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Premier League as it happened

Blackburn 1-1 Middlesbrough MATCH REPORT
Everton 1-1 Man Utd MATCH REPORT
Sunderland 2-1 Newcastle MATCH REPORT
West Brom 0-3 Hull MATCH REPORT


To get involved use 606 or text us your views & comments on 81111. (Not all contributions can be used)

By Caroline Cheese

1933: Well off we go then. Don't forget MOTD at 2200 BST tonight on BBC1, simulcast on this website (for UK users) and 606 on 5 Live - right now. UK residents will be delighted to be reminded that we have an extra hour's sleep tonight, which will be very welcome given that we have a very, very big day ahead of us tomorrow. See you then?

1929: That goal came in the 94th minute, timing fans. The result leaves both teams still pottering about in mid-table - Blackburn 10th, Boro 13th.

1926: Well, well. Those Blackburn fans who headed off earlier will have a nice surprise when they get home won't they? Unlucky Boro, but Blackburn deserved their point in my humble opinion.

1926: FULL-TIME Blackburn 1-1 Middlesbrough

1924: GOAL Blackburn 1-1 Middlesbrough
Unbelievable. Benni McCarthy rises to head in the corner emphatically. That is the fourth time Boro have conceded in injury time this season.

1924: Desperate stuff from Blackburn, as Paul Robinson runs up for the corner...

1922: Four minutes of added time to be played at Ewood Park, and Blackburn have a corner... it is cleared straight to Brett Emerton but he takes a wild swing at it and it's a disastrous effort which arrows towards the touchline.

1920: Carlos Villanueva almost plays in Roque Santa Cruz but a Boro defender gets there first with a desperate challenge.

1918: The home fans are heading for the exits. Blackburn have scored two goals in five home games.

1917: Boro defender David Wheater gets a yellow as he mistimes a sliding challenge - easily done in these conditions. Boro break after the free-kick, and Gary O'Neil's shot hits the corner flag after taking several deflections on the way.

1915: And a change from Boro as Tuncay comes off to be replaced by Dutchman Marvin Emnes.

1911: Paul Ince's response to that goal is to bring on youngster Keith Treacy for defender Martin Olsson.

1907: Replays show Alves' shot took a slight deflection on the way through. I'm downgrading it to a very good, rather than splendid, goal.

1905: GOAL Blackburn 0-1 Middlesbrough
Splendid goal. Afonso Alves effortlessly brings down a long ball on the edge of the box, takes a touch to his right and hammers it past Paul Robinson.

1904: Hang on a minute, that's a very tidy counter-attack from Middlesbrough, as Stewart Downing skips down the left... but his cross is easily cut out and it's as you were.

1901: In these horrendous conditions, it seems churlish to complain, but when has that ever stopped me? This game is not very good.

1857: Paul Ince is raging about something or other on the touchline. Perhaps he has spotted that Benni McCarthy has his socks pulled up right under his shorts, making him look like he is wearing some fetching white tights.

1855: Here's Benni then. He replaces a very disappointed Matt Derbyshire. McCarthy has not scored since February apparently.

1854: Benni McCarthy looks like he might be getting ready to come on. Blackburn could do with a bit of a shake-up, they've gone off the boil a bit. They'll score now obviously...

1852: "Oooh," is what I just said. Afonso Alves chips a delicious left-footed shot about an inch wide of the post for Middlesbrough.

1848: Matt Derbyshire gets a yellow card after pulling back Jeremie Aliadiere, before tripping him for good measure. A neat double manoeuvre there from the Blackburn striker.

1846: "Didn't someone say there would be a lot of goals in this one..."
RD16 - Rafael And Fabio on 606
Who? Who said that? Idiot... oh, hang on, was it me?

1845: Brett Emerton swings over a free-kick and Ryan Nelsen is completely unmarked - but the defender can't control it and the ball goes behind. I am not entirely surprised to learn that he has scored only one goal for Blackburn.

1842: Rocky is back on. The man is indestructible. He's still rubbing the back of his head though.

1841: Santa Cruz is able to get to his feet and wanders off, looking dazed and confused. Benni McCarthy is warming up.

1840: Roque Santa Cruz collides with Blackburn team-mate Brett Emerton as they both go for a cross. The Paraguayan is very groggy.

1838: Stewart Downing floats a promising free-kick straight out of play in absolutely hopeless fashion. He sheepishly retreats the halfway line.

1835: And the final half of Premier League football in British Summer Time 2008 gets under way.

1834: Rain still teeming down as the players emerge for the second half.

