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Live - Premier League



RESULTS:

Tottenham 0-0 Arsenal
West Ham 0-1 Man Utd

GOALFLASHES AND MAJOR INCIDENTS (all times GMT)

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

By Paul Fletcher

1808: Well, that is it from me and Clive. "Good stuff," said Clive of today's action, not that he watched any of it.

I guess you'd have to say that the day belongs to Man Utd, who won 1-0 once again, while Tottenham and Arsenal shared the honours in the north London derby.

I have really enjoyed today - I just hope it has been the same for you.

1807: No standout star in the Player Rater stakes, but Ryan Giggs's goal is enough to see him sitting proudly at the top of the pile on 90 minutes on 7.27. Head on over and have a play yourself.
Rate the players

1805: "Clive's predictions have proved far better than Stevo's. Get him on here every week!"
lobotics on 606
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1803: Just to clarify the situation at the top of the Premier League - Man Utd are two points clear of Liverpool with a game in hand. Which by more rusty calculations puts them in a pretty strong position.

1800: If you were to put Radio 5 Live right now you'll be able to listen to 606, with Spoony at the helm.

1758: Oops. Very much a 1-0 victory for Man Utd. I sincerely hope I didn't temporarily wrong-foot anyone with the 0-0 full-time. The key digit on my left hand has very much let me down at the wrong time.

1755: Another clean sheet, a spot-on prediction from Clive (see 1237), and Man Utd's march towards retaining their Premier League title continues.

1753: Full-time: West Ham 0-1 Man Utd

1752: A final West Ham attack and a good ball in from Savio but it is headed clear.

1751: Into injury-time....

1750: Man Utd win a free-kick, Cristiano Ronaldo certainly takes his time. He strikes the ball into the wall.

1749: Man Utd are ticking down the clock.

1748: Lucas Neill attempts to tackle Cristiano Ronaldo, who goes down. Strong penalty appeals but it is not given.

1746: Carlos Tevez shoots over from an acute angle. His last action as he makes way for Ji-Sung Park. West Ham also make a change as Velon Behrami is replaced by Diego Tristan.

1745: West Ham are looking to push forward but constantly charged with the task of breaking down two banks of four. They are not finding it easy.

1742: "Valon Behrami has been fantastic this evening, he's done the work of two men and looked composed and full of purpose on the ball. What I'd give to see him pop up with an equaliser!"
Grimey via text on 81111

I have to agree - Behrami has done a massive job in terms of ensuring that Lucas Neill has not been isolated with Cristiano Ronaldo charging at him. Great diligent defensive duties by Behrami.

1741: Just about 10 minutes left. Ref Phil Dowd has a word with Cristiano Ronaldo. Doesn't like his lip, so to speak.

1739: Man Utd string a series of passes together, nothing too threatening, along and around the half-way mark mostly, but while they have the ball the Hammers will struggle to score.

1736: A change for West Ham as Mark Noble makes way for Savio.

1735: West Ham are finding their way to the edge of the Man Utd area but then proceedings are becoming very congested indeed. The Hammers are shooting from 20 yards and not really troubling Edwin van der Sar.

1733: "That goal make Giggsy the only player to have scored in every Premier League campaign since it started."
Myles via text on 81111

1731: Carlton Cole makes a brilliant defensive header to clear a Man Utd corner. The game is definitely opening up as West Ham start to chase an equaliser.

1729: Carlton Cole connects with a pull-back but his shot is blocked by Rio Ferdinand. Another case of right place, right time for a Man Utd defender.

1726: The Hammers have approximately 25 minutes to find an equaliser. Carlton Cole almost produces one but his strike is wide with Edwin van der Sar beaten.

1723: What have West Ham got? They win a corner but the ball is cleared.

1721: GOAL West Ham 0-1 Man Utd
Ryan Giggs leaves Carlton Cole sliding into an newly empty corner of the pitch, runs into the box and dribbles past Scott Parker before shooting low into the far corner. Simply brilliant - and his first Premier League goal of the season.

1719: Hmm. Nemanja Vidic is not booked for an exhibition of shirt pulling that reveals the superb quality of the stitching in Carlton's Cole's jersey.

