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Page last updated at 18:37 GMT, Saturday, 9 April 2011 19:37 UK

Saturday football as it happened

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By Chris Bevan

1936: And that is all we have got time for today. Thanks for keeping me company, and don't forget to watch all of today's goals on Match of the Day on BBC One and this website (in the UK) at 2215 BST, swiftly followed by the Football League Show at 2335 BST. Some special strikes there, especially by Everton's Diniyar Bilyaletdinov and Swansea's Fabio Borini. Enjoy, and I'll see you on Sunday for Blackpool-Arsenal and Aston Villa-Newcastle. Cheerio for now.

1932: Let's give a quick mention to Tottenham's Peter Crouch - the villain when he was sent off early on at the Bernabeu on Tuesday, the hero at White Hart Lane with two goals today against Wigan. Surely it was because he stayed on his feet this time? Anyway, Crouch was pretty chuffed afterwards too, saying: "It has been a really hard week. I have apologised to the players and the manager and it felt like a chance to apologise to the fans today - I made a couple of stupid tackles."

FULL-TIME Tottenham 3-2 Stoke
Phil Dawkes reports: "Spurs give their pursuit of a top-four finish a timely boost in the arm with a deserved victory over Stoke, but they were made to work for it by a spirited Potters. Cudos as well to Peter Crouch, who bounced back from Tuesday's sending off with two well-taken headed goals."

FULL-TIME Sunderland 2-3 West Brom
Michael Da Silva reports : "An incredible turnaround by West Brom, who now effectively need just one more win to ensure their Premier League survival. For Sunderland, it was yet another afternoon to forget and, despite Roy Hodgson's post-match words of encouragement, they are officially in a relegation scrap."

FULL-TIME Man Utd 2-0 Fulham
Paul Fletcher reports : "A comfortable afternoon for Manchester United, so much so that quite a few of their fans felt relaxed enough to head out into the spring sunshine before the final whistle. United have a 10-point lead, at least until Arsenal play on Sunday."

FULL-TIME Chelsea 1-0 Wigan
Nabil Hassan reports: "Having scored 14 goals in their previous two games against Wigan this match was expected to be a stroll in the park for Chelsea. However, this was an ugly 1-0 win for the Blues that they just about deserved as they remain 11 points behind leaders Manchester United with a game in hand. Wigan remain bottom, two points from safety."

FULL-TIME Bolton 3-0 West Ham
Julian Shea reports: "A stroll in the sun for Bolton against West Ham. Daniel Sturridge could have had a hatful but had to settle for two against a West Ham side who only woke up once the game was already dead and buried."

FULL-TIME Blackburn 1-1 Birmingham
Catherine Etoe reports: "Blackburn come back to draw in this clash with Birmingham but it is so close at the bottom end of the table that only time will tell whether it is more a case of precious points lost than gained."

FULL-TIME Wolves 0-3 Everton
Chris Whyatt reports: "Poor Phil Neville. His first goal in around 1,000 days - a real screecher - is instantly bettered by Bilyaletdinov's white-hot goal of the season contender."

1919: It was an eventful old day in the top flight too. Here's how our reporters saw all the action...

1918: So, leaders QPR stuffed at bottom side Scunthorpe? And second-placed Norwich see their nine-game winning run emphatically ended by Swansea? Hands up who thought the automatic promotion spots in the Championship were done and dusted? They aren't... well, maybe QPR can still breathe easy - they are still nine points clear at the top after all.

BBC Sport's David Dulin at the Liberty Stadium: "Joyous scenes here as Swansea beat Norwich 3-0 to cut the gap on the second-place Canaries to a point and throw the automatic promotion race wide open. Fabio Borini and Mark Gower both struck match-winning goals in a hard-fought win."

Full time
1915: FULL-TIME Swansea 3-0 Norwich

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Swansea goal: That should settle it. Zak Whitbread does not get enough on his backpass under pressure from Tamas Priskin, who runs on to beat John Ruddy to the ball and, after he has gone round the keeper, tap in. Game, set and match.

1913: GOALFLASH Swansea 3-0 Norwich (Priskin)

1912: Everyone is back now for Swansea to keep Norwich at bay. Ashley Williams has been a rock at the back for them today.

1910: There will be four minutes of stoppage time at the Liberty Stadium.

garrethhawkins on Twitter: "Re: Blue_Revolt1986. 3 world class strikers? Really? Hmm. But Borini is playing well so far and could be one for the future!"

BBC Sport's David Dulin at the Liberty Stadium: "We're into the closing stages and Norwich will want to show that never-say-die attitude again by scoring more late goals. Despite a two-goal lead, it's a slightly nervy time for Swansea fans, but the home defence has held firm so far."



1904: We are into the last four minutes of the 90 at the Liberty Stadium. Time for one last Norwich push? Yep, but Swansea are also looking lively. Tamas Priskin has another pop, but cannot curl the ball on target from way out on the left.

1903: I've said before that Chelsea have got a couple of in-form strikers... but they are both out on loan.

MatthewUnsworth on Twitter: "If Torres is worth £50m, then what is Daniel Sturridge worth? Just got back from the Bolton game, he was immense!"

Blue_Revolt1986 on Swansea's on-loan Chelsea striker Fabio Borini on Twitter: "Borini in his 3 loan games has scored more than our 3 world class strikers combined in last 5-6 matches."

1859: With 10 minutes to go, it is time for some Swansea defensive reinforcements. Fabio Borini and Nathan Dyer are off, Leon Britton and Alan Tate are on.

1857: A rare attack by the Welsh side. Tamas Priskin, who is looking for his first goal for Swansea, forces John Ruddy to push the ball round his post, before Angel Rangel's driven shot is deflected narrowly wide from the resulting corner.

1855: If he is still carrying a knock, then Dorus De Vries is not going to get an easy ride for the last 15 minutes. Norwich are piling on the pressure and pumping balls into the Swansea box.

1852: Two top-drawer saves from Swansea keeper Dorus De Vries, who is injured in the process. He gets down to his left to push away Korey Smith's shot, and immediately springs back across goal to keep out Smith's follow-up. It looks like he will be alright to carry on too.

1848: Norwich have made a couple more changes, including bringing on Wales striker Sam Vokes. He will join Simeon Jackson and Grant Holt in a three-pronged attack. Canaries' boss Paul Lambert is going for it, and his side have got around 20 minutes left to salvage something from this game.

BBC Sport's David Dulin at the Liberty Stadium: "It's Norwich doing most of the pressing but Swansea have pace to break. Tamas Priskin has just come on for the Swans and was roundly booed by the Norwich fans - no wonder, he's on loan from rivals Ipswich."

Sunderland boss Steve Bruce on his side's loss at West Brom, their seventh defeat in eight games: "I sound like a long-playing record, don't I? That sums our last few weeks up, it's exactly the same. It's an unbelievable thing, confidence. You can see West Brom, a couple of results go for them and all of a sudden, they are very, very confident in what they are doing compared to us. I would have thought Phil Bardsley's goal (to put Sunderland 2-1 up) would have given everybody a lift, it was a wonderful strike. But we went 10, 15, 20 minutes in the second half when we were all over the place again, which cost us."

BBC Sport's David Dulin at the Liberty Stadium: "Norwich have started strongly again and their fans are really getting behind them, but Swansea still lead 2-0 and you get a feeling the next goal is going to be key whoever gets it."

1837: Time for a Swansea change. Stephen Dobbie is off, Tamas Priskin is on. Priskin does not take long to get a shot away, either, but he doesn't really get hold of his angled drive on the run and John Ruddy saves comfortably.

1835: Andrew Crofts can certainly hit 'em when he gets a sight of goal, and he goes within a whisker of pulling a goal back for Norwich here... waiting for the ball to drop on the edge of the box before hammering his first-time shot just wide.

Birmingham manager Alex McLeish on his side's draw at fellow-strugglers Blackburn: "It's not a bad point. We were a little bit nervy before the game and you could feel the tension but the players have responded well. "We've taken four good points in a week and I think they will be significant at the end of the season."

1833: Norwich stay in second place if they lose today but Swansea and Cardiff will both be within a point of them in third and fourth. Tight at the top, then. Still time for the Canaries to get something in Wales, mind, and they are doing most of the pressing in the second half.

Stoke boss Tony Pulis on his side's narrow defeat by Tottenham which continues their poor form on the road: "It was a poor start from us. Our defending was poor. We stood off and watched players play round us. We've scored two great goals, and we got a bit closer second half and gave them a run for their money."

1826: And the Canaries almost pull a goal back immediately after the restart. Grant Holt, who doesn't usually miss, gets his angles wrong when he meets a free-kick and sends his header fizzing just wide. Unlucky.

