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Last Updated: Saturday, 3 November 2007, 19:25 GMT
Premier League as it happened
Arsenal 2-2 Manchester United
Aston Villa 2-0 Derby
Blackburn 0-0 Liverpool
Everton 3-1 Birmingham
Fulham 3-1 Reading
Middlesbrough 1-1 Tottenham
Newcastle 1-4 Portsmouth
Wigan 0-2 Chelsea


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

By Caroline Cheese

A slightly surprising winner: Fulham striker David Healy tops the ratings on 8.67 after his late goal against Reading. Aston Villa scorer Martin Laursen is also riding high on 8.39. No prizes for guessing who brings up the rear: calamitous Newcastle defender Claudio Cacapa on an embarrassing 2.83. The new Titus Bramble perhaps? You can change all that though via the BBC website.

1912: So then, no change at the top of the table after Arsenal and Manchester United's 2-2 draw but Chelsea are very much back in the title race - just three points back after a 2-0 win over Wigan. Portsmouth - 4-1 winners at Newcastle - move up to fourth. You can catch all the goals from a cracking day's action in the Premier League on Match of the Day at BBC1 at 2230 GMT and Alan Green awaits your call on BBC Radio 5 Live's 606. Call him on 0500 909 693.

1909: "Second half much more positive, and Kewell looked lively. But this is disappointing."
Im_partial on 606

1906: FULL-TIME Blackburn 0-0 Liverpool
Blackburn have the better of the first half, Liverpool much-improved after the break. Rafa Benitez's side are seventh, Blackburn fifth.

1903: Blackburn freshen up their attack by bringing on Matt Derbyshire for Benni McCarthy. Dirk Kuyt stabs an effort wide of the far post.

1902: Dirk Kuyt's nightmare evening continues as he blazes over with only Brad Friedel to beat. It was a difficult angle - but a hopeless effort.

1901: "I must say Brad Friedel is definitely one of the best goalkeepers in the Premier League this season, he has been amazing for Blackburn."
Scubar2k8 on 606

1859: Fabulous save from Brad Friedel as Peter Crouch heads down for Steven Gerrard. Friedel gets two hands to Gerrard's fierce shot.

1857: Javier Mascherano tries a long-range shot, which bounces once before going harmlessly wide. The Argentine gets a volley of abuse from Jamie Carragher for his troubles.

1854: "For the first time Liverpool really have Blackburn on the back foot."
BBC 5 Live analyst Jimmy Armfield

1853: David Bentley saves the day for Blackburn, clearing Peter Crouch's header off the line from the corner.

1852: Liverpool wake up at last. Dir Kuyt touches the ball on for Steven Gerrard, who races into the penalty area but sees his low shot saved by Brad Friedel. The Reds fans are making all the noise.

1845: Peter Crouch makes his entrance, coming on for Yossi Benayoun. Crouchy's done something very weird with his hair. I think he's been experimenting with the wax during all those minutes on the bench.

1838: The ball drops to Andre Ooijer a few yards out and his shot is blocked by Jamie Carragher's arms. Referee says it's ball to hand and Ooijer is the only one appealing for the penalty. From the corner, Roque Santa Cruz heads over.

1837: Harry Kewell comes on for his first league appearance of the season, replacing Ryan Babel.

1835: It gets worse for Liverpool. Dirk Kuyt is again in acres of space on the right. He cuts into the penalty box, with Steven Gerrard making a run to the near post. Kuyt is confused and just passes straight to a relieved Brad Friedel. Gerrard cannot believe it.

1833: "Me and my mate are playing our usual Premier League drinking game, basically taking a shot of something every time a goal is scored. We're now very sober."
Anon via text on 81111

1831: Steven Gerrard sends Dirk Kuyt galloping down the right but the striker puts his cross straight into Brad Friedel's arms. At the other end, Sami Hyypia gives the ball away to Morten Gamst Pedersen and Jamie Carragher is forced to bring him down, conceding a free-kick and getting a yellow card.

1829: Blackburn boss Mark Hughes makes his first change, bringing Tugay on for David Dunn. Dunn looks disappointed so I don't think it's the first-half injury that has forced him off.

1827: Christopher Samba begins the move from defence which ends in his shot from inside the penalty box being blocked as Rovers earn a corner. Morten Gamst Pedersen heads over.

