15 March 2009

ASTON VILLA 1 (Carew 85)
TOTTENHAM 2 (Jenas 5, Bent 50)

Spurs eased their relegation fears with a fine win at Villa Park. The hosts dominated possession during the first half but were behind early when keeper Brad Friedel could only palm an Aaron Lennon cross away and Jermaine Jenas dived forward to head into the net. Villa almost levelled on half time but Emile Heskey crashed a header against the bar. Amazingly, the second half began in the same way as the first with an early Spurs goal. A shot from Wilson Palacios was parried by the keeper and although Robbie Keane's shot from the rebound would have gone it, Darren Bent made sure by prodding it in just before it crossed the line. Villa pulled one back late on when John Carew headed in a James Milner cross but didn't look like grabbing a point.

Attendance : 41,205
Assists : n/a, Keane, Milner

CHELSEA 1 (Essien 18)

Chelsea keep the pressure on Man United and Liverpool at the top with a narrow, but easily deserved, win against Man City. The only goal came via a Frank Lampard free kick played into the edge of the area where Michael Essien volleyed it goalwards first time and although it came off of his shin, it looped over the keeper and into the net.

Attendance : 41,810
Assist : Lampard

14 March 2009

ARSENAL 4 (Ooijer 2 og, Arshavin 65, Eboue 87, Eboue 91)

Arsenal move into fourth ahead of the Sunday games after a comprehensive home win against Blackburn. They were ahead inside two minutes when a cross from Theo Walcott was met by a crowd of players at the near post, the ball going in off Andre Ooijer who seemed to get in the way of a clearance by one of his own players. Arsenal had to wait over an hour to double the lead when Denilson sent Andrei Arshavin clear down the left and after cutting inside, he fired into the roof of the net from a tight angle. Arshavin's shot was then saved by keeper Paul Robinson but Emmanuel Eboue tapped in the rebound before the same player converted a late penalty after Carlos Vela had been bundled over by Martin Olsson.

Attendance : 60,091
Assists : n/a, Denilson, n/a, Vela (won pen)

BOLTON 1 (Davies 46)
FULHAM 3 (Johnson 42, Davies 56, Kamara 88)

Fulham won away for the first time this season as Bolton were beaten at the Reebok. They needed a helping had to take the lead when Bolton defender Andy O'Brien tapped a back pass past his own keeper and Andy Johnson just reached the loose ball ahead of O'Brien to find the net. The hosts levelled on half time when Mark Davies and a dummy from Johan Elmander found Kevin Davies to take a touch before drilling home. Fulham regained their lead in the second half thanks to Simon Davies who took his time to shoot in after Johnson had hit the bar, although even then the ball only just crossed the line. The win was secured late on as Clint Dempsey set up Diomansy Kamara to score with a low drive.

Attendance : 22,117
Assists : n/a, n/a, n/a, Dempsey

EVERTON 3 (Jo 18, Lescott 24, Fellaini 91)
STOKE 1 (Shawcross 52)

Everton's quest for European football continues after another win at Fortress Goodison, this time against Stoke. Marouane Fellaini set up Jo whose shot was partially saved by Thomas Sorensen but still had enough power to dribble over the line and six minutes later. Tim Cahill's header was saved by the rebound converted by an offside looking Joleon Lescott. Stoke were much better after the break and pulled one back when Ryan Shawcross headed in a corner from Liam Lawrence but Everton grabbed a late third when Fellaini fired in a cross from Leighton Baines aided by a big deflection.

Attendance : 36,396
Assists : n/a, n/a, Lawrence, Baines

HULL 1 (Geovanni 9)
NEWCASTLE 1 (Taylor 38)

Honours even at the KC Stadium leaving Hull, and especially Newcastle, still in the relegation dog fight. Hull went ahead when Geovanni's ball wide found Craig Fagan and his cross was superbly headed in by the Brazilian. Newcastle earned a point when Steven Taylor looped the ball over the keeper from Nicky Butt's cross.

