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Page last updated at 17:16 GMT, Sunday, 29 August 2010 18:16 UK

Premier League as it happened


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By Sam Lyon

1815: Re...1800 - however, I won't be here to chat you through those, so make sure you keep across this beautiful website for all the latest as it happens (we're expecting the England squad announcement before 2000 BST). With no top flight games tomorrow, make sure you join me, Jonathan Stevenson and Paul Fletcher on Tuesday for the complete and utter carnage that is Transfer Deadline Day. I, almost literally, cannot wait. Before then, though, check out Match of the Day 2 tonight at 2200 on BBC Two and on the BBC website (UK only) - if you can't make that, it will be available on demand later in the week. What more could you want? Exactly. Bye.

Chris Whyatt reports:
"Everton must feel like going for a long chin-stroking walk across a dramatic landscape. Villa will probably be at the bar in a Vegas casino."

judemunkey on Twitter: " Of Course we want Moyes to stay, he's the best manager we'll ever get, we dont sack managers for fun like other clubs do!"

1800: I fear I may bore myself through the season saying this, but what another super day of Premier League football, rounded off with a truly titanic tussle between Aston Villa and Everton. And lest we forget, it's not even over yet. Well, it is on the field, but off it we've got Fabio Capello's England squad announcement as well, of course, as Garth Crooks' Team of the Week. It's almost like your Sunday evening wishes have been heard and granted isn't it?

Anon via text: "They say its never easy being a Everton fan. But that was a joke. Just how didn't we score? Some great attacking play and we really did not deserve a loss."

Seaside_Exile on 606: "Re 1753: Worst start for 11 years and Randy Lerner's first choice for manager (rumour has it) is David Moyes. Wonder if Everton will now be so keen to stand in his way?"

Murtini on 606: "I think we can all say now that all Everton lack is a goalscorer. We've got three days to get one in."

Full time
A hugely entertaining game that neither side deserved to lose. This is now Everton's worst start to a campaign for 11 years.

1752: He's not bad Friedel. He's Brad Friedel. Another super stop from the Villa keeper denies Everton what is surely their last chance, the American getting down superbly to his right to get his fingertips on to Louis Saha's shot and tip it around the post. Brilliant.

1750: Great chance for Everton as Louis Saha is fed inside the area 12 yards out, but his shot is straight at Brad Friedel and the Villa keeper stands tall to protect the hosts' slender lead.

1747: The good news for Villa is that we're into injury time. The bad news is that there will be five minutes of it.

1745: We'll have a break in play as Stephen Warnock gets some treatment.

1743: The Everton onslaught continues. Sylvain Distin, this time, having a header from a corner deflected wide, and then seeing his attempted centre denied by some more committed Villa defending. We're in the 86th minute.

1741: Another Everton set-piece, another header on goal - this time from Phil Jagielka - and yet another effort off target from the Toffees.

Boy_from_Brum on 606: "Best game of the weekend. Great stuff from both teams."

1739: ...Mikel Arteta sends it into the wall.

1739: We're inside the last 10 minutes and we have a free-kick to Everton, 25 yards from goal... big chance...?

1736: This is really good stuff at Villa Park, with Everton piling forward in search of a leveller and particularly threatening from set pieces, and the hosts looking to counter at every opportunity.

1732: It should be 2-0. Again. Tim Howard does pretty well to push Ashley Young's curler away from goal but it falls to Marc Albrighton 10 yards out on the angle - the youngster, though, blazes his effort well over the bar.

1730: Oh you have to do better, son. Nigel Reo Coker leads another Villa counter and Gabriel Agbonlahor is in acres of space in the centre of goal charging forward from midfield, but the midfielder's pass fails to find him as Everton stopper Phil Jagielka recovers to clear.

1729: Everton continuing to press, here, and Villa could well be looking at a rearguard action for the next remaining 20 minutes or so.

1725: Fine reception for John Carew as he comes off to be replaced by Gabriel Agbonlahor.

themib on Twitter: "I DON'T KNOW WHAT WE'RE YELLING ABOUT!!!"

Kevin Darling reports:
"Darren Bent's last-gasp penalty sparks a party on Wearside... but Harry Redknapp's wife could have tucked away that unbelievable first-half miss from Carlos Tevez."

Mandeep Sanghera reports:
"Fernando Torres was nowhere near his best, but still proved the difference between the two sides."

1720: Everton getting closer still... Jack Rodwell flicking a header from Mikel Arteta's free-kick millimetres wide of Brad Friedel's far post.