1824: Norwich have brought on Simeon Jackson for the second half - like Grant Holt, he bagged a hat-trick against Scunthorpe last week. Andrew Surman is the man replaced.

From Jason in Norfolk, via text: "I'd be interested to know who Sunderland fans think they're going to get that's going to be much better than Steve Bruce? If I recall, quite a few Aston Villa fans weren't too sad to see Martin O'Neill go. Careful what you wish for..."

Pauljomo79 on Twitter: "West Brom to finish above Liverpool anyone???"


He would never admit it, but I bet Roy Hodgson would enjoy that, a lot.

And Bolton boss Owen Coyle on what victory over the Hammers meant for his side: "For me today was biggest win of the season, I said to the players I wanted the points so we can catch Liverpool and Everton for sixth and finish as high up as we can, and that was the motivation today."

West Ham manager Avram Grant on his side's dismal defeat by Bolton that leaves them stuck in the bottom three: "Until now bad situations have made us strong, I hope it will be the same in the next game."

BBC Sport's David Dulin at the Liberty Stadium: "Swansea are in control with superb goals from Fabio Borini and Mark Gower, but they can't afford to sit back as Norwich do pose a threat and have a habit of scoring late goals."

Half time
1809: HALF-TIME Swansea 2-0 Norwich



1808: Only a last-ditch challenge by Zak Whitbread stops Fabio Borini from meeting Angel Rangel's cross after Swansea rampage forward down the right. Norwich have hardly been shy going forward but they will be glad to get in at the break and regroup.

1805: I also like the look of Swansea's Italian Under-21 striker Fabio Borini, and not just because of his goal. He is a constant thorn in the side of the Norwich back-kine with his hard work and his movement is also excellent. Again, he makes space for a shot but is just unable to lift it over Norwich keeper John Ruddy. We are into the last couple of minutes of the first half, and Swansea lead 2-0.

David_Dalton on Twitter: "It's all gone wrong for Sunderland since the Dazzler left. Simples."


Yep, my question to Steve Bruce would be: Would you still sell Darren Bent to Aston Villa for £24m if you knew what would happen to your side since he left? Good money, yes... brilliant in fact. But obviously a price to pay too.

West Brom boss Roy Hodgson, whose side fought back twice to beat Sunderland and continue their climb away from the relegation zone: "It was a huge victory, even if Sunderland have been wounded in recent weeks. It was a good performance and we deserved it for how hard we battled. It gives us some breathing space ahead of the bottom three."

BBC Sport's David Dulin at the Liberty Stadium: "What a time to get your first goal of the season. Mark Gower's brilliant drive has really put the Swans on the front-foot and Norwich have a lot of work to do now."

1757: You will, of course, be able to watch that Mark Gower goal, and Fabio Borini's strike, on the Football League Show immediately after Match of the Day, at 2335 BST (also on BBC One etc). You want more good news? 606 has just started on Radio 5 live. Give this page a refresh and you will be able to hear it.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Swansea goal: I've seen some special Premier League goals fly in today (watch em all on Match of the Day at 2215 BST on BBC One and this website in the UK) but Swansea's latest strike is every bit as good. John Ruddy does well to push away Fabio Borini's angled strike but the ball is only cleared as far as Mark Gower, who runs on to it on the edge of the area to smash it into the corner of the net. No saving that.

1751: GOALFLASH Swansea 2-0 Norwich (Gower)

Infostrada Sports on Twitter: "Today is the 4th time in 6 PL matches under Roy Hodgson that West Brom have recovered from a 1-0 deficit to take at least a point... AND Only Everton and Chelsea have taken more Premier League points than West Brom since Roy Hodgson took over."

From Mark in Cambridge, via text: "Re 1643. To call Crawley unpopular would be a bit of an understatement amongst us non-league types. Fair play to them though, they have been the best team."

1747: I've been very impressed by Norwich so far, despite Swansea still being ahead. Grant Holt is clearly their main man when they come forward but they don't lump it up to him. Instead the Canaries get it wide and get crosses in from the wings... their latest move sees the ball sent across to Holt at the back post, but he can only head into the side-netting under pressure from Angel Rangel.

1744: Sunderland, by the way, have take just one point from a possible 24. Not so long ago, people were talking about the Black Cats getting into Europe... not anymore, they're not.

Hamwise on Twitter: "Re JRASH1. We don't want him sacked because we might go down, but because he's not very good."

JRAsh1 on Twitter: "Sunderland fans are over-reacting. They won't go down."

1737: It is still fast, furious and frantic at the Liberty, but there are no more clear chances to tell you about. Grant Holt had an effort from a tight angle saved for Norwich, while Stephen Dobbie just fired over for Swansea. The Welsh side still lead 1-0 with 15 minutes gone.

From Tom T, via text: "Another victory for Barnet - we haven't won two on the trot for two years. Mad Dog is a legend."

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson on his side's comfortable 2-0 win over Fulham that takes them 10 points clear at the top of the Premier League: "It was an important win, that is the name of the game, but we did not play that well and we were a bit wasteful in possession."

Odymackem on Twitter: "Re 1725. Time for Bruce to go. We are dropping like a stone and he appears powerless!"

BBC Sport's David Dulin at the Liberty Stadium: "Norwich took the game to Swansea but Chelsea loanee Fabio Borini has sent the home fans into raptures with his superb free kick. It's the Italian's third goal in as many games and that's settled a few home nerves."

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Swansea goal: Some start at the Liberty. Dorus De Vries makes a fine double-stop to deny Norwich before Swansea break and, from a free-kick, Fabio Borini arrows a shot past John Ruddy. That was Cristiano Ronaldo-esque.

1727: GOALFLASH Swansea 1-0 Norwich (Borini)

1725: So, you've got time to get a few things off your chest. Bruce out? Or Hodgson for a knighthood. Let me know. I'm Chris Bevan, and you can tweet me at @chrisbevan_bbc using the hashtag #BBCFootball please. Or text me via 81111 (UK) instead. Got that? Good.

Fulham manager Mark Hughes after his side were outclassed by Manchester United at Old Trafford: "We gave ourselves too much to do. We started brightly but the first goal was disappointing because we thought it was offside and we then conceded the second after a comedy of errors, which meant United could comfortably see the game out."

1722: Norwich have just got things going in Wales. I'm going to keep across that game, and bring you all the reaction from the Premier League, and elsewhere, too.

BBC Sport's David Dulin at the Liberty Stadium: "Swansea are unbeaten in their last four home games while Norwich are unbeaten in nine both home and away. Four players in Norwich's matchday squad have previously been linked with moves to the Swans - Grant Holt, Zak Whitbread, Henri Lansbury and Sam Vokes. Injured Wes Hoolahan has also been a Swans target in the past."

Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp on his side's 3-2 win over Stoke: "I enjoyed the way we played first half. We moved the ball around and it was a pleasure to see. But we got sloppy and gave the ball away and suddenly it's game on. Stoke never give up and we had to hang on. We've had a setback at Real Madrid. But we've got to come back and go on a run in the league and try to get back in that top four."

Swansea v Norwich line-ups
Swansea: De Vries, Williams, Taylor, Monk, Rangel, Dyer, Dobbie, Sinclair, Allen, Gower, Borini. Subs: Ma-Kalambay, Tate, Pratley, Beattie, Moore, Priskin, Britton.
Norwich: Ruddy, Russell Martin, Whitbread, Ward, Tierney, Crofts, Surman, Lansbury, Fox, Holt, Pacheco. Subs: Rudd, Edwards, Jackson, Smith, Lappin, McNamee, Vokes.
Referee: Tony Bates (Staffordshire)

1716: More news from the Blue Square Bet Premier now... and less cheerful for Histon fans I'm afraid. They become the first team to be relegated in that division, following their 2-0 defeat at Gateshead.

From Jonny in Bournemouth, via text: "I'll tell you what's wrong with Torres. He hasn't looked the same player since he cut his hair before the World Cup! He's the modern day Samson. Bring back the flowing locks and he'll be banging them in again!"

simonihirst on Twitter: " Boing Boing! Gotta be safe now? Hail Sir Roy!"

stephlclark on Twitter: "As much as I love Steve Bruce, that was pitiful. Worst record for losing from leading and players looked lost."

1712: Almost time to crack open the champagne for Manchester United too? Not quite, they are 10 points clear at the top, but Arsenal do have two games in hand. Surely nothing but a victory will do for the Gunners at Bloomfield Road on Sunday though? Those wins for Chelsea and Tottenham means the battle for third and fourth is a lot tighter, while the bottom three teams don't manage a goal or a point between them. Apart from West Brom (who won), it was not a good day for teams beginning with the letter 'W'.