Attendance : 24,914
Assists : Fagan, n/a

MANCHESTER UNITED 1 (Ronaldo 23 Pen)
LIVERPOOL 4 (Torres 28, Gerrard 44 Pen, Aurelio 77 fk, Dossena 91)

Liverpool's slim title hopes remain alive after they came from behind at Old Trafford to amazingly beat league leaders Man United 4-1, United's heaviest home defeat since New Years Day against QPR in 1992.

Liverpool led at the interval despite going behind midway through the half when Carlos Tevez threaded the ball through for Ji-Sung Park to burst into the left side of the area. Liverpool keeper Jose Reina decided to come off of his line and clattered Park as he nicked the ball past him allowing Cristiano Ronaldo to fire in the penalty. Within five minutes, a long ball forward by Martin Skrtel was allowed to bounce by the usually ultra reliable Nemanja Vidic and Fernando Torres made up a few yards to win the ball and then slot past the advancing Edwin Van Der Sar to equalise. With half time approaching, Steven Gerrard was fouled by Patrice Evra for the second blatant penalty of the game and much like Ronaldo's earlier, the keeper went the right way but the sheer pace and direction of Gerrard's spot kick took the ball in as he became the first English player to score against United in the league this season!

Naturally enough United pressed for an equaliser after the break and initially their best hope seemed to be courtesy of Reina who looked unsure and fumbled a couple of crosses. Rooney did bobble a cross back across goal and behind Tevez and minutes later Tevez pulled a shot whilst under pressure on the edge of the area. Enter United subs Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes and Dimitar Berbatov with eighteen minutes left and within three minutes, exit Vidic who lost possession to Gerrard thirty yards from goal and hauled the Liverpool man back to earn a correct straight red card. Salt was rubbed into the proverbial wound from the resulting free kick when Fabio Aurelio curled a beauty over the wall and inside the post leaving Van Der Sar rooted to the spot. It effectively killed the game as United stuttered and struggled to reduce the deficit with ten men, indeed Liverpool should have added to the lead only for Gerrard to shoot over from ten yards with no United player anywhere near him. Astonishingly, as the game entered four minutes of stoppage time, a long kick from Reina found Andrea Dossena running clear and he lobbed the United keeper to net his second in successive games and Liverpool's second four goal haul in as many days.

United remain strong favourites with a four point lead and a game in hand but Liverpool fans will console themselves with a league double over United having been behind in both games. They could yet meet in the Champions League as well!

Attendance : 75,569
Red Card : Vidic (Manchester United)
Assists : Park (won pen), Skrtel, Gerrard (won pen), Gerrard (won fk), Reina

PORTSMOUTH 1 (Crouch 30)

Ten man Middlesbrough left it late to snatch a draw at home to Portsmouth. The visitors took the lead with a Peter Crouch volley from Glenn Johnson's pass and it looked to be secured when Matthew Bates was sent off for diving having previously been booked. Boro battled on though and after Tony McMahon's header was saved, Marlon King blasted in the equaliser. They almost won it a minute later when Afonso Alves burst clear but his shot was saved by David James.

Attendance : 24,281
Red Card : Bates 77 (Middlesbrough)
Assists : Johnson, n/a

SUNDERLAND 1 (Leadbitter 41)
WIGAN 2 (Watson 12, N'Zogbia 46)

Wigan move into eighth after a win at Sunderland who are just three points from the drop zone. The visitors took an early lead as Sunderland failed to deal with a long kick from keeper Chris Kirkland and Ben Watson shot in from the edge of the box. The hosts equalised when Grant Leadbitter shot in after being found by Kenwyne Jones's header, however Wigan won it in first half stoppage time as a Sunderland attack broke down and Paul Scharner sent Charles N'Zogbia clear to run half the length of the pitch before finding the net from a tricky angle.

Attendance : 39,266
Assists : Scharner, Jones, Scharner

11 March 2009

FULHAM 1 (Dempsey 2)
BLACKBURN 2 (Diouf 69, Roberts 85)

Attendance : 22,259
Assists : Murphy, Samba, Pedersen

7 March 2009

SUNDERLAND 1 (Richardson 3)
TOTTENHAM 1 (Keane 89)

Attendance : 37,894
Assists : n/a, Bent

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