BBC Sport football


Related BBC sites

Page last updated at 18:17 GMT, Sunday, 23 March 2008

Premier League as it happened

Chelsea 2-1 Arsenal
Man Utd 3-0 Liverpool


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

By Caroline Cheese

1814: Don't know about you, but I need a lie-down. What a day. Controversy central at Old Trafford followed by a fantastic game at Stamford Bridge. Plenty of talking points so give Spoony a call on 5 Live's 606 if you need to rant. He's on 0500 909 693, or text 85058. MOTD2 is on at 2200 GMT on BBC2. Do not miss it. Happy Easter everyone!

1812: Today's Player of the Day is Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney on 7.87, just edging ahead of Chelsea matchwinner Didier Drogba (7.57). The villain of the piece, not susprisingly, is Liverpool midfielder Javier Mascherano on 2.84.

1810: "Disgusting results for Arsenal. The worst possible outcome from the two games. Strength and depth lacked and the striking force were invisible. Four draws and a loss. Liverpool must fancy there chances for the Champions League."
Jamie Lyons, Croydon, via text on 81111

1808: Didier Drogba also called for the Chelsea fans to show more respect to ex-Blues player William Gallas, who was booed throughout the game. Interesting.

1806: "The substitutions helped. They did their job. We are really happy. I hope we can go on and win the title. Today means a lot, especially after Wednesday, which was a big disappointment."
Chelsea striker Didier Drogba

1802: Arsenal still have to travel to Old Trafford, while Chelsea host United before this season is out, so there could be twists and turns yet, but that table has got to look good if you're a United fan.

1800: Chelsea boss Avram Grant posts his first win against a 'Big Four' club and the goals came after a double substitution from the Israeli coach. Point made? I'll leave that to the Chelsea fans...

1756: FULL-TIME Chelsea 2-1 Arsenal
Didier Drogba belts the ball into the crowd as Mark Clattenburg blows the final whistle. An absolutely belting game. Arsenal take the lead in the second half through Bacary Sagna's goal but Drogba's double puts Chelsea above Arsenal in second - five points behind leaders Manchester United.

1755: A delay here as the Chelsea bench get a ticking off from the ref for standing on the touchline.

1754: Alex Hleb goes on a jinking run through midfield but his attempt to release Nicklas Bendtner is cut out.

1751: We're in to five minutes of added time. Yes, five.

1748: Arsenal make their final change, with striker Nicklas Bendtner replacing midfielder Mathieu Flamini. Chelsea remove Joe Cole and send on Mikel John Obi.

The table as it stands...

1747: Four minutes remaining. If the scoreline stays the same, Chelsea will leapfrog Arsenal into second but will be five points behind leaders Manchester United.

1743: Brilliant save from Manuel Almunia. Brilliant. Didier Drogba sends a low shot arrowing towards the bottom corner but the keeper gets down quickly to push it around the post.

1741: GOAL Chelsea 2-1 Arsenal
Nicolas Anelka heads on a long ball from the right to Didier Drogba, who has time to control and then toe-poke the ball goalwards. Manuel Almunia gets a good hand to it but the ball still finds the net.

1739: Arsenal have really lost their rhythm since that rash of injuries. England boss Fabio Capello looks on nervously as Chelsea winger Joe Cole gets treatment. He's off and on again quite quickly though.

1736: Joe Cole feeds Nicolas Anelka on the right-hand edge of the box but he screws his shot hopelessly wide. Theo Walcott on for Robin van Persie...

1733: GOAL Chelsea 1-1 Arsenal
Juliano Belletti floats a ball into the area from his own half, Frank Lampard lays it off to Didier Drogba, who smashes it in. The striker gets a yellow card for taking his shirt off and running into the crowd to celebrate.

1733: Abou Diaby replaces goalscorer Bacary Sagna. Chelsea pile on the pressure from a corner but some desperate clearances from Arsenal...

1732: Arsenal are playing with 10 men for the moment. Doesn't look like Sagna will continue.