1831: "If you get 20 points from nine games you are going to be somewhere near the top. It is Champions League form - but that is what it is, form. That is temporary."
Hull boss Phil Brown

1825: Not sure what poor old Carlos did to incite such low marks on Player Rater. I thought he was very, very good indeed. Blackburn have the Chilean on loan for the season, with an option to buy. Buy, I say.

1823: Oh look, here's Danny the Stat, and boy, is he angry... "Oh come on, you lot. Look, it might not have been a classic at Ewood Park but these scores you have given are really nasty. Ross Turnbull on 3.33? Carlos Villanueva on 3.67? He's not long been in this country and you give him 3.67? He'll feel rotten, if he reads this. I think everyone should be a lot more generous... Get involved."
Blackburn v Boro Player Rater

1819: HALF-TIME Blackburn 0-0 Middlesbrough

1817: The fans are off for their half-time pies, as this 45 meanders towards its conclusion... But wait! Blackburn striker Roque Santa Cruz is through on goal, but Ross Turnbull is out quickly and gets enough on the shot to stop it in its tracks.

1814: Just shows you what I know. Aliadiere is back on.

1810: Boro striker Jeremie Aliadiere goes down clutching his knee in absolute agony after a challenge with Martin Olsson. I'm not sure he's going to be able to continue.

1808: "Re 1752: Wasn't John Johnson who Guy Fawkes claimed to be in the tunnel under the Houses of Parliament?!"
Torres' right peg on 606
This is true.

1806: "There's not a lot of passing through midfield from either team. It's a more direct type of game, with a lot of emphasis on both back fours."
BBC Radio 5 Live analyst Jimmy Armfield

1801: Ross Turnbull beats away Roque Santa Cruz's powerful header from a corner. Boro need to keep a very close eye on Santa Cruz.

1759: "Re 1752: John Johnson, player who has gone through the ranks at Boro. He made his debut against Chelsea in the 5-0 loss, coming on in the 54th minute."
LaticsValencia on 606
Join the debate on 606

1755: A massive let-off for Blackburn as Gary O'Neil heads on for Tuncay, whose wonderfully-improvised bicycle kick hits the back of the net. Linesman flags for offside - replays show he was very much onside.

1754: "Re 1731: Weather report for you Cheesy, wind and rain leaving these shores and heading south! Predo - Blackburn 3 Boro 1"
Keith, NI, via text on 81111

1752: Any fans out there want to educate us all on the mysterious John Johnson on Middlesbrough's bench?

1746: Very nice move from Blackburn ends with Roque Santa Cruz hitting the bottom of the post. Meanwhile, an unseemly argument has broken out in BBC Sport towers over whether Hull going joint top is a better story than United's draw with Everton. I voted for Blackburn-Middlesbrough.

1743: Vince Grella plays in fellow Aussie Brett Emerton with a long ball but Boro keeper Ross Turnbull saves at his near post.

1740: Blackburn's defence stop playing as a ball comes over the top, with Tuncay standing offside. But he leaves it for Jeremie Aliadiere - who volleys onto the bar. Very good chance for Boro.

1734: Carlos Villanueva's shot is deflected behind for a corner... which reminds me, does anyone remember when then Spurs chairman Sir Alan Sugar labelled foreign players 'Carlos Kickaballs'? Not the sort of forward thinking you'd get away with in the Premier League these days.

1733: Blackburn defender Martin Olsson gives away an early free-kick with an untidy challenge on Jeremie Aliadiere, but Rovers clear.

1731: Truly horrid weather at Ewood Park. Hope that's not heading south... We're off!

1728: "What a weird position to be in - my dad's from Hull, my mum's a Spurs fan, and I'm Boro through and through - top, middle, and bottom!"
AMuppet on 606
You just reminded me of 80s quiz show Strike It Lucky...

1725: Driving rain sweeping across Ewood Park, which should spice things up nicely as Paul Ince takes on a former side for the second straight home game. The last one ended in a 2-0 defeat by Manchester United.

1722: "I think I might sleep under the bed tonight. You definitely don't go out of the house after losing a derby. We're all gutted."
Newcastle keeper Shay Given

1716: So the team news from Ewood Park goes like this: Roque Santa Cruz is passed fit for Blackburn and partners Matt Derbyshire up front, with Jason Roberts on the bench. Tuncay, Afonso Alves and Didier Digard all return for Middlesbrough along with Emmanuel Pogatetz. But Mido is missing.

