Manchester United 0 – Aston Villa 1 (Premier League, December 12, 2009) (MOTD highlights here.) United’s patched up starting eleven conceded after 21 minutes at home to Villa, Gabby Agbonlahor and Ashley Young combined on the left before Young’s cross was turned past Kuszczak by the Villa centre-forward. Wayne Rooney received a deserved booking by ref Atkinson after the striker dived in the box when looking for a penalty. (First half highlights here.)
Chelsea 3 – Everton 3 (Premier League, December 12, 2009) (MOTD highlights here.) Everton breached the Stamford Bridge defence after 12 minutes as Leighton Baines curled over a free-kick from the right which deflected off Terry’s back under a challenge Louis Saha before hitting a post and rebounding off Petr Cech and over the line. Chelsea were soon on an even-footing as Lampard teed up Didier Drogba on the edge of the area and the Ivorian’s first-time finish beat Howard. Once level the Blues forged ahead as Nicolas Anelka converted from a corner after the Toffees had failed to clear their lines. The Pensioners were far from their best however, and in the 5th minute of stoppage time at the end of the first 45, Yakubu Aiyegbeni drew Everton level after Terry had failed to clear a throw-in into the Blues’ box. (First half highlights here.) After their first half hiccups, all looked rosy for Chelsea when Branislav Ivanovic’s right-wing cross was scored on the volley by Didier Drogba. But again the Blues defence let them down as an Everton set-play exposed Chelsea’s soft centre once again at Luis Saha was fortunate to see the ball rebound off him and into the net.
Bolton 3 – Manchester City 3 (Premier League, December 12, 2009) (MOTD highlights here.) After their heroics against Chelsea last time out, City were brought back down to earth at Bolton as Ivan Klasnic (offside?) stabbed home the Trotters’ opener from Lee Chung-Yong’s shot after 10 minutes. Carlos Tevez pulled the Citizens level with a defected shot from the edge of the Bolton box, but the Reebok was rocking once again in the 44th minute as Gary Cahill curled a beauty into Shay Given’s top corner. But City went into the break at 2-all as Craig Bellamy slid Micah Richards through in the inside right channel and the full-back found the equaliser. (First half highlights here.) Bolton started the second half just as they did the first, Ivan Klasnic putting Megson’s side into the lead for the third time in the match. City then had Bellamy sent off for a second yellow, but Carlos Tevez again proved his goalscoring prowess by firing home the visitors’ third.
Tottenham 0 – Wolves 1 (Premier League, December 12, 2009) (MOTD highlights here.) Wolves were starring at their result of the season at halftime (first half highlights here) at White Hart Lane as the visitors defended a 1-goal lead earned after Milijas’ free-kick from the right was converted by a deft touch from Kevin Doyle.
Stoke 2 – Wigan 2 (Premier League, December 12, 2009) (MOTD highlights here.) Wigan struck after the quarter hour at Stoke, Thomas Sorensen saved Rodallega’s header from a Jason Koumas free-kick, but Emmerson Boyce was alert to bravely nodding the ball over the line. The Potters rallied after going behind and in the 37th minute they equalised when Tuncay broke the Latics’ offside trap before calmly stroking the ball into the far corner. (First half highlights here.) Stoke continued to pound the Wigan without finding the net, and they were punished in extreme circumstances by Maynor Figueroa’s quick thinking, the Honduran cracking an incredible free-kick from his own half directly into Sorenson’s top corner with 20 minutes remaining. Wigan barely had time to savour their lead as from a Stoke corner Ryan Shawcross outjumped Figueroa to level for Pulis’ men. At the death Huth hauled down Gomez (offside) in the box, only for Hugo Rodallega to fire a pathetic penalty which Sorenson saved with ease.
Birmingham 1 – West Ham 0 (Premier League, December 12, 2009) Lee Bowyer (six goals) scored the only goal of the game against his former club to secure Birmingham’s place in the top half of the after their seventh match without defeat, and increase the relegation worries of a West Ham side who had Mark Noble sent off in the closing stages.
Burnley 1 – Fulham 1 (Premier League, December 12, 2009) (MOTD highlights here.) Owen Coyle’s team fell behind to Bobby Zamora’s goal but Wade Elliott ensured Burnley would avoid just their second home defeat of the season when he struck with a blistering volley 10 minutes later.
Sunderland 1 – Portsmouth 1 (Premier League, December 12, 2009) (MOTD highlights here.)Â Sunderland had taken the lead through Darren Bent’s tenth goal of the season with 23 minutes gone but, although Andy Reid hit the bar with an 80th-minute free-kick, they failed to push home their advantage and were made to pay at the death. Younes Kaboul struck three minutes into stoppage time and was promptly sent off for removing his shirt in celebration having already been booked.