1730: Chelsea boss Avram Grant make a double change. Nicolas Anelka and Juliano Belletti replace Claude Makelele and Michael Ballack. Both Chelsea players none too happy about coming off.

1729: Kolo Toure can only head a cross into Michael Ballack's path but the German's shot is easily saved by Manuel Almunia. Now Emmanuel Eboue needs treatment...

1728: Ricardo Carvalho has a Terry Butcher-style bandage applied to his head, as Bacary Sagna limps off for more treatment.

The table as it stands...

1726: Bacary Sagna is down with an ankle injury. Ricardo Carvalho needs treatment on a head wound... That gives me time to tell you that second-placed Arsenal will go five points clear of Chelsea if the scoreline stays the same.

1725: Salomon Kalou gets away from his marker and fires in a dangerous cross but William Gallas clears behind for a corner.

1723: And that is the fourth goal Chelsea have conceded from a set-piece this week...

1721: Joe Cole floats a cross over from the right to an unmarked Ashley Cole - who heads disastrously wide. Nicolas Anelka warming up...

1719: GOAL Chelsea 0-1 Arsenal
Bacary Sagna gets ahead of Salomon Kalou to meet Cesc Fabregas's corner at the near post and glances home the header. Sagna's first goal in English football puts Chelsea's 77-game unbeaten record at Stamford Bridge under threat.

1718: A slick passing move from Arsenal ends with Emmanuel Adebayor's shot easily collected by Carlo Cudicini. Arsenal looking threatening...

1716: Claude Makelele provides a pass from the halfway line for Didier Drogba to run onto but the Chelsea striker is put off by William Gallas's last-ditch tackle.

1713: Ha, ha. Clattenburg makes a mistake, giving Arsenal a free-kick in the centre circle when Claude Makelele was as much sinned against as sinner. Why does that always happen? Anyway, Chelsea survive.

1710: John Terry heads towards Michael Ballack but Bacary Sagna gets there first and is held back by the Chelsea midfielder. Free-kick Arsenal. I don't want to put the mockers on him but Mark Clattenburg has had a good game so far...

1707: The second half begins as the first ended...frantically. Robin van Persie's cross comes to Mathieu Flamini, whose rasping shot is scrambled away by Carlo Cudicini.

1706: Away we go. No half-time changes. Didier Drogba and Manuel Almunia seem to have shaken off those first-half knocks.

1701: "Re 1650: I don't want a good game. I want an Arsenal win. C'mon Gunners!"
Knowledge, Reason on 606

Arsenal midfielder Cesc Fabregas is just shading things with 7.43, ahead of Robin van Persie (7.28). Ashley Cole and Emmanuel Eboue are the pantomime villains on 5.29 and 5.45 respectively...

1650: HALF-TIME Chelsea 0-0 Arsenal
A breathtaking first half comes to an end. End-to-end stuff. Manuel Almunia sticks out a leg to divert Joe Cole's dangerous ball away and seems to have paid the price as he limps off...

1649: Penalty shout from the Chelsea fans as Kolo Toure and Salomon Kalou collide in the area going for a high ball. Mark Clattenburg says no.

1646: Toure got caught in the unmentionables but he's OK now. Michael Ballack has a shot which is well saved by Manuel Almunia. I can't believe we haven't seen a goal yet...

1645: Panic in the Arsenal box this time. John Terry stabs Michael Ballack's header to Salomon Kalou - who misses his kick as the Gunners defence closes in. Kolo Toure limping...

1643: Kolo Toure heads on Cesc Fabregas's corner and the ball ends up with William Gallas at the far post but his shot comes back off the woodwork. Gallas offside though.

1640: Emmanuel Adebayor motors past John Terry on the right but Ricardo Carvalho clears the cross.

1637: Michael Ballack is the next man into the book for an untidy challenge from behind on Alex Hleb. This is a classic Premier League encounter: fast and furious.

1636: Joe Cole gets a yellow for chopping down Robin van Persie after losing the ball. He can't really complain about that - and he doesn't, to be fair.