Football League Al: "Amazing scenes at Nottingham Forest after a late penalty put the home side level at 3-3 but Reading struck a dramatic fourth to win it and could have ended up with five after missing an injury-time penalty too. Sheffield United are bottom of the Championship after Middlesbrough take a 2-1 lead and Scunthorpe stun leaders QPR 4-1. Big goal from Jack Hunt at Huddersfield who finish level with Peterborough at 1-1 but Brighton and Southampton are in the top two, with Brighton on the verge of promotion. Plymouth and Swindon both win at the bottom while Oldham and Charlton finish goalless - the only such scoreline in the Football League. In League Two, Hereford's 3-0 win over Chesterfield is the standout result but Aldershot, Torquay, Gillingham and Bury record big wins."

OptaJoe on Twitter: "648 - Fernando Torres has now failed to score in 648 mins for Chelsea, despite having 28 shots (inc. blocked);12 of those on target. Ouch."

BBC Sport's David Dulin at the Liberty Stadium: "Two years ago this weekend Swansea beat Norwich 2-1 here to help send them down to League One. The Canaries are after revenge and a win would put them seven points clear of the Swans in the race for automatic promotion to the Premier League. Norwich make one change with Henri Lansbury in for the injured Wes Hoolahan. Angel Rangel and Stephen Dobbie are in for Alan Tate and Darren Pratley for Swansea."

1703: Right, that is our top-flight action out of the way for the day, but we still have a big game in the Championship ahead of us. Swansea and Norwich, battling for the second automatic promotion spot, meet at the Liberty Stadium at 1720 BST.

Full time
1702: FULL-TIME Blackburn 1-1 Birmingham

1701: Blackburn have a corner in the eighth minute of stoppage time and Chris Samba heads wide. When will this game end?

Wigan fan JSimpkin92 on Twitter: "Martinez lost us a point today with his silly subs. I've stuck with him all season but he doesn't make life easy for the fans!"
1657: We are into stoppage time at Ewood Park. Any sign of a winner? Well David Dunn is doing his best conjure one up for Rovers against his old club, hurdling a couple of challenges on the edge of the area, but he only succeeds in running into trouble. Birmingham clear their lines.

Full time
1656: FULL-TIME Sunderland 2-3 West Brom

Hamwise on Twitter: "Steve Bruce has to go, Sunderland look absolutely clueless. Appalling."

Full time
1654: FULL-TIME Chelsea 1-0 Wigan

1654: FULL-TIME Tottenham 3-2 Stoke

1652: Chelsea are playing keep-ball at the Bridge, or at least they were until Didier Drogba gave it away. Still, the Blues have enough men back to mop up the danger when Franco di Santo tries to break forward. Tom Cleverley does manage to get in a shot on goal from the edge of the box but it is easily saved by Petr Cech.

Champagne moment
1650: CRAWLEY BEAT TAMWORTH 3-0 AND ARE PROMOTED TO THE FOOTBALL LEAGUE

1651: FULL-TIME Bolton 3-0 West Ham

Full time
1650: FULL-TIME Man Utd 2-0 Fulham

1649: Two minutes of stoppage time at the Reebok, but the game was up for West Ham a long time ago. Good news for Wolves, however, after their own heavy defeat earlier on today.

Football League Al: "There's no stopping Scunthorpe who lead QPR 4-1 in probably the performance of the day. Brighton are 2-0 up against Sheffield Wednesday and could be promoted on Tuesday, Southampton double their lead over Leyton Orient while a saved penalty from Joe Lewis maintains Peterborough's narrow lead over Huddersfield. In another big surprise, League Two leaders Chesterfield are losing 3-0 at Hereford."

1647: Fernando Torres is still trying too. No luck again for him, though, and still no goals. First he sees his weak effort on the run saved by Ali Al Habsi, who denies him again moments later after brilliant work by Yossi Benayoun found Torres in space. That was a top drawer save which means Chelsea still only need 1-0.

1647: Sunderland are pressing hard for an equaliser but the Baggies are defending in numbers - a bit of a role-reversal from what was happening earlier on in that game. Stoke are also knocking on the door, but doing rather better: Kenwyne Jones has a shot from 25 yards tipped over by Spurs keeper Heurelho Gomes.

Champagne moment
1643: Some champagne needed at Tamworth, I think. Crawley are 3-0 up and heading for the Football League for the first time. Three points will see them crowned Blue Square Bet Premier champions today. I think their success will be as popular in non-league circles as mine in the Grand National was in the office earlier!

1640: Blues goalkeer Ben Foster is having a busy spell at Ewood Park, denying Jonas Olsson and having to palm over a corner as well. And Franco Di Santo has almost levelled for Wigan against his old club, seeing his close-range header palmed away at full stretch by Petr Cech.

1639: Fulham have been better since the interval, but have not improved enough to look like ruining Manchester United's day. Sir Alex Ferguson's men have a two-goal cushion and they are in cruise-control against the Cottagers.

1638: Dare I say there is a bit of a lull at White Hart Lane, ever since Roman Pavlyuchenko had a tap-in ruled out for a foul on Stoke keeper Asmir Begovic. Marc Wilson has just fired over for the Potters from about 30 yards out, but not much in the way of goalmouth action to tell you about. There are 11 minutes left for Spurs to hold on, and Stoke have just made a triple substitution.

Football League Al: "A fifth goal at the City Ground and it's gone to Reading who lead Nottingham Forest by 3-2 thanks to Jimmy Kebe, while Millwall reinstate their two-goal lead over Leeds and teenager Josh Carson has both Ipswich goals in their 2-0 lead over Crystal Palace. In League Two, Wycombe are level 2-2 with Oxford and bottom-club Stockport lead Stevenage 2-1."

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
West Brom goal: Fabulous work from Peter Odemwingie, who finds Paul Scharner with his precise cut-back from the right and the Austrian steers in his first-time shot at the near pots. The Baggies have been behind twice... now they are ahead.

1633: GOALFLASH Sunderland 2-3 West Brom (Scharner)

1631: Fernando Torres is still waiting for his first Chelsea goal. He shouldn't be, because he was clean through and in acres of space... but his control let him down badly from Petr Cech's huge clearance. Just what is wrong with that boy?

Someone has struck the woodwork
1631: Agony for West Ham as Demba Ba's shot on the turn from the edge of the box rattles the inside of the post and bounces clear. And West Brom have gone close too - Jonas Olsson's header from a free-kick brought a fine save from Sunderland keeper Simon Mignolet. Still all-square in that one.

Champagne moment
1628: Fergie's horse didn't win the Grand National, but mine did. I had Ballabriggs in the office sweepstake... who ran away with the big one at Aintreee. Good work.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Chelsea goal: Not the prettiest goal you will ever see at the Bridge, but will Chelsea care? Not one bit. Didier Drogba's corner causes havoc in the Wigan defence and after Ali Al Habsi flaps at David Luiz's header, the ball falls for Florent Malouda to poke it home. Scrappy? Yes. Vital? Definitely.

1625: GOALFLASH Chelsea 1-0 Wigan (Malouda)

Someone has struck the woodwork
1624: It is still lively at Ewood Park too. Birmingham midfielder Seb Larsson has just brought out the best in Paul Robinson, who has to stretch to palm away the Swedish midfielder's smart free-kick from the edge of the area. At the other end, Roque Santa Cruz did beat Ben Foster but saw his header come back off the bar. Like I said, lively.

1623: A great ball by Nani sees him pick out Darron Gibson, who goes for placement rather than power with his shot. He gets neither and it is easily saved. Even so, this remains a walk in the park for Manchester United.

1622: Chelsea are getting closer at the Bridge. Didier Drogba's free-kick is dipping under the bar until diving Wigan keeper Ali Al Habsi flicks his wrist to tip it over. Still 0-0, and if the Blues do drop points here, then their title defence is surely over.

Football League Al: "Joe Garner nets his second and Michael O'Connor also strikes to give Scunthorpe a shock 3-1 lead over QPR, Robert Earnshaw gave Nottingham Forest the lead over Reading only for Jem Karacan to level shortly afterwards to make it 2-2 in a great game at City Ground, while Leeds pull one back but trail Millwall 2-1."

1620: I was going to say that, with United cruising, Sir Alex might feel relaxed enough to go and watch his horse after all. But Fulham are showing (some) signs of life. Eidur Gudjohnsen, who has just come off the bench, forces a save from Tomasz Kuszczak with a shot from 25 yards out.

1618: Fernando Torres is about to come on for Chelsea. And the Grand National is about to start.