1713: "Re 1654: Hull will indeed stay third after tomorrow's matches - until Chelsea beat Liverpool 5-0 and then they will go second!"
Drogbasknee, London, via text on 81111

1709: "We've got to enjoy it while we can, but we can't get too carried away. Chelsea at home then Manchester United away, so another two easy games coming up!"
Hull striker Marlon King

1708: "Ten years ago this week we were rock bottom of the Football League. I have been saying this every week but surely it cant get any better then this. The dream just keeps going."
Hull fans Bushy Badger via text on 81111

1706: TEAMS Blackburn v Middlesbrough
Blackburn: Robinson, Simpson, Ooijer, Nelsen, Olsson, Emerton, Grella, Warnock, Villanueva, Roque Santa Cruz, Derbyshire. Subs: Brown, Kerimoglu, McCarthy, Khizanishvili, Andrews, Treacy, Roberts.
Middlesbrough: Turnbull, Wheater, Riggott, Pogatetz, Taylor, Aliadiere, O'Neil, Digard, Downing, Alves, Sanli. Subs: Jones, Emnes, Shawky, Adam Johnson, John Johnson, Grounds.

1659: Now remember, there will be no sloping off early today. If I'm staying for Blackburn v Middlesbrough, then we all are. I predict a goalfest!

1657: "We didn't play that bad, we couldn't hit a barn door. If Ishmael Miller is the answer, I don't know the question."
Chappell via text on 81111

1654: Just in case you weren't aware. That result means Hull are now level on points with Chelsea and Liverpool, but stay third on goal difference - and they will stay third even after tomorrow' matches.

1652: Fourth win in a row, fourth away from home. That's title-winning form you know. Think Phil Brown will get carried away? Of course not. Think the Tigers fans will? You betcha...

1651: FULL-TIME West Brom 0-3 Hull

1650: "Awful, awful, awful. Well done Hull though, good luck in the title race!"
Nick, an annoyed Baggies fan leaving the ground, via text on 81111

1650: "Hey, sitting here watching Stade Francais v Toulouse in Paris but transfixed by West Brom v Hull. Come on the Tigers!"
Alex on hols, via text on 81111

1646: Those cheeky Hull fans are now singing "Bring on the Chelsea". That game is on Wednesday, when Phil Brown's side will look to make it London 0 Hull 5.

1643: Hull defender Michael Turner shrugs off his marker at the far post to connect with a cross from the right, but his downward header is straight at Scott Carson. Four's just greedy though no?

1641: West Brom's Chris Brunt brilliantly curls his free-kick over the wall and the keeper... and the goal, and the first 20 rows of the stand behind the goal.

1639: "It's beginning to look like it's going to be a two-legged horse race between Chelski and Hull at this rate!"
donttellthemissus on 606
A two-legged horse race. Nice...

1637: Geovanni is the third Hull player to come off, replaced by Richard Garcia. A little less than 15 minutes remaining at the Hawthorns.

1634: Hull's veteran skipper Ian Ashbee applauds the visiting fans as he leaves the pitch to be replaced by Bryan Hughes.

1631: James Morrison fires a right-foot shot narrowly wide as West Brom look to make an unlikely recovery.

1628: The visiting fans are cheering their players' every touch. Dreamland doesn't even cover it. West Brom have not played badly at all, although they did fall apart rather dramatically after the first goal.

1626: Hull need 13 more goals to go top. Easy.

1623: GOAL West Brom 0-3 Hull
Well, they're rampant now. A long ball is headed into Marlon King's path by a Baggies defender and the former Watford striker does the rest. "Over," he seems to be saying to the fans as he celebrates.

1620: GOAL West Brom 0-2 Hull
Marlon King brings down the ball on the left, looks across and flicks over a brilliant cross for Geovanni to head in his fourth goal of the season. Was King offside? Only the replay (which I haven't seen) knows...

1616: Decent spell of pressure from West Brom. Boaz Myhill pulls off a great save to deny James Morrison from distance, before there's a hint of handball in the box as the cross comes over. Only half-hearted pleas from the Baggies.

1615: "I'm at work so can't listen to the match :( I am talking to a load of miserable people on the phones and could really do with Hull lifting my spirits with a few goals!"
Victoria in Manchester, via text on 81111

1610: Just the 16 more goals required by Hull to go top of the Prem...

1609: Ryan Donk's header for West Brom is pushed round the post by the defender on the line.

1606: Hull defender Ian Ashbee goes into the book for a late challenge and that means he incurs a one-match ban - with Chelsea up next for Phil Brown's side.

1605: GOAL West Brom 0-1 Hull
Scott Carson somehow changes direction in mid-air to palm away Geovanni's deflected shot, but from Dean Marney's corner, Kamil Zayatte volleys in magnificently. Hull looking for their fourth win in a row...

1603: No changes at half-time, as we get back under way at the Hawthorns.

1600: "Re 1526: I think Dean Windass is in the Hull mascot's costume. Maybe not, Deano is slightly bigger boned."
Steve at the game, via text on 81111

1557: According to BBC Radio 5 Live, the crowd trouble at Stadium Light was fairly quickly dispersed by police. It started when some Sunderland fans began celebrating on the pitch, where they were joined by Newcastle supporters, before fighting broke out.

