Birmingham (1) 3 (Morrison 31, Enckleman (og) 76, Horsfield 83)
Aston Villa (0) 0

Birmingham took the lead just after the half hour mark and it was well
deserved after their early play. A long ball into the Villa area was missed
by Steve Staunton, striking Robbie Savage on the leg. It fell for Clinton
Morrison, who, totally unmarked, hooked the ball past Enckleman, sparking a
mini-crowd invasion from the joyous home fans. We then witnessed one of the
most astonishing incidents that you are ever likely to see whilst watching
football. Steve Staunton took a throw-in, level with the edge of his own
area and sent it back to his own keeper. However, as Enckleman went to trap
it, he took his eye off the ball and allowed it to roll almost
apologetically into the bottom corner. Villa protested that the goalie never
touched the ball, thereby making the goal illegal, however after consulting
with his linesman, referee David Elleray ruled that he did get studs on the
ball and that the goal would stand. That remarkable moment ended the game as
a contest, although the mistakes and the goals weren't over. This time the
player responsible was Alpay, as he lost possession on the edge of his own
area, allowing sub Geoff Horsfield to steal in and shoot inside the near


Manchester City (0) 2 (Anelka 79, Goater 90)
Blackburn (1) 2 (Thompson 27, Cole 53)

RED CARD : Tiatto (Man City 66)

Manchester City showed remarkable character to come from one man and two goals
down, to force a late draw against Blackburn. The visitors took the lead in the
first half when Marc Vivien Foe's poor pass went straight to David Thompson, who
took full advantage to fire the ball home. The lead was doubled when City again
lost possession in their own half, leading to Keith Gillespie to send Andy Cole
through and the former Man United striker drilled in via the legs of Schmeichel.
On came Shaun Goater and Danny Tiatto and within the five minutes, the latter
made a spectacular impact with a two footed challenge on Thompson. Having
consulted with both assistants, the referee showed a straight red card.
Remarkably, City then stepped up a gear and pulled a goal back when Nik Anelka
netted from Eyal Berkovic's cutback. With time almost up, City grabbed a
sensational late leveller as Goater found the net after good work from Distin.

Tottenham (0) 3 (Davies 62, Sheringham (pen) 71, Gardner 89)
West Ham (0) 2 (Kanoute 66, Sinclair 77)
RED CARD : Pearce (West Ham) 70

A typical game of two halves at White Hart Lane as Spurs made hard work of
moving into second place. It took over an hour for the deadlock to be broken
when Simon Davies converted Matt Etherington's cross, however within four
minutes, Freddie Kanoute tapped in from close range after Christian Dailly had
nodded back a Paolo di Canio cross. Spurs then regained the lead when Robbie
Keane showed brilliant skill to beat Ian Pearce, only to be tripped as he shaped
to shoot. Teddy Sheringham converted the penalty as Pearce was sent off for a
professional foul. West Ham didn't give up through and equalised again when a
quick Di Canio free kick saw Trevor Sinclair help the ball past Kasey Keller. A
draw looked likely until a minute from time when Antony Gardner spotted space
ahead of him and ran unchallenged, before his 20 yard shot deflected into the
bottom corner.


Bolton (0) 2 (Gardner 57, Campo 87)
Liverpool (1) 3 (Baros 45, 74, Heskey 88)

Liverpool left it late to see off Bolton in a topsy-turvey encounter at the
Reebok. With Michael Owen dropped to the subs bench, Milan Baros made his debut
one to remember as he scored twice, firstly blasting home from the edge of the
area after Bruno Cheyrou had dummied Dietmar Hamann's pass, and then volleying
in a Steven Gerrard cross. In between, Ricardo Gardner had equalised, finishing
well after Dean Holdsworth had headed on Simon Charlton's long ball. Bolton
thought they'd snatched a point with three minutes to go when Ivan Campo ghosted
in at the far post to thump in Kevin Nolan's cross, however a minute later,
Emile Heskey prodded the ball home after Riise had sent him in on goal.

Charlton (0) 0
Arsenal (1) 3 (Henry 45, Wiltord 67, Edu 89)

Arsenal stay top with another clinical display, this time at Charlton. It took
almost half the game for the opening goal to arrive, however it was a beauty as
Thierry Henry thumped home from the edge of the area after Dennis Bergkamp had
set him up. Midway through the second half, Slyvain Wiltord was greeted with a
tap in after Patrick Vieira had done the hard work, and late on Edu added a
third with a looping header from Henry's cross.

Chelsea (2) 3 (Gudjohnsen 13, 58, Zola 25)
Newcastle (0) 0

Chelsea thumped Newcastle at Stamford Bridge, largely thanks to 36-year old
Gianfranco Zola. The diminutive Italian scored Chelsea's second with a deflected
free kick and set up the third for Eidur Gudjohnsen, after he and Zenden had
trapped visting keeper Shay Given in the corner with Aaron Hughes, forcing an
error. Gudjohnsen began the scoring as well with a fine header in off the post
from Zenden's cross.

Everton (1) 2 (Campbell 32, 77)
Middlesbrough (1) 1 (Nemeth 11)

Everton came from behind to beat Middlesbrough at Goodison Park. Boro took the
lead when Szilard Nemeth had a tap in after Massimo Maccarone's shot was
half-saved by Paul Gerrard. The equaliser came from Kevin Campbell, lethal from
two yards after Tomasz Radzinski had headed against the post and Campbell was on
hand to grab a late winner, glancing home a header from Thomas Gravesen's

Leeds United (0) 1 (Kewell 66)
Manchester United (0) 0

The second defeat in four days for Man United and Leeds' first win over the side
from Old Trafford in five years. The only goal came from the head of an unmarked
Harry Kewell after Ian Harte had crossed from the left. The visitors felt they
should have had a penalty when Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was held by Jon Woodgate,
however Leeds will point to an elbowing incident when David Beckham appeared to
catch Lee Bowyer in the face.

Sunderland (0) 0
Fulham (1) 3 (Inamoto 34, Hayles 54, Marlet 79)

Junichi Inamoto stole the show at the Stadium of Light as Fulham swept aside
struggling Sunderland. The Japanese star scored the first with a far post shot
after Rufus Brevett had crossed from the right, and then made the other two,
firstly for Barry Hayles to burst through after a poor kick from Sorensen and
then for Steve Marlet, whose finish was emphatic.

West Brom (0) 1 (Gregan 79)
Southampton (0) 0
RED CARD : Williams (Southampton) 84

A poor game at the Hawthorns, but a third successive 1-0 win for West Brom. The
only goal came from a long range effort by Sean Gregan, who shot deceived keeper
Paul Jones, bobbling over his out-stretched body and into the net, almost
apologetically. Saints misery was complete when Paul Williams was unluckily
shown a second yellow card for holding back Jason Roberts.

Gary Dowden
Chief Editor SoccerAge UK