1824: Ryan Babel's half-volley is deflected behind for a corner. Nothing doing for Liverpool though.

1818: Away we go in the second half. Goals please.

1817: "I'm sick and tired of all these people questioning Rafa, I bet most of them aren't even Liverpool fans! Sir Alex didn't win the league in his first seven years let alone two Champions League finals and is still there 21 years later! Get behind the team and stop being so short termist!"
DDD via text on 81111

1810: "Oh well, there's always next season for Liverpool. I don't think there'll be next season for Rafa though."
Tony H via text on 81111

Blackburn4top4 on 606

1803: HALF-TIME Blackburn 0-0 Liverpool
David Bentley and David Dunn both hit the woodwork for the hosts in an otherwise turgid first half. Dunn limps off. I'll be surprised if we see him in the second half.

1802: What a hit! David Dunn's cracking left-foot half-volley strikes the underside of the bar and bounces out. That came from nowhere.

1801: Good news... it's nearly half-time. I don't know if this game is suffering by comparison to the earlier thrillers. Don't think so though. It's just two sides cancelling each other out.

1758: Blackburn keeper Brad Friedel is called into action for the first time, beating away Ryan Babel's right-foot shot.

1755: "Liverpool have to win today and on Tuesday otherwise the news on Wednesday will be about Benitez departing Anfield."
Arnie_Aardvark on 606

1751: Best chance of the game. Morten Gamst Pedersen heads the ball through for David Bentley but the England man's shot skims the outside of Pepe Reina's left post.

1750: Someone in the Ewood Park crowd is playing with a Rubik's Cube. Says it all.

1746: "We've played half an hour and we haven't had a shot at goal."
BBC 5 Live analyst Jimmy Armfield

1742: "Liverpool tactics look crude, it seems as though they're gonna bore the opposition into submission then steal a goal when they're asleep. Effective to say the least and it looks to be working."
Welcome to Old Trafford on 606

1740: "After the masterclass of movement Arsenal gave us last week, I thought we may have learned a thing or two. Instead we've got even better at passing the ball between our back four."
liver_lally on 606

1737: Derby boss Billy Davies says he can't fault his players. Which is odd considering it was a poor attempt at an offside trap that led to the first goal in their 2-0 defeat to Villa.

1735: Liverpool exchange some neat passes on the edge of the Blackburn box but Ryan Babel ruins it all by giving the ball away.

1734: "There are goals in this game. No doubt."
beardash on 606

1730: While things are quiet at Ewood Park, let's see what Fergie had to say about Manchester United's eventful 2-2 draw with Arsenal: "I think Howard Webb has a great chance to be the top referee but today was a big game for him and, at times, he favoured Arsenal. Their second goal came from him not giving a free-kick for a foul on Louis Saha on the far side. It should have been a foul for us."

1724: That pretty much sums the situation up. David Dunn cuts inside from the right but slices his left-foot shot and it spins away towards the corner flag.

1722: A quiet start at Ewood Park. Neither side can keep the ball at the moment.

1716: Away we go in the final game of a remarkable day in the Premier League. Blackburn kick off.

1711: The teams are out at Ewood Park.

Still no starting place for striker Peter Crouch in Liverpool's XI. Despite impressing against Arsenal last week, Crouch is once more on the bench, as Rafael Benitez deploys Dirk Kuyt as a lone striker. Mohamed Sissoko replaces the injured Xabi Alonso as Yossi Benayoun and Ryan Babel start. There are two changes for Blackburn as captain Ryan Nelsen and Morten Gamst Pedersen return.

1703: Don't go away folks. Still Blackburn v Liverpool to come. And that game has got a lot to live up to after today's fireworks.

1700: Tottenham may only have managed a draw today but it is still enough for them to climb out of the bottom three. Wigan replace them in the relegation zone after defeat to Chelsea.

1659: "I love Pompey. Up to fourth. Four away victories on the trot. And Harry could never win away."
Sean in Portsmouth, via text on 81111

1655: FULL-TIME Aston Villa 2-0 Derby
Second-half goals from Martin Laursen and Ashley Young win it for Villa. Derby still without an away goal this season.

1655: FULL-TIME Everton 3-1 Birmingham
Two late goals seal victory for Everton after Olivier Kapo looked to have earnt a point for Birmingham.

