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Page last updated at 18:48 GMT, Saturday, 17 April 2010 19:48 UK

Premier League and Football League as it happened


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By Caroline Cheese

1941: Match of the Day? 2225 BST on BBC One since you're asking. I'll see you tomorrow. I can't wait...

From abhuiya on Twitter: "The most unpredictable league in the world! Love it!"

1937: And if Manchester United beat Spurs next Saturday, they will be top by the time Chelsea host Stoke the day after.

1934: Next for Chelsea, it's Stoke at home, a game John Terry will miss through suspension, and then to Liverpool, who could do Manchester United a massive favour by taking points off the Blues... This Premier League season just doesn't know when to stop does it?

Daily Telegraph's Henry Winter on Twitter: "And that's why it's the most exciting league in the world. Pure drama at the Lane & Eastlands. Speed, commitment & unbelievable noise."

1928: That Spurs win was a lot more convincing than the scoreline suggests. Chelsea were surprisingly flat, but Tottenham were magnificent - as they were against Arsenal. Six points from two games against Arsenal and Chelsea. Just Manchester United to go...

1927: FULL-TIME Tottenham 2-1 Chelsea

1926: Chelsea pile forward in search of an equaliser... but Tottenham are suddenly on the counter, three on one. Gareth Bale passes inside to Roman Pavlyuchenko, who takes a touch and then STILL SOMEHOW MANAGES TO PROD IT WIDE. Sorry about the caps, but Spurs should have wrapped this up a long time ago. Pav promptly replaced by Peter Crouch.

Chelsea goal: Hello... this could be interesting. We're about two minutes into five minutes of added time as Frank Lampard turns in Michael Ballack's excellent cross from the right.

1923: GOALFLASH Tottenham 2-1 Chelsea (Lampard)

1922: Chelsea's goal difference advantage over Manchester United is now down to two. Tottenham are two better off than Manchester City.

1919: SITTER! Gareth Bale is back on the left and crosses for Roman Pavlyuchenko, who is all on his own right in front of goal, but volleys wide. The Russian is looking sheepish.

1918: Gareth Bale, on the right now, outmuscles and outpaces Yuri Zhirkov and looks to flick the finish left-footed into the far corner, but it's beyond the far post. Three minutes remaining, and the Spurs fans are giving their players the 'oles'

Yellow card
1916: Yuri Zhirkov gallops down the left and crosses for Nicolas Anelka, whose header hits Tom Huddlestone. Moments later, Roman Pavlyuchenko goes into the book for stopping Chelsea taking a quick free-kick.

1914: Didier Drogba picks up Florent Malouda's pass, and just as he's about to finish into the far corner, Michael Dawson arrives with a perfectly-timed block. Fabio Capello saw that, but he won't see any more. He's left the building.

1914: Petr Cech is keeping the scoreline down for Chelsea, pushing Gareth Bale's shot round the post. But Bale probably should have squared it.

1910: Yes, yes, I know Gareth Bale's Welsh (see 1903), and I'm sure Don Fabio does too. With Bale and Aaron Ramsey (when he recovers from that horror broken leg), Wales's future looks quite bright.

1909: Branislav Ivanovic forces Heurelho Gomes to tip over a dipping effort. Jermain Defoe comes off after scoring his 30th goal of the season, and Eidur Gudjohnsen comes on against his former club.

1907: West Brom wrap up a 2-0 win and that definitively ends Boro's play-off hopes. Fifteen minutes remaining at White Hart Lane, and it's only Spurs looking like scoring at the moment.

1906: Stunning effort by David Bentley, spotting Petr Cech off his line and chipping the keeper from 20 yards out. Cech back-pedals in time and tips the ball over. Wonderful technique by Bentley though.

1903: Wonder what the watching Fabio Capello makes of it all? So far today, he's seen Wayne Rooney return from injury (albeit in quite quiet fashion), but Rio Ferdinand again absent, and now John Terry sent off. I'll bet he likes the look of that Gareth Bale on the left...

1901: They have finally shown a replay of that Terry challenge and he got nowhere near the ball. My lip-reading skills tell me that he said "that's twice I got the ball" on the way off. Michael Ballack appears to have replaced Terry in defence.

Red card
Chelsea red card: Gareth Bale is threatening to escape down the left and John Terry takes a huge risk by sliding in. Phil Dowd has absolutely no hesitation in bringing out a second yellow and the red. Terry says something to Bale on his way off before wagging his finger. He didn't look that surprised to see the red though.

1858: RED CARD Chelsea (Terry)

1856: Gareth Bale beats the wall well enough but there's nowhere near enough dip on his effort and it's comfortably over the bar.

Yellow card
1855: John Terry loses out to Roman Pavlyuchenko and then makes sure the Russian striker can't get his shot away by bringing him down. Yellow for the Chelsea skipper and a free-kick, dead centre, 20 yards out for Spurs.

1854: Didier Drogba, who appears to be running at full pelt against after that injury scare, is penalised for a foul on Sebastian Bassong.

1852: The Spurs fans are making a terrific din at White Hart Lane. It's been quite a week for them. Beaten in the Cup semi-final by relegated Pompey, then a stirring win over their fiercest rivals, and now this... But it's not over yet.

1850: Roman Pavlyuchenko has a chance to play in Luka Modric, but overhits the pass and Chelsea survive. Moments later, Pav has a go from a tight angle on the left, turned behind by Petr Cech... and the Chelsea keeper catches the corner.

Yellow card
1845: Tom Huddlestone and Frank Lampard begin a scuffle on the halfway line, and pretty soon, everyone else bundles in. Phil Dowd shows one yellow to Huddlestone and then appears to pick Deco at random for inevitable Chelsea card.

1844: Not for the first time, Phil Dowd awards a goalkick when it should be a corner. Chelsea on the receiving end this time, as Nicolas Anelka's effort seems to come off Michael Dawson last.

1843: John Terry and Didier Drogba are complaining to ref Phil Dowd about something. Not sure what.

1841: Jermain Defoe is through on goal... can he finish it off? Not quite, he's denied by a smart Petr Cech save. Cech punches the resulting corner into Roman Pavlyuchenko's path but the Russian's ambitious volley flies well over.

