The Gunners ‘just’ getting the better of Birmingham…
Venue – The Emirates
Result – Arsenal 2 – 1 Birmingham
‘As it happened’ – Arsenal, after having lost their last home game, were set to make amends by picking up early points in the weekend against a little-off-color Birmingham side. The match also saw the return of former Arsenal star Alex Hleb to the Emirates. The home side, as always, looked dangerous with a lot of attacking moves but without an end product. On the other end, the tallest man in the Premiership, Nicola Zigic, headed home in fantastic fashion to give the travelers a shocking lead just after the half an hour mark. A few minutes later, Samir Nasri converted from the penalty spot, after Marouane Chamakh made-a-meal of a slight tackle to earn the home side a foul. The Morrocan washed away some sin after neatly beating the keeper and finishing a move started by the young Jack Wilshere.
‘You can’t miss this’ – Jack Wilshere, was Arsenal’s best performer yet again in the absence of their influential skipper. His assist for Arsenal’s second goal was top-draw; his attacking and defensive abilities were, however, overshadowed by a ‘dangerous’ challenge on Zigic, which saw him pick up the dreaded red card few minutes before the final whistle. The Englishman did admit that the tackle deserved nothing less than a red card.
After Arsenal, West Brom ‘now’ snatch points from Red Devils
Venue – The Old Trafford
Result – Manchester United 2 – 2 West Brom
‘As it happened’ – Roberto Di Matteo’s West Brom scaled new heights as they snatched points away from Manchester United at Old Trafford. After upsetting Arsenal in their backyard, the Baggies had similar plans against United. The Red Devils had a very decent first half with goals from Hernandez and the man-in-form Nani giving them an useful lead before the interval. However, things became ugly for United after the break, as an own goal from Evra, followed by an awful ‘howler’ from Van Der Sar, handed the Baggies a point to take them to a respectable position in the league.
‘You can’t miss this’ – Van Der Sar, known for his heroics for most of his career, had a moment of absolute madness as he let in the second goal for West Brom. But, that won’t be this week’s biggest talking point for United. Wayne ‘Once Teenage Wonder’ Rooney spent most of his time on the bench throughout the match, making a small and ‘almost meaningless’ appearance in the last 20 minutes of the game. The Red Devils’ striker has recently made the headlines after he refused to sign a new contract at The Trafford.
The Villains make it difficult for the Champions.
Venue – The Villa Park
Result – Aston Villa 0 – 0 Chelsea
‘As it happened’ – It wasn’t a long time back when The Villains suffered a 1-7 trouncing at the hands of the defending champions. This was an altogether different occasion. Aston Villa, at their home-turf, looked confident and determined right from the outset; they almost took a lead within three minutes. Both sides kept their defense water-tight for most periods of the match and penetration was increasingly difficult. The Blues dominated the proceedings for the later part of the match, but failed to break the deadlock in the absence of their talisman striker Didier Drogba.
‘You can’t miss this’ – Both Chelsea and Aston Villa hit the woodwork, which was the best chance of the match for them. A glancing Clark header hit the woodwork for Villa, while Branislav Ivanovic’s brilliant header was denied by the width of the post for Chelsea.
The Mersey-Side is all Blue now
Venue – Goodison Park
Result – Everton 2 – 0 Liverpool
‘As it happened’ – Two opportunistic strikes from Tim Cahill and Mikel Arteta were enough to seal the faith of ‘newly owned’ Liverpool. The match was dominated in the earlier stages by the team in blue, who clearly looked more ‘pepped up’ for the occasion while their ‘red neighbors’ tried to contain the barricade of attacks. Liverpool front-man Torres looked off-color for most parts of the match, while his counterpart at the other end, Yakubu, troubled the opponent’s defense throughout the match. With this defeat, Liverpool moves to the 19th place in the Premiership, making life even more difficult for Roy Hodgson and his troops.
‘You can’t miss this’ – Mikel Arteta has been a prolific player for The Toffees in the last few years, taking up the mantle of their anchorman in the middle of the field. His brilliantly executed ‘outside-of-the-foot‘ drive from just outside of the box after a clearance from a corner, was easily the best moment of the match.
Citeh too good for the high-flying Blackpool
Venue –Bloomfield Road
Result – Blackpool 2 – 3 Manchester City
‘As it happened’ – The last match of the weekend was a cracker as City, close to the top of the table, traveled to the beautiful seaside Bloomfield Road. Blackpool dominated early proceedings as they put too much pressure on City, who were without the services of Yaya Toure in the middle of the park. The deadlock was finally broken in the 67th minute as Carloz Tevez put City’s 160 Million starting line-up ahead. The Seasiders equalized via the head of Marlon Harewood, who back-glanced a Charlie David free-kick. Within a minute, the inspirational Argentine put City ahead on the other side, taking his goal tally to 6 in the league. A fine solo goal from David Silva made it 3-1 to the Blue side from Manchester. Ian Holloway’s men pulled one back in the dying minutes, but it was too late for the cause.
‘You can’t miss this’ – When Carlos Tevez left Manchester United, he came to City with a mission. The captain had another fantastic day on the field, scoring a brace to keep City as close to Chelsea as possible. His first goal was as exquisite as it gets. A thumping cross from the left by Silva saw the Argentine running in front of the defender to make the slightest of touches to divert the ball to the far post. Mouth-watering stuff!
The Other Affairs
Wolves 1 – 1 West Ham
Bolton 2 – 1 Stoke City
Newcastle 2 – 2 Wigan
Fulham 1 – 2 Tottenham
Blackburn 0 – 0 Sunderland