1617: No sign of a comeback at the Reebok, although Bolton keeper Jussi Jaskalainen has finally faced his first real threat of the game - a short West Ham corner is crossed to Demba Ba and his goalbound header is kept out by a fine one-handed save by the Finn.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
West Brom goal: The Baggies are clearly not going to lose Roy Hodgson's unbeaten record as their boss without a fight. Youssouf Mulumbu exchanges passes with Peter Odemwingie and manages to get the ball from under his feet in time to prod it past Simon Mignolet.

1614: GOALFLASH Sunderland 2-2 West Brom (Mulumbu)

Someone has struck the woodwork
1612: It should be 3-3 at White Hart Lane, and only Jon Walters knows why it isn't. The Stoke forward is in the right place to meet Kenwyne Jones' driven cross from the right but with the goal gaping, and from just two or three yards out, he can only divert the ball on to the post.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Bolton goal: Far, far, far too easy for Daniel Sturridge this. He is allowed to advance unchallenged to the edge of the area and then fires in a low shot that beats Rob Green. Game over? It looks like it...

1610: GOALFLASH Bolton 3-0 West Ham (Sturridge)

1608: Play has resumed at Ewood Park now too. I was going to say 'no more goals anywhere yet' but then this happened...

OptaJoe on Twitter: "17 - Of Chelsea's last 24 Premier League goals, 17 have been netted in the second half of matches (71%). Patience."

1606: Still one-way traffic at Old Trafford. Anderson almost makes it 3-0 for Manchester United early in the second half but his strike is saved by Mark Schwarzer.

1604: The second halves have started everywhere in the top flight except Ewood Park - there was about eight minutes of stoppage time there. Anyway, Yossi Benayoun is on for Chelsea, making his first appearance since his serious Achilles injury in September.

Football League Al: "In League Two, Hereford are leading leaders Chesterfield but Bury are cruising at Northampton with three goals already and with Wycombe losing at Oxford they are second in the table. At the bottom, Barnet lead Crewe 2-1."

Football League Al: "Penalties give leaders Brighton and Peterborough the lead just before half-time in League One. Chris Wood scoring for the Seagulls who are unbeaten at home in the league this season while the Posh are leading promotion rivals Huddersfield through Grant McCann's strike. Southampton in second with a 1-0 advantage at Leyton Orient while at the bottom Dagenham and Redbridge are 3-0 up over Notts County and have exchanged places in the relegation spots."

Football League Al: "Jubilation at Nottingham Forest where Kris Boyd's penalty levels their match with Reading. Cardiff and Millwall are winning, while Derby are back on level terms with Coventry at 2-2 and Barnsley fight back to lead Bristol City 3-1. Still 1-1 between leaders QPR and bottom-side Scunthorpe."

1601: We are back under way at Old Trafford.

Half time
HALF-TIME Blackburn 1-1 Birmingham
Catherine Etoe's HT snapshot "It's been a nervy first half at Ewood Park but a game that had been most notable for misplaced passes and poor control was suddenly brought to life by Lee Bowyer's goal for Birmingham followed by Junior Hoilett's late equaliser. The goals have given the game the lift it needed and it could still go either way."

Half time
HALF-TIME: Sunderland 2-1 West Brom
Michael Da Silva's HT snapshot:
A cracking first half at the Stadium of Light finishes 2-1 and, unless West Brom can up their performance, Roy Hodgson will taste defeat for the first time since taking over the Baggies. Sunderland very much on top here."

Half time
HALF-TIME Bolton 2-0 West Ham
Julian Shea's HT snapshot "A Daniel Sturridge stunner and a straight-forward Chong Yong Lee header give Bolton a 2-0 half-time lead over West Ham, but it could be five or six. Totally one-sided, with no threat whatsoever from the visitors. Inspirational words are needed by West Ham at half-time, so they're unlikely to talk about that first-half display."

Half time
Chelsea 0-0 Wigan
Nabil Hassan's HT snapshot: "Florent Malouda has had Chelsea's best chances but has so far found keeper Ali Al Habsi in fine form. It's been lack-lustre and predictable from Chelsea with Wigan worthy of a point at this stage."

Half time
HALF-TIME Tottenham 3-2 Stoke
Phil Dawkes' HT snapshot "A superb half of football comes to an end with Tottenham leading. In truth though, the home side should be far more comfortable but they have largely gifted Stoke two goals and a foot-hold in the game. Spurs' Peter Crouch has a brace, but a full redemption for his midweek sending off against Real Madrid is on hold for 45 minutes."

Half time
HALF-TIME: Man Utd 2-0 Fulham
Paul Fletcher's HT snapshot:
"Far too easy for Manchester Uinited since they opened the scoring after 11 minutes. The match has the feel of a testimonial, no edge to it at all."

Zain_Patel on Twitter: "The only (Premier League) match goalless is the one which usually ends up as a rugby score! I recall 6 and 8 nil victories in the past!"

NeilKnighton on Twitter: "Blimey, this is the Spurs I know and almost love: good work, good goals, undone by two absolute stonkers from Stoke."

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Blackburn goal: Well, Roger Johnson had actually just come back on - I thought he was going to the dressing room to get more treatment - but it was his Birmingham team-mate Liam Ridgewell who looked dazed and confused. David Hoilett nips in to steal possession off Ridgewell, then rounds Ben Foster and findfs the net from a tight angle. All-square at Ewood Park, deep in first-half stoppage time.

1552: GOALFLASH Blackburn 1-1 Birmingham (Hoilett)

1551: Right, it is half-time everywhere in the top-flight apart from Ewood Park. Roger Johnson is on his feet but looking groggy and he is walking slowly around the pitch.

1549: The only other Premier League game still going is at Sunderland, where Black Cats midfielder Lee Cattermole has just been booked for his fourth or fifth crunching tackle of the afternoon.

1548: There is going to be a delay at Ewood Park because Roger Johnson is down after being caught by Blackburn striker Jason Roberts. Johnson is still receiving treatment and looks to be in a bit of trouble.

1547: It is half-time at Old Trafford, where as things stand, Manchester United are 10 points clear at the top of the Premier League.

Someone has struck the woodwork
1546: Almost a second goal for Birmingham. Seb Larsson fires a free-kick against the post from 20 yards out.

1545: A first chance of the day for West Ham, just before half-time. Mark Noble and Wayne Bridge combine before finding Thomas Hitzlsperger in a central position on the edge of the box, but the German's shot is straight into the arms of Jussi Jaaskelainen. Not one of his more hammer-like efforts.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Stoke goal: The goals keep coming at White Hart Lane, don't they? Gareth Bale is caught in possession and Kenwyne Jones picks up the ball and surges towards the Spurs box before firing a powerful drive past Heurelho Gomes and into the roof of the net. Stoke's second special goal of the day, but they are still behind.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Tottenham goal: Peter Crouch is unstoppable today, by the looks of things. He rises at the far post to meet Tom Huddlestone's cross and head home. Spurs lead by two goals again, but not for long...

1541: GOALFLASH Tottenham 3-2 Stoke (Jones)

1539: Better by Chelsea, with Florent Malouda latching on to a ball over the top and running clear... but he sees his half-volley superbly kept out by Wigan keeper Ali Al Habsi. Still 0-0.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Man Utd goal: Antonio Valencia extends Manchester United's advantage with simplest of headers two yards from goal after Nani's attempted finish from a tight angle is deflected into his path by opposition defender Aaron Hughes, who was trying to clear the ball on the line.

Football League Al: "Joe Garner's header puts Scunthorpe level with QPR in the Championship while Millwall lead Leeds 2-0 and Preston are winning at Portsmouth and Leicester have scored against Burnley. In League One Rickie Lambert gives Southampton the lead at Leyton Orient to put the Saints into the automatic promotion slots. In League Two, struggling Barnet are 2-0 up against Crewe while fellow strugglers Burton, Northampton, Lincoln and Cheltenham are all losing."

1537: Goals everywhere then, apart from west London. Didier Drogba is causing the Wigan defence plenty of problems at Stamford Bridge. It's just a shame the rest of his team-mates do not appear to have turned up for today's game. It's lacklustre stuff from Carlo Ancelotti's side.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Birmingham goal: A hint of controversy about this one, with Lee Bowyer very much looking offside as he heads in Cameron Jerome's dinked cross from point-blank range. Still, the goal stands, and it is a very big one from the Blues' point of view.

1535: GOALFLASH Tottenham 3-1 Stoke (Crouch)

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Sunderland goal: The Baggies are level for a matter of seconds, thanks to a scorching free-kick by Sunderland's Phil Bardsley, who sends a shot sizzling into the top corner from a free-kick 30 yards out.

1533: GOALFLASH Blackburn 0-1 Birmingham (Bowyer)

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
West Brom goal: Jerome Thomas's cross from the left loops into the air off Nedum Onuoha, Jonas Olssen is allowed a free header in the box and he flicks it on to Peter Odemwingie, who pounces in the six-yard area to slide the ball home for the equaliser.