1839: Didier Drogba still not running freely. How did he manage to injure himself on his way from the dressing room to the centre circle? Bizarre. Those subs mean we won't be seeing Ashley Cole's return from injury today, by the way.

1836: MASSIVE controversy at White Hart Lane - and we haven't even kicked off yet. Carlo Ancelotti throws caution to the wind by sending Branislav Ivanovic and Nicolas Anelka on for Joe Cole and Paulo Ferreira. That means he can't make any more changes (having brought Michael Ballack on in the first half) - and would you believe it, Didier Drogba limps over from the centre circle, complaining of a groin injury. Can Ancelotti change his subs? It appears not. Drogba will have to soldier on... Remarkable.

1835: Roman Bednar has taken advantage of some frankly hopeless defending by Middlesbrough to give West Brom a 2-0 lead.

1832: Hang on, it wasn't me who ruled Arsenal out of the title race, it was none other than Arsene Wenger - although he did add that "you never know" and today is turning out to be one of those days. The Gunners, as it stands, are six points off the lead, having played a game less.

From DebsGooner on Twitter: "You do know that a team called Arsenal are still in the title race?!"

1823: And the run-ins? Chelsea are at home to Stoke, away to Liverpool, home to Wigan. Manchester United are at home to Spurs, away to Sunderland and home to Stoke. Man City are away at Arsenal, home to Villa, home to Spurs and away to West Ham. Tottenham are away at Man Utd, at home to Bolton, away to Man City and finally, away to Burnley.

1821: As it stands, Chelsea's lead at the top of the Premier League is a slender one point, with three games remaining. Tottenham are fourth, two points ahead of Manchester City. Could all change in the next hour of course...

1819: HALF-TIME Tottenham 2-0 Chelsea

1818: Could be a crucial moment... and it's Heurelho Gomes involved, of course. Paulo Ferreira bursts down the left and chips a cross which Frank Lampard meets with a crisp volley - Gomes saves to his right.

Tottenham goal: Spurs fans in dreamland now. Gareth Bale on the left and faced with Paulo Ferreira, who seems happy for the left-footer to cut in onto his right foot - but Bale simply hammers a low shot past Petr Cech at his near post.

1815: GOALFLASH Tottenham 2-0 Chelsea (Bale)

From Penayat on Twitter: "On the evidence of the first quarter of this match, you'd swear it was Spurs and not Chelsea who were top of the league."

1811: Yuri Zhirkov threads a pass through for Florent Malouda, who has the ball in the net - but he's offside, replays confirming it.

1809: Paulo Ferreira makes a vital headed clearance from a well-worked Spurs corner. That's another corner, and Younes Kaboul heads straight at Petr Cech from a good position.

Football League Nathan: "Party atmosphere at the sunny Hawthorns. With promotion to the Premier League already secured, the Baggies lead Middlesbrough through Simon Cox's superb strike on the stroke of half-time."

1804: Chelsea are forced into an early change. Jon Obi Mikel, who was a doubt before the game, is replaced by Michael Ballack.

1802: Luka Modric weaves his way to the byline and cuts the ball back for David Bentley, whose shot clearly comes off John Terry before going behind. Phil Dowd awards a goal-kick.

1801: Joe Cole has time and space to measure a cross from the right... but overcooks it. Disappointing. He is being watched by the England manager today too.

1756: Roman Pavlyuchenko turns and out of the blue, fires in a crackerjack of a shot, which Petr Cech does well to tip over.

BBC 5 live summariser Graham Taylor: "I'm very disappointed in Chelsea. It's like that late winner by Manchester United has had a really negative effect on them. They haven't done anything to assert themselves in this game."

From anon via text: "I was literally sending a message saying 'is there a secret rule where a referee cannot give a penalty against Chelsea?' How wrong I was..."

1751: Chance for Didier Drogba but he doesn't connect that well and Heurelho Gomes collects.

Tottenham goal: They've been threatening it... Moments after Phil Dowd waves away loud appeals for Jon Obi Mikel's challenge on Gareth Bale, Dowd does point to the spot for John Terry's handball after a corner is deflected into his path. The ball hits him in a similar place to the claim by Bolton on Tuesday - maybe a bit higher - and the Chelsea skipper isn't complaining too much. Jermain Defoe shows remarkable poise to send the penalty high into the net.

1747: GOALFLASH Tottenham 1-0 Chelsea (Defoe pen)


1744: Starting to warm up nicely now. And how is that not a foul? John Terry appears to haul down Jermain Defoe on the edge of the box but no foul...

1744: David Bentley, for the second time in a few minutes, whacks the ball straight at the defender standing right in front of him. Odd.

1738: Chelsea passing the ball around in midfield now as they attempt to take the sting out of Spurs's fast starts. Florent Malouda takes the shot on, a fierce one, which Heurelho Gomes settles for beating away for a corner.

1736: Gareth Bale skips down the left, but Joe Cole stays with him, and makes a vital block.

1733: Lively start by Spurs, Roman Pavlyuchenko closing Petr Cech down quickly and forcing the Chelsea keeper to hurry his clearance.

Hull manager-or-whatever-he-is Iain Dowie after the draw at Birmingham: We had good opportunities but didn't really take them. Defensively we were much better today. Our away following was great and I think we responded in kind. We've got two home games coming and only after them will we know if it was a good point. It's a point gained in my view."

1732: Away we go.

1729: The teams are out and we're moments away from kick-off. After that result at Eastlands earlier, the pressure is right back on Chelsea.

1724: Peter Crouch has got tonsillitis, the poor mite.

1723: TEAM NEWS Tottenham v Chelsea
Tottenham must take on potential champions-elect Chelsea, then, without captain Ledley King, who is not even fit enough to take a place on the bench after his exploits in the midweek win over Arsenal, while man-of-the-moment Danny Rose must settle for a substitute's role with David Bentley and Sebastien Bassong drafted in for the hosts. Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti brings Joe Cole, Florent Malouda and Deco in to his starting XI, with Michael Ballack, Salomon Kalou and Nicolas Anelka dropping out. Ashley Cole is on the bench following his recovery from a fractured ankle.

Spurs boss Harry Redknapp: "I've looked at the Chelsea bench and it looks quite weak. Anelka, Ballack, Ashley Cole..."

