14 November 2004

West Brom (1) 1 (Earnshaw 37)
Middlesbrough (1) 2 (Purse (og) 31, Zenden 51)

Bryan Robson's return to management ended with his new West Brom side
losing to former club Middlesbrough. An entertaining first half saw Boro
take the lead when Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink's cross was diverted into his
own net at the near post by Darren Purse. The lead lasted six minutes as
Cosmin Contra, making his first league start for the Baggies, teased
Franck Queudrue on the right and eventually crossed for Robert Earnshaw
to sweep the ball home. Boro began the second half well and regained the
lead when Stuart Downing's cross was met by Bolo Zenden whose looping
header beat the keeper and found the back of the net. In stoppage time,
Kanu missed a glorious close range chance to level matters when it
looked easier to score.

Assists : n/a, Contra, Downing

Newcastle (0) 1 (Shearer 71)
Man United (1) 3 (Rooney 7, 90, Van Nistelrooy (pen) 74)

Two goals from Wayne Rooney helped Man United to a much needed victory
at Newcastle. The visitors went ahead when Darren Fletcher's near post
cross was helped in by Wayne Rooney, however Newcastle had enough
chances to level before the break with Alan Shearer and Patrick Kluivert
both missing good opportunities whilst clean through and Lee Bowyer
having a shot blocked. The second half was a tepid affair until the
final twenty minutes, notably after Newcastle equalised. The goal was
all down to Shearer as he robbed Wes Brown near the right flank, cut
inside and slotted a shot past Roy Carroll and into the net. It should
have sparked a surge forward for the hosts whereas it actually had the
opposite effect as Man United quickly regained the lead. A Rooney run
into the area began it and after his chip from a tight angle was pawed
away by Shay Given, the keeper then brought down Paul Scholes as he went
to collect the ball, allowing Ruud Van Nistelrooy to drill the penalty
into the bottom corner. A late Newcastle revival never materialised and
it was no great surprise to see the visitors add a third in stoppage
time, Rooney blasting home after Van Nistelrooy shot was blocked on the
line by Titus Bramble.

Assists : Fletcher, n/a, Scholes (won pen), n/a

13 November 2004

Spurs (1) 4 (Naybet 37, Defoe 61, King 74, Kanoute 87)
Arsenal (1) 5 (Henry 45, Lauren (pen) 55, Vieira 60, Ljungberg 69, Pires 81)

Arsenal won for the first time in four league games in one of the most
amazing North London derbies of all time as they beat Spurs 5-4 at White
Hart Lane. Even more remarkable was that the first of the record
equalling nine goals didn't arrive until the 37th minute when Michael
Carrick's free kick found it's way to Nourredine Naybet to volley Spurs
ahead at the far post. The Gunners were level in stoppage time when
Lauren's chipped ball sent Thierry Henry away to slot past Paul
Robinson, however it was early in the second half when Spurs really lost
the game. Firstly, as Robinson went to drop kick the ball, it was
knocked out of his grasp by his own player, resulting in Freddie
Ljungberg eventually dribbling past Pamarot into the area and being
hauled back. Lauren calmly converted the penalty to put Arsenal ahead
and five minutes later the lead was doubled. This time, Naybet lost
possession in midfield, allowing Patrick Vieira to slice through the
defence to clip home the third. Within a minute, Jermain Defoe pulled
one back with a superb solo run and shot into the top corner, however
the two goal lead was restored when Cesc Fabregas shaped to shoot on the
edge of the area, only to find Ljungberg with a brilliant reverse pass
and allow the Swede slotted the ball in at the near post. Five minutes
on and Ledley King pulled it back to one goal adrift again with a fine
header from Carrick's free kick, but once again the two goal cushion was
regained when Henry found Robert Pires and as he looked like crossing
from a tight angle, he somehow found the net with a low shot under
Robinson. To their credit, Spurs had dominated the first half and
despite dreadful defending, never gave up the game and when Freddie
Kanoute shot home Reto Ziegler's through ball with three minutes to go,
you wondered if an unlikely equaliser was possible. Ultimately it didn't

Assists : n/a, Lauren, Ljungberg (won pen), n/a, Edman?, Fabregas,
Carrick, Henry, Ziegler

Southampton (1) 2 (Blackstock 18, Phillips 71)
Portsmouth (1) 1 (Jakobsson (og) 12)

Southanpton boss Steve Wigley won for the first time since his
appointment and earned himself a stay of execution as local rivals
Portsmouth were beaten at St Marys. It looked bleak for Saints early on
when a long ball was chased by striker Lomana Lua-Lua and home defender
Andreas Jakobsson, however as the keeper came out to gather, Jakobsson
headed it over him and into his own net, a goal similar to that netted
by Brian Gayle in 1992 when Leeds beat Sheffield United to set up a
league title victory. Back to the present and Saints levelled matters
within six minutes when Portsmouth failed to clear the ball from their
area and after James Beattie tried an airshot, youngster Dexter
Blackstock connected rather better to volley into the net. Kevin
Phillips came off the bench midway through the second half and within
minutes had headed the winner, a neat effort from a free kick floated in
by Jason Dodd.