Oh, hold on. A full minute later the yellow card finally appears.

1718: Lucas Neill is rightly booked for a rather obvious shove on Cristiano Ronaldo. Not much style or grace about that one.

1717: Scott Parker makes the cleanest of connections. Alas the shot is well wide.

1714: Plenty of singing from the home fans at Upton Park. Rafael displays a nifty series of stepovers before drawing a foul. He is a cracking young player - though I don't know how Gary Neville feels about that.

1712: No openings since Lucas Neill's shot. Not seen that much from Man Utd so far this half. I wonder if Sir Alex Ferguson is considering a change.

1711: There has been a bit of confusion over Edwin van der Sar's record. The run by Chris Woods at Rangers - 1,196 minutes during the 1986-87 season - included all competitions and Van der Sar did actually concede during the Fifa Club World Cup. So as things stood at half-time, by our reckoning Van der Sar had gone 1,167 minutes without conceding in the league, but in all competitions he is "only" 855 minutes without being beaten.

1709: (see 1650) "Uefa's website suggests Danny Verlinden for Club Brugge holds the record of 1,390 minutes in 1990."
Steve, High Wycombe, via text on 81111

1708: West Ham attack and the ball drops to Lucas Neill, who tries to bend it in from 20 yards. Routine save for Edwin van der Sar.

1706: West Ham win a corner. Carlton Cole and Edwin van der Sar compete for the ball. Van der Sar fails to hold it but, guess what, is awarded a foul.

1705: Lights, camera, action. But will there be a goal?

1704: The teams are out, second-half almost upon us.

1703: "Luis Enrique, the famous Barca player, then of Sporting Gijon, finally beat Resino on 19 March 1991."
Stevie, Winchester, via text on 8111

1701: A large number of 606s and texts seem to suggest that Resino is indeed the man.

1700: Can we please, please, please have a goal? Please.

1656: (See 1650) "World record is 1,275 minutes by Abel Resino."
BoyceyBoyceyBoyceyBoycey on 606
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Unconfirmed, obviously. He used to play for Atletico Madrid and is now their coach.

1653: "This will do us Liverpool fans well. Chelsea, Arsenal and now Man Utd all drawing in the same weekend. Suits me. Come on you Hammers!"
Craig Dean, Newport, via text on 81111

How many are there? What? Those chickens you're counting of course.

1650: "What's the world record for the longest time without conceding in a league game?"
Anonymous via text on 81111

I'm trying to find that out for you.

1649: Half-time West Ham 0-0 Man Utd
Entertaining in parts, though hardly a classic. What this game - and the afternoon in general - needs is a goal.

1647: "Berbatov is possibly the most casual, laziest player ever, but also one of the best in the world...how does that work!?"
Terrific_Torres on 606
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Crazy isn't it. A little bit like life itself.

1645: A Scott Parker cross is deflected out for a corner. Edwin van der Sar fails to hold Mark Noble's corner but the ref blows for a foul. Not sure why but goalkeepers seem to be heavily protected these days.

1643: Sir Alex Ferguson is surveying proceedings from his technical area. I imagine he will be moderately happy with what he has seen so far. A relatively even game with not too many alarms for his team.

1641: West Ham enjoy a brief period of pressure but it comes to nothing. No real sign of a goal at the moment. Hint, hint.

1637: Edwin van der Sar and his Man Utd defence have just set a new British record for the longest time without conceding in a league match, beating Aberdeen (goalkeeper Bobby Clark) during the 1970-71 season. United have now gone 1,156 minutes since conceding in the Premier League.

1636: Cristiano Ronaldo dances and dazzles his way into the penalty box but there are three West Ham shirts in close proximity. His shot strikes a claret and blue shirt and Ronaldo wants a penalty. Nothing doing.

1635: I'm not sure that Carlton Cole has yet secured his starting berth against Spain on Wednesday.

1633: Brilliant, brilliant save from Rob Green after Cristiano Ronaldo sharply diverts a poor Paul Scholes strike towards goal.

1630: Man Utd win a corner - this game is increasingly end to end - that Cristiano Ronaldo heads wide. He certainly made a good contact but his direction was poor.

