20 October 2008

NEWCASTLE 2 (Ameobi 44, Dunne 63 og)
MANCHESTER CITY 2 (Robinho 14 Pen, Ireland 86)

Honours even at St James Park as ten man Newcastle came from behind to take the lead against Man City only to be pegged back by a late strike. City began well and took a deserved, but highly controversial, lead. Robinho burst through the middle and was brought down by Habib Beye in the area. Ref Rob Styles awarded a spot kick and sent off last man Beye however replays showed that the Newcastle man clearly played the ball. Robinho struck home the penalty in confident fashion to open the scoring. City continued to see most of the ball but the hosts weathered the storm and levelled just before the break as a clearance from the City area hit Damien Duff then a City defender before falling for Shola Ameobi who held off his marker and netted from close range despite slicing the ball horribly. Newcastle then took the lead in the second half as a corner from Geremi seemed to be seen late by Richard Dunne and he stabbed the ball powerfully into the roof of his own net. They held on until four minutes from time when Robinho played in Stephen Ireland and he fired home an equaliser with only the keeper to beat.

Attendance : 45,908
Red Card : Beye 12 (Newcastle)
Assists : Robinho (won pen), n/a, n/a, Robinho

19 October 2008

HULL 1 (Turner 50)

Hull continue to gate crash the top four with yet another win against a London side with West Ham losing at the KC Stadium. The only goal came early in the second half as Michael Turner rose high at the far post to head in Andy Dawson's corner.

Attendance : 24,896
Assist : Dawson

STOKE 2 (Higginbotham 18 Pen, Delap 52)
TOTTENHAM 1 (Bent 24)

Spurs are rooted firmly to the foot of the table after losing an incident packed game against Stoke, the side originally one place above them. Things began badly for Spurs as they went a man and a goal down inside the opening twenty minutes. Gareth Bale miss controlled the ball on the edge of his area allowing Tom Soares to gain possession however as he got into the area, Bale brought him down to concede a penalty and earn a red card as he was last man. Danny Higginbotham kept his cool despite the ball rolling off of the spot three times due to the strong wind and eventually drilled it low into the corner. Ironically it seemed to galvanise Spurs and they were level inside five minutes as a shot from Alan Hutton was partially blocked and fell nicely for Darren Bent who held off his man to scramble the ball under the keeper and in. Replays showed that he was offside from the initial shot. Stoke regained the lead early in the second half when Mamady Sidibe sent in a superb cross from the left which gave Rory Delap a simple tap in at the far post. Stoke keeper Thomas Sorensen was then replaced after a nasty cut on his head after being caught by the boot of Hutton and replacement Steve Simonsen had little to do for a while as Spurs' defender Vedran Corluka was treated twice in a minute, the second time after being accidentally kneed in the face by his own keeper resulting in a significant delay as he was stretchered off with oxygen. Soares missed a golden chance with two minutes of normal time to go to wrap it up although with all the stoppages, actual stoppage time was signalled as ELEVEN minutes! Four minutes in, Soares was fouled by Jonathon Woodgate in the area for another penalty but this time Ricardo Fuller's shot hit both posts before Delap smacked the rebound against the bar! Astonishingly, Spurs were then reduced to nine men when Michael Dawson caught Sidibe on the shin with his studs despite playing the ball first and was shown a straight red card. Fuller then walloped a shot against the bar with almost the last kick of the game to end a remarkable encounter.

Attendance : 27,500
Assists : Soares (won pen), n/a, Sidibe

18 October 2008

CHELSEA 5 (Kalou 14, Belletti 51, Wheater 53 og, Lampard 63, Malouda 67)

Chelsea equalled the biggest away win in the Prem this season as they thumped Middlesbrough at the Riverside. Chelsea dominated the first half and were ahead at the break when David Wheater's weak header fell to Juliano Belletti and although his shot was blocked by two Boro defenders, it fell nicely for Salomon Kalou to slot in from close range. In the second half Chelsea went into overdrive as Belletti walloped home a beauty from all of 30 yards after collecting a pass from Florent Malouda and before Boro could recover, they made it three as Malouda's volleyed cross was converted by Kalou, aided by a big deflection off of Wheater. Frank Lampard added a fourth with a diving header from Kalou's cross and four minutes later, a stinging shot from Nik Anelka went through keeper Ross Turnbull, hit the post and was bundled in by Malouda.