1531: GOALFLASH Man Utd 2-0 Fulham (Valencia)

1531: GOALFLASH Sunderland 2-1 West Brom (Bardsley)

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Stoke goal: Some goal this by Matty Etherington. The Stoke winger picks up the ball on the left and runs... and runs and runs. He gets past Michael Dawson after cutting into the box and then tucks his shot away nicely between Heurelho Gomes' legs. A great run, and a neat finish = a superb goal. Stoke are back in it.

1538: GOALFLASH Sunderland 1-1 West Brom (Odemwingie)

1528: GOALFLASH Tottenham 2-1 Stoke (Etherington)

Football League Al: "Great start for Championship leaders QPR - they're 1-0 up at struggling Scunthorpe thanks to Rob Hulse, who was set up by the dynamic Wayne Routledge. Reading are leading Nottingham Forest courtesy of Ian Harte's goal and they have gone into fourth place in the as it stands table. A good day for the away teams so far… Cardiff, Hull, Coventry, Middlesbrough and Bristol City are all 1-0 up too."

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Bolton goal: Kevin Davies has just missed a sitter, but there are no such problems for Chung-Yong Lee. The Korean starts the move in his own half with a long ball up the right, the ball is worked across the field to Martin Petrov on the left and he fires in a cross for the Korean to have a straight forward near-post header to extend Wanderer's lead.

1523: GOALFLASH Bolton 2-0 West Ham (Lee)

1523: It's not all going Sunderland's way against the Baggies - John Mensah has been forced off injured so Anton Ferdinand is on instead. West Brom have had a lot of possession since going behind but have done nothing with it... while at the other end, Asamoah Gyan's snap-shot hit the side-netting.

1522: Oh dear. A terrible miss from Manchester United forward Anderson, who is unmarked on the edge of the Fulham box but drags his shot horribly wide.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Tottenham goal: Roman Pavlyuchenko feeds Luka Modric on the overlap down the left, and he skins Robert Huth before firing in a low shot that flies between Asmir Begovic's legs. Spurs have breathing space.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Bolton goal: An absolute stunner from Daniel Sturridge. A long throw is knocked down by Kevin Davies to Johan Elmander, he flicks the ball into the path of Sturridge on the left-hand corner of the box, who curls a beautiful shot into the far top corner, beyond the grasp of West Ham keeper Robert Green. Pure class, that.

1518: GOALFLASH Tottenham 2-0 Stoke (Modric)



Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Man Utd goal: Dimitar Berbatov puts the league leaders in front with his 22nd goal of the season. He slots home with his right foot after collecting a pass from the lively Nani but replays suggest the Bulgarian may well have been offside.

1516: Good to see the goals flying in... some chances to tell you about too: Chelsea have gone close again, when Didier Drogba's through ball found Florent Malouda who fired straight at Wigan keeper Ali Al Habsi from 18 yards out. And, at Ewood Park, Chris Samba has headed narrowly wide for Blackburn.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Sunderland goal: The Black Cats have struggled to notch of late, so how nice of the Baggies to help them on their way. Asamoah Gyan crosses from the left and Nicky Shorey rises to head into his own net under pressure from Ahmed Elmohamady.

1514: GOALFLASH Bolton 1-0 West Ham (Sturridge)

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Tottenham goal: A first step along the road to redemption for Peter Crouch, following his midweek red card in Madrid that proved so costly. Crouch finds space in the Stoke box to head home Roman Pavlyuchenko's cross. Poor marking, but Crouch won't care.

1511: GOALFLASH Man Utd 1-0 Fulham (Berbatov)

1511: GOALFLASH Tottenham 1-0 Stoke (Crouch)

1510: GOALFLASH Sunderland 1-0 West Brom (Shorey og)

1509: Fulham come forward again, and this is their best chance so far. Moussa Dembele's pass takes a big deflection off Paul Scholes and lands in Bobby Zamora's path... but his shot, with his right foot, is wild and wide.

1508: A half-chance for Bolton, as Johan Elmander's cross (off the outside of his boot) finds Kevin Davies in the box. He uses his bulk to good effect to distract the West Ham defence and then lays it off to Daniel Sturridge, whose shot is touched wide by defender Manuel de Costa for a corner.

1506: Another save for Tomasz Kuszczak to make at Old Trafford. Moussa Dembele cuts in from the right before letting fly, but the Pole is down smartly to turn it round his left-hand post.

1505: Man Utd's first effort, at the end of a sweeping move, sees Nani's shot hit Aaron Hughes and fly over. No goals in any of our six 1500 BST Premier League kick-offs yet.

1502: Chelsea should be ahead. Frank Lampard in space, drags his shot across the face of goal and Ramires, at the back post, slices wastefully wide. A lucky escape for Wigan.

1501: We have started at the Bridge and White Hart Lane now too. Fulham have begun like a train at Old Trafford, where Gael Kakuta has brought a low save from Tomasz Kuszczak.

Whistle
1500: We are under way at Old Trafford, the Reebok Stadium, Ewood Park and the Stadium of Light.

1458: A win for Man Utd today will send them 10 points clear of the top. Only one horse in that race now, surely. United legend Mark Hughes will be hoping his Fulham side can hold up their charge to the line.

callummaclean91 on Twitter: "As a Chelsea fan I really hope Ferguson is concentrating more on his horse than United today!"

1457: Just a reminder of how you can get in touch this afternoon. I'm Chris Bevan, and you can tweet me at @chrisbevan_bbc using the hashtag #BBCFootball please. Or text me via 81111 (UK) instead. Got that? Good.

Football League Al: "Runaway Championship leaders QPR could take another step towards the Premier League if they win at bottom-side Scunthorpe, while Nottingham Forest face in-form Reading and Millwall take on Leeds with play-off places up for grabs. Cardiff are at Doncaster while Swansea take on second-placed Norwich in a 1720 BST kick-off."

1455: So, with Wayne Rooney serving the first of his two game ban for bad language, Sir Alex Ferguson can call upon the Premier League's 20-goal top scorer Dimitar Berbatov to replace him. United are really struggling for numbers at this crucial stage of the season, aren't they?

From Martin in Manchester, via text: "For me, this Fulham game is huge. Win & we are 10 points clear. I can live with losing v Chelsea AND City if we are champions. Nothing beats winning the league."

MAN UTD v FULHAM TEAM NEWS
Paul Fletcher reports: "Manchester United
boss Sir Alex Ferguson makes eight changes to the side that won at Chelsea in the Champions League on Wednesday. Only Nemanja Vidic, Patrice Evra and Antonio Valencia remain, while Tomasz Kuszczak, John O'Shea, Chris Smalling, Darron Gibson, Paul Scholes, Anderson, Dimitar Berbatov and Nani all come into the side. Simon Davies misses out for Fulham with an ankle injury, while Gael Kakuta, on loan from Chelsea, makes a first league start for the Cottagers."

BLACKBURN v BIRMINGHAM TEAM NEWS
Catherine Etoe reports: Birmingham boss Alex McLeish names an unchanged side from the one that beat Bolton on Saturday. Veteran striker Kevin Phillips has scored in each of the four games he has started this season so McLeish looks to be hoping for more of the same from the 37-year-old. David Dunn looks to have shrugged off his hip injury and will start for Blackburn in place of the suspended Steven Nzonzi. Morten Gamst Pedersen has seen off a virus and comes in for Brett Emerton, who is on the bench."

TOTTENHAM v STOKE TEAM NEWS
Phil Dawkes reports: Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp has stuck with striker Peter Crouch despite his sending off in Tuesday's 4-0 Champions League defeat at Real Madrid and pairs him up front with Roman Pavlyuchenko. However, he must again do without winger Aaron Lennon due to a virus. Tom Huddlestone replaces Sandro in midfield to make his first appearance in five months and Younes Kaboul comes in for William Gallas to play his first match since December. Stoke boss Tony Pulis hands defender Andy Wilkinson his first Potters start in over two months in place of the injured Danny Higginbotham. Striker John Carew failed to overcome a back injury and so does not feature.

Tottenham v Stoke line-ups
Tottenham: Gomes, Corluka, Dawson, Kaboul, Assou-Ekotto, Van der Vaart, Huddlestone, Modric, Bale, Pavlyuchenko, Crouch. Subs: Cudicini, Jenas, Gallas, Defoe, Bassong, Rose, Sandro.
Stoke: Begovic, Whelan, Shawcross, Huth, Wilkinson, Pennant, Wilson, Delap, Etherington, Walters, Jones. Subs: Sorensen, Collins, Fuller, Pugh, Diao, Whitehead, Faye.
Referee: Kevin Friend (Leicestershire)

1448: So, a very good day for Everton so far, who close the gap on sixth-placed Liverpool to one point thanks to what was an easy win over Wolves. Mick McCarthy's men remain second-bottom. Lots to look forward to this afternoon, though, so give this page a manual refresh and you will be able to watch Final Score, follow Man Utd v Fulham on BBC Radio 5 live or listen to Millwall v Leeds on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra.