1655: FULL-TIME Newcastle 1-4 Portsmouth
Three goals in three first-half minutes set Portsmouth on their way against poor Newcastle.

1654: FULL-TIME Fulham 3-1 Reading
Fulham win for the first time in 10 games, while Reading's miserable away form continues.

1653: FULL-TIME Wigan 0-2 Chelsea
A quiet second-half but two first-half goals from Chelsea are enough to move them three points off the lead.

1652: GOAL Everton 3-1 Birmingham
James Vaughan gallops onto Lee Carsley's pass and finishes into the corner.

1652: RED CARD Fulham
Elliot Omozusi is sent off for his second yellow in only his second game for Fulham.

1651: GOAL Everton 2-1 Birmingham
Birmingham clear a throw-in straight to Lee Carsley, who smashes home.

1650: FULL-TIME Middlesbrough 1-1 Tottenham
Juande Ramos's first league game ends in a draw at the Riverside. Luke Young cancels out Darren Bent's first-half opener.

1649: GOAL Fulham 3-1 Reading
Fulham surely clinch their first win in 10 games. Simon Davies provides the pass for David Healy to sweep home. Told you there'd be more goals today.

1647: Famous last words... but I think the Premier League has run out of goals today.

1645: "If Berbatov wants to leave Spurs, I'll drive him to the airport."
Anon via text on 81111

1642: Fulham have conceded five times in the last 10 minutes this season. We're into the danger zone.

1640: "Re: 1634 entry. I wouldn't go that far. We're heading towards seven away games without a goal and a goal difference of minus 21 after just 12 games!"
A gutted but not surprised Stew, via text on 81111

1638: GOAL Everton 1-1 Birmingham
Gary McSheffrey delivers a dangerous corner and Olivier Kapo heads home, the ball taking a slight deflection off Phil Neville. Everton pay for not taking their chances.

1635: Rob Earnshaw has a shot for Derby - their first meaningful effort since the first minute. It's wide.

1634: "Newcastle have replaced Derby as the laughing stock of the Premiership."
nufc_josh on 606

1630: GOAL Fulham 2-1 Reading
Substitutes David Healy and Shefki Kuqi combine to restore Fulham's lead. Healy crosses and Kuqi header's header drops for Clint Dempsey, who prods home. A goal against the run of play. Cue a lot of desperate pointing from Fulham boss Lawrie Sanchez.

1629: GOAL Newcastle 1-4 Portsmouth
Nico Kranjcar delivers the free-kick from the left and Stephen Taylor slices it in with his outstretched leg for an own goal.

1628: Sorry, a bit of confusion about Aston Villa's goal - prompting Fantasy Football fans everywhere to tear their hair out. Ashley Young scored it, not Luke Moore.

1627: Reading full-back Nicky Shorey's free-kick evades everyone and almost creeps in at the far corner, but Antti Niemi pulls off a good save.

1621: GOAL Aston Villa 2-0 Derby
Derby give the ball away by the touchline and though Gabriel Agbonlahor's shot is saved by Stephen Bywater, Nigel Reo-Coker scoops the ball up to the far post for Ashley Young to smash home.

1618: GOAL Aston Villa 1-0 Derby
Oh dear Derby. Gareth Barry and Martin Laursen beat the visitors' offside trap from Ashley Young's free-kick and Barry heads back across goal for Laursen to sweep the ball home. Derby's players were like statues as the ball went in.

1614: Tottenham boss Juande Ramos changes his strike-force. Dimitar Berbatov and Robbie Keane on, Jermain Defoe and goalscorer Darren Bent off.

1613: Fulham have led 1-0 on six occasions this season without winning. History repeating?

1612: GOAL Fulham 1-1 Reading
And the pressure tells. Nicky Shorey delivers the corner from the right and Kevin Doyle nods in at the far post.

1611: Reading are piling on the pressure at Craven Cottage, with Fulham keeper Antti Niemi making a great stop from Stephen Hunt.

1608: GOAL Middlesborough 1-1 Tottenham
A rocket from Luke Young, drilling the ball into the top corner from just outside the box against his former club.

1606: Decent save from Spurs keeper Paul Robinson. Jeremie Aliadiere climbs high for a glancing header from Stewart Downing's free-kick but Robinson palms it around the post.

