Everton 3 – Manchester United 1 (Premier League, February 20, 2010) (Longer highlights here, MOTD highlights here.) It took Manchester United 15 minutes to go in front at Goodison, Rooney picked out Antonio Valencia wide right, the winger rifled a low cross into the danger area and Dimitar Berbatov thumped in the opener off the underside of the bar. United’s lead lasted just three minutes when a long punt upfield was picked up 20-yards from goal by Diniyar Bilyaletdinov and the Russian lashed a left-footed bullet into Van der Sar’s near post. (First half highlights here.) 15 minutes from time Everton put themselves inÂ position to be the first team this season to beat Ferguson’s charges after going behind first, Pienaar cut the ball back from the left byeline and sub Dan Gosling was perfectly placed to side-foot home the Toffee’s second. With United chasing the game sub Jack Rodwell scored a goal he’ll never forget to wrap up the points in the 89th minutes, as the upstart waltzed past Evans with consummate ease before guiding his low shot past Van der Sar’s outstretched hand.
Sir Alex Ferguson’s post match interview can be seen here.
Wolves 0 – Chelsea 2 (Premier League, February 20, 2010) (Longer highlights here, MOTD highlights here.) After having been outplayed by Wolves throughout most of the first half, Chelsea struck five minutes from the break courtesy of a goal created by Yuri Zhirkov as the Russian left back cut in from the left, aided by Ballack, before crossing for Didier Drogba to slide in the sitter. (First half highlights here.) Wolves battled for an equaliser, but in the 67th minute they were sucker-punched by a route-one Chelsea goal as Cech pumped the ball down the middle and Didier Drogba powered his way through to net his 25th of the season.
Arsenal 2 – Sunderland 0 (Premier League, February 20, 2010) (MOTD highlights here.) The Gunners broke the deadlock with Sunderland just before the half hour when Emmanuel Eboue broke in the inside right channel and crossed the ball across the six yard box where Nicklas Bendtner swept in the opener. Arsenal struggled to kill off the Black Cats, but at the death the hosts won a penalty that Cesc Fabregas confidently dispatched.
West Ham 3 – Hull 0 (Premier League, February 20, 2010) (MOTD highlights here.) West Ham had a lightning start against fellow relegation strugglers Hull as Valon Behrami picked up the ball in midfield, raced into the Hull box via a one-two with Franco before firing past Myhill. The Tigers had Craig Fagan harshly sent off for a second bookable offence on Diamanti, and the Hammers were quick to turn the screw against the 10 men as Faubert sent a long pass over the top to Carlton Cole who timed his run to perfection and coolly clipped his shot into the net. A stoppage-time screamer from Julien Faubert earned the Hammers a big three points in their fight for survival.
Portsmouth 1 – Stoke 2 (Premier League, February 20, 2010) (MOTD highlights here.) In financial ruin and under serious threat of being wound up, Portsmouth took the lead against Stoke 10 minutes from the break when Owusu-Abeyie cut in from the left, played a one-two with O’Hara before smacking a right-footed drive on target which was saved, and Frederic Piquionne pounced on the rebound and lifting it over the sprawling Sorensen from an acute angle. Robert Huth levelled things up just after the break when he powered home a header from a corner. A goal in injury time from Salif Diao broke Pompey hearts and left the financially stricken club rooted to the bottom of the Premier League.
Nottingham Forest 1 – Middlesbrough 0 (Championship, February 20, 2010) A poor match was settled by Chris Cohen’s goal early in the second half which kept Forest’s promotion charge on course.