1552: "OK Hull, I want to see 17 goals in the next half so you can go top of the league! That would surely break some kind of record."
Rafa's Magic Hand Signals on 606
Join the debate on 606

1549: I'm still finding it weird that it's Saturday and there is only one 3pm kick-off in the Prem. Still, it's not a bad game at all.

1548: HALF-TIME West Brom 0-0 Hull

1546: "Sitting on Mount Kilimanjaro and getting excited about Chelsea v Liverpool tomorrow. Oh, we summit Sunday as well."
Jeremy from his mobile, via text on 81111
I suspect this might have been sent from Jeremy's front room, but just in case it is true...

1544: If Ishmael Miller could finish, what a striker he could be. The big striker cuts in from the right but his weak shot dribbles through to the keeper.

1542: Miller returns after having his head stitched back together. He's now sporting a great big white bandage.

1539: Ishmael Miller can't keep out of the action. The striker is off down the tunnel for some treatment on a head wound. Baggies down to 10 men for the moment.

1536: Ishmael Miller rampages down the right-hand channel but his scuffed shot goes wide after a slight touch from Boaz Myhill. West Brom may live to regret missing these chances...

1533: Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson admits he took Wayne Rooney off in the 1-1 draw with Everton because he feared he would be sent off. "The way the referee was behaving I feared he may be sent off, for no reason of course. Just the way the crowd were reacting in getting him booked."

1530: Hull defender Kamil Zayatte loses his marker in the box, but flashes the header wide from a corner.

1528: Has Geovanni left his shooting boots at home? The Brazilian whacks a volley into the stands.

1526: "This game needs a Windass!"
gunner-rossmcd on 606
Join the debate on 606

1525: Dean Marney's shot takes a slight deflection, then an almighty one, and West Brom are a bit lucky to see it go behind for a corner. From the set-piece, Ian Ashbee volleys narrowly wide from 12 yards.

1523: This text has just popped up in the inbox: "I'm off to a royal dinner, glammed up to the max! I've only got 25 mins and i have not even done my hair! argh!" I wonder if Gem is a Baggies or Tigers fan...

1520: "We've finally defeated Newcastle on home turf for the first time in 28 years and I thought it was an excellent game. Nobody likes to see fans on the pitch, trust me, but hopefully the FA will go easy on us because the fans have to enjoy it."
Sunderland boss Roy Keane

1518: Marlon King screws a shot across goal in a rare sight of goal for visitors Hull. Good game this, and a cracking atmosphere at the Hawthorns.

1515: Ishmael Miller chests the ball down brilliantly in the box and is about to pull the trigger when Kamil Zayatte slides in to nick the ball away.

1509: How on earth are West Brom not ahead? Boaz Myhill parries Borja Valero's shot straight to Jonas Olsson, who heads onto the bar. Roman Bednar's scuffed shot from the follow-up is scrambled wide of the post.

1508: Ishmael Miller's shot from the free-kick loops off a defender and lands in the arms of Boaz Myhill.

1507: Ishmael Miller wins a free-kick just outside the area after Andy Dawson's challenge - and it's the Hull defender who ends up worse off. He is eventually helped to his feet and hobbles off.

1503: Geovanni latches onto Marlon King's header but for once, he doesn't connect with the shot and it bounces through to Scott Carson.

1500: Away we go.

1457: Here come the teams at the Hawthorns, quickly followed by the pointless handshakes...

1455: Good tale about John Carew. According to BBC 5 Live reporter Pat Murphy, he was allegedly spotted in a lap-dancing club at 2am on Thursday morning - the same day his side Aston Villa played Ajax in the Uefa Cup. Martin O'Neill is said to be less than happy. As you would expect.

1451: Danny the Stat speaks thus: "Djibril Cisse has stormed ahead with 7.94 on Player Rater, while free-kick legend Kieran Richardson is a full 1.00 behind on 6.94. I put that down to the phenomenon I have already dubbed "Rater Lag" (it'll catch on). Anyway, I've no doubt those Sunderland scores will all be going up, up, up. Get involved, you..."
Sunderland v Newcastle Player Rater

1447: Let's try to move on shall we? West Brom make only one change from the team that was thumped 4-0 by Manchester United last time out, with Ishmael Miller coming in for winger Chris Brunt. Hull name an unchanged starting line-up from last week's win against West Ham.

1441: Not surprisingly, the cameras have panned away from the trouble at the Stadium of Light, but there are reports of seats being thrown. The police have moved in in numbers...

