20 April 2005

Aston Villa (0) 0
Charlton (0) 0

Aston Villa and Charlton keep their faint European hopes alive after
battling out a drab goalless draw at Villa Park. The hosts came closest
to scoring when Nol Solano's curling effort was cleared off the line and
against the bar by Danny Murphy, however both clubs seem to be looking
toward next season.

Attendance : 36,053
Assist : n/a

Blackburn (1) 1 (Pedersen 45)
Crystal Palace (0) 0

Blackburn eased their relegation concerns whilst heaping more of the
same onto Crystal Palace who remain in the drop zone. The only goal came
on the stroke of half time when Robbie Savage swung in a free kick for
Morton Gamst Pedersen to slide in and find the back of the net via the
underside of the bar.

Attendance : 18,006
Assist : Savage (fk)

Chelsea (0) 0
Arsenal (0) 0

Chelsea took another small step toward the title with a goalless draw
against nearest rivals Arsenal at Stamford Bridge. Arsenal began well
and had the better of the early exchanges, culminating in two glorious
chances for Robert Pires who smashed one blistering shot against the bar and
then sent an easier chance wide from eight yards out. Whilst the Gunners
continued to dominate possession, Chelsea did create opportunities as
the half wore on as Frank Lampard had a shot saved, Eidir Gudjohnsen headed
wide and Didier Drogba was denied by the foot of keeper Jens Lehmann having
been set up by Joe Cole. Roles were reversed shortly afterwards, however
Drogba's pass was slightly ahead of Cole who failed to convert with the goal
gaping. The second half was more of the same with Arsenal seeing plenty of the
ball yet Chelsea coming close as Damien Duff crossed for Drogba to shoot
inches wide ten minutes after the restart. It sparked a good spell of possession
for Chelsea and they came desperately close when a Drogba dummy set up
Lampard to again shoot just wide of the post. Lampard also fizzed a free kick wide
as Arsenal introdued Saturday's supersub Robin Van Persie for the final ten minutes,
however his impact was nothing like the weekend as the game petered out into
a draw, leaving Chelsea still eleven points clear at
the top.

Attendance : 41,621
Assist : n/a

Everton (0) 1 (Ferguson 54)
Man United (0) 0
SENT OFF : Neville (G) 72, Scholes (90) both Man Utd

Fourth placed Everton beat third placed Man United for the first time in
ten years as United lost their heads in a controversial finale. In 1995,
Duncan Ferguson's header won the game for Everton and it was like
Groundhog Day as he did it again, stooping to send a diving header into
the net from Mikael Arteta's free kick. United ploughed forward looking
for an equaliser, however as they made a substitution, Gary Neville
seemed to be goaded by a section of fans and thought it a good idea to
kick the ball straight at them! Doing it in front of the ref wasn't the
most intelligent idea and he was shown a straight red for his petulance.
Equally experienced and equally dopey was Paul Scholes in stoppage time
who, having already been booked, kicked out at Kevin Kilbane and was
promptly shown a second yellow.

Attendance : 37,160
Assists : Arteta (fk)

Man City (0) 3 (Fowler 55, Dunne 80, Sibierski (pen) 86)
Birmingham (0) 0

Man City's dwindling European aspirations remain alive after destroying
Birmingham in the second half at the City of Manchester Stadium. They
needed a fluke to get started as Kiki Musampa's cross was headed against
the post by Robbie Fowler, however it struck keeper Maik Taylor as it
came out and bobbled back into the net. Fowler set up the second as his
chip was headed in by the unlikely figure of Richard Dunne and victory
was complete when Antoine Sibierski calmly converted a penalty after
Clinton Morrison had handled in the area.

Attendance : 42,453
Assists : Musampa, Fowler (fk), n/a

Norwich (0) 2 (Safri 68, Ashton 90)
Newcastle (0) 1 (Kluivert 89)

Dramatic stuff at Carrow Road as bottom club Norwich pulled themselves
to within two points of safety with a last gasp winner against
Newcastle. The home side went ahead with a stunning 30-yard effort from
Youssef Safri who collected a pass from Thomas Helveg and let fly, the
ball crashing in off the underside of the bar. It looked to be enough
until the first minute of stoppage time when Patrick Kluivert equalised
with a shot into the bottom corner after Alan Shearer, who had earlier
missed an absolute sitter from five yards, had been tackled. However, as
the game entered the final 60 seconds, a hopeful cross from Helveg found
Dean Ashton whose towering header found the bottom corner to leave just
two points seperating the bottom four clubs.

Attendance : 25,503
Assists : Helveg, n/a, Helveg

Portsmouth (1) 1 (Kamara 34)
Liverpool (2) 2 (Morientes 4, Luis Garcia 45)

Liverpool's Champions League hopes are back on track after a win at
Portsmouth, although Everton's win against Man United keeps their city
rivals in fifth. They took an early lead when John Arne Riise's cross
was eventually bundled in by Fernando Morientes after his original
effort had been blocked by the keeper, however Portsmouth drew level
when Arjan De Zeeuw's header was cleared off the line, allowing Henri
Kamara to scramble the loose ball in. Liverpool won it on the stroke of
half time when Riise's cross was headed firmly home by Luis Garcia.

Attendance : 20,205
Assists : n/a, n/a, Riise

Spurs (0) 1 (Keane 52)
West Brom (1) 1 (Gera 24)

Honours even at White Hart Lane, although Europe chasing Spurs will see
it as points dropped against relegation candidates West Brom. It was the
strugglers who went ahead when a corner was only half cleared and as it
fell to Zoltan Gera, he drilled a beauty inside the far post from the
edge of the area. Spurs levelled matters early in the second half when
Ledley King's long ball was only partially headed clear by Neil Clement,
allowing Robbie Keane to drive the loose ball into the net.

Attendance : 35,885
Assists : n/a, n/a

19 April 2005

Bolton (1) 1 (Giannakopolous 25)
Southampton (0) 1 (Phillips 69)

Southampton move out of the bottom three, at least until the Wednesday
night games, after coming from behind to earn a creditable draw at
Bolton. The hosts took the lead when Stelios Giannakopolous crashed in a
close range header from El-Hadji Diouf's cross, however Saints earned a
crucial point when a long ball from Rory Delap gave Kevin Phillips a
sight of goal and he drilled in an equaliser which also denied Bolton a
top four position.

Attendance : 25,125
Assists : Diouf, Delap

Middlesbrough (0) 1 (Zenden (pen) 90)
Fulham (0) 1 (McBride 82)

Late drama and controversy at the Riverside as Fulham were left furious
by a last minute penalty awarded to the home side. Fulham went ahead
with just eight minutes to go when Brian McBride drilled in a cross from
Thomasz Radzinski, however with time running out, Boro striker Jimmy
Flody Hasselbaink chased a long ball and as keeper Edwin van der Sar
came out, he caught Hasselbaink as he attempted to clear the ball and
although the forward fell into the area, replays showed that the contact
was clearly outside. Cup Final referee Rob Styles pointed to the spot
though and Bolo Zenden converted with ease, sparking angry scenes at the
final whistle as Fulham boss Chris Coleman had to be restrained from
approaching the official.

Attendance : 30,650
Assists : Radzinki, Hasselbaink (won pen)

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