Hull 0 – Blackburn 0 (Premier League, December 12, 2009) Phil Brown: “It was a scrappy game. You tend to get sucked into a way of playing when you play against Blackburn instead of getting the ball down and playing the way we have played of late. ”
Barnsley 2 – Newcastle 2 (Championship, December 12, 2009) Kevin Nolan had put Newcastle ahead when he converted Andy Carroll’s flick in the sixth minute before Barnsley hit back through Emil Hallfredsson in the 52nd minute. Substitute Marlon Harewood’s 78th minute strike looked to have won it for Newcastle, but Bobby Hassell’s late header ensured Barnsley’s unbeaten run stretched to six matches.
Leicester 3 – Sheffield Wednesday 0 (Championship, December 12, 2009) Steve Howard opened the scoring after just seven minutes when he got on the end of Matt Fryatt’s chipped cross. Andy King doubled the Foxes’ advantage midway through the first half as he slotted home from close range. The Foxes wrapped up the win when a superb team move saw the ball break to King, who finished smartly from 12 yards out.
Brentford 0 – Leeds 0 (League One, December 12, 2009) Brentford and Leeds shared the spoils in a gritty 0-0 draw at Griffin Park where chances were few and far between.
Motherwell 2 – Celtic 3 (SPL, December 12, 2009) Georgios Samaras gave Celtic a perfect start at Well weaving past two defender before striking the Bhoys in front, but the hosts hit back before the break as Lukas Jutkiewicz and Mark Reynolds turned the match in Motherwell’s favour. (First half highlights here.) Tony Mowbray’s Super Hoops levelled after the break, Motherwell repeatedly failed to clear their lines when under pressure and Aiden McGeady curled a sweet strike into the top far corner. Ten minutes from time Celtic took the lead as their much-maligned striker Marc-Antoine Fortune smashed a 25-yarder into the top corner. (Second half highlights here.)
Rangers 3 – St. Johnstone 0 (SPL, December 12, 2009) Kris Boyd’s first half (highlights here) double for Rangers put the Gers’ 2-up at the break against St. Johnstone. Nacho Novo wrapped up the points with Rangers’ third five minutes in to the second half.
Valencia 2 – Real Madrid 3 (La Liga, December 12, 2009) (Longer highlights here.) Two goals from Gonzalo Higuain were cancelled out by David Villa and Joaquin, but Ezequiel Garay scored the crucial winner at the Mestalla as Real laid down their championship credentials.
Barcelona 1 – Espanyol 0 (La Liga, December 12, 2009) Barcelona broke the deadlock in the Catalonia derby against Espanyol when they home team were awarded a soft penalty when Xavi fell in the box, and Zlatan Ibrahimovic continued his fabulous goalscoring season with a decisive spot-kick. (First half highlights here.)
Zaragoza 1 – Athletic Bilbao 2 (La Liga, December 12, 2009) 16-year-old Iker Muniain came off the bench just before the hour and his cross three minutes later was weighted perfectly for on-loan Liverpool defender Mikel San Jose to power a header into the top corner past goalkeeper Javier Lopez Vallejo. Markel Susaeta netted the Basque club’s second with nine minutes left after picking up Muniain’s precise through ball before defender Carlos Diogo struck from distance for the home side in added time.
Bari 3 – Juventus 1 (Serie A, December 12, 2009) Ciro Ferrara is starring down the barrell after the Old Lady produced yet another dismal and insipid display. Riccardo Meggiorini put Bari ahead in the seventh minute only for David Trezeguet to bring Juve level midway through the first half. Paulo Barreto ensured Bari led at the interval as he earned and scored a penalty in the 44th minute, and former Juve midfielder Sergio Almiron sealed the win in the 86th minute to lift it to within one point of fourth-placed Parma.
Cagliari 3 – Napoli 3 (Serie A, December 12, 2009) (Longer highlights here.) Ezequiel Lavezzi broke the deadlock with a brilliant individual effort for Napoli, as he broke away between three Sardinian jerseys and stroked a precise right-foot angled drive into the far bottom corner. Michele Pazienzadoubled the visitors’ lead in the 65th minute, but with 15 minutes remaining Cagliari rallied. Joaquin Larrivey volleyed in the hosts’ first before Alessandro Matri’s header looped over De Sanctis and in off the underside of the crossbar in the 80th. The incredible then happened in injury time as Jeda, who had just come off the bench, put Cagliari 3-2 up as his first touch hit the back of the net with a towering header. Napoli though fought back with Mariano Bogliacino closing out a hectic match in which Lavezzi saw red at the death.