BOLTON v WEST HAM TEAM NEWS
Julian Shea reports: Bolton welcome back Zat Knight after seven weeks out with knee ligament damage. He replaces David Wheater, who is one booking away from a suspension which would rule him out of the FA Cup semi-final. In midfield, Chung-Yong Lee comes in for Tamir Cohen. West Ham, who have never won at the Reebok Stadium, make three changes. James Tomkins comes in for Lars Jacobsen in defence, Frederic Piquionne replaces Carlton Cole up front and midfielder Gary O'Neil is sacrificed to make way for Robbie Keane to join Piquionne and Demba Ba in a three-pronged strike force.



Bolton v West Ham line-ups
Bolton: Jaaskelainen, Steinsson, Cahill, Knight, Alonso, Lee, Muamba, Petrov, Elmander, Kevin Davies, Sturridge. Subs: Bogdan, Robinson, Taylor, Klasnic, Moreno, Blake, Cohen.
West Ham: Green, Tomkins, da Costa, Upson, Bridge, Noble, Parker, Hitzlsperger, Piquionne, Keane, Ba. Subs: Boffin, Gabbidon, Cole, Spector, O'Neil, Obinna, Jacobsen.
Referee: Lee Probert (Wiltshire)

CHELSEA v WIGAN TEAM NEWS
Nabil Hassan reports: "£50m striker Fernando Torres is dropped to the bench for Chelsea who pair Didier Drogba up front with Nicolas Anelka. John Terry is rested so David Luiz comes back into the heart of the defence having been ineligible for the midweek Champions League defeat to Manchester United because he was cup tied. Fit again Yossi Benayoun returns to the bench for the Blues. Wigan defender Gary Caldwell required emergency dental work after suffering a facial injury against Tottenham, but he is fit enough to start."

Blackburn v Birmingham line-ups
Blackburn: Robinson, Salgado, Samba, Nelsen, Olsson, Jermaine Jones, Phil Jones, Pedersen, Dunn, Hoilett, Santa Cruz. Subs: Bunn, Emerton, Rochina, Mwaruwari, Roberts, Hanley, Diouf.
Birmingham: Foster, Carr, Johnson, Parnaby, Ridgewell, Larsson, Gardner, Ferguson, Bowyer, Jerome, Phillips. Subs: Doyle, Murphy, Derbyshire, Fahey, Hleb, Mutch, Davies.
Referee: Chris Foy (Merseyside)

BLACKBURN v BIRMINGHAM (1500 BST)
Catherine Etoe reports: "Premier League survival is the name of the game at Ewood Park today as Blackburn and Birmingham sit level on points but just two off the drop zone. No wonder Rovers boss Steve Kean has dubbed this one a cup final. Birmingham know all about those this season but it is the winning mentality shown in last weekend's victory over Bolton that Alex McLeish is using to motivate his League Cup winners today. Kean's side are without a win in seven league games but can take heart from back-to-back draws against Blackpool and Arsenal. It's a must-win today though so expect a cracker."

1437: FULL-TIME Wolves 0-3 Everton

TOTTENHAM v STOKE (1500 BST)
Phil Dawkes reports: "Like his side, Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp was predominantly on the offensive this week over his side's form, choosing to focus not on the six-game winless streak but the fact they have lost just one of the last nine league matches. A first Spurs goal in five games probably wouldn't go amiss for Redknapp, whose side desperately need to get their top-four pursuit back on track. Stoke are no strangers to upsetting the odds and could do with a repeat of last season's surprise 1-0 win at White Hart Lane to ease their relegation worries."

Man Utd v Fulham line-ups
Man Utd: Kuszczak, O'Shea, Smalling, Vidic, Evra, Gibson, Scholes, Anderson, Valencia, Berbatov, Nani. Subs: Van der Sar, Brown, Owen, Park, Hernandez, Carrick, Fabio Da Silva.
Fulham: Schwarzer, Baird, Hughes, Hangeland, Salcido, Kakuta, Murphy, Etuhu, Dempsey, Dembele, Zamora. Subs: Stockdale, Kelly, Sidwell, Gera, Gudjohnsen, Greening, Halliche .
Referee: Mike Jones (Cheshire)

1435: Just two minutes of stoppage time to be played at Molineux. Credit to Wolves for continuing to plug away, but this has been a very disappointing day for them.

CHELSEA v WIGAN (1500 BST)
Nabil Hassan reports: "Both these sides desperately need points, but for very different reasons. Champions Chelsea know they are running out of games to catch leaders Manchester United and anything but victory today could all but end their hopes of defending their title. On the flip side, Wigan are scrapping for their lives at the foot of the Premier League table and anything they can pick up from Stamford Bridge could prove pivotal at the end of the season."

BOLTON v WEST HAM (1500 BST)
Julian Shea reports: "West Ham will be hoping the prospect of next weekend's FA Cup semi-final with Stoke will be on Bolton's mind when the teams meet at the Reebok Stadium today. Defenders David Wheater and Paul Robinson are both one booking away from a suspension which would rule them out of the Wembley match, so may not be risked by manager Owen Coyle. For the visitors, manager Avram Grant is serving a two-game touchline ban but at least he has a near full-strength squad to pick from. West Ham will need to be at their best as they aim to end a run of eight games against the Trotters without a win, and will hope to get off to a strong start to banish the memory of last week's capitulation against Manchester United."

MAN UTD v FULHAM (1500 BST)
Paul Fletcher reports:
"With Arsenal not in action until Sunday, Manchester United can open up a 10-point gap at the top of the Premier League if they defeat Fulham at Old Trafford. United have dropped just two points at home all season but they will have to do without Wayne Rooney, who is suspended following his rather colourful diatribe in the direction of a nearby camera last weekend."

1432: Wolves are still trying, although time is now almost up... just two minutes of the 90 left. Lots of balls are being pumped into the Everton area, but there is a real lack of menace about most of them. It appears Everton are about to celebrate their first win at Molineux since 1982.

SUNDERLAND v WEST BROM (1500 BST)
Michael Da Silva reports:
"Having picked up just one point from a possible 21, Sunderland are in desperate need to arrest their slide down the table. Having spent much of the season challenging for Europe qualification, they now find themselves just six points clear of the drop zone. Steve Bruce's side are boosted by the fitness of Kieran Richardson and Phil Bardsley but Sulley Muntari is on the bench. For West Brom, there is a place on the bench for James Morrison but Graham Dorrans has lost his race to be fit."

Chelsea v Wigan line-ups
Chelsea: Cech, Ferreira, Ivanovic, David Luiz, Cole, Ramires, Mikel, Lampard, Anelka, Drogba, Malouda. Subs: Turnbull, Essien, Torres, Benayoun, Zhirkov, Kalou, Alex.
Wigan: Al Habsi, Boyce, Gary Caldwell, Alcaraz, Figueroa, Watson, Diame, N'Zogbia, McCarthy, Cleverley, Rodallega. Subs: Pollitt, Gohouri, Di Santo, Moses, Gomez, Sammon, Stam.
Referee: Howard Webb (S Yorkshire)

Sunderland v West Brom line-ups
Sunderland: Mignolet, Onuoha, Mensah, Turner, Bardsley, Elmohamady, Malbranque, Cattermole, Richardson, Welbeck, Gyan. Subs: Gordon, Ferdinand, Zenden, Henderson, Muntari, Sessegnon,Colback.
West Brom: Carson, Reid, Olsson, Meite, Shorey, Thomas, Scharner, Mulumbu, Brunt, Odemwingie, Cox. Subs: Myhill, Cech, Morrison, Vela, Fortune, Tamas, Jara.
Referee: Peter Walton (Northamptonshire)

1428: Right, more changes by both teams. Diniyar Bilyaletdinov is off for Everton, Adam Forshaw is on. For Wolves, Adam Hammill replaces Steven Fletcher.


1427: Diniyar Bilyaletdinov has scored one corking goal today, now he has made one terribe mis-kick... lashing wildly at the ball at the back post when he had time to take a touch. Still, it is unlikely to make much difference to the outcome.

1425: BREAKING MAN UTD TEAM NEWS:
Eight changes from Wednesday's Champions League win over Chelsea by Sir Alex Ferguson, including recalls for Nani, Chris Smalling and Dimitar Berbatov. More to follow.

