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Spurs Odyssey Reviews the Premiership Season
for 2001-2002 - Match 31

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

Saturday 23 March 2002

Arsenal v West Ham United P-P
Blackburn Rovers v Newcastle United P-P

The above two matches were postponed because of the Arsenal v Newcastle United FA Cup 6th Round replay, which Arsenal won, 3-0.

Charlton Athletic v Bolton Wanderers 1-2

Two first half goals by Djorkaeff rocked the Addicks only days after they had beaten Spurs. His first goal came when he stole into space when Bobic set him up with a simple chance to score. Charlton won a penalty in the 22nd minute when Warhurst sent Parker flying in the penalty area but Euell dragged his kick wide. In the 39th minute, Bolton went two up when they won a free-kick after Costa had barged Frandsen off the ball. Djorkaeff took the free-kick aiming to curl the ball into goal but the ball clipped a defender and sent Kiely the wrong way. Johansson reduced the arrears in the 52nd minute when Euell crossed the ball as Jaaskelainen came out to challenge for the ball. Euell lobbed the ball to Johansson, who only had to tap the ball into the net.

Derby County v Everton 3-4

The Rams lost this match simply because they chose this day to have their worst performance since John Gregory replaced Colin Todd as manager. Unsworth gave Everton the lead in the 38th minute when he cracked home a shot from the edge of the penalty area. Stubbs increased Everton's lead in the 52nd minute when he cracked home a free-kick following a hand-ball by Zavagno. Alexandersson added another two minutes later when Ferguson sliced a shot which Alexandersson steered home. Strupar then came on as a substitute for Branko. In the 57th minute, Strupar volleyed the ball home. But Ferguson extended Everton's lead in the 71st minute when Ferguson was allowed time to shoot from the edge of the penalty area. Morris reduced the arrears five minutes later when he hooked home Riggott's downward header. Strupar further reduced the arrears with nine minutes left when he throw himself at a Rob Lee cross to head home.

Ipswich Town v Aston Villa 0-0

The fact that Ipswich failed to beat Aston Villa was not a surprise as they had not beaten them for 10 years. Luc Nilis was the guest of honour as his career had been ended by a broken leg in the corresponding fixture last season. Ipswich plans were disrupted when a late Vassall tackle forced Makin off because of a damaged ankle. Both sides had chances to score but lacked the conviction.

Leicester City v Leeds United 0-2

Two first half goals were enough to secure the points for Leeds. Viduka put Leeds ahead after 18 minutes when Kewell took a corner, Fowler saw his spectacular volley blocked by Walker but Viduka headed the rebound home. Fowler added the second after 31 minutes when Viduka latched on to a pass from Kewell. Laursen could not prevent Viduka getting a shot in which Walker did well to turn on to the bar. But the ball came back for Fowler to head home. Debutant Ashton almost reduced the arrears in first half injury time when he saw a lob hit the Leeds crossbar.

Manchester United v Middlesbrough 0-1

A 9th minute goal by Boksic was enough to seal the points for the visitors. It was a terrible error of judgement on the part of Veron. Barthez rolled the ball to Veron, who was caught day dreaming in possession of the ball by Carbone. The result cross was deflected home by Boksic. Manchester United then proceeded to show their nasty side by trying to bully the match officials. Beckham was rightly booked for that and Ferguson was lucky he was not booked or sent off when he persisted in browbeating the match officials within earshot. Manchester United wasted most of their chances by rank bad shooting. Forlan was easily the worst offender in that respect. Boksic should have added to Manchester United's woes when again put through by Carbone but this time he put the ball well wide of the goal. On the touchline, Ferguson's face was a lovely sight to behold as his charges failed to equalise. Indeed, it has to be said they rarely put Schwarzer to the test.

Sunderland v Southampton 1-1

Both the goals came in the second half. McAteer put Sunderland ahead in the 62nd minute when McCann knocked the ball down for him to volley home from 20 yards. Tessem equalised for the Saints with two minutes to go when he rose to head a Svensson free-kick home. Sunderland are now teetering on the edge of a relegation battle simply because they are finding it difficult to score goals with Phillips woefully out of form.

Sunday 24 March 2002

Fulham v Tottenham Hotspur 0-2

Read the report here. Spurs could beat Fulham in this season!

Liverpool v Chelsea 1-0

An injury time strike was sufficient to ensure Liverpool took advantage of Manchester United's unexpected defeat to go top of the table. The Reds did not play at all well and looked out of sorts for long spells. Chelsea played well but could not get past Dudek. Chelsea were wasting time over taking a free-kick deep in injury time at the end of the match. Litmanen was far too quick for Chelsea as he sent Heskey pounding towards the Chelsea goal. Heskey flew by Melchiot and cut the ball back to Smicer, who sidefooted a sublime volley from 12 yards behind Cudicini. Afterwards, Phil Thompson described Heskey's 40 yard cross-field pass to Smicer as the pass of the season.


Pos             Pl.  W.  D.  L.  For- Ag Pts.
  1  Liverpool  32   19  8   5   53- 26   65
  2  Man Utd    32   20  4   8   78- 41   64
  3  Arsenal    30   18  9   3   60- 32   63
  4  Newcastle  30   17  5   8   54- 40   56
  5  Leeds      31   14 12   5   44- 30   54
  6  Chelsea    31   14 11   6   58- 31   53
  7  A. Villa   31   10 12   9   35- 36   42
  8  Charlton   31   10 11  10   35- 36   41
  9  Spurs      31   12  5  14   41- 45   41
 10  M'brough   31   10  8  13   30- 38   38
 11  West Ham   30   10  7  13   35- 48   37
 12  S'hampton  31   10  7  14   38- 46   37
 13  Everton    31    9  9  13   33- 39   36
 14  Fulham     31    8 11  12   30- 38   35
 15  S'derland  31    9  8  13   24- 38   35
 16  Bolton     31    7 12  12   34- 48   33
 17  Blackburn  30    8  8  14   39- 41   32
 18  Ipswich    31    8  8  15   38- 49   32
 19  Derby      31    8  5  18   29- 51   29
 20  Leicester  31    3 10  18   21- 55   19

Cheers, Brian

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