20 December 2009
EVERTON 1 (Bilyaletdinov 5)
BIRMINGHAM 1 (Larsson 22)
Birmingham's unbeaten run extends to nine games as they came from behind to hold Everton at Goodison. The hosts took an early lead as Louis Saha chested the ball to Diniyar Bilyaletdinov who made space well and drilled in from close range. Saha was unlucky to have a goal ruled out for offside before Birmingham levelled when Christian Benitez set up Sebastien Larsson to fire in from the edge of the area via the hand of the keeper and the post.
Attendance : 33,660
Assists : Saha, Benitez
WEST HAM 1 (Diamanti 45 Pen)
CHELSEA 1 (Lampard 61)
West Ham avoid bottom spot at Christmas after a creditable draw against Chelsea who go four points clear at the top in a game of two (or four) penalties. West Ham took the lead on half time after Ashley Cole took the legs of Jack Collison and Alessandro Diamanti netted from the spot. Chelsea's leveller came after Matthew Upson won the ball in a tackle with Daniel Sturridge only for the linesman to flag for a foul and penalty. Frank Lampard, jeered all game by the home fans, netted from the spot only for a re-take to be order due to encroachment from Chelsea players. Amazingly, he scored with the second effort and again a re-take ordered for the same reason. Third time lucky and once again he scored and this time it stood.
Attendance : 33,388
Assists : Collison (won pk), Sturridge (won pen)
WOLVES 2 (Milijas 15, Doyle 50)
Wolves moved from drop zone to 12th with victory over Burnley. They had the better of the first half and led when a shot from Matt Jarvis was saved by keeper Brian Jensen but the rebound fell nicely to Nenad Milijas to fire in. Wolves clinched in early in the second half when Steven Caldwell's long ball found Kevin Doyle who beat two men before slotting past Jensen.
Attendance : 27,410
Assists : n/a, Craddock
19 December 2009
ARSENAL 3 (Denilson 49 fk, Eduardo 59, Diaby 80)
Arsenal move to within two points of Man United with a comfortable win over Hull. They took a while to get into gear and eventually went ahead just before the break when Denilson's free kick found the net from the edge of the area. Hull had a golden chance to level when Mikael Silvestre conceded a penalty for pulling the shirt of Craig Fagan however Geovanni's spot kick was poor and keeper Manuel Almunia saved easily. Within three minutes, Arsenal doubled their lead as Eduardo met Abou Diaby's cross and although the connection was poor, the ball bobbled into the corner. Diaby added the third with a powerful shot from 12 yards after playing a sharp one-two with Andrey Arshavin.
Attendance : 60,006
Assists : Diaby (won fk), Diaby, Arshavin
ASTON VILLA 1 (Carew 61)
Aston Villa continued their excellent campaign with a win against an impressive looking Stoke side. Mamady Sidibe headed in for Stoke in the first half but the goal was unluckily ruled out, presumably for a foul. Villa won it thanks to a close range header from John Carew after Ashley Young crossed from the right.
Attendance : 35,852
Assist : Young
TOTTENHAM 2 (Crouch 47, Crouch 83)
Spurs are back on track after a tricky week with a fine win at struggling Blackburn. Peter Crouch netted both goals, firstly with a header in off the bar from Niko Krancjar's cross and with time edging away from the hosts, a sliding pass from Jermaine Jenas set him up to fire in the second.
Attendance : 26,490
Assists : Kranjcar, Jenas
FULHAM 3 (Murphy 22, Zamora 46, Duff 75)
MANCHESTER UNITED 0
Fulham swept aside Champions Man United with a clinical display at Craven Cottage. United were without a recognised centre-back and Fulham exploited it to the max when Danny Murphy robbed Paul Scholes to run at the back line and drill in from the edge of the area. The second half was 19 seconds old when the lead was doubled as Bobby Zamora blasted in Clint Dempsey's header from close range and then Zamora's touch set up Damien Duff to find the bottom corner from 20 yards.
Attendance : 25,700
Assists : n/a, Dempsey, Zamora
MANCHESTER CITY 4 (Santa Cruz 4, Tevez 12 Pen, Bellamy 35, Santa Cruz 69)
SUNDERLAND 3 (Mensah 16, Henderson 24, Jones 62)
Remarkable game at Eastlands as Sunderland twice came from behind at Man City and still ended up with nothing. Sadly all the excitement was lost in the aftermath as City boss Mark Hughes was sacked and replaced by Roberto Mancini, a deal apparently brokered at the beginning of the month! City flew into an early two goal lead as Roque Santa Cruz tapped in Craig Bellamy's crossed and then Carlos Tevez drilled a penalty down the middle after Bellamy went down under a tame challenge from Nyron Nosworthy. Sunderland battled back when John Mensah headed in Andy Reid's cross and then Jordan Henderson levelled after City made a pigs ear of clearing a corner. The hosts were back in the lead shortly afterwards though as Bellamy curled in a shot after good work from Shaun Wright-Phillips but Sunderland equalised again just after a hour with a powerful close range header from Kenwyne Jones after Henderson had crossed. City eventually clinched the win when Santa Cruz added his second, sliding in to convert Gareth Barry's cross whilst Sunderland ended with ten men when Michael Turner caught Barry in the throat with his elbow as they jumped for a high ball. But a superb attacking game was largely lost in what followed after the final whistle.
Attendance : 44,735
Red Card : Turner 92 (Sunderland)
Assists : Bellamy. Bellamy (won pen), Reid, Mensah, SWP, Henderson, Barry
PORTSMOUTH 2 (Belhadj 33, Piquionne 82)
Bottom club Portsmouth saw off stuttering Liverpool with a superb goal in each half. They opened the scoring after Nadir Belhadj smashed a volley into the roof of the net from a tight angle after Jose Reina saved a stinging effort from Kevin-Prince Boateng but Liverpool failed to clear further. The visitors played all the second half with ten men when Javier Mascherano ruled himself out of the Christmas games with a red card for an over the ball challenge on Tal Ben Haim which ironically left the Liverpool man in more pain! Portsmouth clinched the points late on when Boateng crossed for Frederic Piquionne to clip the ball into the air and then send a low volley across the keeper and inside the far post.
Attendance : 20,534
Red Card : Mascherano 45 (Liverpool)
Assists : n/a, Boateng
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