Fulham boss Roy Hodgson: "I'm not too devastated by it (the 0-0), it looks like all the 11 who started the game will be fit for Thursday. And hopefully we'll have Brede Hangeland back if his wife has had the baby."

From optajoe on Twitter: "Fulham v Wolves was the first Premier League match this season to see just one shot on target. Yawn."

1715: Exciting times for UK users of the BBC website. You can watch West Brom v Middlesbrough live. It's just kicked off.

1711: Just caught the end of an interview with Roberto Mancini on BBC 5 live in which he promised that Manchester City would finish fourth. He didn't sound totally convinced though - and you can't blame him. City, whose next three games are Arsenal (A), Aston Villa (H) and Spurs (H), are one point ahead of Tottenham.

From CraigMurphy75 on Twitter: "Well done Rochdale! The first time in 40 odd years that their fans enjoy promotion!? Quite incredible. Enjoy!"

TEAMS Tottenham v Chelsea
Tottenham: Gomes, Kaboul, Dawson, Bassong, Assou-Ekotto, Bentley, Huddlestone, Modric, Bale, Pavlyuchenko, Defoe. Subs: Alnwick, Crouch, Gudjohnsen, Rose, Kyle Walker, Livermore, Townsend.
Chelsea: Cech, Paulo Ferreira, Alex, Terry, Zhirkov, Deco, Mikel, Lampard, Joe Cole, Drogba, Malouda. Subs: Hilario, Ivanovic, Ashley Cole, Ballack, Kalou, Sturridge, Anelka.
Referee: Phil Dowd (Staffordshire)

1703: Hull's point at Birmingham means they move above Burnley, beaten at Sunderland, but those two still look favourite to join Portsmouth in the Championship next season. West Ham are at Liverpool on Monday, while Wigan host Arsenal tomorrow.

1701: Matt Taylor's double strike in the last 19 minutes at Stoke means Bolton end a four-game losing streak and they are now seven points clear of the drop zone.

1658: And as well as the promotion party in Stevenage, there will be similar scenes of celebration at Rochdale and Notts County (up to League One), and Norwich (up to the Championship). Well done one and all.

1657: Crikey. It's a late goals kinda day it seems. Blackburn twice come from behind but can't prevent Everton ending their eight-game unbeaten run at Ewood Park. David Moyes' men now two points behind sixth-placed Liverpool.

1656: FULL-TIME Blackburn 2-3 Everton

From Perry on 606: "Cheesy, can you please publish this and join me in welcoming Stevenage Borough into the Football League after their 2-0 victory at Kidderminster Harriers confirmed them as Conference champions? Thanks!"

1654: FULL-TIME Fulham 0-0 Wolves

1653: FULL-TIME Stoke 1-2 Bolton

1652: FULL-TIME Sunderland 2-1 Burnley

1651: FULL-TIME Birmingham 0-0 Hull

Everton goal: Yakubu scored just after coming on and now he sets up what could well be the winner for Tim Cahill, who scores with his foot rather than his head for a change. Can they hang on this time?

1650: GOALFLASH Blackburn 2-3 Everton (Cahill)

Bolton's goals: That was a really bad time for my computer to crash... Still my goal prayers have been answered so I shan't complain. Matt Taylor drives in a low free-kick which deflects off the Stoke wall and past Thomas Sorensen. That's a double whammy for Stoke, who have dominated the game and won't have been happy about the referee's decision to award the free-kick for a cheap foul on Vladimir Weiss... AND THIS IS A TRIPLE WHAMMY NOW! Weiss crosses from the right and Matt Taylor sticks a leg out to divert the ball past Sorensen.

1647: GOALFLASH Stoke 1-2 Bolton (Taylor)

Blackburn goal: Everton are making a habit of throwing away leads. Blackburn are almost unbeatable at home. I guess it had to happen. Nikola Kalinic pokes the ball through for Jason Roberts and after one bounce of the ball, the striker unleashes an unstoppable drive into the corner from 25 yards.

1644: GOALFLASH Stoke 1-1 Bolton (Taylor)

Burnley goal: Robbie Blake feeds Steven Thompson, who drives a right-foot effort low past Craig Gordon.

1641: GOALFLASH Blackburn 2-2 Everton (Roberts)

1640: GOALFLASH Sunderland 2-1 Burnley (Thompson)

Everton goal: That's quite an introduction. Leighton Baines's throw-in is flicked on by Victor Anichebe and 22 seconds after coming on as a sub, Yakubu heads past Paul Robinson.

1639: GOALFLASH Blackburn 1-2 Everton (Yakubu)

1636: Ledley King is not in the Tottenham squad to face Chelsea later. Danny Rose is on the bench.

Someone has struck the woodwork
1632: Blimey, the woodwork is having a busy old afternoon. Bolton keeper Jussi Jaaskelainen gets a vital touch onto Tuncay's shot, pushing it onto the inside of the post. Dave Kitson looks certain to tap in the rebound though, but spoons it over the bar as Gretar Steinsson slides in with a last-ditch block.

Blackburn goal: After Baines hits the post, Blackburn go up the other end and pop in an equaliser - in quite some style. Steven Nzonzi picks up the ball about 30 yards out, looks up and spanks a magnificent drive into the top corner. A smasher.

1629: GOALFLASH Blackburn 1-1 Everton (Nzonzi)

Someone has struck the woodwork
1628: Another post shuddering, this time at Ewood Park. The ball is half-cleared and Leighton Baines is running in, meeting it with a thunderous left-foot volley. Very unlucky.

Someone has struck the woodwork
1626: Classic Bobby Zamora, the Fulham striker holding the ball up brilliantly before making space for the shot, which he thumps right-footed onto the post. Unlucky.

1625: Sorry Stoke. You have, of course, joined the goal party - and a very fine effort it was too by Dave Kitson. Not sure how I managed to forget that.

1623: Morten Gamst Pedersen heads an excellent chance wide for Blackburn. He was offside anyway. He's been taken off now. What a miserable minute for the Norwegian. Jason Roberts is on.

1620: Not many goals around... In fact, only Sunderland, Stoke and Everton have joined the net-busting party started by Paul Scholes earlier. This must be what it's like for Jonathan 'The Goal Repeller' Stevenson.

1617: Tim Cahill heads over the bar for Everton from Tony Hibbert's cross. Until then, Everton had been very comfortably in possession, without showing much sign of pressing for a second goal against Blackburn. For Wolves, Dave Edwards hammers a shot over at Craven Cottage.