Attendance : 29,221
Assists : n/a, Malouda, n/a, Kalou, n/a


No goals at Villa Park although both Villa and Portsmouth hit the woodwork. Pompey came close when Armand Traore hit the post and Jermain Defoe skied the rebound from close range whilst late on, John Carew almost won it for the hosts with a long range header that hit the top of the bar. Pompey finished with ten men when Sean Davis was shown a second yellow card for holding back Stilian Petrov. Sadly though the back page headlines were for the wrong reasons after assistant referee Phil Sharp was hit by a coin, allegedly thrown by a Villa fan. Pompey boss Harry Redknapp believed that the coin may have been aimed at him.

Attendance : 37,660
Red Card : Davis 81 (Portsmouth)
Assists : n/a


The East Lancs derby ended goalless as Bolton and Blackburn drew blanks. Rovers had the best chance when Jason Roberts headed wide of a gaping goal fro close range although Andy O'Brien did similar for the hosts after the break. Matt Taylor almost won it late on for Bolton but his shot grazed the post.

Attendance : 24,778
Assists : n/a


Sunderland were desperately unlucky not to record a win in another goalless game, this time at Fulham. Kieran Richardson must have walked under a dozen ladders with the luck that he had as firstly his free kick hit one post, bounced along the line and hit the other post then bobbled back along the line, hit the keeper on the leg and hit the post again! After the break he did find the net with a stunning free kick only for the ref to disallow it for some pushing in the wall.

Attendance : 25,116
Assists : n/a

LIVERPOOL 3 (Kuyt 37, Riera 80, Kuyt 85)
WIGAN 2 (Zaki 29, Zaki 47)

Liverpool came from behind to beat Wigan in an entertaining game at Anfield. The underdogs took the lead when Daniel Agger lost possession on the edge of his own area and Amr Zaki nipped in to slot the ball home. Agger made amends shortly afterwards when his cross found Dirk Kuyt to fire in. On the stroke of half time, Wigan were back ahead as Antonio Valencia's cross was dispatched with a brilliant acrobatic effort by Zaki. The turning point came with 15 minutes to go when Valencia was shown a second yellow for a late challenge on Xabi Alonso and within five minutes Liverpool equalised when Nabil El Zhar set up Albert Riera to score from the edge of the area. Jermaine Pennant then crossed for Kuyt to win the game with another acrobatic shot and although it wasn't struck as cleanly as Zaki's, it found the net via keeper and crossbar.

Attendance : 43,868
Red Card : Valencia 75 (Wigan)
Assists : n/a, Agger, Valencia, El Zhar, Pennant

ARSENAL 3 (Nasri 48, Van Persie 70, Walcott 90)
EVERTON 1 (Osman 9)

Arsenal ended their recent poor run as they came from behind to beat Everton whose own campaign still refuses to kick into life. The visitors took an early lead when Leon Osman combined well with Stephen Pienaar to fire inside the near post. In the second half, Arsenal burst into life and were level within three minutes as a corner wasn't cleared and Mikael Silvestre laid the ball off to Samir Nasri to drill in from the edge of the box. The Gunners took the lead when Robin Van Persie nodded in from close range after keeper Tim Howard had saved an effort from Cesc Fabregas and victory was confirmed late on as Theo Walcott netted from a tight angle after Abou Diaby had cut the ball back.

Attendance : 60,064
Assists : Pienaar, Silvestre, n/a, Diaby

MANCHESTER UNITED 4 (Rooney 56, Ronaldo 69, Berbatov 71, Nani 90)

A second half goal blitz from Man United gave them a comfortable win against a resolute West Brom. The first half was goalless although United should have been ahead when Wayne Rooney slotted home after beating his marker in the area, however the referee felt that the striker had fouled the Baggies man to slip past him and harshly ruled it out. Rooney also had a decent header well saved as United dominated possession. The second half began in much the same vein as Rooney and Dimitar Berbatov had scorching efforts saved by Scott Carson before the breakthrough arrived ten minutes after the break, Cristiano Ronaldo found Rooney after a rare attack from the visitors and the England man cut inside into the area and drilled a low shot inside the near post. It opened the proverbial floodgates with two goals in the space of 73 seconds to effectively end the match. The first came from a lovely through ball by Rooney to send Ronaldo clear to fire in the second and then Nani's cross went through a crowd of players for Berbatov to volley in from close range, followed by the understated celebration. Rooney crossed low for Nani to tap in at the far post in the final minute, followed by the usual acrobatic celebration as United move ominously into fourth.

Attendance : 75,451
Assists : Berbatov, Rooney, n/a, Rooney

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