1717: Talking of fine saves... that's an even better stop from Brad Friedel at the other end, the Villa keeper diving to his right to push away Louis Saha's point-blank shot brilliantly.

1715: Aston Villa's set-up is all about counter-attacking football now... but it still takes a fine double save from Tim Howard to keep Everton in it. First he keeps out John Carew's low shot on the stretch and he then bounces up to stop Ashley Young's deflected effort on the rebound.

1713: Louis Saha comes on to replace Jermaine Beckford in the Everton attack.

1711: Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson on the BBC: "Fernando (Torres) is fighting to be at his best and the goal will do him the power of good. This is a very good result. If West Brom play like that every week they will take points off a lot of teams." He also distances the club from a move for Ola Toivonen, saying: "He doesn't fit the profile of the type of player we want."

myerla on 606: "I LOVE LAMP!!!"

Chowdhury_92 on 606: "Darren Bent for England - what else does he need to do?"

1706: Ashley Young - will he still be at Aston Villa come 1800 BST on Tuesday? - leads a Villa counter attack on his own and blazes an optimistic effort from range wide of the Everton goal.

1704: Aston Villa start on the front foot as Marc Albrighton swings over a delicious cross from the right that John Carew glances wide of the post eight yards out.

Vishmaster1 on Twitter: "I LOVE FOOTBALL!!!"

1702: Aston Villa kick off the second half against Everton.

1700: This Premier League season just refuses to do dull doesn't it?

TopClassCitizen on 606: "I HATE FOOTBALL!!!"

Full time

1654: Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini is absolutely fuming. With the decision or the performance, I'm not sure.

Sunderland goal: With practically the last kick of the game, Sunderland have surely won it. Micah Richards is penalised for climbing on Darren Bent in the City area, and the frontman picks himself up to squeeze the spot-kick underneath Joe Hart to send the Stadium of Light into raptures.

1653: GOALFLASH Sunderland 1-0 Man City (Bent pen)


Full time
Hardly vintage Liverpool, but an all-important three points nonetheless.

1650: Four minutes of added time in the Sunderland-Man City game, and the visitors will play them with Jo up front in place of Carlos Tevez.

1648: Three minutes of added time at Anfield. Around five minutes left at the Stadium of Light.

Half time
Chris Whyatt's HT snap-shot:
"A tad perverse. Everton the better side, but losing."

Red card
West Brom red card: The visitors' task has just got infinitely harder. James Morrison receives a red card after going in hard on Fernando Torres, the Baggies midfielder completely missing the ball and catching the Spaniard on the leg. It looked over-zealous rather than malicious, but Morrison can only roll his eyes and shrug as he makes his way from the field.

1643: RED CARD (Morrison, West Brom)

1640: Gonzalo Jara is a lucky boy if you ask me, Fernando Torres's cross clearly striking the Chilean defender's outstretched arm in the West Brom box but referee Lee Probert waving play on.

1637: Brilliant save. Micah Richards nods down a corner and Emmanuel Adebayor's flick goalwards looks for all the world to be hitting the back of the net, only for Sunderland keeper Simon Mignolet to tip brilliantly over the bar from point-blank range.

Someone has struck the woodwork
1635: Actually, Everton have come pretty darn close to equalising, Leighton Baines laying the ball to Steven Pienaar earlier and the midfielder rattling the crossbar with his drive.

1633: Roberto Mancini needs to change things around right now, with Manchester City coming under the kosh a bit, so Emmanuel Adebayor is called upon - replacing defender Joleon Lescott. Ambitious.

xth on 606: "Sam. Torres is a striker. He's doing his job. He's not coming to anyone's rescue."

1630: That's the link-up play Liverpool fans want to see in attack, a swinging Steven Gerrard cross finding Fernando Torres, whose volley at the back post is only kept out by keeper Scott Carson's brave save.

1628: Aston Villa have started to sit a little deep at Villa Park, and Everton are enjoying plenty of possession as a result. No clear chances for the visitors yet, though.

scoopex on Twitter: "Torressss is Backkkkkkkkkkkkk!"

1626: Danny Welbeck is having a real impact at the Stadium of Light, and on the back of another fine Sunderland break he crashes a shot over the bar from inside the Manchester City area. Could go either way, this one.

Liverpool goal: How many times has this man come to Liverpool's rescue? Moments after West Brom threaten at one end, the hosts counter and Fernando Torres volleys Dirk Kuyt's centre righ-footed into the bottom corner with supreme precision. That's his first goal in 10 games - and how Liverpool needed it.