1629: Oh dear, Carlton Cole is momentarily unmarked six yards from goal but the ball is caught under his feet and he cannot get a shot off. Man Utd snuff out the danger.

1628: The Hammers enjoy a decent spell of possession but it comes to nothing and Man Utd break quickly. Rob Green's attempted clearance strikes Carlos Tevez - fortunately for the West Ham keeper the ball does not deflect to a Man Utd player.

1625: Dimitar Berbatov has the ball in the West Ham goal with a finish from eight yards but he was offside when Paul Scholes' struck the ball from 20 yards. Scholes' effort hit Scott Parker and fell to Berbatov but his goal was quickly ruled out.

1622: A shot from Berbatov is blocked. The West Ham midfield has competed ably so far, not allowing players like Paul Scholes time on the ball.

1619: A sloppy, lazy pass from Dimitar Berbatov gifts possession to the opposition. He really can be infuriating at times.

1617: Fabio Capello at Upton Park. West Ham have hit their stride now and with any luck someone will score a goal today.

1614: Carlton Cole is played through, Rio Ferdinand is tugging his shirt but the striker shoots, trying to lift the ball over Edwin var der Sar, who saves.

1613: Hold the back page... Man Utd almost concede. A corner drops to Lucas Neill but his decent strike is held by Edwin van der Sar.

1611: Scott Parker tries to pick out a team-mate with a probing pass. Far too much purchase on the pass and Edwin van der Sar easily collects.

1608: Cristiano Ronaldo down the left, toying with Lucas Neill. His cross is cut out and Man Utd win a corner that Nemanja Vidic heads over.

1607: Surging run from Cristiano Ronaldo down the left but his low cross finds a West Ham player. Ryan Giggs tries his luck from distance but misses by some way.

1605: Decent sounding atmosphere at Upton Park. Carlos Tevez got a good reception from the Hammers fans.

1604: Man Utd wearing white, for what it's worth.

1602: The action has started, slightly late, at Upton Park.

1559: "I fancy West Ham to take the full three points. Man United have results in their favour, but I'm still not convinced."
ElSquirrel on 606
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1555: Very good news on the football front because kick-off at Upton Park is almost upon us.

1551: Carlton Cole - up front for the Hammers today and in the England squad. Will he cap his inclusion with a celebratory goal?
Cole in England squad

1550: London has not been the happiest hunting ground for Man Utd this season, with Sir Alex Ferguson's team having lost at Arsenal and drawn at Chelsea and Tottenham.

1548: At the risk of slightly over-cooking the Clive goose, when I just mentioned that plenty of people have been talking about his predictions on 606 and the texts, he said: "Jeepers creepers."

1547: In the race for top spot in Player Rater, Luka Modric (7.31) is neck-and-neck with Wilson Palacios (7.30) for pole position, while Emmanuel Eboue is at the back of the field on 2.97. On his return to the Lane, Robbie Keane is a very middle of the road 6.25. But there is still plenty time for you to have your say.
Rate the players

1545: West Ham go into today's match in decent form, unbeaten in eight games in all competitions. Man Utd aren't doing too badly either. Should be a cracker....

1539: Jose Mourinho and Gianfranco Zola captured in a very friendly hug at Upton Park. Nobody can say Mourinho is not doing his homework ahead of Inter Milan's Champions League tie with Manchester United.

1532: Will Man Utd concede today?

1532: (See 1237) Time for more Clive?

His post-match verdict: "My prediction wasn't far off was it."

Meanwhile...

"Obama who? I'm already making 'Clive 2012' badges."
balajazz on 606
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"Clive sounds like the kind of chap who makes a capital cup of tea. Tell him to get on it."
Jon Tattersall, Reading, via text on 81111

"Forget Fletch, Stevo and Cheese, we want CLIVE!"
Anonymous via text on 81111

"Does Clive play football? If so, what position is he? I bet he's a towering centre forward. Would he like to sign for Newcastle? We could do with somebody like him at the moment."
Anonymous via text on 81111

"Clive has brightened up my afternoon on the tills."
Perky via text on 81111

1531: West Ham name the same side that drew 0-0 at Arsenal, with new signing Radoslav Kovac lining up on the bench. Manchester United bring in Rafael for the absent Gary Neville, Paul Scholes comes in for Darren Fletcher and Ryan Giggs replaces Ji-Sung Park, while there is still no return for Wayne Rooney.