1634: Emmanuel Eboue - already on a yellow - is having a go at the ref. He is treading on very thin ice. He's had what looks like a final talking-to from Mark Clattenburg.

1633: Arsenal work the ball from right to left around the area. Eventually Emmanuel Adebayor's shot hits Ashley Cole but Emmanuel Eboue can't get any power on the follow-up.

1630: "Arsenal are playing a very high line. That's twice they've been caught by the ball over the top."
David Pleat on BBC Radio 5 Live

1628: Didier Drogba is clean through ahead of William Gallas from John Terry's volleyed pass, but the striker's control is poor and Manuel Almunia collects.

1627: "There were two different games, before and after the sending off."
Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez on MOTD

Cannot play media. Sorry, this media is not available in your territory.


Match of the Day: Rafa Benitez with Guy Mowbray

1625: Cesc Fabregas provides a fabulous through-ball for Alex Hleb on the left-hand edge of the box, but the cross is cleared by John Terry with Robin van Persie waiting. This game is being played at about 100mph...

1622: Emmanuel Eboue gets the ball wide right, with Carlo Cudicini out of goal, but John Terry heads his first-time volley clear. Meanwhile, Nicolas Anelka is warming up with Didier Drogba struggling with a thigh injury.

1619: Robin van Persie cleverly drops his shoulders to make room for the shot after a good run by Alex Hleb but it's a wild shot from the Dutchman.

1617: Claude Makelele wins the ball in midfield and releases Michael Essien on the right but his cross is disastrous, with Didier Drogba throwing his arms up in frustration.

1613: "We controlled the game most of the time... playing the ball all the time on the carpet - playing one-twos - we started to create some opportunities."
Manchester United assistant boss Carlos Queiroz

Cannot play media. Sorry, this media is not available in your territory.


Match of the Day: Carlos Queiroz with Guy Mowbray

1612: I probably don't need to tell you but William Gallas is being booed by the Chelsea fans, while Ashley Cole is getting the same treatment from the visiting supporters.

1609: Didier Drogba earns a free-kick for William Gallas's foul. Drogba takes it - but Emmanuel Eboue is about four yards away and gets a yellow card for encroaching. Michael Ballack takes the second one but Manuel Almunia collects quite comfortably.

1607: "Re 1604: most probably asking if he'd like Ashley Cole back."
hawick on 606

1606: Gael Clichy provides a lovely, weighted pass for Robin van Persie on the left but his cross is easily cut out by Chelsea.

1605: Referee Mark Clattenburg has a long old chat with John Terry and William Gallas just before kick-off. Couldn't lip-read that - but I wouldn't mind betting it was something to do with back-chat.

1604: Avram Grant makes Arsene Wenger laugh as the two shake hands before the whistle. Wonder what that was about? Anyway, a bit late, but we're up and away.

1559: Here come the teams at Stamford Bridge. Emmanuel Adebayor pauses briefly and points to the heavens before lining up with the rest of his team-mates. The Gunners are looking to end a run of four straight draws in the league. Sir Alex Ferguson admitted earlier he's hoping for a fifth...

1555: Blimey. Time to concentrate on the next game methinks. United are now six points clear of Arsenal after that win over Liverpool. Chelsea are unbeaten at home in the league since losing to the Gunners four years and one month ago - a 77-game run.

1553: "As soon as we lost the player (Mascherano) it all went wrong. Mascherano was surprised at the decision because he thought he said nothing wrong and that's why he reacted like he did - I was telling him to calm down. He made a mistake though by approaching the referee. But after the sending off the game was over. I've spoken to him. He knows he made a mistake."
Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez

1550: "Mascherano's sending off was pathetic. A yellow for speaking to a ref? You're having a laugh!"
Waseem, London, via text on 81111

1543: I would like to state where I stand on that Mascherano red card... I would like to, but I can't decide. Every time I think I've come down on one side or the other, someone makes a very good point (see 1542 and 1531). Ultimately, I think Mascherano was a bit childish. He kept chatting away at the ref from the moment he got his first yellow. But I take the point that he shouldn't have got sent off just because of the furore over Cole.

