10 May 2007
TOTTENHAM 1 (Defoe 67)
BLACKBURN 1 (McCarthy 32)
Spurs need just a point from their final game to secure UEFA Cup football next season following their home draw with Blackburn which in turn ended Rovers' chance of European football. They did take the lead after an uninspiring start when Morten Gamst Pedersen crossed deep for Benni McCarthy to head firmly home. Spurs levelled midway through the second half when Dimitar Berbatov turned in the area and although his shot was saved, it ran clear for Jermaine Defoe to tap in. Stoppage time saw Robbie Keane hit the inside of the post for Spurs and then Jason Roberts booked twice in 15 seconds! Firstly he pulled back Didier Zokora to earn a yellow and then for the second booking he either said too much to the referee or delayed the taking of the free kick by throwing the ball in the air. Whichever it was for, he was off.
Attendance : 35,974
Red Card : Roberts 94 (Blackburn)
Assists : Pedersen, n/a
9 May 2007
MANCHESTER UNITED 0
The outgoing Champions hosted the new Champions in a game that could have decided the title yet ultimately was a high-profile end-of-season meaningless match.
Both clubs started with what could best be described as line ups which allowed key players to be rested and for the majority of the first half it showed although United keeper Tomasz Kuszczak did save well from Shaun Wright-Phillips. United's best chance fell to Gabriel Heinze who shot wide on the stretch from a decent position.
After the break it remained tepid although United looked to have been denied a penalty when Essien fouled Chris Eagles in the area. What chances there were fell to Chelsea though with Kieren Lee clearing a shot off the line and Salomon Kalou forcing a save from Kuszczak.
The pair meet in the FA Cup Final in ten days time when the starting XI's will undoubtedly be different and hopefully so will the excitement factor for the neutrals.
Attendance : 41,794
Assist : n/a
7 May 2007
TOTTENHAM 2 (Berbatov 7, Defoe 91)
Charlton are relegated after failing to get the victory needed at home to Spurs, the game ending in a 2-0 win for Spurs whose quest for a UEFA Cup place looks to be successful.
Charlton looked nervy early on but just seemed to be finding their feet when they went behind. Ledley King played the ball out of defence for Dimitar Berbatov on the half way line. A superb first touch flicked the ball past Talal El Karkouri and Berbatov then showed great strength and speed to hold of his man and clip the ball past Scott Carson and inside the far post. Charlton did create chances with decent efforts falling to Alex Song who sent an unmarked header wide and Darren Bent who burst clear only to shoot wide of the near post.
The second half saw few chances at either end as the clock clicked steadily towards the seemingly inevitable for Charlton. Darren Ambrose did hit a shot well from the edge of the area only for it to strike team mate Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink and sail away to safety and despite forcing a number of corners, Charlton simply couldn't get that telling touch. Salt was rubbed into the wounds in stoppage time when Berbatov sent sub Jermaine Defoe through and his deflected effort from the edge of the box sailed over Carson and into the net.
Attendance : 26,339
Assist : King, Berbatov
6 May 2007
ARSENAL (Gilberto Silva 43)
CHELSEA 1 (Essien 70)
Manchester United are the Premiership champions for the first time in four years after closest rivals Chelsea failed to get the required victory at Arsenal, drawing 1-1 having played for more than half the game with ten men.
On a weekend where the title race has been dominated by penalties, it was no real surprise to see a spot kick open the scoring at the Emirates. Julio Baptiste found space and burst through only for Khalid Boulahrouz to catch him clumsily on the back of his leg bringing him down and earning a red card as he was last man. Gilberto Silva sent Petr Cech the wrong way from the spot at the end of a first half almost devoid of other chances.
After the break Arsenal looked to increase their lead as Emmanuel Adebayor shot across goal and wide whilst ex-Chelsea man William Gallas headed over from a great position. The equaliser came out of nothing as Arsenal cleared a corner to the right where Shaun Wright-Phillips beat his man to send a superb cross in for Michael Essien to glance home a header at the near post. Joe Cole did find the net from the edge of the area a few minutes later only to be correctly denied by the offside flag whilst Essien fizzed a shot wide on the turn as the ten men pushed more and more forward into the last ten minutes. John Terry headed a tricky chance wide and Frank Lampard forced a save from Jens Lehmann as the proverbial kitchen sink was thrown forward. Chelsea were being caught on the break and Alexandre Hleb should have scored from a tight angle whilst at the other end, Saloman Kalou was denied a dramatic winner by a wonderful save from Lehmann. The last action saw Emmanuel Eboue smash Cech's bar but the final whistle shortly afterwards confirmed United's title.
All credit to Man United for their title win. They've been the best side all season and certainly the most exciting to watch. Chelsea will hope to get revenge on Wednesday when they meet in the league and in the Cup Final but ultimately they've been denied a third successive Premiership title by the only side to have won three in a row since the league rename in the early 90s.
