12 September 2005

West Ham (2) 4 (Harewood 25, 29, 50, Benayoun 89)
Aston Villa (0) 0

Marlon Harewood scored a hat trick - the first of the new season in the
Premiership - as West Ham rocketed into the top half of the table after
walloping Aston Villa 4-0. West Ham were deservedly ahead at half time,
thanks to two typical strikers goals from Harewood, although they could
hardly have been much different in their execution. The first came after
he played the ball back to Teddy Sheringham in midfield and as the
veteran nodded the ball forward, Harewood took advantage of a slip from
Olof Mellberg to burst through on goal and slot calmly past keeper
Thomas Sorenseon. Four minutes later, the lead was doubled as a corner
from Matt Etherington was headed goalwards by Anton Ferdinand and as
Sorensen looked to collect, Harewood got a toe to the ball to loop it
over the keeper and in. Early in the second half, Villa came within
inches of getting back into the game as a cross from James Milner
deceived keeper Roy Carroll, hit the inside of the far post, bounced
along the line and came back into play after hitting the other post!
West Ham then went down the other end and increased their lead as a free
kick from the right was floated in by Etherington and as Sorensen came
off his line and misjudged the cross, Harewood controlled and fired in
his third from six yards. Late on, came the icing on the cake as
Sheringham found Yossi Benayoun in the area and after twisting and
turning, he found space and drilled home the fourth and final goal.

Attendance : 29,582
Assists : Sheringham, Ferdinand, Etherington (fk), Sheringham

11 September 2005

Bolton 0
Blackburn 0

The Lancashire derby ended goalless as both Bolton and Blackburn
ultimately cancelled each other out. The first half was hard fought, yet
forgetable as regards chances were concerned, with only Ivan Campo
coming close when the Bolton man headed over from close range just
before half time. Things were a little better after the break, but not
much, although Blackburn looked most likely to score, especially when
Steven Reid capitalised on an error from Henrik Pedersen to fire a shot
goalwards which Jussi Jaaskelainen saved well. The home side were jeered
off, more from boredom than disappointment at the result. 

Attendance : 24,405
Assists : n/a

10 September 2005

Middlesbrough 2 (Yakubu 40, Maccarone 59)
Arsenal 1 (Reyes 93)

Two defeats in four league games now for Arsenal as they were given a
lesson in finishing by an impressive Middlesbrough side. The Gunners
dominated early on, however their tendancy to try and walk the ball into
the net cost them dear as they wasted a host of chances before the home
side went ahead just before half time. George Boateng collected the ball
in midfield and found Yakubu on the edge of the area. He miscontrolled
the ball, but it deceived his marker as he turned to gather it and fire
into the bottom corner. The lead was doubled just before the hour after
Arsenal claimed a penalty when Alexander Hleb went down, albeit easily,
under a challenge in the area from Abel Xavier. Boro then broke straight
away up the other end as Yakubu turned provider to send Massimo
Maccarone through and the Italian kept his cool to slot home. The second
goal seemed to deflate Arsenal and only in stoppage time did they make
any impression when a touch from Hleb put Jose Antonio Reyes clear on
goal and he rounded the keeper to finish with a shot inside the post.

Attendance : 28,075
Assists : Boateng, Yakubu, Hleb

Birmingham 0
Charlton 1 (Bent 15)

Charlton remain 100% and leap into second place after a narrow win at
Birmingham, who are struggling to kick start their season. The only goal
came, almost inevitably, from Darren Bent who lost his marker at the far
post to head home after good work and a pinpoint cross from Jerome

Attendance : 26,846
Assist : Thomas

Chelsea 2 (Geremi 54, Drogba 82)
Sunderland 0

Top against bottom at Stamford Bridge, although Chelsea took their time
breaking down a resolute Sunderland side who still search for their
first point of the season. After a goalless first half, Chelsea finally
broke through when a throw out from away keeper Kelvin Davis was
horribly miscontrolled by sub Andy Welsh and as the ball fell to Geremi,
he smashed it past Davis from fully 25 yards. Chelsea's 100% record was
confirmed late on when Didier Drogba did his party piece and headed home
firmly from Damien Duff's cross.