1542: "Surely the issue is why wasn't Cole 'booked' rather then why was Mascheno 'booked.' Cole not getting booked = mistake. Mascherano getting booked = correct."
keenos2000 on 606

Wayne Rooney is the top man at the moment on 7.68, while Javier Mascherano brings up the rear on 3.07. Fernando Torres is the only Liverpool player with a rating of more than six. Still plenty of time to vote.

1531: "Chelsea got away with it on Wednesday. However, because of Cole's disgraceful behaviour, Liverpool are the team to be punished. How can that be fair?"
Dan, Luton, via text on 811111

1529: "We've been talking about respect for referees... and that looked like dissent..."
Sir Alex Ferguson's view on the Mascherano incident

1526: I would say the texts and 606 messages are about 50-50 on the Mascherano sending-off, with plenty of people making the point that he might have been OK had it not been for the Ashley Cole incident.

1523: FULL-TIME Man Utd 3-0 Liverpool
Rafa Benitez looks like he wants to have another word with Steve Bennett, who is already surrounded by Liverpool players. Javier Mascherano's sending-off will be the main talking point but that didn't affect Pepe Reina's ability to cope with crosses did it? Benitez still without a win over United in eight attempts.

1520: "I'm not sure Pepe Reina will have had a stranger day as a professional. He's made five or six good one-on-one saves - and then two crosses have come and he's been nowhere near them."
Mark Lawrenson on BBC Radio 5 Live

1520: We're into added time...

1516: Cristiano Ronaldo gets away with a dive under a challenge from Jamie Carragher. He gives a cheeky smile as he gets up. Not sure how he did get away with that.

1512: Fernando Torres is replaced by John Arne Riise.

1510: GOAL Man Utd 3-0 Liverpool
Nani plays a one-two with Wayne Rooney before hammering a fierce shot low into the corner. "Easy, easy," chant the United fans, as Nani somersaults in celebration.

1508: GOAL Man Utd 2-0 Liverpool
Pepe Reina pulls off a brilliant save to push Cristiano Ronaldo's shot onto the bar and behind. But he's at fault when Nani's corner comes over, Ronaldo easily beating the keeper's pathetic punch and heading in his 34th of the season - and his first against Liverpool.

1507: TEAM NEWS Chelsea v Arsenal
Chelsea make one change with Michael Ballack coming into midfield and Michael Essien replacing Paulo Ferreira at right-back. Arsenal are unchanged so Theo Walcott stays on the bench.

1505: Fernando Torres needs treatment after a challenge from Michael Carrick but he is soon back on.

1504: Great save Pepe Reina. Alvaro Arbeloa accidentally touches Wayne Rooney's pass into Carlos Tevez but Reina sticks his left arm out to save the shot. Rooney is still struggling though.

1503: Anderson and Ryan Giggs are off, Carlos Tevez and Nani on. Wayne Rooney is hobbling with what looks like a knee injury.

1501: Wayne Rooney goes past two defenders on the left and cuts the ball back for Anderson, who shoots wildly over - prompting Rooney to thump his fists on the turf.

1500: Steven Gerrard half-volleys wide. Good spell of pressure from Liverpool this. United's defence looks a bit shaky all of a sudden.

1458: Steven Gerrard swings over a delicious free-kick from the right but the ball just seems to roll over Fernando Torres's feet. Moments later, Torres jinks his way into the box from the left but is eventually halted.

1456: Yossi Benayoun has been given some very detailed instructions from Rafa Benitez before he comes on to replace Ryan Babel.

1455: Cristiano Ronaldo sends a free-kick from a very acute angle out left straight into the wall. Ambitious - even for him.

1453: The Manchester United fans are shouting for another red as Fernando Torres collides with Nemanja Vidic after the ball has gone. Nothing in it though and Steve Bennett just calms things down.