1622: GOALFLASH Liverpool 1-0 West Brom (Torres)

1621: Sunderland starting to ask a few questions of the Man City defence now, as first Yaya Toure gets back well to head away from Darren Bent with the striker ready to pull the trigger inside the box, and then when Danny Welbeck glances a header narrowly wide from the resulting corner.

1618: Best chance of the day so far for Liverpool as Dirk Kuyt nods down to Martin Skrtel, the defender's rising effort creeping inches past the post.

1616: Man City keeper Joe Hart is called into action for the first time as Ahmed Al-Muhammadi's cross swings towards the near post, the visiting keeper pushing it around the post.

Dan Fookes on 606: "Re: 1606 - Never mind Reo-Coker, Arteta's time to shine, surely?"

CexyCesc on Twitter: "Re: 1606 - More like time for Luke Young to shine!"

1614: No chances in the second half at the Stadium of Light, but Sunderland putting in an improved display so far.

Yellow card
1612: Cynical from Richard Dunne, taking out Jermaine Beckford bearing down on goal and that's a clear yellow card for referee Michael Jones to hand out. Brad Friedel gets across well to save the resulting free-kick from Mikel Arteta.

Aston Villa goal: It's against the run of play, but it's a beautiful goal. Marouane Fellaini's error falls to Ashley Young, who weights his pass perfectly for Luke Young to run on to and curl high into the top corner left-footed from 16 yards out.

1608: GOALFLASH Aston Villa 1-0 Everton (Luke Young)

1606: Guess who's at Villa Park? It's Don Fabio Capello of course! Nigel Reo Coker's time to shine?

_Meteorain on Twitter: "Our midfield used to be Alonso/Mascherano, now it's Lucas/Poulsen. Bad times at Liverpool."

1605: Double change for Sunderland, Danny Welbeck and Phil Bardsley - both with strong Manchester United connections, of course - on for Fraizer Campbell and Michael Turner, whose days have been curtailed by injury. We're up and running again at the Stadium of Light.

1602: Liverpool kick off the second half at Anfield.

1600: The most-played fixture in the English top flight gets under way at Villa Park.

1558: The players are out and about at Villa Park - how will the hosts cope with that late change to their midfield? Owner Randy Lerner looks relaxed enough in the stands. I'll let you know if he still is in about an hour's time.

VillaFour on 606: "Ugh. Stephen Ireland replaced by Nigel Reo Coker. A horrible sentence to read, and a scenario that won't help us get back to winning ways. All I ask from the match is no penalties. Please no penalties. We're dreadful at them."

1554: A bit more news for Sunderland fans, Fraizer Campbell was stretchered off with that injury to his leg at the half-time break and did not look in good shape at all. I'll be stunned if re-emerges in the second half.

quest4clarity on Twitter: "Come on Liverpool what on earth are you doing?! I wanna see some of that spark of old!"

Anon via text: "Re 1518 - not exactly the inspirational display that Big Mac will have wanted from Ireland then!"

Chris Whyatt reports:
"Having made his return in Thursday's dismal Europa League qualifier with Rapid Vienna, Aston Villa defender James Collins makes his first Premier League appearance of the season [in place of Ciaran Clark] after missing the opening two league games of the campaign with a calf injury. The other change to the side hammered 6-0 at Newcastle last Sunday is Nigel Reo-Coker coming in for Stephen Ireland, enforced due to his injury in the warm-up. Everton boss David Moyes makes two changes to the side held to a 1-1 home draw by Wolves last week. Jack Rodwell, who scored in the midweek Carling Cup win over Huddersfield, and Marouane Fellaini replace Diniyar Bilyaletdinov and John Heitinga."

Half time
Kevin Darling's HT snap-shot:
"Tevez's touching tribute to Ronny Rosenthal is an all-time classic miss."

1548: Another great chance for City on the stroke of half-time as James Milner's free-kick falls to Yaya Toure six yards out - but keeper Simon Mignolet does superbly to divert the Ivorian's effort just wide.

Half time
Mandeep Sanghera's HT snap-shot:

Stephen Ireland has injured himself in the warm-up, so is replaced in the Villa midfield by Nigel Reo-Coker.

1545: Sunderland struggling a touch with injuries now. Minutes after Michael Turner receives lengthy treatment on a leg injury, Fraizer Campbell must do likewise. Half-time probably can't come quickly enough for Steve Bruce.

Chris Whyatt reports:
"Birmingham had brief brilliance, but 10-man Bolton the bottle. Two in the net late on was rich reward for their battles."

MCFC_TID ON 606: "City will just be wondering how they're not ahead after a dominant 40 minutes."

