Zeroes Across the Top

cityEach of the top five teams on the Premier League table failed to score a goal today and Arsenal was pushed deeper into trouble by Man City. That’s where we’ll start:

As predicted, Man City were dominant at the City of Manchester Stadium, routing Arsenal 3-0. Stephen Ireland scored just before half and Robinho doubled the score in the 56th minute. Daniel Sturridge’s penalty in the 90th minute put the Gunners out of their misery, knocking them from fourth position to fifth. City, meanwhile pushed up into eleventh place.

Now to the leaders. Chelsea were unable to score in a nil-nil home draw to lowly Newcastle. But the Blues were able to remain atop the table on differential as Liverpool also drew. Toon move into fifteenth position for the time being.

Speaking of Liverpool, they also were unable to score at home though their opponent was marginally better. Fulham held them scoreless in a nil-nil draw at Anfield Road, keeping the Reds on pace in points with Chelsea but does not make up any ground in differential. The point keeps Fulham in the top half, placing ninth.

With a nil-nil draw at Villa Park, Aston Villa take back over fourth position while pushing Arsenal back to fifth. Villa certainly hoped for more out of a home match but United did well to earn a point against a hot club. For United’s part, they fail to make up ground on the leaders but retain third place on 25 points.

Elsewhere, Bolton jumped out on Middlesbrough early and held on to win 3-1 at the Riverside. Gretar Rafn Steinsson and Matthew Taylor scored within two minutes on eight and ten minutes to give Wanderers an early 2-0 lead. Emanuel Pogatetz brought one back for the home side in the 77th minute but Johan Elmander responded immediately for Bolton in the 78th to produce the final tally. With victories in recent weeks, Bolton now sit in twelfth place while ‘Boro lost out on a chance to pass Fulham, Pompey and Everton at home and find themselves in tenth.

Out at Fratton Park, Portsmouth looked to have earned a home victory over Hull City but an 87th minute own-goal kept Hull alive and ultimately forced shared points. Peter Crouch and Glen Johnson sandwiched a Michael Turner goal for the 2-1 lead but Noe Pamarot’s own-goal kept the match a draw in the end, 2-2. Pompey could have caught Hull on 21 points with a win but the shared points keep Portsmouth in eighth place while holding Hull City alone in sixth.

Finally, Mamady Sidibe’s 84th minute strike kept Stoke City from an embarrassing home draw to West Bromich Albion, giving the home side a 1-0 victory at the Britannia Stadium. Stoke inch up to thirteenth position while West Brom remain on eleven points and dead last in the Premiership.

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