1612: Wolves keeper Marcus Hahnemann's punch only reaches Damien Duff but the winger's first-time effort is wide.

1610: A rare chance for Bolton against Stoke, but substitute Ivan Klasnic shoots wide.

1605: BREAKING NEWS BBC 5 live's Nigel Adderley reports that Uefa will make a decision by Monday over whether next week's Europa League ties - featuring both Fulham and Liverpool - will go ahead. The volcanic ash cloud continues to cause havoc...

1604: We're getting back under way in the second half. At Stoke, Bolton boss Owen Coyle replaces Sam Ricketts with Ivan Klasnic.

Football League Nathan: "Notts County cruising against Morecambe. They only need a point to go up to League One and they're 3-0 up at half-time. Rochdale looking good for promotion too, they lead Northampton 1-0. Not looking so good for Grimsby at the bottom though a point won't do them any favours 0-0 there against Torquay."

1556: As it stands, Hull are leapfrogging Burnley into 18th, but they'll still be three points behind West Ham. Sunderland are edging ever closer to that much sought-after 12th place, just two points behind Blackburn, who are losing at home to Everton.

1551: Everton go into the break in the lead courtesy of their strong start but they were forced to soak up a lot of pressure just before the half-time whistle as Blackburn came back strongly. Nicely set for the second half.

1549: HALF-TIME Fulham 0-0 Wolves

1549: HALF-TIME Blackburn 0-1 Everton

1548: HALF-TIME Stoke 1-0 Bolton

1547: HALF-TIME Birmingham 0-0 Hull

1547: HALF-TIME Sunderland 2-0 Burnley

1544: Birmingham keeper Joe Hart produces a save that is every inch England class as he instinctively blocks a point-blank Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink header with a diving one-handed stop. At Blackburn, Everton defender Phil Jagielka has made a vital intervention to prevent Martin Olsson equalising, scrambling the Swede's goalbound shot away.

Sunderland goal: All that good work against Hull last week looks to be going to waste for Burnley. David Meyler chips a lovely pass to Fraizer Campbell, who is just about onside, and he heads across goal for Darren Bent to volley in left-footed past Brian Jensen.

1541: GOALFLASH Sunderland 2-0 Burnley (Bent)

BBC Sport's David Ornstein at Craven Cottage: "It seems the sunshine and leisurely atmosphere down by the Thames today has rubbed off on both sets of players - the standard of football on display is pretty dire. The Wolves fans seem more interested in venting their spleen at ex-West Brom midfielder Jonathan Greening on the Fulham bench, while the Fulham supporters are mixing groans of frustration with renditions of "we're all going on a European tour". Minds elsewhere, me thinks..."

Football League Nathan: "Nightmare afternoon for promotion-chasing Leeds in League One. Their leaky defence has been breached three times by Gillingham after only 33 minutes."

1538: The ball breaks fortunately for Kevin Doyle but the Wolves striker shoots just wide. They are still goal-free at Craven Cottage.

1534: Darren Bent - who has scored seven goals in his last four games at the Stadium of Light - squanders a great chance as he leaps above Tyrone Mears and with the goal at his mercy heads wide.

1532: Keith Fahey's shot is deflected just wide for Birmingham, while Lee Bowyer heads onto the top of the goal. The hosts looking dangerous against Hull.

1531: Blackburn have ridden out the Everton storm a bit and are starting to impose themselves on the game. The Toffees still look dangerous on the break but are now having to do some defending as well.

1531: Wolves have their first shot of the day at Craven Cottage, but Ronald Zubar's ambitious volley from edge of the box flies a good 20 yards wide. It's that sort of game at the moment.

BBC Sport's David Ornstein at Craven Cottage: "Fulham press box packed to the rafters - this is the start of an important week for Fulham. Focus very much on Wolves today but already plenty of talk on the terraces about Thursday's Europa League semi-final first-leg in Hamburg. The turn-around Roy Hodgson has overseen at the Cottage is nothing short of remarkable and don't these fans know it - they're in dreamland."

Sunderland goal: Well, that's a blow to Burnley's slim chances of staying up. Well-worked by Sunderland, Darren Bent holding up the ball and playing in Alan Hutton on the right and his cross is expertly finished by Fraizer Campbell. That goals comes moments after Kenwyne Jones hit the post.

1525: GOALFLASH Sunderland 1-0 Burnley (Campbell)

1521: An outbreak of handbags at Ewood Park - and Mikel Arteta can count himself lucky not to have been sent off. The Everton midfielder goes head-to-head with Morten Gamst Pedersen, poking him first in the cheek, and then, naughtily, in the eye. Andre Marriner gives a yellow apiece.

1519: Goal machine Bobby Zamora glances a header wide from Danny Murphy's free-kick in the first chance of note between Fulham and Wolves.

1517: Stoke almost two up against Bolton as Robert Huth's header hits the bottom of the post and Liam Lawrence isn't quite close enough to bury the rebound.

From moonmonkey0794 on Twitter: "Is it wrong that when Scholes scored, I actually thought to myself: 'Liverpool still have a chance for 4th place'?"

1514: Blackburn's first corner of the game almost sees them get back on level terms as only Tim Cahill's intervention on the goalline prevents them scrambling an equaliser. It would have been massively against the run of play as Everton have dominated and barely relinquished possession.

Stoke goal: Lovely pass from Tuncay for Dave Kitson, who beats the offside trap, touches the ball past Jussi Jaaskelainen and slots into the empty net.

1513: GOALFLASH Stoke 1-0 Bolton (Kitson)

1512: And completing the perfect hat-trick, the League Two story as told by Football League Nathan: "Fairly straightforward at the top in League Two. Notts County need a point against Morecambe to go up, while a win for second-placed Rochdale against Northampton will seal the Dale's auto-promotion place. Not looking good for Grimsby down at the bottom, anything other than three points could see them drop out of the Football League."

1511: And here he is again, with some League One chat: "Millwall's defeat at Huddersfield last night did wonders for both league-leaders Norwich and second-placed Leeds. The Canaries can seal promotion should they beat Charlton and other results go their way, while Leeds (who face Gillingham) have the chance to put daylight between themselves and the Lions."

