25 August 2004

Arsenal (0) 3 (Henry 50, Fabregas 58, Reyes 79)
Blackburn (0) 0

Arsenal break Nottm Forest's record of 42 games unbeaten in the top flight as they
recorded their 43rd such match with a comfortable win against Blackburn. It wasn't
always plain sailing though as it took the Gunners 50 minutes to break through when
Dennis Bergkamp's cross was prodded into the roof of the net by Thierry Henry. There
was no looking back after that as Henry's corner was headed powerfully home by
Gilberto and then late on, Henry was sent clear only for his shot to be saved by
Brad Friedel, however the Frenchman was first to the rebound and set up
Jose Antonio Reyes for a tap in.

Charlton (2) 3 (Jeffers 29, 34, Young 58)
Aston Villa (0) 0

Two goals in five minutes from Francis Jeffers helped Charlton record a fine victory
against a fancied Aston Villa side at the Valley. His first came on the half hour
when Hermann Hreidarsson's fine cross was nodded into the corner well and he
doubled the lead when Radostin Kishishev's long ball was miskicked by Olof Mellberg,
allowing Jeffers through to slot in. Kishishev also had a hand in the third as his
through ball was prodded home by Luke Young, his first Charlton goal in his
100th appearance.

Fulham (0) 0
Middlesbrough (0) 2 (Viduka 54, Nemeth 79)

Fulham were brought down to earth after their weekend return to Craven Cottage as
Middlesbrough netted two second half goals to collect all three points. New signing
Mark Viduka scored the first on his debut as he finished well at the near post from
Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink's cross and with eleven minutes left, Franck Queudrue's
cross was converted at the far post by Slizard Nemeth.

Newcastle (1) 2 (Bellamy 40, Hughes 50)
Norwich (0) 2 (Bentley 52, Doherty 79)

Norwich came from two goals down to earn a superb point at Newcastle who are
struggling to kick their season into gear. The hosts took the lead when Stephen
Carr's cross was nodded back by Alan Shearer for Craig Bellamy to volley in at
the far post. The lead was doubled when an unmarked Aaron Hughes found
space to nod home a Laurent Robert corner, however within two minutes,
Paul McVeigh found David Bentley whose run and shot found the bottom corner
after keeper Shay Given allowed the effort to squirm under him. The recovery
was complete when Gary Doherty fired in from close range after Darren Huckerby's
shot was saved.

Southampton (0) 1 (Crouch 85)
Bolton (2) 2 (Pedersen 7, Okocha (pen) 27)

Having sacked manager Paul Sturrock on Monday, Southampton's week didn't improve
with a home defeat against Bolton. The visitors took the lead when Bruno
N'Gotty's long ball found Henrik Pedersen whose crisp shot found the corner from the
edge of the area. Twenty minutes later, Stelios Giannokopoulos was tripped in the
area by Darren Higginbotham, allowing Jay-Jay Okocha to send the keeper the
wrong way from the penalty spot. Saints pulled a late goal back when Peter
Crouch bundled in a cross from Paul Telfer at the far post, however it was
too little, too late.

West Brom (1) 1 (Gera 3)
Spurs (1) 1 (Defoe 34)

Honours even at the Hawthorns as West Brom and Spurs shared two goals.
The home side went ahead early on when Ricardo Scimeca's header fell to Zoltan
Gera who controlled well and then shot into the bottom corner, however Spurs
earned a draw when Jermain Defoe played a one-two with Fredi Kanoute and
drilled into the net from the edge of the area, although keeper Russell Hoult did
seem to allow the ball to go under his body.

24 August 2004

Birmingham (1) 1 (Heskey 8)
Man City (0) 0

Emile Heskey's first goal for Birmingham gave the Midlanders their first win of the new
campaign as Man City still look for their opening three-pointer. The only goal came
early on as Stan Lazaridis did well on the left to find space to cross and Heskey
out-muscled two defenders to head powerfully home.

Crystal Palace (0) 0
Chelsea (1) 2 (Drogba 28, Tiago 73)

Played three, won three, conceded zero! Not a bad start to the Mourinho era at
Chelsea after their comfortable 2-0 win at Crystal Palace sent them top of the
table. In truth, Chelsea rarely looked like getting anything but a win as Palace
were content to concede possession and hope to catch their opponents on the
break. It was never likely to work and so it proved. Two of the expensive
summer arrivals got on the scoresheet as firstly 24m Didier Drogba rose
superbly to head home Celestine Babayaro's cross and in the second half,
Tiago made space on the edge of the area before drilling his effort into the
bottom corner. As comfortable a two-goal win as you're ever likely to see.

Gary Dowden
Chief Editor SoccerAge UK

Gary Dowden - Joint Admin Topica Premier-L list
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