1530: TEAMS

West Ham: Green, Neill, Collins, Upson, Ilunga, Behrami, Parker, Noble, Collison, Cole, Di Michele. Subs: Lastuvka, Nsereko, Boa Morte, Kovac, Spector, Tristan, Sears.

Man Utd: Van der Sar, Rafael Da Silva, Ferdinand, Vidic, O'Shea, Ronaldo, Scholes, Carrick, Giggs, Tevez, Berbatov. Subs: Foster, Park, Nani, Welbeck, Fabio Da Silva, Fletcher, Eckersley.

Referee: Phil Dowd (Staffordshire)

1529: "It's the Arsenal fans who are happier at the final whistle, while Spurs' Luka Modric is a picture of desperate disappointment after missing that late chance.

"Plenty of sweat, incident and action, but no great quality on show in a game that does little to move Spurs out of the danger zone and hardly helps Arsenal's bid to get back into the top four - and no dream return for Robbie Keane."
Chief football writer Phil McNulty at White Hart Lane

1526: Adel Taarabt had the last effort of the game, shooting wide for Spurs. Arsenal can be pleased with the way they played after they were reduced to 10 players. But what a late chance for Luka Modric. It could have been such a better afternoon for Spurs.

1525: Full-time: Tottenham 0-0 Arsenal

1523: Tottenham break and really should score. Luka Modric has the opportunity to shoot or square the ball to one of several team-mates. He shoots and his effort is saved.

1522: Almost an Arsenal goal, Carlo Cudicini making a brilliant save to deny Nicklas Bendtner.

1521: Not exactly 4-4 is it?

1520: Arsenal are now just a couple of minutes away from what will be a hard-earned point. Remember, they have played all the second half with 10 men.

1518: Clichy, blood pouring, is replaced by Kieran Gibbs. Tottenham make a change, with Adel Taarabt on for Aaron Lennon.

1516: Clichy goes down hurt with a head injury. He and Bent definitely clashed. The ref doesn't stop play and Arsenal break, with Carlo Cudicini fumbling a cross from Nicklas Bendtner that took a deflection off Michael Dawson. Cudicini eventually collects.

1515: Benoit Assou-Ekotto whips in a decent cross and Gael Clichy makes an excellent defensive header with Darren Bent lurking.

1514: Can I tempt fate? This game is now looking like it has 0-0 written all over it.

1513: "White Hart Lane is suddenly very subdued, as if the Spurs fans sense their side is running out of ideas against a resilient Arsenal defence. Harry Redknapp is starting to venture more from his technical area, urging substitute Pascal Chimbonda to provide the width his side so badly needs.

"Arsene Wenger's assistant Pat Rice is constantly urging the Arsenal defence to move further from their deep defensive positions."
Chief football writer Phil McNulty at White Hart Lane

1511: I'll have West Ham-Man Utd teams news on here as soon as I have it. Shouldn't be too long now.

1510: Robbie Keane picks the ball up and breaks into the edge of the Arsenal box. He looks for support but there isn't any. Why? Spurs should be the team pushing to win this game.

1509: "If this game doesn't end as a draw I will smash every window of my house!"
gaz2612blue on 606
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How many is that?

1507: Spurs win a free-kick, Luka Modric whips the ball in. It is a great delivery and Manuel Almunia comes out to punch the ball clear. About 15 minutes left.

1504: Samir Nasri, who has had a very quiet game, knocks a free-kick into the box but it comes to nothing.

Spurs make another change, with Pascal Chimbonda on for Vedran Corluka.

1502: Robbie Keane strikes the ball on the turn and drills it across goal but his effort drifts narrowly wide.

1500: Alex Song misses the best chance of the game. The Arsenal player is six yards from goal when the ball comes in but he guides it wide of goal with his right foot.

1459: At the risking of tempting fate, Arsenal look quite comfortable at the moment. Spurs were really going at them for the first 20 minutes of the half but have lost a little impetus.

