5 April 2009

EVERTON 4 (Jo 26, Fellaini 47, Jo 51, Osman 61)

Everton move to within a point of fifth placed Aston Villa after sweeping aside Wigan at Goodison. Leon Osman's pass set up Jo to fire the first across the keeper and inside the far post but it was after the break when Everton went into overdrive with three goals in sixteen minutes. Tony Hibbert's cross found Marouane Fellaini to score with a first time shot before Jo added his second with a tap into an empty net after Fellaini's shot was parried by keeper Chris Kirkland. We then had a case of Groundhog Day as another Fellaini shot was only half saved and this time Osman netted with a simple finish.

Attendance : 34,427
Assists : Osman, Hibbert, n/a, n/a

MANCHESTER UNITED 3 (Ronaldo 14, Ronaldo 80, Macheda 93)
ASTON VILLA 2 (Carew 30, Agbonlahor 58)

Man United regain top spot after coming from behind to net a last minute winner at home to Aston Villa. The visitors began well but conceded a free kick in their own area when Brad Friedel handled a back pass from James Milner. Ryan Giggs then set up Cristiano Ronaldo to fire in through a crowd of players. It gave United, missing the likes of Scholes, Berbatov, Vidic, Ferdinand and Rooney, a boost but Villa bounced back and were level on the half hour when Gareth Barry made space on the right to cross for John Carew to send a firm header into the bottom corner. After the break, Villa stunned Old Trafford by taking the lead as Ronaldo lost possession and Villa broke clear, resulting in Carew crossing for Gabriel Agbonlahor nodding in just ahead of Edwin Van Der Sar. The expected United blitz didn't come but with ten minutes left they broke through as Michael Carrick set up Ronaldo whose low shot found the bottom corner just out of reach of the keeper. Now came the all out attack as Ronaldo blazed over and sub Danny Wellbeck was denied by Friedel as the game entered an additional five minutes of stoppage time. It look just over two of those for the coup de grace as Ryan Giggs played in 17 year old sub Federico Macheda in the area and he turned brilliantly before curling in a fantastic shot inside the far post.

Attendance : 75,409
Assists : Giggs (fk), Barry, Carew, Carrick, Giggs

4 April 2009

ARSENAL 2 (Adebayor 8, Adebayor 49)

Arsenal consolidate fourth place after a comfortable home win over Man City. Returning pair Cesc Fabregas and Emmanuel Adebayor combined for both goals, first as the former crossed for the latter to head in early on and then after the break, the same combination resulted in Adebayor rounding the keeper and rolling in the second. City did have chances, notably to Gelsen Fernandes who hit the post with only the keeper to beat.

Attendance : 60,097
Assists : Fabregas (fk), Fabregas

BLACKBURN 2 (McCarthy 82, Ooijer 89)
TOTTENHAM 1 (Keane 30 Pen)

Blackburn eased their relegation fears after coming from behind to beat Spurs despite being outplayed for long spells. Spurs took the lead on the half hour although Rovers were left doubly angered as Aaron Lennon's cross hit the arm of Gael Givet and although he seemed to be trying to get out of the way of the ball, a penalty was awarded. Robbie Keane slotted confidently into the bottom corner but the ball wasn't properly on the spot but the ref allowed it regardless. To be fair, Spurs dominated the first half and were worthy of the lead and this trend continued after the break with Rovers unable to muster an attack let alone an effort on goal until the latter stages when Benni McCarthy sent a diving header wide from close range. Spurs were reduced to ten men when Wilson Palacios was booked twice inside two minutes for fouls on David Dunn although the second of the two was a blatant dive from the Rovers man as Palacios clearly pulled out of the tackle. It sparked an amazing transformation and Rovers levelled as Spurs failed to clear a corner, allowing Christopher Samba to find McCarthy to slot in from eight yards and with a minute left, a corner from El Hadji Diouf somehow found its way through a maze of players at the near post and fell to an unmarked Andre Ooijer to poke in from a matter of a yard out.

Attendance : 21,891
Red Card : Palacios 80
Assists : n/a Samba, n/a

BOLTON 4 (Davies 8, Cahill 44, Taylor 78 fk, Gardner 84)

Middlesbrough are five points from safety and have a toe dipped in Championship waters after a crushing defeat at Bolton. The hosts took an early lead when Ricardo Gardner crossed for Kevin Davies to volley in at the far post however Boro levelled with a fine passing move resulting in Tuncay setting up Gary O'Neil to slot in. Just before half time, Matt Taylor's free kick wasn't dealt with and Johan Elmander found Gary Cahill to drill in the second. After the break Bolton took control as Taylor's free kick from 45 yards out drifted past everyone and bounced into the corner before Taylor's long ball was brilliantly controlled and finished by Gardner.

Attendance : 20,819
Assists : Gardner, Tuncay, Elmander, Davis (won fk), Taylor

LIVERPOOL 1 (Benayoun 92)

Liverpool top the Premier League after a stoppage time goal saw off Fulham. The first half was goalless although goodness knows how as Liverpool hit the woodwork four times before the break. Andrea Dossena did it twice, both with headers against the bar whilst Xabi Alonso also struck the crossbar with a volley from outside the area. Fernando Torres had the best chance but rolled his shot against the post whilst through and he also tested keeper Mark Schwarzer on two occasions. It was much the same after the interval only without the punishment toward the woodwork but the goal wouldn't arrive until the entrance of sub Yossi Benayoun who came within inches twice before finding the net after the ball fell to him when Steven Gerrard was tackle and he smashed it past the keeper and into the net. Liverpool are two points clear of Man United but have played two games more

Attendance : 25,661
Assists : n/a


No goals and little excitement at the KC as Hull and Portsmouth remain in the relegation dog fight after a goalless draw. Pompey were reduced to ten men with ten minutes to go when Glen Johnson earned a second yellow for a foul on Dean Marney but they almost won it late on when Herman Hreidarsson headed against the post.

Attendance : 24,802
Assist : n/a

CHELSEA 2 (Lampard 56, Malouda 65)

No happy home coming for Alan Shearer as he Newcastle team were beaten at home by Chelsea who remain on the tails of Liverpool and Man United. After a goalless first half, Chelsea went ahead when Nik Anelka's deflected effort looped against the bar and Frank Lampard nodded in the rebound. Lampard then sent Florent Malouda clear to slot in the second. Newcastle should have pulled one back but the officials ruled that Michael Owen's deflected shot didn't cross the line before Ashley Cole cleared. TV replays suggested otherwise.

Attendance : 52,112
Assists : n/a, Lampard

STOKE 2 (Fuller 2, Beattie 49)

If Boro are dipping toes in the Championship, West Brom are only just keeping their heads above the waves as defeat at home to Stoke left them eight points from safety. Stoke scored early when Danny Higginbotham found Ricardo Fuller and after a short run, he fired in low from the edge of the box although keeper Scott Carson should have done better. The win was clinched when James Beattie crashed in a superb shot after the Baggies failed to clear although again Carson got a hand to it.

Attendance : 25,277
Assists : Higginbotham, n/a

WEST HAM 2 (Stanislas 42, Tomkins 53)

West Ham are on course for Europe after a simple home win against Sunderland who are fourth from bottom. Two youngsters grabbed the goals as Junior Stanislas netted from close range after good work from Luis Boa Morte and then James Tompkins headed in Mark Noble's corner to secure victory.

Attendance : 34,761
Assists : Boa Morte, Noble (ck)

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