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Match Reports
Spurs Odyssey Reviews the Premiership Season
for 2001-2002 - Match 36

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

Saturday 20 April 2002
Bolton Wanderers v Tottenham Hotspur 1-1

Full report available here

Chelsea v Manchester United 0-3

The Champions' League has now slipped out of the grasp of the Blues. They look like ending the season trophy-less once again. Scholes put the champions ahead after 15 minutes when the visitors won a free-kick. Giggs rolled the ball to Scholes, who blasted the ball home from 30 yards. Ruud van Nistleroy added a second in the 41st minute when Giggs swapped passes with Solksjaer and van Nistleroy jinked past Terry and Cudicini to score. Solksjaer rounded off the scoring with four minutes of the match to play when van Nistleroy supplied a pass to Giggs, who spotted Solksjaer hovering on the other side of the goalmouth and the Norwegian timed his run to perfection to score.

Leeds United v Fulham 0-1

The South West London side grabbed the victory that assures them of another season in the Premiership when lifeless Leeds capitulated, much to the annoyance of their manager, David O'Leary. Malbranque scored the only goal of the game in the 52nd minute when Leeds made a hash of clearing a corner kick, allowing Malbranque to fire the ball home.

Leicester City v Aston Villa 2-2

Relegated Leicester gave Villa a huge fright. They fought hard for the ball and made Villa scrap all the way. Vassall put the visitors ahead in the 22nd minute when Crouch supplied a pass for Vassall to drive a low shot beyond Walker. Izzet then scored a penalty for Leicester in the 25th minute after Samuel had clattered into Marshall. Hitzlsperger restored the Villa lead two minutes later when he evaded the attentions of Marshall and Oakes before firing a low ball beyond Walker. Stevenson equalised for the Foxes in the 67th minute when Savage chipped the ball into the penalty area and Stevenson was first to react before Villa had realised their appeals for offside were unsuccessful.

Liverpool v Derby County 2-0

The Rams crumbled towards relegation with hardly a bleat. Michael Owen sparkled in the sunshine at Anfield as the Reds kept up the pressure on their rivals. Owen put the Reds ahead in the 16th minute when Anelka ran down the right wing, the ball moving to Riise on the left before Murphy pushed the ball to Smicer. A deft pass freed Owen from the hovering Riggott and Derby were down and out. Owen's 90th minute goal merely confirmed what had been obvious for several months. A long clearance from defence sent Owen scampering away, eluding Oakes in the process, to tap the ball into an empty goal.

Middlesbrough v Blackburn Rovers 1-3

Damien Duff was the brains behind this victory for Blackburn. Yordi put Blackburn ahead in the 33rd minute when a magnificent run by Duff left Yordi with a simple tap-in chance. Cole added a second in the 74th minute when Duff took a corner from which Cole headed home. Dunn scored a penalty in the 83rd minute when Queuendreu upended Dunn. Immediately afterwards, Queuendreu was sent off for a silly tackle on Dunn. With the exits jammed with departing home fans, Nemeth reduced the arrears in the 90th minute when he beat Short to a ball to force the ball home.

Newcastle United v Charlton Athletic 3-0

The Toon have almost qualified for the Champions League as a result of this win. Speed put them ahead in the 22nd minute when Shearer won them a corner. Solano took the corner and Speed headed the Toon ahead. Lua Lua added a second seconds after half-time when Elliott sent a long ball forward for the young striker to thump past Kiely. Shearer then scored the 200th goal of his career with a minute left to play when Speed split the Charlton defence with a peach of a pass for Shearer to tap the ball beyond Kiely.

Southampton v Everton 0-1

The Toffees ensured their safety with this victory. Prior to the arrival of David Moyes, they looked down and out. Their future looks promising if Moyes can strengthen their squad. Watson scored the only goal of the game in the 41st minute when he ran on to a Campbell pass to chip the ball over the hapless Jones in the Southampton goal.

West Ham United v Sunderland 3-0

Things will look bleak for Sunderland next season unless they can find someone to score goals. Sinclair put the Hammers ahead in the 28th minute when Schemmel tore down the right wing and chipped the ball to Sinclair, who steadied himself before scoring. Lomas added a second in the 52nd minute when Cole fed Sinclair on the right wing, the ball flew across the face of the Sunderland goal to Lomas, who buried the ball in the bottom right hand corner of the goal. Defoe added a third in the 77th minute when Lomas centred the ball from the right wing, Sinclair nodded the ball back and Defoe headed the ball into the Sunderland goal from point blank range.