1423: Leon Osman has had a cracking game for Everton today, and he causes havoc in the Wolves defence again with a weaving run that takes him into the area before Christophe Berra gets across to cover. I have read a lot about how Wolves might struggle to score without Kevin Doyle but their biggest problem seems to be keeping them out at the other end.

1421: Wolves' turn to make a change. Nenad Milijas is on for Adlene Guedioura.

1420: BREAKING CHELSEA TEAM NEWS
Didier Drogba and Nicolas Anelka start against Wigan, Fernando Torres is on the bench. More details very shortly.

1418: Another Everton substitution. Apostolos Vellios is on for Jermaine Beckford, who doesn't want to come off and tells his manager exactly that. Never a wise move, that, especially when David Moyes is your manager.

1417: Wolves have a sight of goal thanks to Jamie O'Hara's dangerous cross from the right but Everton have enough men back to stop Steven Fletcher getting away a clean shot. Chance gone. Under 20 minutes left at Molineux, and Everton are still three goals to the good.

1412: Hmmm, maybe Everton do want a fourth goal after all? Jermaine Beckford is narrowly offside when he collects the ball in front of goal with only Wayne Hennessey to beat, but the Toffees are soon coming forward again. Leighton Baines wants a goal today too, by the looks of things, but his long-range effort is a mile off target.

Bertchester on Twitter: "Re 1350. Surely the best rare-special goal of all is John Jensen's brilliant curler for Arsenal against QPR?"


Plenty of other suggestions... including Paul Konchesky, Nigel Winterburn, Tom Huddlestone and Matty Taylor. Speaking of rare-special goals, maybe today is the day that Tony Hibbert will finally get off the mark for Everton? I'm sure he would settle for a tap-in, mind...

1410: A change for Everton. Magaye Gueye, who has a very decent full debut, is off. Victor Anichebe is on.

1409: The last time Wolves had pressure like this, Everton scored. The home side are the ones looking likely at the moment, though. From another Wolves corner, Phil Jagielka gets the last touch under pressure from Steven Fletcher and the ball skims narrowly wide of Tim Howard's far post. Close, but no cigar for Mick McCarthy's men.

1407: I think Karl Henry heard me! He has a pop for Wolves from distance, and it is a good one... but Tim Howard is across to brilliantly tip it away. Wolves are not done yet, either, because from the resulting corner, Adlene Guedioura meets Michael Kightly's cross but sees his header kept out by Howard. If anything, that second stop is even better. This is more like it from the home side.

1404: It's all a bit flat at Molineux. Everton don't seem bothered about scoring any more goals, Wolves, to be absolutely honest, look unlikely to get any at all.

dandelacour on Twitter: "You really have to feel sorry for Wayne Hennessey. Outsanding keeper, under-rated, but given no help by the poor Wolves defence."

1402: Matt Jarvis gets the ball out on the left and Steven Fletcher is lurking at the near post. A shame for Wolves, then, that Jarvis's cross is a deep one. So deep, in fact, that it flies straight out of play. Still no sign of a Wolves fightback, with just under half-an-hour left. Everton still lead 3-0.

OptaJoe on Twitter: "3 - Everton have scored 3 goals in the 1st half of a PL game for the 1st time since 24/11/2007, a game that they won 7-1 v Sunderland. Rout?"

Yellow card
1358: Diniyar Bilyaletdinov has a yellow card to go with his wonder-goal, after a rash challenge on Adlene Guedioura. That means another Wolves free-kick, and when it is fired in, the home side and their fans want a penalty when Matt Jarvis sees his shot come back off Tony Hibbert's arm inside the area. Referee Phil Dowd, again, has a great view of the incident, and waves their appeals away.

1357: Adlene Guedioura is behind a free-kick about 30 yards out and I think he is going for goal, curling the ball around the wall. His shot lacks power, however, and doesn't get anywhere near Tim Howard before being cleared.

1355: Wolves are seeing plenty of the ball, but they are not doing much with it because Everton are defending well so far. Tony Hibbert does well not to be out-muscled by Matt Jarvis on the Wolves left and even manages to help the ball back to his keeper. Hibbert is there again a few moments later, this time heading away a Jarvis cross.

1352: A muted atmosphere at Molineux at the moment. Wolves are trying to get their comeback going, but Everton are defending in numbers and looking to hit them on the break with Jermaine Beckford's pace.

Whistle
1350: We are back under way at Molineux. Wolves have made a change, with fit-again winger Michael Kightly replacing striker Sylvan Ebanks-Blake. Good to see Kightly on the field - a great player, but lots of injuries.

From Joe Curtis on Totton, via text: "I have to say great goal by Phil Neville. But as for best ever? I think his goals against Boro in 01 and Rangers in 03 are better."


It really is all about quality for Neville, isn't it? Any other players who don't score many but make em special when they do? I seem to remember David Batty had that knack when he was at Leeds.



From Simon the loyal Royal, via text: "I read in the week that Mick McCarthy wants to buy our striker, Shane Long, and pair him in the prem with another ex-Reading striker Kevin Doyle. By looks of it, if they want to play together in the Prem then Doyle will have to come back to Reading."

From Simon the loyal Royal, via text: "I read in the week that Mick McCarthy wants to buy our striker, Shane Long, and pair him in the prem with another ex-Reading striker Kevin Doyle. By looks of it, if they want to play together in the Prem then Doyle will have to come back to Reading."

1342: Phil Neville's last goal before today was against Aston Villa in April 2008. He now has four in the Premier League for Everton, in almost six years and 190 starts for the Toffees. Prolific, then. But I'm sure he will be pointing out that it is all about quality, not quantity, after that scorcher. As some of you have pointed out, though, it is is only Everton's second-best goal of the day.

dannyeverton on Twitter: "I Have never rated Billy. But I know he has that in him on his day. Absolutely outstanding!!"

AJ_909 on Twitter: "Poor old Phil Neville, just had his best ever goal eclipsed by Bilyaletdinov. Two fantastic strikes."

Half time
HALF-TIME: Wolves 0-3 Everton
Chris Whyatt's HT snapshot:
"Wow. Phil Neville rifles in a potential goal of the month before Bilyaletdinov unleashes a goal-of-the-season contender."

1334: Boos ring out around Molineux as the half-time whistle goes. Work to do for Mick McCarthy now.


Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Everton goal: Whatever Phil Neville can do, Diniyar Bilyaletdinov can do better. The snappily-named Russian midfielder latches on to a loose ball near the halfway line and makes for goal before smashing a pearler of a strike past Wayne Hennessey from the edge of the area. An absolute rocket, that. Life is very good if you are an Everton fan right now but pretty rotten if you support Wolves.

1331: GOALFLASH Wolves 0-3 Everton (Bilyaletdinov)

RikBrkr on Twitter: "Phil Neville. Wow."

1329: Into the last couple of minutes of the first half. It started badly for Everton, but it is ending very well indeed. Wolves have done nothing but defend for the last few minutes, and they have not done a very good job of it either.

1328: Erm, where has the Wolves defence gone? Rookie French midfielder Magaye Gueye runs clear but he scuffs his shot and Wayne Hennessey sticks out a leg to deflect it wide.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Everton goal: Poor old Wayne Hennessey. The Wolves keeper makes a super stop to keep the ball out when it hits George Elokobi's back from a corner and flies goalwards, but he is soon picking it up out of the back of the net. Jermaine Beckford picks it up and tees up Phil Neville to slam an unstoppable shot into the top corner. Hennessey's view was blocked, so he didn't even see it. Wolves are in big, big trouble now.

1324: GOALFLASH Wolves 0-2 Everton (Neville)

1324: Wolves come forward with purpose for the first time in a while and they are actually unlucky not to be level. After Jamie O'Hara's shot is deflected just wide, Sylvan Ebanks-Blake has a shooting chance from the resulting corner but a combination of last-ditch challenges/blocks from Phil Jagielka and Leon Osman keep the ball out of the net. Great defending.

1320: Everton's turn to appeal for a penalty. Jermaine Beckford seems to be the victim of some very strong grappling in the Wolves area from a free-kick, but refree Phil Dowd is not impressed. David Moyes, again, cannot believe it.

1319: Things almost get a LOT worse for Wolves. Leon Osman does well again down the right and sends over another cross of real quality. Jermaine Beckford is there, unmarked, to meet it in the middle but his downward header is brilliantly and acrobatically kept out by Wayne Hennessey. Everton boss David Moyes cannot believe how that didn't go in.

1317: Hmmm, Wolves seem to have lost their way a bit, a fact reflected by some growing frustration from the stands... not to mention the home side's manager Mick McCarthy, who is cutting an extremely animated figure on the touchline.