Aston Villa:
Friedel, Luke Young, Collins, Dunne, Warnock, Albrighton, Ireland, Petrov, Downing, Ashley Young, Carew. Subs: Guzan, Agbonlahor, Heskey, Reo-Coker, Cuellar, Lichaj, Bannan.
Everton: Howard, Hibbert, Jagielka, Distin, Baines, Arteta, Fellaini, Rodwell, Pienaar, Cahill, Beckford. Subs: Mucha, Heitinga, Bilyaletdinov, Saha, Gueye, Osman, Coleman.
Referee: Michael Jones (Cheshire)

1539: Are Liverpool clicking into gear here? Steven Gerrard drives forward from midfield and a simple lay-off would put Milan Jovanovic through on goal, but the midfielder's pass pushes the Serbian a touch wide and the Baggies defence is able to get back and clear.

Dan, Nottingham via text: "Good to see David Moyes starting Jack Rodwell for Everton today. The lad needs to prove himself in these starts to get himself into the England squad."

1535: West Brom are the better side at Anfield at the moment, Roy Hodgson's Liverpool looking every inch a team of players who have only recently met... though as I type that Dirk Kuyt has half a sight of goal in the Baggies box, only to see his his snap-shot bundled behind.

1533: Carlos Tevez and Yaya Toure are starting to find themselves on the same wavelength at the Stadium of Light, and the latter is inches away from getting on the end of Tevez's through-ball inside the area, home keeper Simon Mignolet out bravely to save at the Ivorian's feet.

1529: Carlos Tevez, a man on a mission after that earlier miss, is given the chance to by Fraizer Campbell, whose horrid pass across the Sunderland defence is cut out by the Argentine. Tevez can't get the ball from out of his feet, though, and his shot is deflected behind when it could have been a lot worse for Sunderland.

ArsenalArseneArshavin on 606: "Liverpool are all over the place. You need to assert your domination at home to a team like West Brom."

Full time
A frantic finale, completely dominated by Birmingham, is brought to an end and Bolton will be mightily happy with that.

1524: Half chance for West Brom at Anfield, Jonas Olsson pulling back for Marc-Antoine Fortune, but the striker's low shot is saved well by Pepe Reina down to his right.

1522: Oh so very nearly... Cameron Jerome gets clear of the Bolton defence but his low shot is kept out well by the feet of substitute keeper Adam Bogdan. Big chance, big save.

1521: We're into injury time at the Reebok Stadium... five whole minutes of it. Time for a winner?

gunner-zp on 606: "Oh my god! Miss of the season from Tevez! Great play from Yaya Toure."

Chris Whyatt reports:
"If Villa and Everton were grubby school kids, they'd be good pals. Both hang around the most popular gang in class - but are never quite in it - and each is worryingly below-par right now. David Moyes may be less concerned as his Everton are never bad for long, though defeat in this most-played top-flight fixture would mean their worst start for over a decade. Villa's caretaker boss Kevin McDonald is desperate for new boy Stephen Ireland to shine."

1516: If you thought Antolin Alcaraz's miss for Wigan at Tottenham was bad yesterday, check out this one from Carlos Tevez later tonight on Match of the Day 2. Yaya Toure, on the back of a surging run, lays it on a plate to the Argentine 12 yards out with the whole of the goal to aim at, but Tevez contrives to spoon it over. Woeful.

Anon via text: "Six English players in the Man City team this afternoon with Darren Bent up front for Sunderland. Promising for the national team."

Bolton goal: I did say it was game on... Bolton earn themselves a free-kick 20 yards from goal and up steps summer signing Robbie Blake to curl home a stunning strike to level things up with his first Trotters goal.

1511: GOALFLASH Bolton 2-2 Birmingham (Blake)

Jack Rodwell starts for the Toffees at Villa Park.

1509: Fernando Torres gets a bit of space inside the area, but he is closed down quickly and his shot is deflected behind for a corner. No goals in 10 games for club and country, the Spaniard, and I'm not sure he is even match fit yet.

1508: Bright start from Sunderland at the Stadium of Light and Black Cats midfielder Ahmed Elmohamady tries to take advantage of the swirling wind with a decent pot-shot from 25 yards.

1507: Keith Fahey comes on to replace the injured Sebastian Larsson for Birmingham.

TorreSamK9 on Twitter: "Liverpool's 4-4-1-1 system is worrying, we always play better with 4-2-3-1. Guess without Joe (Cole) we can't play that."

1505: Sebastian Larsson is in agony at the Reebok Stadium after going over his knee awkwardly in a challenge. That could be the Birmingham midfielder's day done.