1452: "Ref Steve Bennett disgraceful and pathetic sending off, looks like you can't even talk to referees anymore. Spoilt the game."
Richard, north London, via text on 81111

1449: Rio Ferdinand is the first Manchester United player to see yellow as he boots the ball away after fouling Fernando Torres. United survive the free-kick though.

1446: Wayne Rooney is through for the third time today - this time from Edwin van der Sar's long kick. He brings the ball down brilliantly but Pepe Reina saves the shot.

1442: Alvaro Arbeloa is the next man to go into the book for stopping Anderson getting onto the end of Ryan Giggs's lofted pass. Free-kick right on the edge of the box... Cristiano Ronaldo hammers it wide.

1437: Paul Scholes scoops a pass to Cristiano Ronaldo but Pepe Reina is out quickly to block. At the other end, Edwin van der Sar is out of his goal to clear ahead of Fernando Torres.

1435: Away we go again then...

1431: "Mascherano was probably piping away too much but the referee was disgraceful. It was no booking for Torres. He was getting kicked around and was just making a point."
Anon via text on 81111
This text probably sums it up for me. Torres looked very unlucky, but Mascherano was walking a tightrope and should have left it to his team-mates to make the point.

1428: "I don't care about all the controversy in the press this week, a player getting sent off for just speaking his mind to the ref is ridiculous. Especially in a game with as much passion as this!"
Anon via text on 81111

1420: Incidentally, that whole palaver began when Liverpool WON a free-kick. Mascherano had to be persuaded to leave the pitch, first by Xabi Alonso, then by Benitez.

1419: HALF-TIME Man Utd 1-0 Liverpool
Steve Bennett and his officials are surrounded by Liverpool players as they leave the pitch. Rafa Benitez - who is absolutely seething as you can imagine - has his say on the way down the tunnel.

1415: RED CARD Liverpool
Fernando Torres sees yellow for complaining to Steve Bennett and Javier Mascherano - who has been chipping away at the ref for a while now - has another go. The Argentine is held back by Xabi Alonso as he approaches Bennett but it doesn't do him any good. He gets a second yellow for dissent.

1413: Ryan Babel completely bamboozles Wes Brown with a stepover on the left but his cross is blocked by Anderson.

1412: Pepe Reina is having an absolute nightmare. He throws the ball straight to Anderson but the midfielder balloons a shot into the crowd.

1405: GOAL Man Utd 1-0 Liverpool
Pepe Reina flapping again. Wayne Rooney crosses from the left and Wes Brown's header comes off the keeper's flailing arm and bounces into the net.

1405: Another nervous moment for Liverpool fans as Pepe Reina misjudges Ryan Giggs's lofted cross and almost palms it into his own goal. He recovers in time to claw the ball away.

1403: Fabio Aurelio finds Fernando Torres with a first-time pass. The striker's snap-shot is deflected behind but he doesn't get a corner.

1400: Regular listeners to BBC Radio 5 Live will not be at all surprised to learn that Alan Green doesn't think much of this game. I'm quite enjoying it, to be fair.

1359: Oh, Steven Gerrard is playing. Dirk Kuyt touches the ball to the midfielder and his vicious shot is deflected narrowly over by Nemanja Vidic.

1355: Ryan Giggs delivers the free-kick which is headed on to Cristiano Ronaldo. His sidefooted shot comes back off the post - but he's flagged offside. He wasn't, but anyway...

1353: Javier Mascherano has been brilliant so far. He follows a perfectly-timed tackle on Cristiano Ronaldo with a block on Ryan Giggs. Nervous moment for Liverpool fans as Pepe Reina comes charging out of his goal but he gets to the ball ahead of the United player.

1352: "Steven Gerrard has been forced a little deeper because he's barely had the ball."
Mark Lawrenson on BBC Radio 5 Live

1349: "From the way they've started the match, I think Fergie got his tactics right without a doubt."
GaelForce22 on 606

1346: Cristiano Ronaldo endears himself to the Liverpool fans with some fancy footwork before collapsing under the challenge of Xabi Alonso. No free-kick.