1605: Spurs striker Jermain Defoe is millimetres away from connecting with Aaron Lennon's deflected shot while at Craven Cottage, Leroy Lita has the ball in the net for Reading but he's offside.

1603: The games at Wigan and Middlesbrough are under way in the second half.

1600: Chelsea's players are already out at the JJB Stadium. Bit keen.

1552: "I told the guys we had to fight until the end and if we have to die we will die together. I think today we showed everybody we can die."
Arsenal captain William Gallas after the 2-2 draw with Manchester United

1551: "Yes!!!!!!!!!!!! Derby have gone 45 minutes without conceding!!!!!!!!!!!"
We_Are_Derby on 606

1550: HALF-TIME Aston Villa 0-0 Derby
Duller than a weekend in Dullsville at Villa Park.

1549: HALF-TIME Newcastle 1-3 Portsmouth
Portsmouth's three goals in three extraordinary minutes puts them in control at a shell-shocked St James' Park.

1547: HALF-TIME Fulham 1-0 Reading
Simon Davies' free-kick puts the hosts ahead at Craven Cottage - where Mark Clattenburg is officiating for the first time since the controversial Merseyside derby.

1547: HALF-TIME Everton 1-0 Birmingham
Yakubu's goal gives Everton a narrow lead.

1546: HALF-TIME Wigan 0-2 Chelsea
Easy for Chelsea.

1545: HALF-TIME Middlesbrough 0-1 Tottenham
Darren Bent's goal is the difference

1544: Darren Bent goes close to a second but doesn't get quite enough on strike partner Jermain Defoe's cross and the ball drifts past the far post.

1543: The BBC journalist who got left with the Aston Villa v Derby report is not a happy man. He just swore actually, which is a bit unnecessary.

1541: The Chelsea fans are happily singing the Great Escape as half-time approaches at the JJB Stadium. Victory will leave Chelsea three points off the top.

1537: "This is the reason why the Prem is the best league in the world."
Joe via text on 81111

1534: GOAL Middlesbrough 0-1 Tottenham
Chris Riggott stands off Darren Bent and the striker cuts in from the left and finishes at the near post. Good finish from the 16m man - starting ahead of Robbie Keane and Dimitar Berbatov.

1533: With all these goals flying in, perhaps Derby might finally get in on the act. They haven't scored an away goal since Steve Howard's penalty in the Championship play-off semi-final win at Southampton. They're not creating much at the moment though.

1531: Scrappy at the Riverside. The game is being played at a high-tempo but chances are at a premium.

1528: "No goals in last five minutes??? What's happening??"
holland21 on 606

1526: "I bet a friend 5 that Newcastle would win against Portsmouth. I paid up after only fifteen minutes... "
Anon via text on 81111

1524: "There have been about eight goals in the space of 15 minutes of Premier League football. Surely that's close to a record?"
(Certainly testing my typing skills)

1521: Newcastle boss Sam Allardyce appears to have seen enough of Claudio Cacapa for one day, ending the Brazilian centre-back's hellish afternoon and bringing on David Rozehnal in his place.

1517: GOAL Wigan 0-2 Chelsea
Juliano Belletti runs from well inside his own half and is allowed to advance to the edge of the Wigan box where he unleashes a glorious 25-yard shot which flies past Chris Kirkland.

1516: GOAL Fulham 1-0 Reading
Simon Davies showcases the technique of volleying to perfection. Reading fail to clear a Fulham corner and when the ball breaks to Davies on the corner of the area he hits the ball with the outside of his foot. Cue nanosecond delay before Craven Cottage erupts in unbridled joy.

1516: GOAL Newcastle 1-3 Portsmouth
This game is bonkers. Charles N'Zogbia's shot is saved by David James but Michael Owen is on to the rebound and though James gets a hand to it, he can only direct it on to Sol Campbell's head and the ball dribbles into the net for an own goal.

1516: "What the hell is going on?!"
Sebwinder on 606

1512: GOAL Newcastle 0-3 Portsmouth
Dream start for Pompey, nightmare for Newcastle. John Utaka uses his strength to nudge a hesitant Claudio Cacapa off the ball before rounding goalkeeper Steve Harper and passing the ball into an empty net.

1511: GOAL Wigan 0-1 Chelsea
Didier Drogba finds Shaun Wright-Phillips on the right flank and he crosses for Frank Lampard to finish into the bottom corner.

