Arsenal did not allow Chelsea to score an offensive goal and Robin Van Persie scored twice in three minutes (59th and 62nd minutes) to send the Gunners to an impressive away victory at Stamford Bridge. An own-goal by Arsenal’s Johan Djourou in the 30th minute pushed the Blues ahead but Van Persie would not be denied in the second half. The Gunners push back ahead of Aston Villa for fourth position while Chelsea remain on 33 points and tied with Liverpool who play tomorrow at Anfield Road against West Ham United.
In the first Manchester Derby at the City of Manchester Stadium, Man United survived Cristiano Ronaldo’s second yellow in the 68th minute to defeat Man City 1-0. Wayne Rooney scored for United in the 42nd minute, the match’s lone goal. United stay solidly in third position on 28 points (and a match down) while City fade further into seventeenth.
At White Hart Lane, Steven Pienaar (the Egyptian, according to lore) edged Everton past suddenly slumping Tottenham, 1-0. Pienaar’s goal in the 51st minute was enough to break the Toffees out of the log-jam on 19 points and remain in seventh place. Spurs are stuck on 15 points though their differential keeps them out of the relegation zone, at least for now.
Finally, out at Fratton Park, five goals were scored in the final forty minutes, two by Blackburn and three by the home side, Portsmouth. Sean Davis’ 79th minute tally broke the tie, adding to Peter Crouch and Jermain Defoe’s earlier efforts. Blackburn need any points they can get but failed again to earn enough (or any) to get out of their solid position in the relegation zone. Pompey meanwhile keep pace with Everton, at least on points, and sit in eighth position.
As previously mentioned, Liverpool will host West Ham United tomorrow with a chance to retake sole possession of the top billing in the Premier League.