1440: TEAMS West Brom v Hull
West Brom: Carson, Zuiverloon, Donk, Olsson, Robinson, Morrison, Greening, Koren, Borja Valero, Miller, Bednar. Subs: Kiely, Hoefkens, Cech, Barnett, Brunt, MacDonald, Moore.
Hull: Myhill, McShane, Zayatte, Turner, Dawson, Marney, Ashbee, Boateng, Cousin, King, Geovanni. Subs: Duke, Hughes, Garcia, Mendy, Halmosi, Folan, Ricketts.

1439: Ugly. Fans are spilling onto the pitch, and fighting has broken out. We'll hear more about that I'm sure. Disappointing end to an engaging derby. Sunderland defeat Newcastle for the first time since 2000, when chairman Niall Quinn got the winner.

1438: FULL-TIME Sunderland 2-1 Newcastle

1437: Joey Barton gets past Andy Reid on the right, and sends in a dangerous cross but Sunderland clear.

1435: We're into three minutes of added time. Andy Reid comes on for Sunderland, with El-Hadji Diouf trudging off.

1433: Jonas Gutierrez drives to the byeline and earns a corner. Joey Barton takes it, but Danny Collins gets a firm header away.

1431: Sunderland eat up some vital seconds as Teemu Tainio replaces Steed Malbranque.

1430: Four minutes remaining for Sunderland to hold on, or Newcastle to salvage something.

1428: A predictable warm reception for Joey Barton as he replaces Nicky Butt for Newcastle. That is one brave move by Joe Kinnear. Jose Enrique is on for Sebastien Bassong.

1427: Djibril Cisse hammers one onto the foot of the post now. He's loving this.

1426: Djibril Cisse collects the ball on the right-hand edge of the penalty box, and without looking at the goal, he turns and shoots narrowly over the bar. Brilliant effort.

1425: Joey Barton is de-tracksuited...

1423: Is that a smile playing on Niall Quinn's lips? The Sunderland chairman has 12 minutes to wait...

1422: "What a goal! A true golazo!"
guidos_4_reds on 606
Join the debate on 606

1418: GOAL Sunderland 2-1 Newcastle
Blast-off. Kieran Richardson takes a couple of steps and belts the free-kick into the top corner. A rocket if ever I saw one - and perhaps just reward for Richardson, who managed to hit the post three times with a free-kick against Fulham last week, and had another disallowed.

1417: Good call from ref Mike Riley as Nicky Butt trips El-Hadji Diouf millimetres outside the area after the Sunderland man plays a clever one-two with Kenwyne Jones. Yellow for Butt. Newcastle take the opportunity to bring on Jonas Gutierrez for Geremi.

1414: All very scrappy doo at the Stadium of Light, to be honest. Quite difficult to pick out the ball sometimes amid the debris on the pitch. 20 minutes remaining.

1411: Here's Danny the Stat then... "Darren Fletcher is still top of the pops on our Player Rater - indeed, his half-time score of 7.44 has rocketed to 7.45. Tim Howard is top man for Everton with 6.74, but whither goal hero Marouane Fellaini? Languishing on 6.34, that's where. You can still vote, get involved."
Everton v Man Utd Player Rater

1407: A floated cross is held up in the wind, allowing Djibril Cisse to sneak in ahead of the defender but he fails to connect with the shot and Shay Given collects.

1405: Ugly scenes by the touchline as Joey Barton appears to be pelted with coins and a bottle as he warms up. Play is stopped briefly but we're back under way now. Barton retreats to the technical area to continue his stretches.

1404: Nicky Butt wins the ball in midfield and the ball ends up with Shola Ameobi on the edge of the box, but he pulls his shot wide.

1401: It's a blustery old day in the north east, plenty of bags and assorted litter flying about the pitch. Sunderland bring on fit-again striker Kenwyne Jones for Dwight Yorke - to a tremendous response from the home fans.

1359: "It has to be said, credit to Moyes, whatever he did to / said to / gave the Everton players at half-time clearly worked. Looks like last season, slow start but we pick up, one or two mini-setbacks (we lost to Bolton last year for instance) but eventually we will be there or thereabouts."
yorker_129-7 on 606
Join the debate on 606

1358: Manchester United stay fifth, five points behind Chelsea and Liverpool. A determined second-half display from Everton moves them up a few places from 16th.

1356: FULL-TIME Everton 1-1 Man Utd

1353: Despite my gloomy Everton-supporting friend's comment after Marouane Fellaini's goal went in, I'd say Everton deserve a point on the basis of their second-half recovery. Urgent whistling around the ground...

1351: Four minutes of stoppage time remaining at Goodison Park.

1349: Newcastle get the second half under way at the Stadium of Light.