1344: Fabio Aurelio beats the challenge of Ronaldo on the left of the box and drives a shot - or it might have been a cross - wildly out of play.

1342: Javier Mascherano gets the first yellow card of the day. Mascherano is penalised for a Paul Scholes-style late, sliding tackle on, er, Paul Scholes.

1341: Wayne Rooney beats the Liverpool offside trap to get on the end of Paul Scholes's free-kick but he can't control the ball and Pepe Reina collects. Difficult chance.

1337: First chance. Anderson slips the ball through for Wayne Rooney, who leaves Jamie Carragher trailing but sees his shot saved by Pepe Reina. Rooney wants a penalty for Carragher's last-ditch tackle but Steve Bennett says no.

1336: Ryan Giggs loses the ball to Fabio Aurelio out right but as the cross comes over, Fernando Torres is penalised for pushing in the box.

1334: Fernando Torres puts Edwin van der Sar under pressure as the keeper dithers over a clearance. He survives though.

1332: Referee Steve Bennett blows his whistle and Liverpool, in their white shirts and black shorts, get the game under way.

1327: And here come the teams to a tumultuous reception at a packed Old Trafford.

1325: Five minutes to go... I know these games almost always disappoint, but I can't help but be excited. Blue sky and sunshine at Old Trafford as we're treated to a bit of classic Stone Roses before kick-off.

1323: "Those stats will mean nothing to the players before kick-off. Believe me, they don't think about them at all."
Former Arsenal midfielder Perry Groves on BBC Radio 5 Live

1321: Here's Rafa Benitez on his shocking record against United: "Every game we played against them was really close and every year we've got closer. We're in good form and we're confident. We can beat them."

1318: John Arne Riise is on the bench for Liverpool today but that didn't stop him chatting to Football Focus. "They're a great team but, the way we're playing now, we're confident. The system we're playing now is working for us."

Cannot play media. Sorry, this media is not available in your territory.


John Arne Riise talks to Football Focus

1317: "We need experience for these games, that's why Scholes and Giggs are playing. No doubt Nani will come on for the last 20 minutes to terrorise the Liverpool full-backs."
James, York, via text on 81111

1316: "I questioned his team selection against Arsenal in the FA Cup as well!"
sserruya on 606

1309: Now then, plenty of Manchester United fans seem to be fretting about today's line-up - with concerns about the ageing legs of Scholes and Giggs. But I seem to remember the United fans were also questioning Fergie's team selection before the Bolton match in midweek and that game was over in 20 minutes...

1307: Manchester United winger Ryan Giggs - chasing his 10th Premier League title - told Football Focus: "Whether you're top of the league or three, four or five points behind doesn't really matter. I think the team that's more consistent going into the last five or six weeks of the season will have the upper hand."

Cannot play media. Sorry, this media is not available in your territory.


Ryan Giggs talks to Football Focus

1302: Some more stats for you... Liverpool have not beaten United in seven league games, while Cristiano Ronaldo is yet to score against Liverpool in seven matches. United are one of only two top-flight teams Rafa Benitez is yet to record a Premier League win against. The other one is... Birmingham.

1259: That quiz was harder than I thought apparently, but well done 100Sport10 on 606 who's first with the correct answer: Harry Kewell. He scored a consolation in the 2-1 defeat at Anfield in November 2003. Danny Murphy has scored a penalty since then, while Liverpool's last league goal against United was a John O'Shea own goal.

1253: Quiz for you... Name the last Liverpool player to score a goal from open play against Manchester United in the league.

1252: "I love my mum. She is timing the Easter family lunch to fit perfectly between the two games. The joy of having four sons!"
Pete, Altrincham, via text on 81111

1250: "Liverpool's defence are going to be torn apart. How do they expect the likes of Aurelio, Skrtel, and Arbeloa to match up against Rooney, Ronaldo, and Tevez? Meanwhile, Torres is going to have fun holding hands with Rio and Vidic."
Thomasbirty on 606

1246: BBC Radio 5 Live reporter Alan Green reckons Anderson has been told to "sit on" Steven Gerrard in midfield. He also says there was never any doubt Rio Ferdinand would start. However, he adds: "I will stake my mortgage on him not playing for England on Wednesday."