1457: (See 1442) "Your comments are very misleading. In fact the Royal Prerogative is still prevalent in the English legal system and it would be remiss of you to suggest otherwise." Phil, Manchester, via text on 81111

I'm instantly bowing to your superior (sounding) knowledge. Just not my period I'm afraid. Give me twentieth century regimes any day.

1456: Of the 76 red cards Arsenal have collected since Arsene Wenger took over in 1996, four have come against Tottenham. The last one was Gilles Grimandi in 2000, when Arsenal won 2-1. The other two dismissals in addition to Grimandi and Emmanuel Eboue came in the same game - Martin Keown and Fredrik Ljungberg in November 1999, when Tottenham last won a league game against the Gunners.

1455: "Spurs in the ascendancy but Arsenal holding firm. Andrey Arshavin is warming up with vigour - how long will Arsene Wenger wait before introducing the lavishly-gifted Russian? Eduardo is also stalking the touchline, receiving a huge ovation from the Arsenal fans as he prepares to return after that horrific broken ankle."
Chief football writer Phil McNulty at White Hart Lane

1454: No sign of Andrey Arshavin yet but Darren Bent comes on for Spurs, replacing Roman Pavlyuchenko.

1450: The clock has just reach the hour mark. Arsenal have to survive another 30 minutes to take something from this game. There has certainly been very little indication since the restart that they have ambitions of winning.

1448: Just for the record, Emmanuel Eboue's red was the 76th under Arsene Wenger.

1447: Robbie Keane scores on his return for...... oh, no he doesn't, but he probably should have. The striker heads over Aaron Lennon's cross. A good chance wasted.

1444: At the risk of stating the blindingly obvious, goals are what win games and Spurs need one. Tottenham are playing with urgency and skill but haven't quite got the hang of the business of finishing.

1443: Aaron Lennon picks out Vedran Corluka but his limp strike from the edge of the box is easily saved. All Tottenham.

1442: "Should I finish my essay on James I's Royal Prerogative or watch the second half? Help me Fletch."
dr_elementary on 606
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The thing about the Royal Prerogative is that it is all in the past now. The present is all about the near future.

1441: Roman Pavlyuchenko bursts into the area from the left and has time to pick his spot but is well wide of the target. A disappointing effort.

1439: Denilson concedes a free-kick about 30 yards from goal. Roman Pavlyuchenko smashes it way over.

1438: No early openings. Fair play to Arsene Wenger, who still has two strikers on the field.

1436: "More stats Fletch, the last time Eboue was sent off, Arsenal lose to Manchester United 4-0."
red_side_up on 606
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1435: Mike Dean chomping away as the second half starts.

1432: Here's some chat from Macca, recently back from Cuba. Emmanuel Eboue's sending off has seen his standing in Player Rater plummet to 2.95 at half-time, despite him looking one of Arsenal's better performers until his dismissal. At the other end of the scale, Tottenham's Luka Modric is shading matters on a very decent 7.22. Feel free to head on over and make your mark:
Rate the players

1429: How popular is Emmanuel Eboue?

"Rumour has it the Arsenal fans cheered louder than the spurs fans when Eboue left the field."
Sarah, Barnet, via text on 81111

1427: Oh go on then, let us have some more Clive.

"Can I buy the rights to "Clive the movie"? It would be epic."
Hazey, Northampton, via text on 81111

"Is Clive single?"
Anonymous via text on 81111

I believe he is.

"I miss Clive. Has he returned from his walk yet?"
Matt, Wirral, via text on 81111

Oh yes. He has been moved to the core of his very being by the first-half drama.

1423: "Lots of endeavour, but very few actual clear-cut chances. Spurs have the numerical advantage and look the more likely side, but if Arsenal are to get any joy it will come down the flanks.

"Arsenal will just be happy to have reached half-time after that somewhat eventful end to the first period."
Chief football writer Phil McNulty at White Hart Lane

1421: That was a very decent half of football - lacking only in the goals department. Should Harry Redknapp go for broke after the break? Surely he won't get a better chance against Arsenal.

