27 August 2003

Arsenal (0) 2 (Campbell 57, Henry 90)
Aston Villa (0) 0

Arsenal regained top spot thanks to a last minute goal against Aston Villa,
completing a 2-0 win for the Gunners. They took an hour to break down a
resolute Villa side and even then had the help of their opponents as J.Lloyd
Samuel diverted a corner towards his own goal and although Lee Hendrie
cleared off the line, Sol Campbell was on hand to head in the opener. In
stoppage time, Dennis Bergkamp charged down a clearance from Olof Mellberg,
sending Thierry Henry clear on goal and the Frenchman made no mistake,
shooting home from a tight angle.

Liverpool (0) 0
Spurs (0) 0

No wins and no goals from open play this season for Liverpool after a
goalless draw at home to Spurs. Steven Gerrard ran the show for the hosts
and came closest when his firm effort was well saved by Kasey Keller.

Man United (1) 1 (O'Shea 10)
Wolves (0) 0

Despite the so-called experts predicting an avalanche of goals at Old
Trafford, Man United and Wolves were seperated only by an early John O'Shea
header, indeed the visitors could well have snatched a draw. The only goal
came from a Diego Forlan corner, O'Shea finding space to nod in, although
the keeper did get a hand to the ball. Late in the first half, Wolves
striker Henri Camara missed two glorious chances as United failed to make an
major impressions up front.

26 August 2003

Charlton (1) 2 (Euell (pen) 25, (pen) 49)
Everton (1) 2 (Watson 26, Rooney 72)

Everton twice came from behind to earn a creditable draw at Charlton, with
Wayne Rooney scoring a cracking second equaliser. The hosts took the lead
when Scott Parker's run was brought to an end by David Unsworth, allowing
Jason Euell to send the keeper the wrong way from the spot, however a minute
later, the visitors were level when Steve Watson lobbed in after being sent
clear by Mark Pembridge. Early in the second half, Hermann Hreidarsson was
fouled by Joseph Yobo and Euell repeated his spot kick from earlier. With
time edging away, Gary Naysmith crossed from the left and Rooney took
control of the ball, turned and belted in a superb effort which found the
roof of the net.

Leeds (0) 0
Southampton (0) 0

Both Leeds and Southampton are still looking for their first win after a
goalless draw at Elland Road. Leeds had a goal ruled out for offside early
on, Lamine Sakho marginally ahead of the last man before heading home,
whilst Alan Smith blasted over from close range in the second half. Saints
were largely restricted to long range efforts, with Paul Robinson coping
easily with all shots.

Leicester (0) 0
Middlesbrough (0) 0

Goalless also at the Walkers Stadium as Gaizka Mendieta made his
Middlesbrough debut and shot over in the second half from long range.
Leicester's best effort came from James Scowcroft, however his looping
header just cleared the bar.

Portsmouth (0) 4 (Stone 48, Sheringham 57, 88, (pen) 89
Bolton (0) 0

Portsmouth replaced Man City at the top of the table with a second half
demolition of Bolton. Steve Stone gave the hosts the lead after half time,
bundling in from close range after Patrik Berger's shot was saved and within
ten minutes, the lead was doubled when Boris Zikovic crossed for Teddy
Sheringham to crash a bullet header into the top corner. Two minutes from
time, Sheringham side-footed home after Stone cut the ball back and almost
straight from the kick off, Yakubu was tripped by Ivan Campo, allowing
Sheringham to complete his hat trick from the penalty spot.

25 August 2003

Blackburn (1) 2 (Sinclair (og) 44, Amoruso 61)
Man City (1) 3 (Tarnat 3, Barton 59, Anelka 87)

Manchester City top the Premiership table after a remarkable late goal from
Nik Anelka gave them a 3-2 win in a pulsating encounter away at Blackburn.
City got off to an ideal start as Rovers again conceded inside the opening
three minutes. The unlikely scorer was Michael Tarnat, who swerved a superb
free kick into the bottom corner from fully 30 yards, which Brad Friedel got
his hands to but couldn't keep out. The hosts levelled matters with half
time looming as Brett Emerton swung a corner kick towards the near post and
as David Seaman came off his line to collect, Trevor Sinclair glanced the
ball over him and into his own net. City regained the lead just before the
hour as Joey Barton collected the ball 30 yards out, battled through three
tackles and a dummy from Anelka, before slotting past the keeper, however
within two minutes, Rovers levelled again as Lorenzo Amoruso thumped home a
near post header, again from an Emerton corner. Both clubs had chances to
win it before Amoruso turned villain with a loose back header which Anelka
latched onto and as it looked as though he was running out of space, he
somehow flicked the ball between Friedel's legs and inside the far post from
the tightest of angles.

Gary Dowden
Chief Editor SoccerAge UK

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