Werder Bremen 0 – Schalke 2 (Bundesliga, December 12, 2009) Schalke ended Bremen’s run of 23 competitive games without defeat courtesy of second half goals from Kevin Kuranyi and substitute Jan Moravek. Schalke move to second in the table on 31 points, while Bremen are fourth on 28.
Bochum 1 – Bayern Munich 5 (Bundesliga, December 12, 2009) (Longer highlights here, extended highlights here.) Mario Gomez got Bayern on their way at Bochum after 23 minutes, Mergim Mavraj turned in a left wing cross into his own net to double Bayern’s lead, and Ivica Olic made it three minutes before the interval. Bayern killed the match as a spectacle at the start of the second half as Ivica Olic headed home Munich’s fourth, and Danijel Pranjic increased the humiliation grabbing number five. Christian Fuchs replied with a consolation for Bochum with 14 minutes remaining.
Monchengladbach 5 – Hannover 3 (Bundesliga, December 12, 2009) Gladbach moved ahead of Hannover when Fromlowitz stuck the ball in his own net on the quarter hour, Rob Friend striking home the hosts’ second before Didier Ya Konan pulled a goal back for the visitors to give them a foothold in the match. Constant Djakpa’s own goal and Bradley’s drive put Gladbach in cruise control before Ya Konan scored his second of the game on 69 minutes. Ya Konan was then sent off for picking up a second yellow card and Hannover pulled it back to 4-3 through Christian Schulz three minutes from time. Hannover’s hopes of an unlikely comeback were thwarted in stoppage-time when Haggui put the ball through his own net for the second time in the game.
Hoffenheim 1 – Eintracht Frankfurt 1 (Bundesliga, December 12, 2009) Sejad Salihovic’s 9th minute penalty fired Hoffenheim ahead, but Pirmin Schwegler earned Frankfurt a point just past the hour mark.
Nurnberg 0 – Hamburg 4 (Bundesliga, December 12, 2009) (Longer highlights here.) After streaking past the Nurnberg defence at the start of the second half, Eljaro Elia produced a cute chipped finish to put Hamburg in the lead. Elia then teed up Marcell Jansen to score on the hour mark, Tunay Torun added Hamburg’s third on 66 minutes before Netherlands international Elia scored his second of the game on 74 minutes.
Freiburg 0 – FC Cologne 0 (Bundesliga, December 12, 2009)
Marseille 2 – Boulogne 0 (Ligue 1, December 12, 2009) (Longer highlights here.) OM moved with three points of leader Bordeaux. Gabriel Heinze scored for Marseille with a header in the 48th minute off a corner from Benoit Cheyrou. Nigeria fullback Taye Taiwo made it 2-0 by converting a penalty kick in the 54th after Lucho Gonzalez was fouled.
Le Mans 2 – Valenciennes 1 (Ligue 1, December 12, 2009) Anthony Le Tallec scored a stoppage-time winner as 10-man Le Mans beat seventh-placed Valenciennes 2-1. Sebastien Corchia’s opener for Le Mans had been cancelled out five minutes later by Gael Danic before the hosts had Modibo Maiga sent off for two bookable offences on the stroke of half-time.
Lens 2 – Nice 0 (Ligue 1, December 12, 2009) Kanga Akale and Toifilou Maoulida scored as Lens beat 10-man Nice 2-0 at home, with Mamadou Bagayoko dismissed for the visitors.
Nancy 1 – Rennes 2 (Ligue 1, December 12, 2009) Julien Feret put the hosts ahead, but a Bakaye Traore own goal four minutes into the second period levelled matters and Sylvain Marveaux scored a 69th-minute winner two minutes after Damian Macaluso was sent off.
Lorient 0 – Auxerre 0 (Ligue 1, December 12, 2009)
FC Twente 3 – NAC 1 (Eredivisie, December 12, 2009) (Longer highlights here.) Edwin De Graaf gave the visitors a halftime lead (highlights here) at the Arke Stadion, but Twente stepped up their efforts in the second half with a brace from Miroslav Stoch and a further strike from Bryan Ruiz earning Steve McClaren’s men a convincing win.
VVV Venlo 3 – RKC Waalwijk 0 (Eredivisie, December 12, 2009) Two goals in the space of six first-half minutes from Adil Aussar and Michael Timisella all but killed off any kind of RKC challenge with only a quarter of the game gone. Kens Leeman then wrapped up the points 11 minutes from time.