1420: Half-time: Tottenham 0-0 Arsenal

1419: Wilson Palacios tries his luck from distance. His effort swerves and forces a decent save from Manuel Almunia.

1417: I get the definite impression Arsenal just need to get through to the break. Three minutes of injury time.

1416: "Pandemonium here and seemingly more bodies on the touchline than on the field of play as Arsenal's afternoon takes a very nasty turn for the worse. Emmanuel Adebayor was already being carried around the pitch as Eboue sees red for a flare-up with the increasingly influential Luka Modric.

"The much-maligned Eboue had actually been one of Arsenal's better performers up until that point, but he was always in danger after his mindless early booking for dissent. Wenger a picture of disgust again, but whether it is with the officials or his player is a mystery."
Chief football writer Phil McNulty at White Hart Lane

1414: "As a neutral I'm really enjoying this game. Best I've seen in a while."
Football_is_my_religion on 606
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1413: Spurs have been the better side so far but have not turned supremacy into goals. Arsenal still have two up front but I wonder if they will park the bus after the break.

1410: Ah, a replay has just shown that Eboue slightly kicked out at Modric. Silly. Very, very silly.

1408: RED CARD
DRAMA. I thought Emmanuel Eboue had escaped a second yellow. Maybe he had, but the defender doesn't seem to know when silence works best and is sent from the field by Mike Dean. I'm still not exactly sure what for.

Meanwhile, Nicklas Bendtner is on for Adebayor.

1408: Wow. I thought Emmanuel Eboue was going to get his second yellow but referee Mike Dean instead books a rather bemused looking Luke Modric for diving.

1405: Twang. Emmanuel Adebayor is running after the ball and just pulls up with a face contorted in agony. Must be a hamstring. Tottenham fans look delighted.

1404: Vedran Corluka tries to shepherd the ball out but is dispossessed and Emmanuel Adebayor is inches away from slotting home Gael Clichy's low cross. A let off for Spurs. I'm rating this game so far. Agreed?

1402: Taxi for Alex Song and Luka Modric bursts forward before forcing a save with a low strike from 20 yards.

1401: Arsenal burst forward and Carlo Cudicini needs two attempts to get hold of Kolo Toure's low cross. A worrying moment for Spurs fans.

1400: Arsenal stroke the ball along their backline as they attempt to put a string passes together. The move breaks down and Aaron Lennon gets the better of Gael Clichy but the Spurs player rather scuffs his shot and it drifts wide.

1358: "Who is that wearing Eboue's shirt?"
arsenalofmegadeth on 606
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Very droll.

1355: "Not much joy for Robbie Keane so far - but plenty of energy and effort, as indeed there was from him at Liverpool. Arsenal's bench looked unhappy with Emmanuel Eboue for his yellow card. Ridiculous badgering of referee Mike Dean, who eventually - and rightly - lost patience."
Chief football writer Phil McNulty at White Hart Lane

1354: Jermaine Jenas is in space 25 yards from goal and he tees up a shot. Oh dear. He mis-times his effort and it rolls limply to an Arsenal defender.

1352: Gael Clichy makes a great sliding tackle in the area on Luka Modric. Just as well or it was penalty time.

1351: Spurs win another corner and again Arsenal do not look convincing. Emmanuel Adebayor eventually boots the ball up-field.

1349: Arsenal's Emmanuel Eboue has made a very impressive start to this game but is booked for dissent.

1347: A chance for Roman Pavlyuchenko. The ball bounces in front of him and he shoots on the half-volley 14 yards from goal but fires over. It was a technically difficult chance but he was completely unmarked.

1346: Emmanuel Eboue has the ball in the net but the whistle has already gone for a foul by Emmanuel Adebayor as Spurs desperately scrambled to clear their lines.

1343: Chants of "Going down" from the Arsenal fans. What can they possibly mean?