1503: First shot in anger at Anfield, Fernando Torres cutting in from the left and firing right-footed towards goal - but Scott Carson saves comfortably.

1502: If you give this page a cheeky refresh, people, the delights of Sunderland-Man City audio commentary will appear on the right-hand side. Cheers.

Bolton goal: Game on. Roger Johnson is penalised for climbing on the back of Kevin Davies in the area, and the striker picks himself up to send an unstoppable penalty into the top corner for his 100th league goal. This could be a thrilling 20 minutes, here.

1501: GOALFLASH Bolton 1-2 Birmingham (Davies pen)


1500: And we're started at Anfield too.

1500: Sunderland gets up and running at the Stadium of Light.

biggybennett123 on Twitter: "What is West Brom's threat and where does it come from? One player - Graham Dorrans. Going down?"

1456: Bolton still knocking on the door at the Reebok Stadium, and Lee Bowyer might consider himself a touch lucky not to be penalised for wrestling with Gretar Steinsson at a home corner. Nothing given.

1454: Raul Meireles is paraded in front of the Anfield crowd and gets a lovely reception. Which is nice.

AndySzpuk on Twitter: "Exactly the same team?! For a Man City line-up? Radical stuff indeed from Roberto Mancini."

1451: Apologies for the delay in publishing the full Liverpool-WBA line-ups, by the way, more gremlins in the system it would appear.

Reina, Johnson, Skrtel, Carragher, Agger, Kuyt, Poulsen, Lucas, Jovanovic, Gerrard, Torres. Subs: Jones, Pacheco, Kyrgiakos, Maxi, Babel, Spearing, Kelly.
West Brom: Carson, Olsson, Tamas, Jara, Shorey, Morrison, Mulumbu, Dorrans, Brunt, Odemwingie, Marc-Antoine Fortune. Subs: Myhill, Tchoyi, Pablo, Barnes, Bednar, Reid, Cox.
Referee: Lee Probert (Wiltshire)

Mandeep Sanghera reports:
"Liverpool's main men return after their midweek Europa League win at Trabzonspor as Fernando Torres and Steven Gerrard start. Gerrard is likely to play in the advanced role supporting striker Torres as holding midfielder Christian Poulsen comes in for David Ngog in the one change from their last league game when the Reds were beaten by Manchester City. West Brom boss Roberto Di Matteo makes two changes from the win at Sunderland as striker Marc Antoine-Fortune is thrust straight into the side after his move from Celtic, while left-back Nickey Shorey also starts. Marek Cech and Jerome Thomas make way.

1446: Great chance for Johan Elmander as Chung-Yong Lee's pass finds him in the box, but the Bolton striker's hooked effort is straight at keeper Ben Foster. Birmingham break on the counter attack and James McFadden again finds Cameron Jerome, but the striker's snap-shot flies wide from 10 yards out.

Kevin Darling reports:
"Lee Cattermole and Michael Turner return from suspension for Sunderland, while on-loan City defender Nedum Onuoha's ineligibility presents a rare starting opportunity for Anton Ferdinand at right-back. Manchester City boss Robert Mancini names exactly the same side that beat Liverpool 3-0 on Monday. That means Emmanuel Adebayor, who this week warned he could quit Eastlands if he doesn't get regular football, is on the bench again."

Birmingham goal: Bolton appeal for offside when James McFadden's cross finds Cameron Jerome - but the striker is, correctly, ruled onside and his nod-down is bundled in by Craig Gardner. Uphill task for Bolton now and no mistake.

1441: GOALFLASH Bolton 0-2 Birmingham (Gardner)

Mandeep Sanghera reports:
"Two days to go until the transfer deadline day and there is plenty of activity going on at Liverpool. Raul Meireles is taking a look around Anfield after completing his move to the Merseysiders from Porto, while Fulham left-back Paul Koncesky is also seen at the stadium ahead of his proposed move to the club. Another signing that could be on the cards is Ola Toivonen. PSV confirmed to me Liverpool had made an enquiry about the Swedish striker a couple of weeks ago and he has been left out of the Dutch club's squad for today's game at Den Haag because of illness."

Andy2806 on Twitter: "Hodgson get on the case to sign Adebayor. If Man City don't want him, we (Liverpool) will have him."

1436: Birmingham get us back up and running against 10-man Bolton.

dziekanowskisboots on 606: "Raul Meireles seems a good signing for Liverpool. Looked like a Premier League-type of player in the World Cup in a largely disappointing Portuguese campaign."

