Sunday, February 25, 2007

Premiership Weekend Roundup: February 24-25

Fulham 1 - 2 Manchester United
Maybe it was the European hangover, maybe it was taking this game for granted after thumping Fulham 5-1 to kick off the season, but United looked very sluggish on Saturday. They didn't help themselves by conceding the opening goal, when Edwin van der Sar came out to clear the ball and collided with Nemanja Vidic instead. But they did have the benefit of some laidback refereeing, with Rio Ferdinand shown a yellow card instead of red after raising his hands to Tomasz Radzinski, and neither Paul Scholes nor Michael Brown being booked despite spending 90 minutes kicking the shit out of each other.

No question that Fulham were unlucky not to come away with at least a point. But this would be the point where we drag out the clich├ęs about the best teams being able to win even when they don't play well.

Liverpool 4 - 0 Sheffield United
I love Steven Gerrard for many reasons, but one of them is not his ability to fall down in the penalty area. To be fair, I do think they were both penalties. But he doesn't help his cause by appealing to the ref even before he's hit the ground, all "Hey mom! Look at me!"

Robbie Fowler converted both penalties and gave Liverpool a 2-0 lead after a first half in which they'd played reasonably well but struggled to break down Sheffield United at the back. As the Blades tried to chase the game in the second half, Liverpool went on to score twice more and cap off a comfortable win. Javier Mascherano made his debut for the Reds and looked a bit shaky to start with, but he improved as the game progressed. I don't even want to think about how Rafa's going to fit him, Gerrard, Alonso and Sissoko all into the lineup, because it make my head hurt.

Other results
Blackburn 3 - 0 Portsm'h
Tottenham 4 - 1 Bolton
Wigan 1 - 0 Newcastle
Charlton 4 - 0 West Ham
Middlesbrough 2 - 1 Reading
Watford 0 - 3 Everton

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