1315: Jermaine Beckford gets on the end of another ball from the right, holding off Richard Stearman to meet Tony Hibbert's looping cross, but he cannot control his header which flies a long way wide. Half-an-hour gone at Molineux, and Everton still lead 1-0.

TacheyDelBosque on Twitter: "Osman never gets enough credit for me as a player. Always offers creativity & a goal threat."

1311: Wolves did have a shout for a penalty just before they went behind, when Sylvan Ebanks-Blake tangled with Phil Jagielka in the area, but Phil Dowd was well placed to see it, and said no. I've just seen a replay, and Dowd was right.

1310: Wolves huff and puff in response to going behind, but can they blow Everton's house down? Not this time. Adlene Guedioura shows his quality with a curling effort from the edge of the box but the ball flies just wide of Tim Howard's left-hand post.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Everton goal: Completely against the run of play? Yes. Everton's first real attack? Yes. But the Toffees are ahead, and perhaps this is why Wolves are where they are in the table. Leon Osman finds space behind the home defence on the right and his header is met at the near post by Jermaine Beckford, who glances it past Wayne Hennessey. A nice finish.

1307: GOALFLASH Wolves 0-1 Everton (Beckford)

1303: It was Leighton Baines who took it, but it was easily cleared. Then Tony Hibbert fired the ball back in - again, easily mopped up. Pretty poor by Everton, to be honest.

1301: Just over 15 minutes gone and think Everton striker Jermaine Beckford has just touched the ball for the first time. He wins a free-kick too, about 30 yards out and on the left. Leon Osman will take it.

1259: Everton, for once, keep hold of the ball for more than a few seconds but even that ends in a Wolves attack, with Sylvan Ebanks-Blake breaking forward, before the Toffees get men back to snuff out the danger. This is very encouraging for Wolves, who just threatened again when Matt Jarvis fired over a dangerous low cross from the left. No goals to show for their bright start yet though.

1256: You guessed it, more Wolves pressure. Sylvain Distin fouls Steven Fletcher and Jamie O'Hara swings in the free-kick. It's too deep, but Steven Fletcher is offside in any case.

From Rick, via text: "In hospital recovering from collar bone surgery. McCarthy said "goals" four times at 1235 so Wolves obviously won't score. 1-0 Toffees."

1254: Another Wolves corner, and another sniff of goal. Steven Fletcher leaps to get on the end of it and his header looks like it is dropping in until Leon Osman, on the goal-line, gets across to nod it to safety.

1252: We still haven't seen much of Everton going forward yet, and they are struggling to keep hold of the ball at the moment. Wolves are working hard to win it back whenever they lose it and setting a great early tempo.

1250: It is Wolves who have the first effort on goal, with Adlene Guedioura making space to drive in a shot that Phil Neville does well to block. That's another corner, which is played out to an unmarked Jamie O'Hara on the edge of the area... but his volley is way off target.

1248: Wolves are playing 4-4-2 today, with Sylvan Ebanks-Blake partnering Steven Fletcher up front. Everton just have Jermaine Beckford in attack. None of them have seen much of the ball yet, mind. Matt Jarvis just bent in a corner for the home side but the Toffees easily cleared it.

Whistle
1246: Here we go then. Everton get us under way.

TheHussler101 on Twitter: "Glad to see some new names on Everton's bench - their youth system isn't prolifiic but is the obvious solution to finance issues."

It's sunny
1240: Right then, almost time for this Saturday to get started. Molineux is bathed in spring sunshine, the players are in the tunnel, and we are just five minutes away from kick-off.

OptaJoe on Twitter: "29 - 29% of the goals conceded by Everton have been headers, the highest proportion of any team in the PL this season. Bombarded."

Infostrada Sports on Twitter: "Everton have not won in their last three league visits to Molineux, since a 3-0 victory in old Division One in January 1982."

HyungJoonKim on Twitter: "Everton always finish towards the top of the table. Moyes is one of the best without the financial backing."

WOLVES v EVERTON TEAM NEWS
Chris Whyatt reports: "Algerian midfielder Adlene Guedioura makes his first Wolves appearance since suffering a leg-break in September. He replaces Nenad Milijas. Mick McCarthy also brings in record signing Steven Fletcher up front at the expense of Adam Hammill. Everton? Down to the bare bones. No Cahill, Rodwell, Coleman, Saha, Arteta, Fellaini. And a bench full of youngsters and unknowns. Boss David Moyes gives a first league start to French midfielder Magaye Gueye."



1235: It's all a bit tight in the relegation fight, isn't it? Wolves are second-bottom going into this game... win, and they go 14th. Everton were down there themselves not so long ago too, but a run of five games without defeat has got them up to seventh. Europe certainly isn't out of the question, which isn't a bad thing considering David Moyes' injury problems.

CityMoltenLight on Twitter: "Wolves need to be confident and start winning from this match onwards. Any mistakes and the drop will just get steeper."

Wolves manager Mick McCarthy on how his side will cope without injured striker Kevin Doyle: "We've got goalscorers, no question. They are proven goalscorers without a doubt and there's goals in us apart from the strikers. Doyle getting injured isn't what anyone would have wanted, but in Steven Fletcher, Sylvan Ebanks-Blake and Stephen Ward, we've got good cover. Matt Jarvis, Michael Kightly and Adlene Guedioura also have goals in them."

alexwood91 on Twitter: "Fernando Torres to come alive for Chelsea against Wigan today. Hat-trick for him in a 4-1 win for Chelsea."


Hmmm, that is something I definitely would not be putting any money on.

Wolverhampton v Everton line-ups
Wolverhampton: Hennessey, Foley, Stearman, Berra, Elokobi, Guedioura, Henry, O'Hara, Jarvis, Ebanks-Blake, Fletcher. Subs: Hahnemann, Craddock, Kightly, Ward, Hammill, Milijas, Mancienne.
Everton: Howard, Hibbert, Distin, Jagielka, Baines, Gueye, Neville, Heitinga, Bilyaletdinov, Osman, Beckford. Subs: Mucha, Vellios, Anichebe, Mustafi, McAleny, Forshaw, Nsiala.
Referee: Phil Dowd (Staffordshire)

WOLVES v EVERTON (1245 BST)
Chris Whyatt reports: "Freed from their sickly sticky patch, the Toffees (seventh) are panting hotly down Liverpool's neck as the Merseyside rivals chase a desperately yearned-for Europa League spot. Okay! City bragging rights. Now. Second-bottom Wolves, strangely, have conquered heavyweights Manchester United, Chelsea and Manchester City at Molineux this season, but can't shake off the Ghost of Championship Past i.e. they're haunted by relegation. Yet David Moyes has only banked nine more points than fellow managerial realist Mick McCarthy. Tight league this, folks. Expect grit."

1217: Now you know what is happening, this is how you get in touch. It's easy, you know? I'm Chris Bevan, and you can tweet me at @chrisbevan_bbc using the hashtag #BBCFootball please. Or feel free to text me via 81111 (UK) instead.

1215: Enough about horses and courses already (although I will let you know later if Fergie wins in Liverpool today)... because football is where it is at today. SEVEN Premier League games affecting the top and bottom of the table, starting with Wolves versus Everton at 1245 BST, and a full programme in the Football League too. I think we might be quite busy later, but let's start with Football Focus on BBC One and this website (in the UK) now. Refresh this page manually if you cannot already see it.

1213: Sorry about that - I couldn't resist. Anyway, when Blackpool boss Ian Holloway was asked yesterday if Fergie could win the National, he conjured up quite an image. "He's running is he?" said Ollie. "I hope he's got a light jockey on him. He's 70 and I know he is remarkable, but that is something else."

1210: Afternoon all. Now, you probably already know that Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson's horse What A Friend is running in today's Grand National... but did you know his biggest rival in the Premier League title chase, Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger, also has a nag in the big race? I'm not sure I'd put my money on Becauseicouldn'tsee though - he hasn't won a lot recently.



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Barclays Premier League table snapshot

As it stood on 9 Apr 2011 23:59 UK

Position Team P GD PTS
1 Man Utd 32 38 69
2 Arsenal 30 30 59
3 Chelsea 31 30 58
4 Man City 31 23 56
5 Tottenham 31 8 53
6 Liverpool 31 4 45
7 Everton 32 4 44
8 Bolton 32 3 43
9 Newcastle 31 2 39
10 West Brom 32 -13 39
11 Fulham 32 1 38
12 Stoke 32 -3 38
13 Sunderland 32 -10 38
14 Blackburn 32 -12 35
15 Birmingham 31 -12 35
16 Aston Villa 31 -14 34
17 Blackpool 31 -18 33
18 West Ham 32 -18 32
19 Wolves 32 -20 32
20 Wigan 32 -23 31

see also
Saturday's football photos
09 Apr 11 |  Football


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