1343: "Lively start by Spurs - but some concern on the home bench about the threat Arsenal are posing down the right-flank. Harry Redknapp's right-hand man Joe Jordan is desperately trying to pass information to Benoit Assou-Ekotto, who does not hear the advice. Fair warning because seconds later Arsenal sprung the Spurs defence in exactly that position."
Chief football writer Phil McNulty at White Hart Lane

1341: (See 1328) By popular demand:

"Get Clive giving some stats, he can be our very own c-facts!"
Steve, Slough, via text on 81111

"When's Clive's autobiography coming out? I'm hooked."
Matt via text on 81111

1339: Tottenham's Aaron Lennon cuts in from the left flank and forces a routine save from Manuel Almunia. I would describe this as a bright opening.

1338: Robin van Persie with a great through ball and Emmanuel Eboue shoots across goal and wide. A warning for Spurs.

1337: Arsenal have their first spell of possession but don't actually threaten the opposition goal.

1335: Just seen a replay of the penalty shout - Gallas did get the man and not the ball. Seen 'em given.

1334: Spurs win another corner. This one is allowed to bounce dangerously through the Gunners penalty box. Shortly after Spurs have a penalty shout turned down for a challenge on Robbie Keane by William Gallas.

1332: We'll have some West Ham-Man Utd news for you as soon as we get it but for the moment all eyes are focused on White Hart Lane. Spurs have an early free-kick out wide that is bundled out for a corner.

1331: And we are under way...

1328: Last reference to Clive...

"My first car was called Clive. He too did his best and is now retired. Respect."
Rachel Tyrrell, Lincoln, via text on 81111

Clive is so excited about the Spurs-Arsenal game that he has just gone for a walk.

1326: Looks very parky at White Hart Lane as we wait for the players to emerge. Plenty of singing from the fans. You've really got to try to enjoy yourself given the amount you have to shell out to watch top-flight football these days.

1323: "Spurs are helping to kick off World Orphan Week here at White Hart Lane today - and have roped the men and women of Her Majesty's Media in on the fund-raising. They are donating 50 to the SOS Children's Villages Campaign for each member of the press that "wears something WOW" today.

"This consists of wearing purple fuzzy wigs - think Everton's Marouane Fellaini - or purple glitter wigs and you get the idea. Do they look ridiculous? Of course, but a fine gesture by Spurs."
Chief football writer Phil McNulty at White Hart Lane

1321: Steffen Iversen and Tim Sherwood anyone? They scored the last time Tottenham beat Arsenal in the Premier League. That was in November 1999. Martin Keown and Freddie Ljungberg saw red that day as Spurs won 2-1.

1317: Not long now until kick-off. I see that Gareth 'I've still to play in a winning side in a Premier League fixture' Bale is on the bench.

1313: (See 1237) "I love Clive already! Lets make him famous! CLIVEEE-OHH! CLIVEE-OHH! HE SITS TO FLETCHES LEFT, HE WORKS FOR TELETEXT!"
Oli Wilton, Telford, via text on 81111

Can we make that Ceefax?

"Clive sounds top. I reckon society would be infinitely more palatable if there were more of his ilk around."
Cen via text on 8111

One thing I should mention about Clive is that he sings one line from a song several thousands times in one shift. And when you are sat next to him....

1310: "Fletch, just a little heads up. Martin Skrtel arrived for us last season in January from Zenit and had a shocker of a debut against Havant."
red_side_up on 606
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I am very assuming you are a Liverpool fan? Good bit of info. I just saw Arsene Wenger interviewed, he suggested that Arshavin might get 20 minutes.

1307: "Arshavin on the bench? Why buy a player that could change the teams fortunes and not start him?"
Sunil via text on 81111

Possibly because the Russian league season finished in November and thus he lacks match fitness. Add to that the fact he spent most of the week back in his native country and has hardly trained with his new team-mates.

1303: "I am delighted to see Eduardo back in the team! What a guy!"
emiratesgooner on 606
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I'm sure that every right-minded person would agree with that sentiment. Great to see him recover from what was a terrible, shocking injury.

1259: "Spurs fans are clearly delighted to have Robbie Keane back in the ranks. A huge cheer when his name is announced in the starting line-up. Keane's performance will be one of the most intriguing aspects of this north London derby. Will the proven Premier League goalscorer who looked so lost at Liverpool return to form back on familiar territory?"
Chief football writer Phil McNulty at White Hart Lane

1257: "Can you tell us more about Clive? Ceefax was the weapon of choice before the days of the internet."
Nigel, Leeds, via text on 81111

Clive describes himself thus: "He is someone who tries to do his best and is looking forward to his retirement."

