Friday 25 September 2009

Time for Owen

The Manchester derby was decided with the last kick of the match deep into added time. Wayne Rooney opened the scoring for United after only 2 minutes but the persistence of Tevez forced Foster into an error and gifted Gareth Barry with a goal in the 16th minute. Darren Fletcher headed United in front 4 minutes into the 2nd half, but Bellamy replied with a rocket 3 minutes later and after Fletcher had scored with another header, Bellamy took advantage of a Ferdinand giveaway to sprint into the box and equalise from an acute angle in the 90th minute only for Giggs to deliver a delightful pass to Owen who slid the ball in for a 4-3 United win with the last kick of the game. Cole, Ballack and Drogba scored at the Bridge as Chelsea beat Tottenham to stay at the top of the pile while Torres scored twice for Liverpool who won 3-2 at West Ham. Burnley continued their good run with a 3-1 home win against Sunderland thanks to a brace from David Nugent.
In Spain Barcelona lead the way after a hat-trick from Messi helped them gain a 5-2 victory over Atletico Madrid at the Camp Nou

Friday 18 September 2009

European group matches begin

Another bad day for Arsenal in Manchester as City won 4-2 with Adebayor among the scorers against his old club, but getting himself into trouble for letting his emotions run wild. While the red side of Manchester were also celebrating having returned from North London with a 3-1 win against Tottenham despite going down to a 1st minute goal and having Paul Scholes sent off. Liverpool were convincing at home as Yossi Benayoun helped himself to a hat-trick in their 4-0 demolition of Burnley, but Chelsea needed goals at the end of each half to come from behind and win 2-1 at Stoke. Fulham, who defeated Everton 2-1 at home, travelled to CSKA Sofia in the Europa League and earned a 1-1 draw, while Everton put 4 past their Athenian guests AEK. Another Greek side, Panathinaikos, lost 3-1 at home to Galatasaray of Turkey and Swiss outfit Basel beat Roma 2-0 at home. In the first week of the Champions League group matches Arsenal went 2 down to Standard Liege in Belgium within 5 minutes but fought back to win 3-2, and Manchester United relied on a single goal from Scholes to win at Besiktas. Edinaldo Grafite scored all 3 goals as Wolfsburg sent CSKA back to Moscow with a 3-1 deficit and Inzaghi grabbed a double for Milan who won 2-1 at Olympique de Marseille. In the most highly anticipated match Inter and Barcelona played out a goalless draw.

Picture: Emmanuel Adebayor celebrations angers Arsenal fans

Thursday 10 September 2009

German girls finish off England

Germany continued their domination of women’s football by thrashing England 6-2 in the final of Euro 2009 in Finland. Grings laid the ball on for Prinz to roll past Brown in the 19th minute and 3 minutes later Melanie Behringer let fly from 41 yards to double the German lead, but within 2 minute England pulled a goal back when Kelly Smith ran onto a long ball in the box and dribbled her way along the by-line to present Karen Carney with a tap-in. Five minutes into the 2nd half Krahn's volley came off the post and Kim Kulig knocked the rebound into the roof of the net, but 5 minutes later Kelly Smith skilfully beat a German defender in the box to fire past Angerer in the German goal. Inka Grings restored Germany’s 2 goal lead with a firm header in the 62nd minute and caught England’s defence flat-footed on the counter attack to cue the ball up for a shot past Brown in the 73rd minute. Birgit Prinz lashed in the 6th a few minutes later to cap a magnificent victory for Germany. (picture: German keeper Nadine Angerer flying high against England)

How they reached the final

With Casey Stoney having received the only red card of the tournament in the 29th minute, a Tuttino screamer 8 minutes from time condemned England to a 2-1 defeat in their opening match against Italy. Within 22 minutes of their next match the England were 2 goals down to Russia and seemingly on their way out of the tournament, but by half time goals from Carney, Aluko and a long-rang wonder-goal from Kelly Smith had given the spirited English girls a 3-2 lead which they kept until fulltime. A 1-1 draw against Sweden in their final group match was enough to see England progress to next round.

Germany began the defence of their title with a flattering 4-0 win over Norway thanks to a first-half penalty conversion and 3 goals in the last 2 minutes of the match. An emphatic 5-1 win over France and single goal against Iceland gave the Germans the expected top spot in group B.

In the quarter finals a double from German goal machine Inka Grings was enough to see off Italy 2-1, while England eliminated feisty Finland 3-2 with Eniola Eluko grabbing a brace including an unstoppable run from kick-off after the hosts had pulled a goal back. In the other quarter-final matches the Dutch knocked France out on penalties after a goalless draw and Norway stunned Sweden 3-1 to set up a meeting with Germany.

In the semi-final matches Jill Scott headed in the winner 4 minutes from the end of extra time to give England a deserved 2-1 victory against the Netherlands and a place in the final against Germany who came from behind with 3 goals in the 2nd half including 2 from Fatmire Bajramaj to gain a 3-1 win against Norway.

Saturday 5 September 2009

Manchester moving up

Arsenal’s trip to Manchester ended in disappointed as an own goal and a penalty resulted their 2-1 loss despite having dominated much of the game at Old Trafford. A 1-0 win for Manchester City at Portsmouth elevated them into 4th place one below their Manchester rivals on goal difference but with a game in hand. Chelsea and Tottenham lead the way after wins at home to Burnley 3-0 and Birmingham 2-1 respectively.
In Italy Diego showed his finishing skills scoring twice as Juventus returned 3-1 victorious from Roma and in the Milan derby Inter demolished Milan 4-0.
The Spanish league got under way with Getafe, Barcelona, Malaga, Mallorca, Valencia, Real Madrid, Athletic Bilbao and Real Zaragoza all winning their opening matches.