1348: Oof, hearts in mouths time for Everton fans. Cristiano Ronaldo chests down the ball in the box but shoots wide. That probably would have gone in last season. Yakubu is off for Everton, replaced by James Vaughan.

1345: Yellow card for Wes Brown for bringing down Yakubu on the halfway line as the Everton striker breaks. Very much a deserved card.

1345: Suddenly, Cristiano Ronaldo is through but Joseph Yobo is there with the saving tackle.

1341: Strangely quiet second-half this from United, and it looks like Everton scent victory. You definitely sense there's another twist in this game.

1339: Sir Alex Ferguson responds to the pleas of 606 (probably) as Carlos Tevez replaces Darren Fletcher.

1334: Mikel Arteta tricks his way past a couple of players and gets to the edge of the box where he promptly falls over in rather rubbish fashion. Waste really.

1334: HALF-TIME Sunderland 1-1 Newcastle

1331: Fergie responds to all that shenanigans by hauling Rooney off, and sending on Nani. I like to think that in the cold light of day, Rooney may regret all of that. Anyway, just to say: I told you he wouldn't score today (see 1119).

1329: I feel I should state at this point that absolutely no one seems to agree that Phil Neville's yellow card was not deserved. OK, I'll look at it again. Wayne Rooney is booked for clashing with Mikel Arteta - which wasn't a yellow card either if you ask me. Then, very naughtily, the striker kisses his badge and points to the United fans. Ref gives him a ticking-off. Silly boy.

1326: Hell fire, Everton are so, so close to taking the lead as Rio Ferdinand's woeful backpass is pounced on by Yakubu. Edwin van der Sar gets a hand to the shot and the ball bounces off the foot of the post.

1324: GOAL Everton 1-1 Man Utd
Blimey. Phil Neville cross from the right and Marouane Fellaini climbs highest (as indeed he always does) to head home what my Everton-supporting colleague describes as "the most undeserved equaliser in the history of football".

1317: Meanwhile, at Goodison Park, Phil Neville's tasty challenge on Cristiano Ronaldo prompts some handbags. Neville is booked, which seems a bit harsh because he did get the ball.

1317: GOAL Sunderland 1-1 Newcastle
Newcastle are rewarded for a decent spell of pressure as Geremi provides a pinpoint free-kick from the left for Shola Ameobi to head in at the far post.

1317: Everton winger Mikel Arteta pounces on a Wes Brown mistake and sets up Marouane Fellaini, but his shot is blocked.

1315: Newcastle midfielder Nicky Butt has picked up a knock and guess who's warming up? Yup, it's cuddly Joey Barton.

1312: Phil Jagielka with a slightly, er, mistimed tackle on Dimitar Berbatov. That's putting it very kindly. Takes a wild swing at his legs several days after the ball has gone. Booking for Jags.

1311: On the occasion of his first Wear-Tyne derby, Djibril Cisse has opted for a particularly ludicrous look: a close-cropped mohawk coupled with bleached blond stubble. He doesn't look so silly now though does he?

1307: GOAL Sunderland 1-0 Newcastle
Steed Malbranque is allowed to cut in from the right and his mis-hit shot is guided in beautifully by Djibril Cisse at the far post. Pandemonium...

1306: They're off again at Goodison Park.

1305: "Everton's big mistake this season was letting Lee Carsley leave. He held the defence together all of last season! I'm saying 3-2 Everton, Saha hat-trick."
Anon via text on 81111

1304: After "Darren Fletcher, the new Paul Scholes" comes this gem from 606: Is Danny Guthrie the new Roy Keane? I think I can answer that one. No.
Join the debate on 606

1301: Obafemi Martins crumbles under a challenge from Dwight Yorke to win a rather fortuitous free-kick - which comes back off the wall.

1258: El-Hadji Diouf puts a dangerous cross across the face of goal for Sunderland, but there's no one on the end of it. Worrying moments for Newcastle...

1256: And it's a big Premier League-sized hello to Danny the Stat... "Well well. The oft-mocked Darren Fletcher is having something of a last laugh. His towering Player Rater score of 7.44 sees him way ahead of the more celebrated Cristiano Ronaldo (7.06) and Wayne Rooney (6.53). Well done Dazzler. But don't celebrate too much - as it could all change."
Everton v Man Utd Player Rater

1254: "Now an over optimistic Evertonian might say after only conceding one goal in a fantastic United attacking display, that we could get back into this."
Sarriesandtoffees on 606
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1253: A booking after less than five minutes in the Wear-Tyne derby, as Danny Guthrie leaves Dean Whitehead in a heap.

1251: Everton might consider themselves fortunate to only be trailing by one. After the hosts' bright start, United took control - Ryan Giggs and Cristiano Ronaldo looking particularly impressive.