1511: GOAL Everton 1-0 Birmingham
Mikel Arteta slides the ball through for Steven Pienaar, whose cross is turned in by Yakubu.

1510: GOAL Newcastle 0-2 Portsmouth
Benjani Mwaruwari outmuscles Claudio Cacapa and finishes with aplomb.

1509: GOAL Newcastle 0-1 Portsmouth
A screamer from Noe Pamarot. Newcastle's attempt to clear a corner only lands at the midfielder's feet just outside the box and he sends it high into the roof of the net.

1508: Wigan half-heartedly appeal for a penalty as Juliano Belletti prevents Marcus Bent getting on the end of a cross.

1507: David James comes to Portsmouth's rescue as he saves a deflected shot from Newcastle striker Alan Smith.

1506: Derby are lucky to see Zat Knight shoot straight at Stephen Bywater from inside the six-yard box.

1504: Middlesbrough go close against Tottenham, Stewart Downing narrowly failing to get on the end of Gary O'Neill's cross. Downing ends up in the back of the net... without the ball.

1502: Slight delay at Aston Villa v Derby but we're finally under way around the grounds.

Everton have Mikel Arteta back in midfield after missing their Carling Cup win at Luton with a calf injury. Yakubu is also recalled while young striker James Vaughan is on the bench. Birmingham's Johan Djourou is back after a two-match absence with a hamstring strain, while Mikael Forssell returns to the bench after a month out with a hernia problem.

Cesc Fabregas is top of the pops for Arsenal with 7.72, while Wayne Rooney wins Manchester United's vote with 7.59. Still time for BBC Sport website users to change all that.

1454: "Can't believe Ramos has left both Keane and Berba out! Looks like we got ourselves another tinker man!!!"
Yakboobs on 606

Goalkeeper Scott Carson and midfielder Nigel Reo-Coker are back in Aston Villa's starting XI after suspension. Derby striker Kenny Miller misses out with a hamstring injury so there is a recall for Steve Howard up front.

Fulham boss Lawrie Sanchez is clearly keen to give youth its chance. Nathan Ashton is one of three changes for Fulham, as the 20-year-old Fulham defender makes his debut. You don't change a winning team unless you are Rafa Benitez, so Reading boss Coppell names the same side that beat Newcastle 2-1 last weekend.

Chelsea make three changes from the side that beat Man City 6-0 last week. Shaun Wright-Phillips comes in for Joe Cole, left-back Wayne Bridge replaces the injured Paulo Ferreira and Florent Malouda starts ahead of Salomon Kalou. Wigan drop striker Antoine Sibierski and bring in midfielder Michael Brown in their one change.

Middlesbrough manager Gareth Southgate makes one change from the side that lost 4-1 to Manchester United last week, Jonathan Woodgate missing out through injury, with Chris Riggott replacing him. Tottenham boss Juande Ramos rings the changes for his first league game in charge, dropping Dimitar Berbatov, Robbie Keane and Didier Zokora to the bench and starting with Darren Bent, Jermain Defoe and Kevin-Prince Boateng.

Newcastle make five changes with Shay Given, skipper Geremi, Habib Beye, Emre and Obafemi Martins all out - in come Steve Harper, Steven Taylor, James Milner, Charles N'Zogbia and Alan Smith. Portsmouth bring in fit-again Sulley Muntari for Pedro Mendes.

1446: Deep breath everyone before we go again.

1443: "Amazing game... best game of the season so far... definitely!"
London_Master on 606

1441: FULL-TIME Arsenal 2-2 Man Utd
And that's your lot. A frantic end to an entertaining game. Rio Ferdinand is arguing with the ref about that last-minute equaliser but it was a goal. Not that William Gallas is aware - he has to be told by Emmanuel Adebayor that it was he who scored.

1439: GOAL Arsenal 2-2 Man Utd
Absolute chaos! Edwin van der Sar palms away William Gallas's volley and Theo Walcott and Cesc Fabregas have follow-ups cleared off the line. The linesman flags for a goal to Gallas. Replays show it did cross the line.

1437: Eduardo has all the time in the world as John O'Shea misjudges the bounce of a long ball but he volleys hopelessly wide. Three minutes of added time to come.