PSV 1 – AZ Alkmaar 0 (Eredivisie, December 12, 2009) Substitute Ola Toivonen was the match-winner as second-placed PSV grabbed a dramatic 86th minute goal to beat AZ Alkmaar 1-0.
Sporting Lisbon 0 – Uniao Leiria 1 (Superliga, December 12, 2009) Paulo Vinicius’ 26th minute strike lead Uniao to a shock victory at Sporting.
Olhanense 2 – Benfica 2 (Superliga, December 12, 2009) Carlos Fernandes put the hosts ahead after nine minutes and then, after Javier Saviola had equalised in the 28th minute, Vitor Toy put them back on top shortly after. But despite the 42nd minute dismissal of Angel Di Maria, Benfica continued to fight and earned their point when Nuno Gomes popped up at the death.
Standard Liege 0 – Roeselare 1 (Jupiler League, December 12, 2009)
Club Brugge 1 – KV Mechelen 1 (Jupiler League, December 12, 2009)
Fenerbahce 3 – Ankaragucu 2 (Super Lig, December 12, 2009) Brazilian forward Alex put Fenerbahce in the lead after 27 minutes, but goals from Darius Vassell and Aydin Karabulut turned things around for Ankaragucu. Fener hit back, with Alex making it 2-2 on the hour before Daniel Guiza netted the winner with just two minutes left in regular time.
Iraklis 0 – Panathinaikos 1 (Greek Super League, December 12, 2009) Panathinaikos’ superiority paid off in the 72nd minute when Sortiris Ninis won the ball in the area and hit the net with a powerful shot.
Pas Giannina 1 – Ergotelis 0 (Greek Super League, December 12, 2009)
Aris 0 – Asteras Tripolis 1 (Greek Super League, December 12, 2009)
Shakhtar Donetsk 2 – Illitchivets Mariupol 1 (Ukrainian Premier League, December 12, 2009) A mistake in the Shakhtar defence allowed Pavel Kirilchik to break clear of the backline and lob the goalie to fire Illitchivets into the lead. Two goals in the opening 10 minutes of the second half turned the match for Donetsk, Ruslan Fomin’s smart swivel and shot was followed by a sublime left-footed free-kick from Kostyantyn Kravchenko.
Arsenal Kyiv 2 – Chernomorets Odessa 0 (Ukrainian Premier League, December 12, 2009)
Metalist Kharkiv 3 – Dnipro Dpetrovsk 2 (Ukrainian Premier League, December 12, 2009)
Ahi Natzrat 0 – Beitar Jerusalem 1 (Ligat ha’Al, December 12, 2009) John Gregory’s reign as the new manager of bottom-club Ahi Natzrat started badly, Beitar claiming the points courtesy of Amit Ben Shushan’s winner on the hour.
Red Star Belgrade 5 – Spartak Subotica 2 (Serbian Super League, December 12, 2009)
Kashima Antlers 1 – Gamba Osaka 2 (Emperor’s Cup, December 12, 2009) Gamba went ahead in the 29th minute when Masato Yamazaki headed home Endo’s free-kick. Kashima managed to level through Yuzo Tashima shortly before the break, but it was the visitors who regained the lead in the 69th minute when Yamazaki fired home Hideo Hashimoto’s return ball from 10 yards.
Shimizu S-Pulse 3 – Albirex Niigata 2 (AET) (Emperor’s Cup, December 12, 2009)
Brisbane Roar 0 – Adelaide United 1 (A-League, December 12, 2009) A goal from Fabian Barbiero kept Adelaide United’s A-League season alive and dented Brisbane Roar’s hopes of a making the top six, the Reds recording a 1-0 win at the Suncorp Stadium.
Central Coast Mariners 0 – Melbourne Victory 3 (A-League, December 12, 2009) Second half goals from Carlos Hernandez and Matthew Kemp plus an own goal from Nigel Boogard handed a 3-0Â win to Victory and kept the visitors at the top of the A-League ladder.
Argentinos Juniors 5 – Huracan 1 (Apertura, December 12, 2009) Argentinos’ Nsstor Ortigoza netted a penalty goal after 8 minutes, while Juan Mercier scored five minutes before the break. Gabriel Hauche closed outArgentinos’ season with a second half hattrick.
Lanus 0 – Independiente 0 (Apertura, December 12, 2009)
Auckland City 0 – Atlante 3 (FIFA Club World Cup, December 12, 2009) The opening goal came in the 36th minute Daniel Arreola with Christian Bermudez doubling the lead after 68 minutes and Lucas Silva finishing the job in the 90th minute. Auckland will play TP Mazembe in a playoff for fifth and sixth on Thursday morning.