1510: Another special guest for your reading pleasure. It's Football League Nathan: "Cardiff will make sure of their place in the play-offs if they win at QPR, as will Leicester if they beat Watford. Already-promoted Newcastle will be crowned champions without even playing should West Brom slip up against Middlesbrough. Plymouth must wait until Monday before they have a chance to rescue their campaign, but if those above them have a good weekend, they'll be on the brink of relegation come Sunday night."

1509: There was an early chance for Birmingham at St Andrews. The ball was fed to James McFadden on the right, who cut inside and unleashed a 25-yard shot but just wide of the far corner of the goal.

Man Utd boss Sir Alex Ferguson: "Whether we're back challenging for the title all depends on the result between Chelsea and Tottenham. We deserved to win, no question, but I couldn't see a goal coming."

Everton goal: That's about as clear a penalty as you'll get. Ryan Nelsen clatters into Mikel Arteta and the Spaniard steps up to send Paul Robinson the wrong way. Nelsen didn't even really complain about that.

1504: GOALFLASH Blackburn 0-1 Everton (Arteta)


From Steve, a confused Hull Fan, via text: "4-5-1 in a must-win game? Iain Dowie? Would rather have David Bowie."

Gary Neville kisses Paul Scholes
1459: My colleague has shown me a picture of Gary Neville apparently kissing Paul Scholes full on the lips. Meanwhile, they're under way at St Andrew's where Hull must surely win if they're to have any hope of staying up.

Man Utd captain Gary Neville:"We passed them to death all day. I hope the result puts Chelsea in a negative frame of mind. I hope that Spurs can do something for us. Against Arsenal, Spurs showed they are a good team."

BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at Eastlands: "Some Manchester City fans look close to tears as they pour out of Eastlands. Manchester United were within 20 seconds of seeing their Premier League title hopes more or less snuffed out until that superb header from Paul Scholes. They have done City in injury time for the third time this season. United still in the title race but a shift in momentum back to Spurs in the race for fourth. They can do themselves and United a massive favour against Chelsea at White Hart Lane later."

1454: After sitting out the 5-1 defeat at parent club Manchester City last weekend, on-loan keeper Joe Hart returns to the Birmingham team in place of Maik Taylor. This is the only change the Blues make as they look to end a run of six matches without a win. Hull make three changes from the side which lost 4-1 at home to Burnley. In goal, Matt Duke comes in for Boaz Myhill, Tom Cairney replaces Bernard Mendy in midfield and up front Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink is selected ahead of Jozy Altidore.

1453: Fulham boss Roy Hodgson makes three changes to the side that drew at Liverpool last week. Brede Hangeland is missing from the squad so Chris Smalling comes in at centre-back, while Zoltan Gera and Simon Davies replace Jonathan Greening and Erik Nevland. On the bench, John Pantsil appears for the first time since December after recovering from a knee injury. Wolves manager Mick McCarthy names an unchanged line-up, with skipper Karl Henry still banned following his red card against Arsenal two weeks ago.

1452: Stoke boss Tony Pulis makes two changes to the side that saw off Hull last time out. Tuncay Sanli replaces the injured Mamady Sidibe, while Liam Lawrence comes in for Matthew Etherington, who drops to the bench after sustaining a knee injury. Owen Coyle, whose Bolton side are without a goal in 381 minutes, sticks with the same XI narrowly beaten by Chelsea on Tuesday evening.

1451: Striker Kenwyne Jones returns to Sunderland's starting line-up to partner leading scorer Darren Bent in attack, but Lee Cattermole misses out as he has failed to recover from a calf injury. Burnley boss Brian Laws makes one change to the team which beat Hull last weekend with midfielder Chris Eagles replacing striker David Nugent.

1451: Blackburn make three changes from the side that drew with Man Utd, bringing in Ryan Nelsen, Keith Andrews and David Dunn for Christopher Samba, Brett Emerton and Vincenzo Grella. Everton also line up with three changes from the side that held Aston Villa last time out as Tony Hibbert, Mikel Arteta and Louis Saha replace Johnny Heitinga, Leon Osman and Yakubu.

TEAMS Sunderland v Burnley
Sunderland: Gordon, Hutton, Turner, Mensah, Richardson, Campbell, Meyler, Henderson, Malbranque, Jones, Bent. Subs: Carson, Bardsley, Ferdinand, Zenden, Da Silva, Kilgallon, Mwaruwari.
Burnley: Jensen, Mears, Cort, Duff, Fox, Paterson, Elliott, Alexander, Cork, Eagles, Steven Fletcher. Subs: Weaver, Carlisle, Caldwell, Blake, Bikey, Jordan, Thompson.
Referee: Howard Webb (S Yorkshire)

TEAMS Fulham v Wolverhampton
Fulham: Schwarzer, Baird, Hughes, Smalling, Konchesky, Davies, Murphy, Etuhu, Duff, Gera, Zamora. Subs: Zuberbuhler, Pantsil, Okaka, Nevland, Riise, Greening, Dikgacoi.
Wolverhampton: Hahnemann, Zubar, Craddock, Berra, Elokobi, Mancienne, David Jones, Foley, Jarvis, Edwards, Doyle. Subs: Hennessey, Ebanks-Blake, Ward, Halford, Iwelumo, Milijas, Guedioura.
Referee: Mike Dean (Wirral)

MOTD2's Kevin Day tweeting from Eastlands: "A Man United fan actually stage dived and Rooney chose to celebrate in front of City fans rather than his own subs."