1254: Robbie Keane returns for Tottenham alongside Roman Pavlyuchenko, while Wilson Palacios and Jermaine Jenas start in the centre of midfield.

Andrey Arshavin has to settle for a place on the Arsenal bench, where he is joined by Eduardo, who has not featured for the first-team squad in the Premier League since breaking his leg last season. Robin van Persie is in for Nicklas Bendtner.

1252: TEAMS

Tottenham: Cudicini, Corluka, Dawson, Woodgate, Assou-Ekotto, Lennon, Jenas, Palacios, Modric, Pavlyuchenko, Keane. Subs: Gomes, Bale, Zokora, Huddlestone, Bent, Taarabt, Chimbonda.

Arsenal: Almunia, Sagna, Toure, Gallas, Clichy, Eboue, Song Billong, Denilson, Nasri, Adebayor, Van Persie. Subs: Fabianski, Eduardo, Ramsey, Djourou, Arshavin, Bendtner, Gibbs.

Referee: Mike Dean (Wirral)

1249: "Fletch you haven't plugged 606 yet. Why?"
Oledzhqkali on 606
Join the debate on 606

You lot are so hard to please. Great name by the way.

1247: "My wag's been calling Arsenal's new Russian 'Our Sharon' all week... Someone have a word!"
Tim, Chelts, via text on 81111

I have to say that is much better than what I have heard some people calling him.

1243: I love a north London derby. I have no vested interest in it at all but relish a bit of passion and endeavour. Too many games these days strike me as being a touch humdrum. No danger of that today surely.

I went to watch one in the early 1980s, travelling down from the north on a trip organised by the local church. The priest loved his footy and took us to Highbury. At that stage in my sorry life I had never seen so many people in one place. In fact I'd probably never seen so many people period. It was possibly the most confusing and scariest afternoon of my life. The following day I was completely disorientated by the chimes of Big Ben (I was stood below it) and walked into someone with my ice cream.

1237: Let us get this clear nice and early - I don't have Stevo's gifts for predictions and thus won't be doing any. However, sat to my left is Clive. A veteran of Ceefax and a man with no interest at all in football. I cannot think of anyone better to hit us with some predo's.

Clive predictions:
Tottenham 1-1 Arsenal
West Ham 0-1 Man Utd

Get down the bookies while there is still time, I reckon.

1235: Off out this afternoon? Don't want to miss on the action? Fear not. You can still follow this text commentary - God forbid - and get all the scores on your mobile. From a UK phone, just text FOOTBALL to 81010, it will cost you 10 to 15p and you will receive in return a link to our mobile site. Click on that, and you'll be straight through (then bookmark it so you never need to text that number again). The cost of being online on your phone will vary according to network and your own contract.

1233: Arsenal might be fifth in the Premier League table but they are top of the pile in other regards. The Gunners have won 181 corners so far in the league this season, more than any other team. I wonder how many they have scored from?

1230 GMT: Afternoon all.

Robbie Keane back in a Tottenham shirt - who'd have thought it eh?

And to think that he never actually managed a Premier League victory over the Gunners in his first spell as a Spurs player.

Tottenham could well do with three points this afternoon - mind you, Arsenal have some ground to make up if they are to finish in the top four and need a victory as well.

I'm thinking we have all the ingredients for a cracking game of football, though surely I'm asking too much for a repeat of the 4-4 at the Emirates earlier in the season?

Mind you, there'll be no pyrotechnics from David Bentley today as he is suspended.

As for West Ham v Manchester United - will Sir Alex Ferguson's team ever concede again?

I read in one of the Sunday papers that Wayne Rooney had taken Colleen out for a meal and paid for it with a two-for-one voucher. Touch. You just cannot get a two-for-one offer on class or style.

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
West Ham 0-1 Man Utd
08 Feb 09 |  Premier League
Tottenham 0-0 Arsenal
08 Feb 09 |  Premier League
Sunday's football photos
08 Feb 09 |  Football


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