United charge to the title as the Toon slide towards the Championship; City topple Villa; Spurs claim a big win against Boro; Hammers continue Wigan’s bad run

Newcastle 1 – Manchester United 2 (Premier League, March 4, 2009) (MOTD highlights here.) After a lightening start to the match at an icy St. James Park, it was the Magpies who broke the deadlock after 8 minutes when a Gutierrez shot was only parried by Edwin van der Sar and Peter Lovenkrands couldn’t believe his luck as he ended the United keeper’s amazing shut-out record. With the United defence rattled Obafemi Martins narrowly sent a shot wide. But after taking the lead the Toon could not hold on to it, O’Shea drive forward in the 20th minute, he picked out Wayne Rooney in the box, and the number 10 swivelled and crashed in the equaliser past Harper. (First half highlights here.) After the break United scored their second, Coloccini made a shocking error trying to cut out a Rooney pass, Park stole in and prodded the ball to Dimitar Berbatov who scored.

Manchester City 2 – Aston Villa 0 (Premier League, March 4, 2009) After James Milner brought down Shaun Wright-Phillips in the box, Elano stepped up to give City the lead from the spot. At the death City added a second, Shaun Wright-Phillips played a one-two with Stephen Ireland before scoring in the far corner.

Tottenham 4 – Middlesbrough 0 (Premier League, March 4, 2009) (MOTD highlights here.) Captain Robbie Keane netted inside the opening 10 minutes to set the ball rolling, Roman Pavlyuchenko doubled the home side’s lead with a 14th minute strike, with Aaron Lennon capping a fine first half display with a third five minutes before halftime. (First half highlights here.) Lennon was a potent threat throughout, and he bagged a second after Keane was the supplier, leaving the midfielder to dink a precise lob over the onrushing Jones.

Wigan 0 – West Ham 1 (Premier League, March 4, 2009) Carlton Cole gave West Ham the lead then got himself sent off before halftime for a second bookable offence. But the Hammers held on for all three points, with the help of Wigan being reduced to ten men themselves seven minutes after the restart as a result of Lee Cattermole’s reckless challenge on Scott Parker.

Stoke 2 – Bolton 0 (Premier League, March 4, 2009) James Beattie scored his fifth goal in seven appearances for the Potters since his arrival in January during the first half. Rory Delap’s long throw-in then set up Ricardo Fuller for Stoke’s second. Stoke are now out the bottom three.

Fulham 0 – Hull 1 (Premier League, March 4, 2009) A late late goal from Manucho gave Hull a much needed win.

Blackburn 0 – Everton 0 (Premier League, March 4, 2009) Goalless at Ewood Park in a game of few clear cut chances.

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Kilmarnock 1 – Celtic 2 (SPL, March 4, 2009) Aiden McGeedy teased the Killie defence before Scott McDonald benefitted to give Celtic the lead. Danny Invincible brought the hosts level ten minutes later, but in the second half the McGeedy and Scott McDonald tandem combined again with the Aussie striker claiming a superb solo goal for the winner.

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Mallorca 1 – Barcelona 1 (Agg. 1-3) (Copa Del Rey, March 4, 2009) Gonzalo Castro crashed home a stunning strike on the stroke of halftime to give Mallorca the lead. But Lionel Messi levelled nine minutes from time as Barca progressed.

Athletic Bilbao 3 – Sevilla 0 (Agg. 4-1) (Copa Del Rey, March 4, 2009) Athletic Bilbao need just four minutes to move ahead of Sevilla as Javi Martinez found the back of the net. Bilbao then netted two quick goals just after the half hour, Fernando Llorente headed home the second and Gaizka Toquero tucked in the third.

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Sampdoria 3 – Inter Milan 0 (Coppa Italia, March 4, 2009) Inter embarrassed themselves conceding the opener at Samp, Rivas was caught aimlessly holding onto the ball at the back, Antonio Cassano nipped in and beat Cesar after 8 minutes. The hosts then doubled their lead through Giampaolo Pazzini’s close-range header. Inter fell to pieces to concede a third, Cassano teased Maicon before sending a cross into the box, the defence fluffed their chance to clear and Pazzini punished the Serie A leaders.

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Bayer Leverkusen 4 – Bayern Munich 2 (DFB Pokal, March 4, 2009) (Longer highlights here.) Bayern’s terrible start to 2009 followed them into the cup where Tranquillo Barnetta gave Leverkusen a 54th minute lead with a fine strike past Rensing. Arturo Vidal headed in the second from a Barnetta corner and Bayern’s humiliation was completed when Patrick Helmes added a third. Bayern almost turned around the match with quick-fire goals from Lucio and Miroslav Klose but Bayer held on to see out the match with Kiessling added a fourth at the death.

Wolfsburg 2 – Werder Bremen 5 (DFB Pokal, March 4, 2009) (Longer highlights here.) Bremen surged into a 2-nil lead inside seven minutes thanks to goals from Diego and Mesut Ozil, but they were pegged back before halftime. Edin Dzeko reduced Wolfsburg’s arrears in the 10th minute and then scored his second of the evening after 43 minutes to make it 2-2. Diego netted from the penalty spot on 55 minutes to restore Bremen’s advantage and on-loan Chelsea striker Claudio Pizarro bagged a late brace (71 & 89).

Hamburg 2 – Wehen 1 (DFB Pokal, March 4, 2009) Mladen Petric also scored twice (17 & 37) as Hamburg overcame second division side Wehen. Sandro Schwarz’s strike in the 86th minute was merely a consolation.

