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Match Reports
Spurs Odyssey Reviews the Premiership Season
for 2001-2002 - Match 28

With many thanks to Brian Judson, without whom this feature would not be possible

Saturday 2 March 2002
Aston Villa v West Ham United 2-1

Di Canio put the Hammers ahead in the 13th minute after Mellberg chopped down Defoe. Di Canio craftily deceived Schmeichel as to which side of the goal he planned to put the ball. Angel equalised for Villa in the 23rd minute when Barry sent over a superb cross from the left wing and Angel outjumped everyone else to head the ball home. Cole almost won the game for the Hammers in the second half but Schmeichel somehow blocked his shot. In the dying seconds of the match, Vassall was fastest to react to a low centre from Samuel, leaving James with no chance to prevent him from scoring.

Bolton Wanderers v Blackburn Rovers 1-1

Andy Cole lost control of his emotions after being brought down by Whitlow in the 30th minute. He turned and stamped on the hapless defender and has surely landed a lengthy suspension. It was unnecessary as the referee saw the incident and booked Whitlow for his part in the incident. Bolton went ahead just before half-time when Berg tried to pass back to Friedel only to see Wallace nip in to intercept his pass and drive the ball home. Wallace should have added a second soon after half-time. Jansen punished this by equalising for Blackburn in the 59th minute when he played a one-two with Duff before scoring.

Charlton Athletic v Chelsea 2-1

All the incidents came late in the second half. The first half was a bore enlivened only by Graham Poll refusing to award a penalty for Charlton after Gallas had brought down Euell. Charlton went ahead in the 72nd minute when Powell launched a deep cross from the left. Svensson headed the ball to Euell, who calmly smashed the ball home. The tubby looking Lampard equalised for Chelsea when the Addicks allowed him too much space in the 83rd minute. Euell then raced clear in the 89th minute to chip the ball over Cudicini.

Fulham v Liverpool 0-2

The Reds were never bothered by Fulham even though Owen remained on the bench all afternoon. Anelka showed signs of a return to full match fitness and scored one of the goals. Murphy sent Anelka away in the 13th minute. Brevett intercepted his first shot but could not prevent Anelka picking up the rebound and slamming the ball into Fulham's goal. Henchoz then blocked a shot by Saha as the Fulham striker looked set to score. Boa Morte thought he had won a penalty when he crashed to the ground and was surprised to find himself being booked for ungentlemanly conduct. Marlet almost snatched an improbable equaliser when his shot beat Dudek but rolled wide of the upright. In the dying seconds, as Fulham threw even van der Sar forward, Litmanen chased Xavier's long clearance and steered the ball into Fulham's empty goal.

Ipswich Town v Southampton 1-3

The Saints look fairly safe from the threat of relegation after winning this match. All the goals came in the second half. Southampton went ahead seven minutes after the break when Bramble was adjudged to have fouled Delap. From the resulting free-kick, Delap fired the ball home with a slight deflection off the hapless Stewart. Ormerod increased the Saints lead in the 61st minute when Oakley's precise pass enabled Ormerod to breach Ipswich's offside trap. Marshall had no chance to block Ormerod's left-footed shot. George reduced the arrears in the 82nd minute when Jones punched the ball clear, Holland volleyed the ball back and George deflected the ball over the line. But memories of John Barnes scoring against Brazil in 1984 were awakened when Marsden was allowed to run with the ball unchallenged and to hit the ball behind Marshall in the dying seconds of the match.

Middlesbrough v Leicester City 1-0

The Foxes are now surely doomed to relegation! They are also likely to create an unwanted record as they are unlikely to surpass Watford's 24 points on this showing. The reports blamed Sinclair's own goal but, having seen the goal myself, I think Walker was equally culpable as he must have been aware of Sinclair's generosity for scoring bizarre own goals. Certainly, Sinclair had plenty of options available to him before he punted the ball back to Walker, without checking to see where Walker was, but as the ball had to travel 30 yards, Walker had ample time in my opinion to retrieve the situation. The goal came after only 4 minutes. Thereafter, the Teessiders were able to keep the Foxes at arm's length. Whelan should have added a second but shot tamely at the grateful Walker. There were very few incidents worthy of note in a boring match.

Newcastle United v Arsenal 0-2

Robert Pires was the star of the match as the Gunners beat the Toon easily. Bergkamp put them ahead as early as the 11th minute. Pires spotted a chink in the Newcastle defence and played the ball forward. Bergkamp flicked the ball one side of Dabizas and spun round the other and calmly placed the ball beyond Given. Seaman defied everything Newcastle could throw at him. It came as no surprise when Arsenal went further ahead in the 41st minute. Bergkamp took a free-kick and Campbell timed his run to perfection to head the ball home. Newcastle pushed forward throughout the second half but lacked the know-how to penetrate the Arsenal defence.

Tottenham Hotspur v Sunderland 2-1

The full report is here.

Sunday 3 March 2002
Derby County v Manchester United 2-2

This was a humdinger of a match that Derby very nearly won but for a dreadful mistake by referee Steve Dunn in failing to allow a goal to Derby. On the other hand, the Champions dominated the match for very long spells and should have made the most of their superiority. Christie put Derby ahead after 8 minutes when he finished off a move that had been started by Kinkladze, helped by Ducrocq and Ravenelli. It took a while for the shell-shocked champions to hit back. But it was Scholes who equalised in the 41st minute when Silvestre found van Nistelrooy, whose pass to Giggs was played back to Scholes, who scored. Veron put the Reds ahead after 60 minutes when he chested the ball down and hammered home a shot from 20 yards. Christie equalised in the 77th minute when Zavagno provided the pass from which Christie scored. And Christie was denied a hat-trick when he had the ball in the net after Barthez appeared to lose control of it. Referee Dunn applied the strict letter of the law which assumes a goalkeeper has possession of the ball if he as much as touches it. Even Sir Alex conceded he could not understand why the goal was disallowed.

Everton v Leeds United 0-0

This was an ugly match in which both sides paid off old scores. Matteo was sent off in the second half for various offences and Alan Smith was lucky he did not have an early bath also. The Toffees rarely showed any sign of scoring a goal, displaying for all to see the reasons why they figure at the wrong end of the table. Leeds ended the match with an unusual centre-back partnership of Duberry and Bakke as Ferdinand missed the match. Leeds even survived an appeal for a penalty when Radzinski tumbled in the penalty area.


Pos             Pl.  W.  D.  L.  For- Ag Pts.
  1  Man Utd    29  18   4   7   69- 37   58
  2  Arsenal    28  16   9   3   57- 31   57
  3  Liverpool  29  16   8   5   47- 25   56
  4  Newcastle  28  17   4   7   52- 35   55
  5  Leeds      28  11  12   5   37- 29   45
  6  Chelsea    27  11  11   5   47- 28   44
  7  A. Villa   28  10  11   7   34- 31   41
  8  Spurs      27  11   5  11   39- 36   38
  9  Charlton   28   9  10   9   32- 33   37
 10  Fulham     28   8  11   9   27- 31   35
 11  M'brough   28   9   7  12   27- 35   34
 12  S'hampton  28  10   4  14   34- 43   34
 13  West Ham   28   9   7  12   31- 43   34
 14  S'derland  28   8   7  13   22- 33   31
 15  Everton    28   7   9  12   27- 34   30
 16  Ipswich    27   8   6  13   35- 43   30
 17  Bolton     28   6  12  10   31- 43   30
 18  Blackburn  27   6   8  12   33- 37   26
 19  Derby      28   7   5  16   23- 45   26
 20  Leicester  28   3   8  17   18- 50   17

Cheers, Brian

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