Sunday 21 April 2002
Arsenal v Ipswich Town 2-0

The Gunners are now red hot favourites to complete a third League and Cup double. They will be the Champions if they win their remaining matches. For much of this match, they were nervy but kept their nerve just as all good winners do when they hit a rocky patch. Ljungberg scored both of their goals late in the match. His first goal, in the 68th minute, came with his outwitting the Ipswich defenders marking him and pivoting to toe poke the ball into the narrowest of gaps provided by the Tractor Boys. The second goal, some ten minutes later, came from a creative centre by Grimandi. Ljungberg's first effort, a header, was saved by Marshall but the goalkeeper could not prevent the ball from rebounding off the Swede's knee.

Tuesday 23 April 2002
Blackburn Rovers v Newcastle United 2-2

The Toon grabbed the point they needed to qualify for the pre-qualifying stage of next season's Champions League. Gillespie put Blackburn ahead in the 28th minute when he scored against the run of play after the Toon had dominated the match up to that point. Shearer equalised in the 63rd minute when Solano's shot was blocked by Friedel but Solano chipped the ball to Shearer to equalise. Cole restored Blackburn's lead in the 67th minute when Gillespie centred the ball to Cole to poke home beyond Given. But Shearer had the last word in the 71st minute when Robert put Shearer through to thump the ball home.

Fulham v Bolton Wanderers 3-0

Earlier in the day, Fulham had reported a 23.3M loss, a record for a British club. Goldbaek put Fulham ahead in the 42nd minute when he volleyed the ball home after a lapse of concentration by the Bolton defence. Marlet added a second in the 72nd minute with a swirling left footed drive. Hayles ensured Fulham were safe from relegation in the 76th minute when he slotted home Malbranque's pass. This was the final match at Craven Cottage before their season's tenancy at Loftus Road whilst Craven Cottage undergoes a 70M refit next season.

Wednesday 24 April 2002
Arsenal v West Ham United 2-0

In winning their 10th consecutive match, Arsenal are now clearly in pole position to win the League as they are now 4 points ahead of Liverpool. Two victories from their remaining three games will make them Champions. The goals came very late in the match. But West Ham did score a goal but which was not allowed. Kanoute's shot was clearly well over the line when Ashley Cole cleared the ball but the nearest official said he could not see clearly where the ball was. It was Ljungberg who scored in the 77th minute when he got on to the end of an exquisitely placed pass from Bergkamp. The celebrations had barely died away when Kanu added a second goal in the 80th minute. Sinclair lost possession of the ball in midfield and Ljungberg provided the pass from which Kanu scored.

Ipswich Town v Middlesbrough 1-0

Darren Bent scored the only goal of the match in the 58th minute to increase the pressure on Sunderland, the team immediately above them. He had come on (with Alan Armstrong) a minute earlier as replacements for Marcus Bent and Marcus Stewart. Venus took a corner which bounced off Hreidarsson's knee into Bent's path and Schwarzer had no chance to retrieve the situation.

Pos             Pl. W.  D.  L.  For-Ag  Pts.
  1  Arsenal    35  23  9   3   72- 33   78
  2  Liverpool  35  22  8   5   58- 26   74
  3  Man Utd    35  23  4   8   86- 44   73
  4  Newcastle  36  20  8   8   70- 48   68
  5  Chelsea    36  16 13   7   63- 35   61
  6  Leeds      36  16 12   8   51- 37   60
  7  West Ham   36  14  8  14   45- 52   50
  8  Spurs      36  13  8  15   47- 51   47
  9  M'brough   36  12  9  15   35- 44   45
 10  A. Villa   36  10 14  12   41- 45   44
 11  Fulham     36  10 13  13   36- 41   43
 12  Everton    36  11 10  15   41- 51   43
 13  S'hampton  36  11  9  16   42- 51   42
 14  Charlton   36  10 12  14   36- 47   42
 15  Blackburn  35  10 10  15   47- 46   40
 16  Bolton     36   9 13  14   43- 58   40
 17  S'derland  36  10  8  17   26- 48   38
 18  Ipswich    36   9  9  18   41- 58   36
 19  Derby      36   8  5  23   32- 61   29 R
 20  Leicester  36   4 12  20   28- 63   22 R

Cheers, Brian

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