TEAMS Stoke v Bolton
Stoke: Sorensen, Huth, Abdoulaye Faye, Higginbotham, Collins, Lawrence, Whitehead, Whelan, Delap, Sanli, Kitson. Subs: Begovic, Beattie, Fuller, Pugh, Etherington, Wilkinson, Moult.
Bolton: Jaaskelainen, Steinsson, Cahill, Knight, Robinson, Lee, Ricketts, Muamba, Wilshere, Taylor, Kevin Davies. Subs: Al Habsi, Samuel, Elmander, Mark Davies, Klasnic, Cohen, Weiss.
Referee: Stuart Attwell (Warwickshire)

TEAMS Blackburn v Everton
Blackburn: Robinson, Salgado, Nelsen, Jones, Givet, Andrews, Nzonzi, Dunn, Pedersen, Olsson, Kalinic. Subs: Brown, Roberts, Grella, Basturk, Hoilett, Di Santo, Chimbonda.
Everton: Howard, Hibbert, Jagielka, Distin, Baines, Bilyaletdinov, Neville, Arteta, Pienaar, Cahill, Saha. Subs: Turner, Yobo, Yakubu, Senderos, Anichebe, Duffy, Wallace.
Referee: Andre Marriner (W Midlands)

TEAMS Birmingham v Hull
Birmingham: Hart, Carr, Johnson, Dann, Ridgewell, Gardner, Ferguson, Bowyer, Fahey, Jerome, McFadden. Subs: Taylor, Larsson, Phillips, Benitez, Michel, Parnaby, Vignal.
Hull: Duke, McShane, Sonko, Mouyokolo, Dawson, Fagan, Bullard, Boateng, Cairney, Kilbane, Vennegoor of Hesselink. Subs: Myhill, Barmby, Altidore, Geovanni, Marney, Cooper, Olofinjana.
Referee: Mark Clattenburg (Tyne & Wear)

1442: Wow. A frankly rubbish game ends in the most dramatic of fashions. Over to you, Chelsea. The United players went absolutely berserk when that goal went in, and Gary Neville is now one of the last to leave the pitch, pointedly clutching the United badge on his chest before he is quickly hurried away by Mike Phelan.

1441: FULL-TIME Man City 0-1 Man Utd

Man Utd goal: With seconds remaining of added time, Gabriel Obertan passes out wide to Patrice Evra and his first-time cross is met by Paul Scholes, whose soaring header creeps inside the post. How important could that goal be?

1439: GOALFLASH Man City 0-1 Man Utd (Scholes)

1438: Wayne Bridge joins the attack and picks up Carlos Tevez's pass but shoots straight at Edwin van der Sar. One minute to go. Who wants it?

1436: There will be three minutes of added time. Only three.

1434: Another good cross from Nani and Ryan Giggs looks certain to head it in. The ball drifts over his head though. Not sure how.

1432: Shaun Wright-Phillips wins another free-kick on the right, this time thanks to Gabriel Obertan's foul. Carlos Tevez swings it towards Nedum Onuoha, but Nemanja Vidic just gets enough on his header to deflect it behind. From the corner, there's an almighty scramble as Patrick Vieira prods it back in and Onuoha tries to ram it home - but Nemanja Vidic makes the vital block.

1428: Be still my beating heart. That was actually a very good cross. Well done, Nani. Dimitar Berbatov is a little bit too far out to get any purchase on his header, but he nods it towards the far corner, and a scrambling Shay Given is quite pleased to see the ball dribble wide.

1426: Gabriel Obertan, sporting some pink boots which have horrified poor Jimmy Armfield on BBC 5 live, comes to replace Antonio Valencia for Manchester United. Into the last 10 minutes now.

1424: Nigel de Jong is coming off, Stephen Ireland is coming on. There are 12 minutes remaining and it's still a bore draw.

Yellow card
1422: Shaun Wright-Phillips is tripped by Patrice Evra - who gets a yellow. Free-kick on the right, but again, it's an awful delivery from Gareth Barry.

1419: Action at both ends. Gareth Barry runs on to Emmanuel Adebayor's pass, but goes over under Gary Neville's challenge. Didn't look to be much contact, if any, and City weren't exactly over-enthusiastic with their appeals. At the other end, Ryan Giggs is through on goal but Shay Given meets him on the edge of the box and blocks the shot. Dimitar Berbatov replaces Wayne Rooney, while for City, Shaun Wright-Phillips is on for Emmanuel Adebayor.

From Gordon_Fer on Twitter: "You'd never guess this was a derby match, no real commitment from either team, this has draw written all over it. Shame."

1417: Ryan Giggs sidefoots a dangerous low ball in from the left, and Nani is sliding in to meet it at the near post but his effort is well wide. Looks like Berbatov will be on in a sec.

1415: The crossing today has been pretty poor from both sides. Antonio Valencia beats the first man but beats everyone else too and the ball floats harmlessly over to the other side of the pitch.

1413: Emmanuel Adebayor's cross clips off Jonny Evans, but Patrice Evra doesn't realise and lets the ball run out of play for a corner. Nedum Onuoha heads it wide.

1411: Adam Johnson is coming off. Not had a great game, the young winger, but not disastrous. The fresh-ish legs of Patrick Vieira replace him. And the rest of Patrick Vieira too.

1409: Shay Given kicks the ball straight out of play. His distribution has been a bit off today. Nani takes on three on the left before rolling the ball to Paul Scholes... who wasn't expecting it and shakes a fist at his team-mate.

BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at Eastlands: "Eastlands showing signs of anxiety as Manchester United control the early possession after the break. The mood has not been helped by what looked like a blatant piece of gamesmanship from Wayne Rooney that resulted in a booking for Vincent Kompany. Nani's introduction will give United greater width - a smart move."

1405: Nani on for for Darron Gibson.

1404: Swift attack by City and Craig Bellamy runs on to a perfect pass on the left, but instead of squaring for Carlos Tevez, he shoots from a tight angle and Edwin van der Sar gathers.

Yellow card
1403: Sir Alex has sent Nani to warm up... Meanwhile on the pitch, Adam Johnson keeps Kompany company in the book for hauling back Antonio Valencia.

Yellow card
1400: Vincent Kompany catches Wayne Rooney on the back of the ankle and the England striker looks to be in agony. The City fans are less than pleased as they watch Rooney wait for the yellow card to appear before leaping to his feet and jogging back into the City half. He wasn't even very subtle about it.

1358: City made the stronger start to the half, but a poor throw-out by Shay Given put his side under pressure. Eventually, Craig Bellamy gives away a free-kick for a foul on Gary Neville but it's a TERRIBLE effort by Ryan Giggs and City comfortably clear.

MOTD2's Kevin Day tweeting from Eastlands: "Talking to Man City fans in the toilet who tell me that is the most composed they have seen City against United. I should clarify that I wasn't tweeting while I was talking to the City fans in the toilet."

1351: Second half begins. Roberto Mancini didn't hang about in the dressing room too long. He was out of the tunnel and staring moodily at the pitch several minutes before his players. Scarf watchers: I forgot to inform you, he is wearing his trademark blue and white number, despite the blazing sunshine.

From Lord_Tachyon on Twitter: "Re 1339: It'll be draws all around today and nothing will be different. So on to next week we'll go!"

1348: Anyone guess Craig Short? The former Blackburn, Everton and Derby defender is managing Ferencvaros in Hungary and your friend and mine, Paul Fletcher, has written a splendid blog about it. Read it... Or not. I don't mind.

1345: Here's a quick half-time quiz to relieve the tension: Name an English manager at a foreign club, whose name isn't Steve McClaren...

From hussaindo on Twitter: "Man Utd's weakest link is Giggs. Poor passing. Get Nani in!"

1339: A draw suits neither of these two. As it stands, United will be three points behind Chelsea, while City will be two points ahead of Spurs. Spurs-Chelsea is today's evening kick-off. In between, a few games which could have a huge bearing on the relegation places, not least Birmingham-Hull.

MOTD2's Kevin Day tweeting from Eastlands: "If Adebayor had half the work rate of Tevez, he'd be a player - or if Tevez was half the size of Adebayor, same thing."

BBC Radio 5 live
BBC 5 live summariser Jimmy Armfield: "United are winning the midfield battle. They are playing these triangles all the time, and City haven't found an answer. We've seen very little from Gareth Barry, who has been very disappointing, and not much from the front three."

1334: HALF-TIME Man City 0-0 Man Utd

1332: An even better chance - created by Antonio Valencia. He twists and turns Wayne Bridge before crossing low for Ryan Giggs, who gets in front of his man but shoots weakly from six yards, straight at Shay Given.

BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at Eastlands: "Plenty of energy from both sides but this game needs an extra touch of class and composure from somewhere. Wayne Rooney has been getting very frustrated with referee Martin Atkinson as the fit-again striker battles to make an impact. Antonio Valencia has the capacity to really trouble Wayne Bridge and Rooney should have scored after being set up by the winger."

1328: Ah, here's one - and a good one too. Antonio Valencia cleverly heads the ball inside and into the path of Wayne Rooney, who sets himself up brilliantly but then screws the shot past the post.

1327: Just over five minutes until half-time and City are enjoying a decent spell of possession. Can they carve out a chance though? Can anyone?

From Jim bowen on 606: "This is rather a rubbish game to be honest."

1324: Emmanuel Adebayor needs some attention, and while he gets it, Roberto Mancini can pass on some instructions to Adam Johnson. And there's golfer Lee Westwood. Maybe he can tee up a goal...

MOTD2's Kevin Day tweeting from Eastlands: "Worried about Rooney - he could barely muster the energy to bawl full in the referees face."

1321: This game could do with a goal... but I'd settle for a chance.

1318: Promising move by City and Adam Johnson sweeps a pass over to Craig Bellamy on the opposite wing, but there's the hard-working Antonio Valencia to make the tackle.

MOTD2's Kevin Day tweeting from Eastlands: "Rooney seemed to pull up off the ball and felt his ankle straight away - he didn't run to join in some handbags either."

1316: Craig Bellamy sends in a dangerous low ball from the left but Adam Johnson fails to take the gamble, and United get away with it... in more ways than one because it looked like it should have been a City corner.

1314: Martin Atkinson's just missed two handballs: one in the penalty area by Wayne Bridge (but no-one appealed) and one by Gareth Barry. United do have a free-kick for a Barry foul, but Shay Given collects. Odd passage of play there.

1311: United just edging the possession, but they're not creating too many chances at the moment.

MOTD2's Kevin Day tweeting from Eastlands: "Spiteful little tackle by Rooney on De Jong much to the annoyance of 42,000 referees. The real ref took no notice."

BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at Eastlands: "Flying start in a magnificent atmosphere. Adam Johnson is not getting much joy out of Patrice Evra so far, but he is prepared to run at the Manchester United defender. Carlos Tevez has been in long debate with the Manchester City management team while play has been going on - looks lively enough though."

1306: There are some tasty tackles going in now, not least a Paul Scholes special on Adam Johnson.

1304: What on earth? Right in front of the ref, Wayne Rooney kicks Nigel de Jong after the ball has gone. Martin Atkinson must be tempted to flash the yellow, but keeps his cards in his pocket for now.

1303: Wayne Rooney beats Vincent Kompany on the right. He should cut it back for one of two team-mates in the box, but delays it too long and Shay Given scrambles the ball out.

1300: Space for Paul Scholes to have a go... Dragged it wide. United fans may be worried about the Bellamy v Neville pace mismatch, but the ageing right-back is getting plenty of help from the slightly quicker Antonio Valencia.

1258: Now Craig Bellamy is fuming... well, he's always fuming... but he's particularly angry about the close attention Gary Neville is paying him.

1256: Darron Gibson is fuming after being pulled up for a foul on Carlos Tevez, but Martin Atkinson is convinced. About 25 yards out and Tevez curls it towards the top corner - but Edwin van der Sar claims it safely.

MOTD2's Kevin Day tweeting from Eastlands: "I hope Gary Neville is not sensitive! Giggs looks to be playing fairly advanced so far..."

1253: Chance for City to attack, almost for the first time. Adam Johnson has a bit of time and space to cross from the right, but his inswinger goes straight out for a goalkick.

1252: Close. Ryan Giggs plays it inside for Darren Fletcher, who smashes a right-foot shot just wide. Don't think Shay Given was getting there.

1250: Decent start by United. Half a chance as Wayne Rooney wins a header at the back post, but City clear from in front of goal.

1248: Inside the first minute, Nigel de Jong commits the game's first foul (on Darren Fletcher), and Carlos Tevez goes tearing in on Edwin van der Sar to close down a kick.

1247: Carlos Tevez and Adam Johnson get the 142nd league meeting between these two teams under way. The atmosphere is really quite good, as you would expect.

It's sunny
1242: Here they come then... Gary Neville leads out the reds, Kolo Toure the blues. Glorious, glorious sunshine.

From Young_Mostyn on Twitter: "Dear Caroline, if I'm polite too, can you sort out a MU win please? By the way, your hair looks great today. I think..."

BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at Eastlands: "Dear Caroline, Manchester City's fans were orchestrating an Argentina-style ticker tape reception outside Eastlands before kick-off in honour of their hero Carlos Tevez. This, along with a huge Tevez flag emblazoned with the word "Pasion", is no doubt designed to illustrate the scale of success enjoyed by a player Manchester United allowed to leave Old Trafford."

Infostrada Sports on Twitter: "Ryan Giggs' first league goal for Manchester United came against Manchester City 19 years ago."

1232: Incidentally, Kevin Day is the politest tweeter in the world. He has begun all his tweets with 'Dear Caroline'. I hope Phil McNulty's taking notes...

Kevin kindly sent this picture of a sunny Eastlands
MOTD2's Kevin Day tweeting from Eastlands: "What a wonderful stadium! It's almost like Selhurst Park the way it glistens in the sun. Stand-in referee has just been met by several burly Man City fans reminding him how long a football match actually lasts."

From Riquelminho on 606: "Just had a look at the team and I have to say I'm a little worried. Why are Giggs and Scholes starting off in the centre again? It didn't work against Chelsea, it didn't work against Blackburn and I doubt it'll work here. I'd rather have played one of the two and had Nani wide left. I hope I'm wrong though."

1223: By the way, fancy appearing in BBC Sport's World Cup Photo Album? If you've got a photo of yourself with one of the stars set to play in South Africa this summer, we want them. We've had some corkers already, but there are plenty of spaces to be filled. Email your photos to, or send them to us via Flickr (where there are some examples of what we mean, should you be at all confused) but for goodness sake, check the BBC terms and conditions first.

1220: Just in case you were worried, Phil McNulty hasn't turned up at Old Trafford (see a few entries ago). That was me having a moment of madness. Manually refresh your page to find out where he really is.

1215: Mixed news for Don Fabio today, with Wayne Rooney returning - and Ashley Cole possibly to come off the bench for Chelsea later. But there must be real concern about Rio Ferdinand's fitness. He'll have three games after today to prove he is fit enough to captain England at the World Cup.

MOTD2's Kevin Day tweeting from Eastlands: "United players just came out to a chorus of boos, Rooney looks fit and I met a very nice lady from Chinese TV."

BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at Eastlands: "Sir Alex Ferguson has gone for the old guard as Gary Neville, Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes all play. Might be an interesting afternoon for Neville given the pace and width in this City side. Adam Johnson is in Fabio Capello's thoughts for an England World Cup place, so the perfect platform for this gifted young player."

1212: TEAM NEWS Man City v Man Utd
So Manchester City welcome Wayne Bridge back into their starting XI after a five-match absence following a hernia operation for the visit of local rivals United in the only change to the team that beat Birmingham 5-1 last week. Manchester United are boosted by the return from an ankle injury of Wayne Rooney, but Rio Ferdinand has failed to shake off a groin injury and does not feature. Dimitar Berbatov, Nani, Michael Carrick and John O'Shea must settle for places on the bench.

1207: You'll have heard, I'm sure, that Martin Atkinson has stepped in to referee this game after original pick Steve Bennett got stuck in Romania cos of the ash. Atkinson was in charge for the 4-3 league game at Old Trafford earlier this season when Michael Owen scored in one of the six minutes of added time. City are none too pleased about the situation, but there were no other refs available.

From 4fabregas on 606: "Re 1200: The real breaking news there is that Neville is starting. Bellamy must be delighted. He's going to fill his boots!"

From George_The_Best on 606: "Rooney plays - we win. He doesn't - we lose. Not saying we're a one man team or anything..."

1201: TEAMS Man City v Man Utd
Man City: Given, Onuoha, Kompany, Toure, Bridge, Johnson, De Jong, Barry, Bellamy, Tevez, Adebayor. Subs: Nielsen, Zabaleta, Ireland, Wright-Phillips, Santa Cruz, Vieira, Boyata.
Man Utd: Van der Sar, Neville, Vidic, Jonathan Evans, Evra, Fletcher, Scholes, Gibson, Valencia, Rooney, Giggs. Subs: Kuszczak, Berbatov, Carrick, Nani, Rafael Da Silva, O'Shea, Obertan.
Referee: Martin Atkinson (W Yorkshire)

1200: BREAKING TEAM NEWS Rooney starts for Man Utd.

1157: And as if this day isn't exciting enough already, I've got HUGE news… We've got a special guest contributing to the live text today. Kevin Day off the telly (MOTD2 to be specific) is at Eastlands today finding out what it takes to be a football journalist. Shouldn't take too long I wouldn't have thought, leaving him plenty of time to email and tweet us his wry observations. And don't forget to watch MOTD2 on Sunday night (we might be on the telly!*), and look out for the results of his day's work on the website on Monday.
* Sort of

1153: But we don't need Fergie to tell us that this is a big game. Lose and United are surely right out of the title race. Win and they could be right back in it by the time the final whistle goes between Tottenham and Chelsea later. For City, it's a similar deal in the race for fourth. It'll probably be a draw then...

1149: So hello then, and crikey, what an explosive day we've got in store. I've got myself in a right old lava about it (thank/blame the good old Sun for the puns). First up: the Manchester derby, and hasn't Sir Alex been in tip-top form this week? "In my years at Manchester United," he told us yesterday. "This is the first time we have played City when they have had a chance to achieve something."

1145: Wonder how Fergie slept last night? Heard he's been having a bit of trouble with the neighbours recently.

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Premier League table snapshot

As it stood on 17 Apr 2010 23:59 UK

Position Team P GD PTS
1 Chelsea 35 54 77
2 Man Utd 35 51 76
3 Arsenal 34 40 71
4 Tottenham 34 28 64
5 Man City 34 27 62
6 Liverpool 34 21 56
7 Aston Villa 33 12 55
8 Everton 35 9 54
9 Birmingham 35 -8 47
10 Fulham 34 -2 43
11 Stoke 34 -4 43
12 Blackburn 35 -16 43
13 Sunderland 35 -7 41
14 Bolton 35 -25 35
15 Wolves 35 -23 34
16 Wigan 34 -34 32
17 West Ham 34 -16 31
18 Hull 34 -38 28
19 Burnley 35 -37 27
20 Portsmouth 34 -32 15

see also
Saturday's football photos
17 Apr 10 |  Football
Football on the BBC
11 Aug 10 |  Football

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