1432: So close to an equaliser! Patrice Evra tries to clear Cesc Fabregas' cross but succeeds only in shaving the top of his own cross-bar. Unbelievable.

1431: "Poor defending by Arsenal there. Ronaldo was in the right place, right time. One more goal in this methinks."
guesstimater on 606

1429: GOAL Arsenal 1-2 Man Utd
Louis Saha finds Patrice Evra rampaging into the box and the Frenchman gets to the ball ahead of Arsenal keeper Manuel Almunia, crossing for Cristiano Ronaldo to finish into the open goal.

1427: Worrying times for United as Nemanja Vidic is injured while challenging for a corner. The defender will be OK though - which is a relief as United have made their three subs. And now so have Arsenal. The impressive Alex Hleb and Tomas Rosicky are off. Gilberto and Eduardo are on.

1425: Theo Walcott trundles down the right wing and delivers a cross. He gets it all wrong but it ends up forcing Edwin van der Sar to back-pedal and collect from under the bar. Quick as a flash, the Arsenal teenager is forced into defensive action, robbing Wayne Rooney in the other box.

1423: A quiet afternoon for Carlos Tevez comes to an end as he is replaced by Louis Saha. Michael Carrick is on for Anderson.

1421: Here comes Theo. Emmanuel Eboue makes way.

1420: Think Arsenal are settling for a draw? Well, I can tell you Theo Walcott is warming up...

1418: memyselfandpie (see 1417) has put the mockers on Wes Brown. He's off, to be replaced by John O'Shea. Not sure if it's an injury.

1417: "Wes Brown is having a great game - forward and in defence."
memyselfandpie on 606

1416: Patrice Evra gets on the end of Wayne Rooney's pass ahead of Manuel Almunia but Kolo Toure gets to his cut-back first and clears.

1412: Alex Hleb goes high and wide with a left-foot effort from a promising position. It's hard to believe there won't be another goal but it's anyone's guess which side will score it.

1411: Wayne Rooney plays a one-two with Ryan Giggs. The Welshman lofts his return but Rooney heads wide when he should at least have got it on target. This game is starting to open up.

1409: "Get Adebayor off the pitch before I lose what's left of my patience with him!"
GlasgowGooner on 606

1405: Alex Hleb wins a free-kick just outside the box after Anderson's foul. Kolo Toure, Gael Clichy and Cesc Fabregas stand over it but it's the latter who hits it low. Edwin van der Sar gathers quite easily.

1403: Gael Clichy just about keeps the ball in on the left and cuts into the box. His pass hits Owen Hargreaves on the hand but Arsenal don't appeal.

1357: "Made my first bet yesterday... Man U to win! Will be 30 quid better off if they can do it."
Anon via text on 81111 (Er, I don't know how to tell you this...)

1354: GOAL Arsenal 1-1 Manchester United
Edwin van der Sar saves well from Emmanuel Adebayor but Bacary Sagna picks up the rebound on the byeline and delivers it to Cesc Fabregas, who takes his time before finishing into the corner.

1353: Manchester United kick off the second half. No changes as yet.

1350: "I don't like this negative Arsenal formation. I know United are far stronger than most of the teams we have played, but I feel we are a far better side playing 4-4-2. We just don't get enough players into the box. "
an_d_c on 606

1345: "Cagey but good first-half. United look awesome on the counter and seem happy to play that way. 0-2 I reckon."
Cold War Kid on 606

1343: Poor old William Gallas has now been "credited" with United's goal. It did seem to come off his hand.

1340: BBC Sport's Player Rater has Cesc Fabregas leading the way for Arsenal with a rating of 7.64, while Cristiano Ronaldo is United's star man with 8.00. Owen Hargreaves is surprisingly low at 6.07.

1337: Arsenal fans might want to remember this fixture last season. Wayne Rooney gave United the lead before late goals from Robin van Persie and Thierry Henry sealed victory for the Gunners.

1336: HALF-TIME Arsenal 0-1 Man Utd
There's hardly time to kick off before the whistle goes and it's advantage United.

1334: GOAL Arsenal 0-1 Man Utd
Wes Brown feeds Cristiano Ronaldo on the right and his low cross finds Wayne Rooney at the near post. The striker's shot is deflected in by William Gallas's hand for an own goal. What a time for United to score.