1431: Interesting to see Emmanuel Adebayor on the Manchester City bench again. Only a couple of days ago, the Togolese said: "If I don't have a chance to play here there will be a lot of chance to play somewhere else. If they force you out then you always have to follow your destiny." Will we see the big frontman moved on before Tuesday's 1800 BST deadline?

Simon Of Fulham on 606: "So it seems its bye bye Konch and hello Salcido for us."

1427: Plenty of chat about whether Birmingham should have had a penalty for Jussi Jaaskelainen's slap on Roger Johnson. For my money, the referee has played it right. He has played on after Johnson's initial foul, and taken it back to that foul following Jaaskelainen's reaction. Simple. Erm, ish.

Mignolet, Ferdinand, Turner, Bramble, Richardson, Elmohamady, Henderson, Cattermole, Malbranque, Campbell, Bent. Subs: Carson, Bardsley, Zenden, Riveros, Welbeck, Colback, Waghorn.
Man City: Hart, Richards, Toure, Kompany, Lescott, Adam Johnson, De Jong, Toure Yaya, Barry, Milner, Tevez. Subs: Given, Zabaleta, Wright-Phillips, Adebayor, Silva, Vieira, Jo.
Referee: Mike Dean (Wirral)

ttuna1 on Twitter: "Did the match reporters get random words they had to include in the intros? I mean 'boing boing' and 'hoodoo'???"
They are a strange beast our match reporters, it is true.

1422: Our friends at Infostrada Sports tell us that Jussi Jaaskelainen's four direct red cards equal the Premier League record for a goalkeeper, set by the Czech Repuvlic's Pavel Srnicek from 1994 to 1999. But then, I'm sure you knew that already. Obviously.

Chris Whyatt's HT snap-shot:
"Blues too cool for moody Trotters as they frolic feistily in the late summer sunshine."

lee fett on 606: "That sending off was the easiest decision that ref will have to make all year. Violent conduct, simples."

Fulham defender Paul Konchesky is at Anfield, strolling around the dressing room area. Well I'd say that's a done deal then, no?

Fernando Torres and Steven Gerrard both start at Anfield.

1411: Bolton bring substitute keeper Adam Bogdan on for Martin Petrov, as Trotters boss Owen Coyle looks to reshuffle.

Yellow card
1410: And now Roger Johnson goes into the referee's book for the initial challenge on Jaaskelainen. What a completely bizarre turn of events.

Red card
Bolton red card: Utterly, utterly senseless. Roger Johnson goes in clumsily - but not maliciously - on Bolton keeper Jussi Jasskelainen but just as the defender is about to apologise to the Finn, Jaaskelainen slaps him right in the face. Referee Kevin Friend has no choice whatsoever but to dismiss the keeper.

1408: RED CARD (Jaaskelainen, Bolton)

Kevin Darling reports:
"The last time Sunderland beat Manchester City, Bob the Builder was No. 1 in the charts and the City line-up featured Shaun Goater and Danny Tiatto. Ten years on, City have notched nine wins and a draw against the Black Cats and their squad has undergone a rebuilding job worthy of Bob himself. Can the Wearsiders break the hoodoo against a City side yet to concede in four games this season? Not unless they improve on last week's dismal display at West Brom."

1405: Excellent break from Birmingham and Craig Gardner's looped cross finds James McFadden in the area, the Scot's left-foot volley drilled straight at keeper Jussi Jaaskelainen, though.

Mandeep Sanghera reports:
"Liverpool have signed midfielder Raul Meireles to replace Javier Mascherano but the tattoo-loving Portuguese will not figure today as the Reds go in search of their first league win of the season. Their big stars should be back after their Turkish delight in midweek and, playing a Baggies side who have not beaten them at Anfield since 1967, the Merseysiders will be expecting nothing short of the three points. But can West Brom match Wigan, who beat Spurs on Saturday, and boing boing to a shock?"

1402: Scramble! Playground stuff at the Reebok as Bolton pile in for a corner - Martin Petrov, Gary Cahill, Kevin Davies and Zat Knight all getting half a glimpse at goal before the Birmingham defence is able to frantically clear.

1358: It's been a lot more even in the last five-10 minutes and, as a result, goalmouth incidents have proved rare. Bolton boss Owen Coyle is already on the sidelines barking orders.

1353: Bolton bounce forward and a Stuart Holden free-kick causes Ben Foster a moment of alarm, the Birmingham keeper just about shuffling the ball over his own bar. Foster makes immediate amends with a neat claim from the resulting corner.