Attendance : 60,102
Assists : Baptista (won pen), Wright-Phillips
5 May 2007
ASTON VILLA 3 (Agbonlahor 25, Young 42, Berger 60)
SHEFFIELD UNITED 0
Sheffield United remain in relegation trouble after being well and truly swept aside at Villa Park. After a slow opening to the game, Villa took command midway through the first half when Gabriel Agbonlahor produced a goal from nowhere as he collected a throw in 25 yards from goal, turned Matthew Kilgallon with ease and walloped a shot across Paddy Kelly with ripped into the back of the net. Agbonlahor was also involved in the second before half time as he played the ball wide to Ashley Young who cut into the area and after a Ronaldo-style stepover, fired the ball from a tricky angle below the keeper and inside the far post. The third goal was superbly well worked as an intricate series of passes ended with Partik Berger playing a neat one-two with John Carew on the edge of the box and then slotted in off the far post. United were clearly rattled, never more illustrated when Kenny threw the ball at team mate Killgallon after a misunderstanding at the back. A win for United against fellow strugglers Wigan in their final game will confirm safety and a draw may be enough depending on the Charlton result at Spurs on Monday.
Attendance : 42,551
Assists : Bouma? (throw-in), Agbonlahor, Carew
EVERTON 3 (Arteta 59 Pen, Yobo 62, Naysmith 94)
Barring a series of freak results, Everton are in the UEFA Cup next season after beating fellow European hopefuls Portsmouth at Goodison. They needed a penalty to get started though when James Vaughan was tripped by Glen Johnson, leaving Mikel Arteta to score from the spot although David James did get hands to the effort. The second followed quickly as Joseph Yobo was left unmarked to head in Fernandes's corner and in the last minute, another Arteta corner, this time from the left was flicked on by James Beattie and dispatched at the far post with a diving header from Gary Naysmith.
Attendance : 39,619
Assists : Vaughn (won pen), Fernandes (ck), Beattie
FULHAM 1 (Dempsey 69)
Fulham are safe from the drop after a tense victory over Liverpool whose season really depends on the CL final against Milan. Clint Dempsey was the unlikely scorer, sweeping in a cross from Liam Rosenior and the only sour moment came in the last seconds when Papa Bouba Diop was red carded for a late challenge on Mohammed Sissoko, his second yellow of the game.
Attendance : 24,554
Assist : Rosenior
BLACKBURN 2 (McCarthy 14, Roberts 73)
Blackburn's slim UEFA Cup hopes remain alive after a goal in each half saw off Newcastle whose fans are left to look back on another mediocre season. Stephen Warnock's cross led to the first as Benni McCarthy remained onside to volley in from close range. The second and deciding goal came from a fine run and cross from David Bentley which was headed in by Jason Roberts.
Attendance : 51,226
Assists : Warnock, Bentley
WATFORD 2 (Shittu 60, King 84)
Bottom club and already relegated Watford put a severe dent in Reading's European hopes with a win at the Madejski. They went ahead on the hour when Lee Williamson's free kick saw the defence move out almost en masse, however it wasn't quite well organised enough and having been played onside, Danny Shittu drove the ball in. Watford doubled the lead late on when Tommy Smith's cross was dropped by Marcus Hahnemann and left Marlon King with the easiest of headers.
Attendance : 23,294
Assists : Williamson, n/a
WEST HAM 3 (Tevez 10 fk, Tevez 21, Noble 29)
BOLTON 1 (Speed 67)
West Ham's revival is almost complete after a superb first half display swept Bolton aside. Carlos Tevez shrugged off a tricky week off the pitch to curl in a 20 yard free kick on ten minutes and netted again shortly afterwards when he slotted in after unselfish work from Luis Boa Morte. Mark Noble's excellent far post volley made it three before the half hour as Tevez turned provider with a cross and it was effectively game over. Bolton did pull one back when Nik Anelka set up Gary Speed to wrong foot the keeper but the Hammers earned another vital three points.
Attendance : 34,404
Assists : Tevez (won fk), Boa Morte, Tevez, Anelka
MIDDLESBROUGH 1 (Viduka 29)
Wigan drop into the bottom three and now need to win their final game at Sheffield United to stay up after defeat at home to Middlesbrough. The only goal was a strange one as Stuart Downing prepared to take a shot at goal from a free kick, however he slipped as he took it to the amusement of the home fans only for the inadvertent chip to find Mark Viduka unmarked at the far post to volley in!
Attendance : 21,204
Assist : Downing (fk)
MANCHESTER CITY 0
MANCHESTER UNITED 1 (Ronaldo 34 Pen)
Man United are on the verge of winning the Premiership after a narrow but well deserved win in the Manchester derby at Eastlands in a game of two penalties. City should have been down to ten men inside the opening minutes when Michael Ball stamped on Cristiano Ronaldo after the ball had broken away. No accident, no question about did he mean it? This was purposeful and had the referee not been following the ball, Ball would have been off. Ronaldo got the best possible revenge later as he bamboozled Ball in the area and was tripped. Clear penalty dispatched by Ronaldo after a couple of pauses in the run up. Most of the remainder of the game was scrappy, however City and Chelsea were handed a lifeline when Ball was fouled in the area by Wes Brown. After some delaying tactics from keeper Edwin Van Der Sar, Darius Vassell stepped up and fired his kick against the legs of the Dutchman. United will clinch the title tomorrow if Chelsea fail to win at Arsenal (will there be a guard of honour on Wednesday if that happens??) or if they draw at Chelsea on Wednesday. As an aside, City have only netted 10 home goals in the league this season - a Premiership record low - and haven't scored at home since Jan 1st!
Attendance : 47,244
Assist : Ronaldo (won pen)
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