Assists : og, Beattie, Dodd

Bolton (1) 1 (Diouf 21)
Aston Villa (1) 2 (McCann 41, Hitzlsperger 89)

Two of the top six met at the Reebok as Villa came from behind to beat
Bolton. The home side went ahead when Kevin Nolan's shot headed for the
corner flag only to be diverted into the net by El-Hadji Diouf. Villa
equalised just before half time when Gavin McCann nodded home at the far
post from Lee Hendrie's cross and then won the game late on when Carlton
Cole's cross was cleared to the edge of the area to Thomas Hitzlsperger
who unleashed a brilliant first time volley that tore into roof of the

Assists : Nolan, Hendrie, n/a

Charlton (2) 4 (Johansson 15, 21, Konchesky 75, Euell 88)
Norwich (0) 0

Norwich remain the only Prem club without a win after crashing to a
heavy defeat at Charlton. Jonaton Johansson began the rout with two
early goals, firstly when he headed into the corner after Hermann
Hreidarsson had nodded on a long ball and then he was on hand for a tap
in after Danny Murphy's shot was saved. Paul Konchesky added a third
just seconds after coming on as sub when he slid in at the far post to
convert Luke Young's cross and late on, Johansson turned provider for
Jason Euell to volley in at the near post.

Assists : Hreidarsson, n/a, Young, Johansson

Fulham (0) 1 (Diop 57)
Chelsea (1) 4 (Lampard 33, Robben 59, Gallas 73, Tiago 81)

Chelsea stay top after a crushing victory at West London rivals Fulham.
The leaders went ahead when a free kick was tapped to Frank Lampard who
left veteran keeper Mark Crossley standing to admire his stunning 25
yard shot into the corner. Better was to come with the Fulham equaliser
as a cross was only half cleared to Papa Bouba Diop whose sensational
first time volley arrowed into the bottom corner from a similar
distance. Parity lasted two minutes before Arjen Robben collected the
ball on the edge of the area, jinking through the defence and fired into
the net. William Gallas added the third, stooping low from close range
to nod in Damien Duff's free kick and with nine minutes to go, Robben
and Tiago exchanged passes on the left before the latter cut inside and
shot home from the edge of the area.

Assists : Duff, n/a, n/a, Lampard, Robben

Liverpool (2) 3 (Baros (pen) 23, 45, (pen) 90)
Crystal Palace (1) 2 (Kolkka 44, Hughes 52)

Milan Baros scored a hat trick, including two penalties, as Liverpool
left it late to beat plucky Crystal Palace. The home side went ahead
when Baros was fouled in the area by Mikele Leigertwood and the slotted
the spot kick into the bottom corner, sending the keeper the wrong way.
Palace then equalised when Joonas Kolkka found space on the left and
volleyed a superb shot into the net from a tight angle, however within a
minute, Baros restored Liverpool's lead from close range after Harry
Kewell had cut the ball back. Palace equalised again early in the second
half as Kolkka crossed for Michael Hughes to head home, however with
time almost up, Baros was held in the area by Tony Popovic and again
converted the penalty, although the keeper almost kept it out this time.

Assists : Baros (won pen), Watson, Kewell, Kolkka, Baros (won pen)

Man City (1) 1 (Sibierski 45)
Blackburn (0) 1 (Dickov (pen) 78)
SENT OFF: Mills (Man City) 77

Blackburn move off the bottom after a late penalty gave them a draw at
Man City. The hosts took the lead at the end of the first half when
Antoine Sibierski shot home from close range after Shaun Wright-Phillips
had crossed, however with time edging away, Danny Mills brought down
Paul Dickov in the area and was red carded, allowing Dickov to calmly
equalise against his former club.

Assists : Wight-Phillips, Dickov (won pen)

Birmingham (0) 0
Everton (0) 1 (Gravesen (pen) 69)
SENT OFF: Izzet (Birmingham) 68

Everton consolidate third place with a narrow win at struggling
Birmingham in what was a poor game as regards entertainment. The
breakthrough came midway through the second half when a corner was
cleared to Thomas Gravesen on the edge of the area. His shot was heading
for the top corner before Muzzy Izzet used both hands to push the ball
away from goal. The inevitable red card followed for Izzet and seconds
later, Gravesen slotted the penalty into the bottom corner. In the final
minute, Dwight Yorke had a golden chance to equalise, but blazed over
from six yards out with only the keeper to beat.

Assist : n/a

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