1249: HALF-TIME Everton 0-1 Man Utd

1248: Sunderland get the game under way at the Stadium of Light. They're looking for their first home win over Newcastle for 28 years.

1246: Joe Kinnear gives a jaunty wave to the visiting fans, shortly before Roy Keane emerges from the tunnel to give the Newcastle boss a warm shake of the hand. Meanwhile, a cacophony of boos as the Newcastle team is read out over the tannoy.

1242: Here come the team at the Stadium of Light, to a truly tumultuous roar. There's nothing the English Premier League does better than a full-blooded derby. Love it.

1241: Wayne Rooney has a chance right in front of goal but Phil Jagielka dives in with the challenge. Five minutes of the first half remaining.

1239: Steven Pienaar swings over a decent cross from the left, but it's just over the head of Yakubu. Slim pickings for Everton though.

1235: "Now that he's playing more than Evra, him and Giggsy need each other, you can stand under my Darren Fletcher-etcher-etcher!"
From an excitable Scotsman, via text on 81111
Top marks for effort, excitable Scotsman.

1232: Nemanja Vidic sees yellow for a reckless challenge on Louis Saha, just inside the United half. Can't have any complaints about that.

1230: Ryan Giggs is running the show. The veteran winger skips past the challenge and forces Tim Howard into another top-class save. The keeper is again in action as he keeps Louis Saha's header from a corner. Everton hanging on for dear life.

1229: Ryan Giggs again with the ball, and Cristiano Ronaldo turns and unleashes a dipping shot in the blink of an eye. Tim Howard pushes it round the post.

1227: "The new Paul Scholes?" says an over-excited Seb on 606.
Join the debate on 606

1224: GOAL Everton 0-1 Man Utd
What a lovely, lovely goal by... Darren Fletcher. Yes, indeed. The Scotland midfielder takes one touch from Ryan Giggs' pass to take it away from Joleon Lescott and then shoots through the legs of Tim Howard.

1222: Cristiano Ronaldo looks like he's in the mood today, popping up all over the place. His deflected shot earns United a corner, but Marouane Fellaini clears. Everton's attacks becoming a bit more sparse now...

1220: Apologies, failed to spot earlier that Craig Gordon is not in Sunderland's team. The keeper has a twisted ankle and is replaced by Marton Fulop.

1217: "I'm surprised nobody's pointed out that a victory by 16 goals puts Hull top of the league. Stranger things have happened (or perhaps not)."
Sebastian Gooner, Oxford, via text on 81111

1215: Cristiano Ronaldo is seeing a lot of the ball on the right for Manchester United... after a couple of stepovers, he dinks a dangerous cross in but Tim Howard collects. Everton go straight up the other end and Yakubu almost connects with a left-wing cross.

1212: Lovely, crisp passing move from Everton. Steven Pienaar sets up Louis Saha for the shot but Wes Brown is in quickly with the block. Mikel Arteta was to Saha's left and screaming for the ball. Decent game this so far.

1211: So Joey Barton only makes the bench for Newcastle, as does Jonas Gutierrez who is still on his way back from fitness. Sunderland striker Kenwyne Jones is on the bench, while there is no place for Nyron Nosworthy who is still recovering from a hamstring injury.

1210: TEAMS Sunderland v Newcastle
Sunderland: Fulop, Chimbonda, Ferdinand, Collins, McCartney, Malbranque, Whitehead, Yorke, Richardson, Cisse, Diouf. Subs: Colgan, Bardsley, Tainio, Chopra, Jones, Leadbitter, Reid.
Newcastle: Given, Beye, Taylor, Coloccini, Bassong, Geremi, Guthrie, Butt, Duff, Ameobi, Martins. Subs: Harper, Jose Enrique, Cacapa, Barton, N'Zogbia, Gutierrez, Xisco.

1209: Ryan Giggs breaks from midfield and runs about 40 yards without a challenge coming in. Weak shot though, easily collected by Tim Howard.

1206: Alan Wiley is our man in the middle today, the same ref who awarded a penalty to Everton against Stoke a few weeks back and then rescinded it. He later apologised to David Moyes, who was sent to the stands in the aftermath.
Report: Stoke 2-3 Everton

1206: Wayne Rooney gets his first touch... well, it's half a touch really as he challenges for the ball - but there's still a smattering of boos from the home fans.

1204: Everton carve out the first chance, slicing through the United defence with surprising ease. Leon Osman provides the pass for Marouane Fellaini, but his shot is deflected behind.

1203: Off we go...

1202: Plenty of laughs in the centre circle as United skipper Ryan Giggs shakes hands with opposite number - and former team-mate - Phil Neville.