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Rodez 3 – PSG 1 (AET) (Coupe De France, March 4, 2009) (Longer highlights here.) PSG started confidently and defender Sammy Traore grabbed the opener after nine minutes. Third division Rodez levelled when Jeremy Choplin raced into the area before beating Landreau in the 66th minute. The match when to extra time where Choplin gave Rodez the lead six minutes from time with a stunning 35-yard belter before Miguel Pacios put the result beyond doubt four minutes later.

Lille 3 – Lyon 2 (Coupe De France, March 4, 2009) Lille went ahead on 22 minutes with Michel Bastos tapping in a cross from Eden Hazard. Jean Makoun levelled two minutes later heading home a Pjanic corner. Hazard put Lille back in front on 44 minutes when he skipped past several challenges before firing home a beauty, but Lyon responded in stoppage time through Anthony Mounier’s close range finish. With extra time looming, Eden Hazard ran past three Lyon players on the right flank before lofting a perfect cross for Fauvergue to score.

Rennes 3 – Lorient 0 (Coupe De France, March 4, 2009) Jimmy Briand had the hosts in front after 24 minutes and Romain Danze ended the game as a contest six minutes later. Jires Kembo Ekoko added another in second half stoppage time to compound Lorient’s misery.

Ajaccio 0 – Monaco 2 (Coupe De France, March 4, 2009) Park Chu-young put them on their way to a comfortable success after 31 minutes, before Alexandre Licate secured a 2-0 win with 16 minutes left on the clock.

Dijon 1 – Grenoble 1* (Pens. 3-5) (Coupe De France, March 3, 2009) Grenoble drew with Ligue 2 side Dijon as Nassim Akrour cancelled out Stephane Morisot’s opener, but they won on penalties to advance to the last eight.

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Twente 1 – De Graafschap 0 (AET) (KNVB Beker, March 4, 2009) Steve McClaren’s dreams of a league and cup double were kept alive by a sublime chip from Marko Arnautovic in the last minute of extra time.

Heerenveen 3 – NEC 1 (KNVB Beker, March 4, 2009) NEC scored first at Abe Lenstra Stadion through Lasse Schoene on 37 minutes, but the lead proved short-lived. Within a minute Paulo Henrique levelled matters with an exquisite lob over the keeper (first half goals here), before late second half efforts from Patrik Ingelsten and Viktor Elm secured Heerenveen’s progress.

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Fenerbahce 3 – Sivasspor 1 (Turkish Cup, March 4, 2009) All the goals arrived inside the last 25 minutes. Baris put Fener ahead before Dracena bundled in the second for the host. Bilica walloped in an unstoppable 30-yard free-kick to bring Sivasspor back in the game. But any hope of a comeback were snuffed out when Alex de Souza started and finished the move to claim the third.

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Cercle Brugge 2 – Mechelen 1 (Beker van Belgie, March 4, 2009) All goals were scored in the last half hour, with Cercle’s Honour Gombani breaking the deadlock on 61 minutes and Stijn de Smet went on to double the lead 14 minutes later. Bjorn Vleminckx got one back in the 82nd minute giving Mechelen hope for the second leg.

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Olympiakos 2 – PAOK 0 (AET) (Greek Cup, March 4, 2009) Diogo’s well-executed header on the stroke of halftime was the difference on the night. With the game pushed to extra time, Englishman Matt Derbyshire was the hero of the night with a winninh header in th 108th minute.

Panathinaikos 2 – Panserraikos 3 (Greek Cup, March 4, 2009) The Pana defence switched off midway through the first half with Panserraikos’ Baykara picking up the ball free on the left hand side, cutting inside and finding the far corner. Nastja Ceh doubled the visitors advantage from the spot before Ceh bagged the third to seemingly wrap up the match. Pana had a late rally, Christodoulopoulos pulled a goal back with a fine free-kick with 15 minutes remaining before Papazoglou set up a grandstand finish putting through his own net in injury time.

Asteras 1 – Panionios 0 (Greek Cup, March 4, 2009) Bastia worked his way through the Panionios backline with a neat one-two and finish to give Asteras a 35th minute lead.

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Young Boys 3 – Grasshoppers 0 (Swiss Cup, March 4, 2009) Young Boys’ fabulous winning hot-streak continued to six consecutive wins against Grasshoppers as Ghezal, Hochstrasser and Doumbia killed the tie with three goals in fourteen minutes.

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Hajduk Split 4 – Cibalia 1 (Croatian Cup, March 4, 2009)

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Metalist 0 – Dynamo Kiev 2 (Vyscha Liga, March 4, 2009) Dynamo won the league preview of the all-Ukrainian tie awaiting in the UEFA Cup.

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Al-Sadd 1 – AC Milan 2 (Friendly, March 4, 2009) Al Sadd took AC Milan in a testimonial match to honour long-serving Qatar international Jafaal Rashid. The Italians took the lead through Alexandre Pato before Mohammed Gholam brought the hosts level in the 36th minute. Sixty seconds later Luca Antonini restored the Rossoneri’s advantage at that’s the way the match ended.

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Deportivo Tachira 0 – Boca Juniors 1 (Copa Libertadores, March 4, 2009) An 87th minute header by Luciano Figueroa gave six time champions Boca Juniors a 1-0 victory over Deportivo Tachira and pushed the Argentinians to the top of Group Two in the Copa Libertadores.

Universitario de Sucre 0 – Cruzeiro 1 (Copa Libertadores, March 4, 2009) Thiago Ribeiro netted the sole goal of the game with a header seven minutes before the break.

Universidad de Chile 3 – Aurora 0 (Copa Libertadores, March 4, 2009) Manuel Iturra, Manuel Villalobos and Jose Rojas supplied the goals as their side moved up to four points, one ahead of Colombians Boyaca Chico and three in front of Brazilian side Gremio.

Sport Recife 2 – LDU de Quito 0 (Copa Libertadores, March 4, 2009)


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