1351: Another Sebastian Larsson free-kick causes problems in the Bolton box and Cameron Jerome is convinced he should have a penalty when, under pressure from Johan Elmander, he swipes at nothing but clean air. Would have been harsh, I think.

1349: Bolton just starting to get their foot on the ball a little more now, and Martin Petrov is looking a threat up front at times, the latest when the Bulgarian forces a sprawling save by Blues keeper Ben Foster with a 20-yarder.

WolfPacPrem on Twitter: "I think it is Birmingham who shall be delivering our overdue weekly 6-0 if the game continues in this manner."

1346: And that's a waste from Bolton - the hosts' first corner and Martin Petrov curling it behind the goalline.

1344: We're 13 minutes into the game and Birmingham have enjoyed 60% of the possession so far. Alex McLeish will be delighted with this.

1342: A rare foray forward from Bolton and Martin Petrov gets a shot off on goal after a slip by Stephen Carr, but the Birmingham defender recovers well enough to block the goalbound effort.

1341: Birmingham continue to peg Bolton back, Sebastian Larsson floating in a couple of free-kicks from deep, but the Trotters just about scramble both of them away.

1338: A really shoddy start defensively this from Bolton, and Birmingham can sniff blood in these early stages. Lee Bowyer is already taking every opportunity he can to get forward from the Blues' five-man midfield.

TheSportsDirector on 606: "Roger Johnson for England!"

Birmingham goal: Lightning start for the visitors and Roger Johnson gets his first goal in a Birmingham shirt, prodding home after Cameron Jerome flicks on Lee Bowyer's cut-back.

1335: GOALFLASH Bolton 0-1 Birmingham (Johnson)

1333: Apparently it's still summer in the north west. I jest you not, there are people sat inside the Reebok Stadium wearing just a t-shirt. They've not even got an emergency waterproof to hand. What's that all about?

1331: Bolton get us up and running.

50in50 on 606: "Bolton only need to win 6-0 to go second. And we are due our weekly 6-0..."

1326: Right, let's put the theme tune chat to one side for a bit as we concentrate on all things Bolton-Birmingham. Plenty of top-drawer chat around this afternoon's other matches coming up soon as well, but for now, it's all about the sun-drenched (seriously) Reebok Stadium. The battle for third is on.

Will from Cambridge via text: "How about 'Gold' by Spandau Ballet for the theme but with the title word changed to 'Goal'."

el-nino84 on 606: "How could you all be so wrong... the theme tune should be the Benny Hill theme without a doubt."

1321: It's that time again, people. Yes, the brilliant Hypercube/Infostrada Sports Euro Club Index system that I adore despite having zero understanding of how it is compiled. Its take on today's fixtures is...
A Villa (29) v Everton (26) Villa 47% win chance, Everton 27%
Bolton (108) v Birmingham (103) Bolton 47%, Birmingham 27%
Liverpool (9) v West Brom (157) Liverpool 76%, West Brom 8%
Sunderland (160) v Man City (21) Sunderland 26%, Man City 49%
Genius isn't it?

Rob, Wales via text: "Theme tune has got to me 'More more more, how do you like it?'"

Joe from Birmingham via text: "Alex Alex Alex, you like everybody else knows the Blues cannot do 451... watch it go pear-shaped."

Chris Whyatt reports:
"Bolton are unchanged from the team that beat West Ham 3-1 last week. Johan Elmander, who scored two goals at Upton Park [and is now just one short of last season's entire tally], partners the talismanic Kevin Davies in attack. For Birmingham, who've won only one of 10 away games in the league this year, an extra man comes into the midfield - Lee Bowyer - as, despite the big build-up, Serbian beanpole striker Nicola Zigic drops to the bench."

yblcolin on 606: "Theme tune? Got to be 'Everybody's talkin' at me'."

1307: Plenty of chance for movement in the Premier League table today, of course, just a couple of games into the season. Both Bolton and Birmingham could go third, a high-scoring win would send Man City second, Aston Villa, Everton and Sunderland will also fancy their chances of pushing up towards the early pace-setters, West Brom can leap up into the Champions League places, while Liverpool - currently in the 'relegation zone' -can jump 13 places. Just a thought... but why do we even look at the table this early in the season? It means next to nothing doesn't it?

geekinthepink23 on Twitter: "Got any more footballing icons getting in on your live text today?"
The door's always open fella. Feel free to lobby your faves.

redandblackT on 606: "Carlton Palmer? I don't think Capello is THAT desperate. Andy Sinton maybe..."