Attendance : 41,969
Assists : n/a, Duff 

Everton 0
Portsmouth 1 (Ferguson 60 og)

Portsmouth collected their first win of the season and condemned Everton
to a place in the bottom three as Duncan Ferguson handed - or headed -
the visitors a rare three points. The giant Scot was helping out at the
back for a corner and as Laurent Robert swung the ball in, he rose at
the near post to head past his own keeper.

Attendance : 36,831
Assists : n/a

Manchester United 1 (van Nistelrooy 45)
Manchester City 1 (Barton 76)

Honours even in the Manchester derby as City came from behind to stun
their illustrious neighbours at Old Trafford. City defended well but
fell behind in first half stoppage time when Ruud Van Nistelrooy helped
on a bullet of a free kick from Paul Scholes and although keeper David
James saved well, the big Dutchman was on hand to score from the
rebound. City grabbed a point to remain unbeaten and end United's 100%
record when Trevor Sinclair's cross was volleyed goalwards by Andy Cole
and although Edwin Van Der Sar saved well, Darius Vassell sent the
rebound back toward goal and it was helped in by Joey Barton to score
the first goal conceded by United this season.

Attendance : 67,839
Assists : n/a, Vassell

Newcastle 1 (N'Zogbia 78 fk)
Fulham 1 (McBride 13)
Red Card : Parker 83 (Newcastle)

With all eyes on Michael Owen for his Newcastle debut at St James Park,
it was young sub Charles N'Zogbia who took the plaudits with a stunning
equaliser against Fulham. The home side self destructed early on and
handed Fulham a deserved goal when Stuart Taylor's back pass was
intercepted by Thomasz Radzinski. He found Luis Boa Morte on the edge of
the area and as he sent the ball across goal, Jean-Alain Boumsong
slipped as he looked to block it, leaving the goal gaping for Brian
McBride to tap in. With time running out, Newcastle were awarded a free
kick on the right corner of the area and with everyone expecting a
cross, N'Zogbia curled a beauty across goal and sailing into the far top
corner for Newcastle's first league goal of the season. It still ended
on a sour note as Scott Parker was sent off for a second bookable
offence as he held back Claus Jensen, however Toon fans will be hoping
that they are beginning to turn the corner.

Attendance : 52,208
Assists : Boa Morte?, Owen (won fk)

Tottenham 0
Liverpool 0

No goals at White Hart Lane, although it wasn't for the want of trying
as both Spurs and Liverpool had goals disallowed. The hosts were unlucky
early in the second half when Michael Carrick's corner sailed out of
play and then back in before Grzegorz Rasiak headed in powerfully,
however an indentical situation occurred later in the game at the other
end when Steven Gerrard's corner was headed home by Peter Crouch. Both
goals were rightly ruled out. That aside, John Arne Riise came as close
as anyone when he smashed a shot against the underside of the bar with a
stunning long range volley.

Attendance : 36,148
Assists :

West Brom 1 (Greening 26)
Wigan 2 (Connolly 40, Bullard 91)

Unfancied Wigan came from behind to win at West Brom and move into the
top half of the table. The Baggies took the lead when Jonathon
Greening's deflected shot was punched away by Mike Pollett, however it
fell straight back to Greening who cracked the ball into the back of the
net from the edge of the area. Wigan were level before half time when
David Connolly was sent clear by Damien Francis and although the angle
was tricky, he drilled a shot inside the near post. With the game
heading for a draw and Wigan keeping the ball in the corner, the ball
fell to Jason Roberts on the left edge of the area and he set up Jimmy
Bullard to side foot the ball into the bottom corner.

Attendance : 25,617
Assists : n/a, Francis, Roberts

Gary Dowden
Chief Editor SoccerAge UK

Gary Dowden - Joint Admin Topica Premier-L list
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