29 February 2004

Leeds (2) 2 (Bakke 29, Viduka 34)
Liverpool (2) 2 (Kewell 21, Baros 41)

Leeds and Liverpool shared four goals at Elland Road after a pulsating
encounter which either club could have won. Liverpool created the better
chances early on and it was therefore no surprise to see the visitors take
the lead and equally no surprise to see Harry Kewell silence the home fans
with a superb goal. Milan Baros found Kewell on the left edge of the area
and he curled a beauty of a shot into the far corner. It sparked a goal
blitz as three more followed in twenty minutes, the two of which saw Leeds
come from behind and go ahead, firstly when Alan Smith's header found
Jermaine Pennant who played a square ball to Eirik Bakke who slotted in from
just inside the area. Five minutes later, Smith was involved again as he
sent Mark Viduka clear to lob Chris Kirkland and put Leeds ahead. Between
the two home goals, Baros thudded a header against the bar whilst both Smith
and Didier Domi were off target for Leeds as the game became wide open.
Liverpool levelled matters four minutes from the break and it was another
stunning strike as Dietmar Hamann found Baros who jinked into a shooting
position and fired into the corner from the edge of the area.

Portsmouth (0) 1 (Lua-Lua 89)
Newcastle (1) 1 (Bellamy 34)

On-loan striker Lomana Lua-Lua scored a late equaliser to earn his temporary
employers a point - ironically against the side that loaned him out and are,
presumably, still paying his wages! The visitors took the lead with a fourth
goal in as many games from Craig Bellamy who finished well after a good run
and cross from Kieron Dyer. It looked to be enough until the final minute
when Lua-Lua took advantage of Newcastle not clearing the ball and crashed a
volley into the bottom corner.

28 February 2004

Arsenal (2) 2 (Pires 2, Henry 4)
Charlton (0) 1 (Jensen 59)

Arsenal increased their lead at the top to nine points, although despite a
dream start, they were made to sweat against Charlton. Two goals in the
opening four minutes put Arsenal in command, firstly when Robert Pires
tapped in at the far post from Freddie Ljungberg's cross and then Thierry
Henry controlled and finished well from a ball in by Patrik Vieira. The
visitors pulled one back in the second half from a superbly struck free kick
by Claus Jensen which went in off the post, however despite a spirited
comeback and a late effort which struck the post, the equaliser didn't come.

Blackburn (0) 1 (Cole 52)
Southampton (1) 1 (Phillips 5)

Blackburn earned a useful point at home to Southampton, although once again
they needed a jolt of a goal against them to really find their feet. The
strike in question came from Kevin Phillips who volleyed home after James
Beattie headed the ball into his path, however early in the second half,
Rovers levelled matters when Saints failed to clear on the edge of the area
and after a couple of ricochets, the ball fell to Andy Cole who drilled in.

Everton (0) 2 (Radzinski 78, Gravesen 84)
Aston Villa (0) 0

Two late goals gave Everton some breathing space in the relegation dog fight
as Aston Villa's recent rise up the table was halted. Sub Thomas Radzinski
was the spark that the hosts needed as he nodded in a cross from Wayne
Rooney to break the deadlock and then found Thomas Gravesen in midfield,
allowing the Dane to embark on a wonderful solo run, culminating in a fine

Fulham (0) 1 (Boa Morte 64)
Man United (1) 1 (Saha 14)

Man United drop to third after a second successive draw and a third
successive league game without a win as Fulham came from behind to earn a
draw. Former Fulham striker Louis Saha, who left six weeks ago to join the
Red Devils, almost scored against his former side within ten seconds of kick
off, however he didn't have much longer to wait as he collected a pass from
Cristiano Ronaldo before striking a fierce shot into the back of the net.
The hosts equaliser just after the hour when Brian McBride found Luis Boa
Morte and he found the net with a near post effort which seemed to go under
keeper Roy Carroll. United were furious late on when Edwin van Der Sar
brought down Saha in the area only to be denied what looked a clear cut

Leicester (0) 0
Wolves (0) 0

Wolves move out of the bottom three after a goalless draw against felloe
relegation strugglers Leicester. Chances were few and far between, although
Kenny Miller did bring a decent save out of Ian Walker, whilst sub Les
Ferdinand was denied by Paul Jones at the other end.

Man City (0) 0
Chelsea (0) 1 (Gudjohnsen 82)

Chelsea move into second on goal difference thanks to a late goal against
Man City after the home side had dominated the second half. The only goal
came eight minutes from time after Eidur Gudjohnsen broke the offside trap
to run onto Wayne Bridge's pass and lob past David James.

Gary Dowden - Joint Admin Topica Premier-L list
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