1333: "I'm a United fan, and that was disgraceful, clear referee harassment from Anderson. The yellow should've gone to him."
Eastlygod via text on 81111

1331: Anderson and Owen Hargreaves are doing a great job of starving the Arsenal midfield of time on the ball. Those two have been outstanding so far.

1328: Cesc Fabregas catches Anderson - who responds with a triple tumble. Very continental. Fabregas is booked - and then wags his finger at the United midfielder.

1324: Fabulous save from Edwin van der Sar. Cesc Fabregas delivers the free-kick and William Gallas looks certain to score but the United keeper somehow keeps out the defender's close-range header with his feet.

1323: Corner for United. Arsenal clear Ryan Giggs's effort easily and then go on the counter, with Alex Hleb winning a free-kick on the right.

1319: Manchester United win a free-kick but Wayne Rooney wastes it by taking it quickly and passing it straight to Arsenal keeper Manuel Almunia. Expect a hairdryer at half-time Wayne.

1316: Kolo Toure plays a one-two with Tomas Rosicky but the Gunners defender blasts his shot well over from the edge of the box.

1313: Alex Hleb goes flying under a challenge from Owen Hargreaves bang on the halfway line. The winger nearly landed on his head. Hargreaves sees yellow.

1311: Ryan Giggs picks up the ball from Edwin van der Sar's clearance and tries his luck from 30 yards. It's high but only just.

1310: Fergie's still going! Ranting and raving on the touchline. The Arsenal fans are amused, as I'm sure you can imagine.

1308: Sir Alex Ferguson loses it as the ref awards Arsenal a free-kick for Patrice Evra's foul on Emmanuel Eboue. He looks ready to explode.

1307: "United should be 2-0 up. Two great chances wasted now."
Manchester_Reds on 606

1305: United counter-attack and Cristiano Ronaldo crosses from the right for Ryan Giggs, who misses a golden opportunity at the far post. He seems to be a bit surprised that the ball reached him and only helps it behind for a goal-kick.

1304: Patrice Evra's mistimed tackle on Emmanuel Adebayor gets him a booking. Cesc Fabregas' free-kick is comfortably cleared by the United defence.

1303: There's the first penalty shout of the day as the dangerous Alex Hleb drives into the box. Nemanja Vidic looked to be tugging the winger's shirt but it was a half-hearted appeal.

1300: Kolo Toure and Wayne Rooney have a mini disagreement over the United striker's challenge - but they're soon smiling.

1258: Now Emmanuel Adebayor heads over at the other end from Gael Clichy's cross.

1257: Wayne Rooney's persistence earns him a corner - the first of the game. Ryan Giggs takes it but an unmarked Cristiano Ronaldo doesn't time his header quite right and it shaves the outside of the post. Might have done better and that was the first chance.

1255: A good few meaty tackles going in now, but it's Arsenal who have started much the better.

1252: Lovely stuff from Alex Hleb again. The Belarussian tricks his way out of defence before starting a passing move which ends with a disappointing shot from Gael Clichy.

1249: Typical Arsenal. Instead of passing the ball back to defence, Alex Hleb dribbles the ball forward deep into the United half but his passing options are limited when two team-mates collide. Interesting start though.

1248: Arsenal get the game under way. Apparently, 202 countries are taking television coverage of this game and one billion people are expected to watch. Let the fun begin.

1243: Here come the teams along with today's referee Howard Webb, who of course took charge of Liverpool v Arsenal last weekend.

1240: A shower of orange balloons descends on the Arsenal fans at the Emirates Stadium as Elvis Presley's The Wonder of You blares out.

1237: Only a few minutes to go until the 201st meeting between Arsenal and Manchester United. United have won 80, Arsenal 76, with 44 draws. Arsene Wenger leads the head-to-head with Sir Alex Ferguson 13-11, with nine draws.

1232: There's injured Arsenal striker Robin van Persie chatting to staff at the Emirates Stadium. He's wearing a Top Cat T-shirt. But who will be top cat today? Sorry, that's terrible.

1228: "It's my birthday today, and Ian Wright's, and Dwight Yorke's!"
dangermouse852 on 606

1226: Over on Football Focus, Manchester United goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar praises Arsenal's youngsters ahead of the big match at the Emirates.

