through, the youngster showing good
control to hold off his marker and bundle the ball in. Bolton face West Ham
next week - the club one place, and three points, below them!

Leeds (1) 2 (Viduka 31, (pen) 76)
Spurs (2) 2 (Sheringham 37, Keane 39)

Honours even at Elland Road as both sides took, and then lost, the lead.
Leeds dominated early on and went ahead when Harry Kewell found Mark Viduka
who turned well and shot into the corner. Spurs levelled matters when Darren
Anderton's corner was flicked on by Goran Bunjevcevic and headed powerfully
in at the far post by Teddy Sheringham. Two minutes later, Leeds were stung
the curse of the former player as Robbie Keane, who left Elland Rd for Spurs
in August, beat three men before finding the corner - his second goal
against Leeds since leaving the club. Parity was restored late on when Kasey
Kellar hauled back Kewell in the area, allowing Viduka to cooly grab his
second of the game from the penalty spot.

Liverpool (1) 2 (Heskey 36, Owen 59)
Fulham (0) 0

Soon-to-be-managerless Fulham remain in the relegation dog fight after a
defeat at Liverpool, who themselves still harbour Champions League hopes.
Emile Heskey opened the scoring with a rare goal, volleying in after John
Arne Riise's free kick was only half cleared and Michael Owen doubled the
lead when he was sent clear by Vladimir Smicer and made no mistake
one-on-one with the keeper.

Man City (0) 0
Middlesbrough (0) 0

Poor game at Maine Road as two mid-table clubs fought out a drab goalless
draw. The closest we came to a goal was when Peter Schmeichel's clearance
thudded against Malcolm Christie but went wide of the empty net. One for
insomniacs only.

West Brom (1) 1 (Balis (pen) 18)
Everton (2) 2 (Weir 23, Campbell 45)

Everton came from behind to beat West Brom, who now need to win all of their
remaining five games to have any chance of avoiding the drop. It began well
for the Baggies when Alan Stubbs handled in the area, allowing Igor Balis to
slot in the penalty, however things soon turned upside down when a Mark
Pembridge corner was punched into his own net by Russell Hoult, under
pressure from David Weir. Hoult was also at fault for the winner as he
flapped at a cross from Joseph Yobo, the ball falling to Wayne Rooney who
sent up Kevin Campbell for a tap in.

West Ham (1) 2 (Sinclair 15, Kanoute 65)
Aston Villa (1) 2 (Vassell (pen) 26, Leonhardsen 53)

West Ham remain in the bottom three after a pulsating draw against Aston
Villa, who are still not safe from the drop themselves. The hosts took the
lead when Freddie Kanoute's cross was controlled and finished well at the
far post by Trevor Sinclair, however Villa soon levelled matters from the
penalty spot after Thomas Repka pushed Marcus Allback, Darius Vassell cooly
netting the spot kick. Villa then took the lead when sub Oyvind Leonhardsen
scored at the far post after a fine cross from Gareth Barry, but the Hammers
earned a crucial point when Kanoute fired home after a fine pass from Joe
Cole gave him the chance.

Newcastle (1) 2 (Jenas 20, Ameobi 89)
Man United (4) 6 (Solskjaer 32, Scholes 34, 38, 52 Giggs 44, Van Nistelrooy (pen) 58)

Paul Scholes scored a hat trick as Manchester United demolished third placed
Newcastle 6-2 at St James Park, taking top spot from Arsenal ahead of their
Highbury showdown on Wednesday. Man United dominated an amazing first half
which saw them go behind and then score four in a sensational thirteen
minute spell before the interval. The hosts took the lead in spectacular
style when Craig Bellamy's header was saved by Fabien Barthez and after it
was half cleared, Jermaine Jenas drilled in a beauty from 25 yards which
found the top corner. Just after the half hour, the visitors equalised when
Ryan Giggs' cross found Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who had broken the offside
trap to control, turn and fire into the bottom corner. It opened the
proverbial floodgates. Within two minutes, Paul Scholes played a neat
one-two with Solskjaer to volley United ahead and then with the home side
barely recovered, Scholes scored his second with a long range effort after a
good run by Giggs and a lay off from Wes Brown. It got even better before
half time as John O'Shea showed superb skill on the left to cut inside and
hammer a shot against the bar, Giggs was on hand to thump home number four.
The second half began as the first ended, with more goals from the visitors.
Firstly, Scholes completed his hat trick with a far post tap in after sub
Gary Neville had crossed from the right and then another sub, Diego Forlan,
was tripped in the area by Titus Bramble, allowing Ruud van Nistelrooy to
place home his customary spot kick for number six. They seemed to ease off a
little for the final half an hour, although Forlan could have easily scored
a hat trick himself, however having drawn level with Arsenal on goal
difference, a late Newcastle goal did dent that acheivement slightly.
Barthez was at fault as his por clearance fell to Jenas. He sent Shola
Ameobi clear to clip over the keeper and into the net. The win puts United
three points clear of Arsenal, having played a game more.

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