1158: Apparently, scabies is highly contagious (see 1142) - but I'm going to stick it out, largely because they're playing the brilliantly awful 'Grand Old Team' at Goodison Park... but they have to cut it short because the teams are ready, so the Z Cars theme is on the decks.

1150: British Summer Time going out with a bang on Merseyside. It's absolutely tipping down at Goodison Park. They've even got the floodlights on.

1146: "I feel this is gonna be Everton's day. Saha to open the scoring."
Jonos via text on 81111

1142: "Re 1109: I'm a doctor and having itchy and tingling fingers may be a sign of diabetes, mineral imbalances in your body or perhaps scabies? Hope this puts your mind at rest, and just think twice before eating a cream cake at half time (for the sake of your potential diabetes) regards..."
Dr Sd, Liverpool, via text on 81111
It's actually a colleague to my right with the tingly fingers. Is scabies catching?

1140: "Re 1109: My mate Tom has had a recurring nightmare about Grace Jones ever since he first saw "View to a Kill". He gets chased by her on foot for hours before getting trapped on a cliff edge. It ends with him choosing to leap to his death rather than find out why she's chasing him in the first place."
Rich, Norwich, via text on 81111

1137: I'm not a big fan of predictions. That's more my colleague Jonathan Stevenson's bag. So here's Toffee In Exile on 606: Everton 1-4 Man Utd, Sunderland 2-2 Newcastle, West Brom 1-2 Hull, Blackburn 2-0 Middlesbrough.
Join the debate on 606

1128: In a lovely touch, they're letting little sports have a go today. The Rugby League World Cup has kicked off. You can follow it here: (but be back by 12pm sharpish or there'll be trouble)
Live text - England v Papua New Guinea

1124: "Hi Caroline; having just seen the United line-up, where do you reckon Tevez is going in January? Perhaps he'd fancy a move to a bigger club, maybe Hull?"
Aidan, Oxford, via text on 81111
But how would you fit Tevez, Daniel Cousin and Marlon King into the same team?

1121: Finally an answer to one of my questions (see 1109). Thank you Ben, via text on 81111, "Laurel wreaths were given to ancient Greek champions. Resting on them was to give up being champ." Ben adds: "Come on Sunderland."

1119: Wayne Rooney returns to his former club in the form of his life, with nine goals in his last seven games. He is looking for his 100th club goal - and it was his 23rd birthday yesterday. Anyone agree with me that he won't score today?

1116: So Rio Ferdinand is back in the Manchester United fold after missing the game against Celtic in midweek. Louis Saha starts against his old club, partnering Yakubu up front for Everton.

1115: TEAMS Everton v Man Utd
Everton: Howard, Neville, Yobo, Jagielka, Lescott, Arteta, Fellaini, Osman, Pienaar, Saha, Yakubu. Subs: Nash, Baines, Castillo, Vaughan, Nuno Valente, Rodwell, Anichebe.
Man Utd: Van der Sar, Brown, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra, Ronaldo, Fletcher, Giggs, Park, Berbatov, Rooney. Subs: Kuszczak, Neville, Anderson, Nani, O'Shea, Evans, Tevez.

1109: Now then, just because there's only four games today, I don't want you resting on your laurels, so drop me a text on 81111 or join the mad, mad world of 606. Couple of things that have cropped up in the first hour or so of my shift: Why has Grace Jones got a foreign accent? What does having tingly and slightly itchy fingers mean? Oh and also, what are laurels?

1100: Ooh hello. What ever happened to football on a Saturday eh? Just the four games today, and there'll be a special prize* for you if you're still here for the 1730 BST kick-off between Blackburn and Middlesbrough.

* Not really. This is a financial meltdown you know...

Barclays Premier League Table
01 February 2010 22:00
    P GD PTS
1 Chelsea 23 38 54
2 Man Utd 24 36 53
3 Arsenal 24 32 49
4 Tottenham 24 20 42

5 Liverpool 24 16 41

6 Man City 22 14 41
7 Aston Villa 23 13 40
8 Birmingham 23 -1 34
9 Everton 23 -1 32
10 Blackburn 24 -15 28
11 Fulham 23 -2 27
12 Stoke 22 -7 26
13 Sunderland 23 -10 24
14 Wigan 22 -23 22
15 West Ham 23 -9 21
16 Bolton 22 -15 21
17 Wolverhampton 23 -21 21

18 Burnley 23 -23 20
19 Hull 23 -26 20
20 Portsmouth 22 -16 15

see also
Everton 1-1 Man Utd
25 Oct 08 |  Premier League
Sunderland 2-1 Newcastle
25 Oct 08 |  Premier League
West Brom 0-3 Hull City
25 Oct 08 |  Premier League
Blackburn 1-1 Middlesbrough
25 Oct 08 |  Premier League

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