1224: The Carling Cup quarter-final draw has been made and, waddayaknow, Chelsea will host Liverpool. The other three games are: West Ham v Everton, Manchester City v Tottenham, Blackburn v Arsenal.

1222: "Giggs is our captain and will provide experence to help Anderson. We could even move around and play Giggs in the centre and Anderson on the left. Nani can be brought on if needed."
sandmanchester on 606

1217: The Manchester United players go through their stretches out on the pitch. A lot of laughing going on and no sign of any nerves.

1215: "Giggs instead of Nani? Huge mistake."
Charlie Hendersons RHM on 606

1213: Here are the full line-ups:
Arsenal: Almunia, Sagna, Toure, Gallas, Clichy, Eboue, Flamini, Fabregas, Rosicky, Hleb, Adebayor. Subs: Lehmann, Diarra, Eduardo, Walcott, Silva.
Man Utd: Van der Sar, Brown, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra, Ronaldo, Anderson, Hargreaves, Giggs, Rooney, Tevez. Subs: Kuszczak, Saha, Carrick, Nani, O'Shea.

Arsenal are unchanged from the 1-1 draw with Liverpool so Gilberto stays on the bench. For Manchester United, Patrice Evra replaces John O'Shea and Ryan Giggs comes in for Nani.

1158: The BBC's very own Mystic Meg, Lawro, believes Arsenal will beat Manchester United 5-4. Just kidding. A 1-1 draw, says the big-collared Preston predictor, and he says it will be "tight and nervy". Boo.

1153: Just got off the phone to a United-supporting friend. She informs me she's off to have her hair cut because she can't stand the tension. "I'll just check the result afterwards," she said. And that is why girls should not be allowed anywhere near football.

1149: And talking of Kelly Brook and all things Strictly Come Dancing... I've just seen Gabby and Kenny Logan. Gabby looks very chirpy so I think she's over last week's bombshell exit. The bald one from daytime TV is practising what looks like a tango. On his own. In full view of the whole of Television Centre. I looked him straight in the eyes and there was not a hint of shame. That programme does funny things to people. Anyway, back to the football...

1144: "Continuing with last week's beautiful women theme, today's match is the equivalent of Kelly Brook and Penelope Cruz mud wrestling!"
Anon via text on 81111

1133: "This is one of those games where you're almost afraid to build up expectations for fear of it being a damp squib - and these lunchtime games often do fail to get off the ground. Having said all that, this one has to be a feast doesn't it?"
BBC 5 Live correspondent Mike Ingham

1127: "Arsenal? Worth the title? (See 1100) Please, it's only November! Bear in mind United still have to play Derby. Twice!!"
Dan in Warrington via text on 81111

1124: Thank goodness. The first cheese gag makes it onto 606. Thought you'd all got bored.

1121: "It seems so early in the season to be this excited about a game. But why not? United!"
Anon via text on 81111

1117: United's last league centurian was of course Mark Hughes. More fascinating stats to come. Maybe.

1107: If Ryan Giggs scores today, it will be the Welshman's 100th league goal for United. Here's a question - who was the last United player to reach a century of league goals?

1100: "I dreamt it was a 3-1 win to Arsenal! Come on Gunners! Let's show them we're worth the title!"
Ade in Herts via text on 81111

1053: Arsene Wenger reckons Arsenal's "collective pressure" will be enough for them to take the spoils today. Sir Alex Ferguson thinks United are in the "strongest position" they have been in all season. Something's got to give...

1050: "I woke up with a blocked nose so I'm going for a bore draw with Rooney hitting the post twice and Adebayor having a hat-trick of goals disallowed."
Anon via text on 81111

1045: As I made my way past the Emirates Stadium this fine morning, a Jens Lehmann T-shirt caught my eye. Is this is a sign I thought? Will the eccentric German be back in the Gunners goal today? Probably not.

1041: "Been waiting for this match all week, now I'm just hoping it will deliver. Arsenal to win!!"
jashana on 606

1035: "Making our way to the stadium... via the pub! C'mon United!"
Scotty and Smickers via text on 81111

1029: I know I am. And so is Arsene Wenger. He reckons the "world will stop" when Arsenal kick off against Manchester United in two-and-a-quarter hours.

1024: Excited?

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

5 Liverpool 24 16 41

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

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

Saturday's football photos
03 Nov 07 |  Football


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