Fulham 1 – Arsenal 0 (Premier League, August 23, 2008) (MOTD highlights here.) After Adebayor and van Persie had gone close, Brede Hangerland poked Fulham into the lead on twenty minutes. Two minutes later Adebayor was unlucky to see his header come back off the post. Although Arsenal continued to dominate possession, Bobby Zamora went close on the hour mark. With twenty minutes remaining van Persie flashed a stinging shot wide.
Liverpool 2 – Middlesbrough 1 (Premier League, August 23, 2008) (MOTD highlights here.) Boro put up stern resistance against Liverpool, having the best chance in the opening exchanges when Reina was forced to tip over Taylor’s snap-shot. For Liverpool, Gerrard came close with a right footer and Fernando Torres should have done better when teed up by Robbie Keane. Downing then showed excellent control to cut inside from the left, but he skewed his right-foot shot badly. In the second half Boro continued to impress, and Tuncay almost scored a spectacular goal but his shot went straight at Reina. Back came the Reds with a long shot from Torres, but the deadlock was eventually broken with a fabulous strike from Mido who hit a left footed rocket into the bottom corner. To their credit, Liverpool kept belief even though they were being outplayed, and Jamie Carragher equalised with a deflected shot (accredited to Pogatetz) that flew into the goal. Incredibly captain Steven Gerrard stole the points in the 94th minute, blasting home a winner which the Reds barely deserved.
Tottenham 1 – Sunderland 2 (Premier League, August 23, 2008) (MOTD highlights here.) After a dull first-half, Sunderland took the lead through Keiran Richardson with a fine right-footed strike. Spurs hit back through Jermaine Jenas but late on substitute and debutant Djibril Cisse headed in the winner from a Murphy cross to give Roy Keane’s side their first three points of the season.
Stoke 3 – Aston Villa 2 (Premier League, August 23, 2008) (MOTD highlights here.) Liam Lawrence gave Stoke the lead over Villa just after the half hour, dispatching a penalty after a debatable penalty had been awarded for a foul on Rory Delap. John Carew equalised before Ricardo Fuller put the Potters in front again. Martin Laursen was the next to equalise with just four minutes remaining, but four minutes into injury-time Mamady Sidibie grabbed the dramatic winner for the Premier League new-boys.
Blackburn Rovers 1 – Hull City 1 (Premier League, August 23, 2008) Jason Roberts flicked the home side in front only for Richard Garcia to equalise with a fine looping header.
Newcastle United 1 – Bolton Wanderers 0 (Premier League, August 23, 2008) Shay Given saved a penalty from Kevin Nolan before substitute Michael Owen headed home the winner.
West Brmowich Albion 1 – Everton 2 (Premier League, August 23, 2008) Goals from Leon Osman and Ayegbeni Yakubu gave the Toffees a barely deserved win, Roman Bednar pulled one back for the Baggies from the penalty spot.
Charlton 4 – Reading 2 (Championship, August 23, 2008) The Addicks won an eventful game featuring three penalties. Holland put Charlton ahead before Kevin Doyle hit a penalty for Reading against the bar. Andy Gray doubled the lead from the penalty spot only for Reading to respond through Sonko and a Hunt penalty. But Luke Varney and Hameur Bouazza scored on 69 and 72 minutes to give Charlton the victory.
Woking 0 – Forest Green 1 (Conference, August 23, 2008) Kaid Mohamed scored a screamer which arrowed in the top corner for the away win.