Jaaskelainen, Steinsson, Cahill, Knight, Robinson, Lee, Holden, Muamba, Petrov, Elmander, Kevin Davies. Subs: Bogdan, Taylor, Mark Davies, Ricketts, Blake, Alonso, Andrew O'Brien.
Birmingham: Foster, Carr, Johnson, Dann, Ridgewell, Larsson, Gardner, Ferguson, McFadden, Bowyer, Jerome. Subs: Taylor, Murphy, O'Connor, Derbyshire, Fahey, Zigic, Valles.
Referee: Kevin Friend (Leicestershire)

abandinhope on Twitter: "The theme has to be 'More Than a Feeling' by Boston!"

panchopuskas on 606: "Got to admit that I'm impressed by Owen Coyle's work at Bolton. Ball on the deck, passes to the man and lot's running into space. Cloughie reincarnate."

1252: Oh yes, after today's live footy action, by the way - at around 2000 BST - Fabio Capello will name his England squad for Friday's Euro 2012 qualifier against Bulgaria, though unfortunately for the Italian his potential call-ups appear already to be dropping like flies. I remember when Mondays used to be the classic international pull-out day, now they're doing it before they're even named in the squad. Strange. Anyway, what do you do when your squad looks like being beset by injury? You totally go back on what you said a few weeks ago and consider a recall for David Beckham of course! Also in line for recalls are Glenn Hoddle, Chris Waddle and Carlton Palmer. Maybe.

Sam, Spain via text: "Re: possible theme tune: Ride of the Valkyries seems the only appropriate theme tune to me!"

RoshanShetty on Twitter: "Big chance today for Ben Foster to establish himself in the Fabio Capello camp as the only genuine contender for Joe Hart's no.1 England jersey."

Chris Whyatt reports:
"No bona fide dripping-in-gold uberstars on show at the sparse Lancashire homage to modern sporting architecture that is the Reebok. But, though neither side is flying, both remain unbeaten this season. Will Birmingham's new basketball player-sized signing Nicola Zigic take a schooling from Bolton's hitman-for-all-seasons Kevin Davies? Can former Manchester City man Martin Petrov weave his elusive magic for the hosts? A win would really spark one team's season into life. But a draw would keep both chugging along nicely…"

Royal Blue Hakuren on 606: "Sunday football, bring it on."

oliverhj84 on Twitter: "BBC's Live Text Commentary. The modern day equivalent to Grandstand! You're the 21st century Des Lynam! Just missing the nostalgic theme tune!"
Love it. Theme tune suggestions welcome, folks.

1241: And you know what I'd like while the goals pile in today? Your top-level chat, that's what. Rio Ferdinand might not want to get involved today, but by golly I'm betting you do. So get chatting on 606, text me on 81111 (UK) or +44 7786200666 (worldwide) with FOOTBALL before your message, or Tweet me. Have it.

1234: Or, perhaps today's matches will return to form with a couple of 6-0s, a 4-4 and a 3-2er just to restore order, like. On the face of it, we could be in luck. There has been just one goalless draw in the last 35 Bolton-Birmingham meetings and none in Sunderland-Man City matches since 1938, Liverpool will be free to pile towards the West Brom goal in the knowledge the Baggies haven't scored in eight Premier League meetings against them, and Everton may well be licking their lips ahead of their trip to Villa bearing in mind the hosts have lost by a six-goal margin twice in their last 10 league matches, having previously gone 24 years without losing by such a margin in the top flight. And yes, I know, I really should get out more.

1230: So, after a couple of Premier League weekends that can only be described as goal-mental, some semblance of normality was restored yesterday with only(!) 15 goals scored in six matches. Perhaps we've been spoiled by the net-busting start to the season?

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Premier League results

29 Aug 2010 23:59 UK

Premier League table snapshot

As it stood on 29 Aug 2010 23:59 UK

Position Team P GD PTS
1 Chelsea 3 14 9
2 Arsenal 3 7 7
3 Man Utd 3 6 7
4 Aston Villa 3 -2 6
5 Bolton 3 2 5
6 Birmingham 3 1 5
7 Wolves 3 1 5
8 Newcastle 3 3 4
9 Man City 3 2 4
10 Sunderland 3 0 4
11 Tottenham 3 0 4
12 Blackpool 3 -2 4
13 Liverpool 3 -2 4
14 Fulham 3 0 3
15 Blackburn 3 -1 3
16 West Brom 3 -6 3
17 Wigan 3 -9 3
18 Everton 3 -2 1
19 Stoke 3 -4 0
20 West Ham 3 -8 0

see also
Sunday's football photos
29 Aug 10 |  Football

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