1242: TEAM NEWS Man Utd v Liverpool
Edwin van der Sar and Rio Ferdinand are both fit to start for Manchester United. Michael Carrick, Anderson, Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs line up in midfield with Cristiano Ronaldo. Wayne Rooney is up front, Carlos Tevez on the bench. Liverpool, as I said, are unchanged.

1242: "It's 8.15am here in the Dominican Republic - there's no TV or computer in sight, so I'm hitting the refresh button on my phone like a madman! Come on United!!"
Andy, on holiday in the rain, via text on 81111

1239: "I'm trapped at the in-laws, no escape from peeling potatoes. I feel like a referee surrounded by Chelsea players."
DirtyDolla on 606

1236: TEAM NEWS Liverpool
Easy really. Liverpool are unchanged from the team that beat Reading so Ryan Babel keeps his place in midfield. That team: Reina, Aurelio, Carragher, Skrtel, Arbeloa, Mascherano, Alonso, Gerrard, Babel, Kuyt, Torres. Subs: Itandje, Hyypia, Riise, Benayoun, Crouch.

1234: "Re 1222: How hypocritical is John Terry?! He acts like the fifith official in most games!"
Gav, Bangor, via text on 81111

1233: "It's going to be an eggcellent day's football."
Torres, GOAL! on 606

I'm so pleased you said that, not me.

1230: "Never mind the family. I'm off to a mate's for the day with two Chelsea, two Liverpool, two United, and three Arsenal fans including me. Its gonna be an epic Easter."
Fraser via text on 81111

1222: Interesting chat from Chelsea captain John Terry on BBC Radio 5 Live's Sportsweek this morning: "I agree there has to be a line drawn and confronting the referee has to be taken out of the game." On the Ashley Cole incident on Wednesday, he explains: "I saw their bench jump up and I ran forward to tell Mike Riley not to listen or be intimidated by their bench trying to force him into a decision. I spoke to him and he told me 'It was a high tackle and it's going to be a booking', I agreed and walked away. There was no argument from me or anyone else close to Mike Riley."

1217: "Why put these matches on an Easter Sunday when you know you're going to get invited around the girlfriend's family's house for lunch? Wish I was single."
Kev, Wales, via text on 81111

1214: "Just about to have a massive fry-up, then head to a pub around Stamford Bridge and then hopefully see Chelsea stuff Arsenal. Come on the Chels!"
Alan, London, via text on 81111

1211: Still waiting for team news... The big question in the early game is whether Rio Ferdinand will be fit for Manchester United. He's been out for a couple of games with a back injury, and Sir Alex Ferguson rates him very doubtful for today. But is Fergie just keeping Liverpool guessing?

1208: "Today is most important for Chelsea because there are so many doubts about Avram Grant in these big games. If Arsenal get a draw, that will be seen as a success for them and there'll be more criticism for Grant."
Daily Telegraph football writer Henry Winter on BBC Radio 5 Live

1201: It's snowing. BBC Sport's Sarah Holt has brought home-made cakes in. I'm buzzing after a battling second place in the inaugural Creme Egg 'n' spoon race here at BBC Sport towers. And we've got two massive, massive games to look forward. Do Easter Sundays get any better?

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

5 Liverpool 24 16 41

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

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

see also
How to watch Match of the Day
08 Oct 07 |  Match of the Day
Man Utd 3-0 Liverpool
23 Mar 08 |  Premier League
Chelsea 2-1 Arsenal
23 Mar 08 |  Premier League
Title race still alive - Ferguson
23 Mar 08 |  Premier League
Benitez backs sent-off Mascherano
23 Mar 08 |  Premier League

related bbc links:

related internet links:
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites