Soccer Magazine

Weekend Recap (Video)

By Thetoaststaff
Tottenham v West Ham:  One word can describe Spurs’ performance against West Ham on Saturday: unlucky.  What could easily have been a 4-0 thumping of the Hammers turned into a 0-0 draw and two points lost.  Gareth Bale, Michael Dawson, and Aaron Lennon all put shots off the frame of the goal, and Jermain Defoe shockingly put a shot wide after trying to tap in a quick rebound from just a couple yards out.  West Ham keeper Robert Green also came up big with some key saves helping to move his squad out of the relegation zone.
Aston Villa v Wolves:  Aston Villa continues to struggle, as they drop a big three points to Wolves on Saturday.  This loss keeps Villa only a point out of the relegation zone.  This was Wolves’ first win over rivals Villa in 31 years.  The lone goal came from Matt Jarvis.  After a Milijas cross was flicked on by Berra, Jarvis was there to send a shot off the post and in.  Aston Villa created a chance with 10 minutes left in regulation, but Ashley Young’s shot richocheted off the crossbar, along with Villa’s chances to collect a point from the derby.
Blackburn v Blackpool:  Blackburn and Blackpool played to a thrilling 2-2 draw at Ewood Park on Saturday.  An early goal by Luke Varney was disallowed as he was correctly ruled offside.  Blackpool were awarded a controversial penalty kick, which Charlie Adam finished for their first goal.  It looked as if Gary Taylor-Fletcher had gotten his shot away before he was taken down, but either way, the free kick was awarded.  Charlie Adam struck again four minutes later off a nicely taken free kick from 25 yards out that curled into the top corner of the net.  Blackburn captain Samba scored in the 49th minute after the ball rattled around in the box for a spell, bringing the Rovers within one.  Samba barely missed a chance at equalizing in the 76th minute when his effort was cleared off the goal line by Stephen Crainey of Blackpool.  They did, however, eventually get their equalizer.  It happened three minutes into stoppage time when Robinson sent in a free kick that Blackpool keeper Kingson couldn’t reach, allowing Hoilett to head it home to steal a late, crucial point.  
Manchester United v Bolton: Manchester United struggled to get anything going against Bolton at Old Trafford on Saturday.  There weren’t a whole lot of chances from either side, but Bolton were definitely making the hosts nervous for much of the game.  Forward Wayne Rooney was all over the place, creating several chances for himself and others but none came to fruition, including a spectacular high-side kick volley from outside the box that could have squeaked in above the keeper if he weren’t on his guard.  United Defender Johnny Evans was sent off with a straight red after a lunging challenge for a 50-50 ball against American Stuart Holden, an attempt in which he was the first to reach the ball.  No matter, the referee still produced the red.  Oddly enough, the dismissal seemed to energize United who played well in the final minutes.  They earned a winner with three minutes left in the match when Dimitar Berbatov finished a rebound effort as Bolton keeper Jaaskelainen couldn’t handle a long strike from Nani. 
Stoke v Newcastle: Stoke City blasts Newcastle United 4-0.  It is the first time Stoke has scored four goals in a Barclay’s Premier League match.  Their first goal came in the 27th minute when Jon Walters headed home his eighth goal of the season.  Their second came when Newcastle defender Sol Campbell made a critical mistake, sending a weak clearing effort right into the path of Jermaine Pennant who fired it home.  Their third came on a cracking free kick by Danny Higginbotham who simply decided to go through the wall rather than around it.  And finally, the fourth came from Ricardo Fuller in stoppage time as he clinically finished beyond Newcastle keeper Harper.  
West Brom v Arsenal:  Arsenal drop a big two points to West Brom at the Hawthorns on Saturday when the two settle for 2-2 draw.  Arsenal were scrambling after three minutes when West Brom’s Steven Reid headed home the host’s first goal.  Their mountain grew as Peter Odemwingie capitalized on another Arsenal keeper/defender mix-up and put West Brom up 2-0.  Arsenal got one back in the 70th minute from Andrey Arshavin, and completed the comeback in the 78th with a goal from Robin van Persie.  The Gunners were unable to pull out a victory and drop two points at a critical point in the title race.  They now sit five points behind leaders Manchester United.   
Wigan v Birmingham: Wigan secures a dramatic victory over Birmingham City in what may prove vitally important as the relegation battle progresses.  Liam Ridgewell struck first for Birmingham, as a failed clearance led to a ball being whipped back into the box.  Ridgewell was the first to pounce on it and finished it beyond the Wigan keeper, though Ridgewell could easily have been ruled offside.  Birmingham keeper Ben Foster fumbled a Wigan cross, setting the ball right on the foot of Tom Cleverley who wasn’t going to miss from only two yards out and drew the game even at one.  It wasn’t until nearly two minutes into stoppage time that the deadlock would be broken.  Defender Maynor Figueroa blasted a shot from outside the box, which nestled comfortably into the back of the Birmingham net.
Everton v Fulham:  Despite Clint Dempsey scoring on his American compatriot Tim Howard, Everton get the last laugh in a 2-1 win for the Toffees.  Seamus Coleman started the scoring off with a simple 35th minute header back across the  Fulham keeper.  Louis Saha went under the Fulham wall on a free kick, surprising Fulham keeper Schwarzer and putting Everton up 2-0.  Clint Dempsey snagged a consolation goal back for Fulham with a low shot from outside the box, but they were still to drop two points at Goodison Park. 
Sunderland v Liverpool:  This week’s goal of the week comes from Luis Suarez of Liverpool.  It was the Reds’ second goal of the game and came from an impossible angle from the right side of the net.  Suarez somehow managed to sneak it past Sunderland keeper Simon Mignolet to secure a 2-0 win for the visitors.  Their first goal came from a Dirk Kuyt penalty kick on a foul clearly committed outside the box.  No matter, the kick was awarded and finished by the Dutchman.  Sunderland made little noise in the 2-0 home defeat. 
Chelsea v Manchester City:  The weekend’s biggest came last as Chelsea took on Manchester City at Stamford Bridge.  The two went into the halftime break drawn at zero.  Super-signing defender David Luiz of Chelsea was the first to get on the board with a nice header in the 78th minute, followed by a spectacular run and eventual goal by Brazilian midfielder Ramires in stoppage time.  Manchester City were not without chances in this match as Petr Cech was called on to make a nice diving save on a Yaya Toure in the first half.  The win continues Chelsea’s hopeful run in the title race as they pass Manchester City for third on the table and remain nine points back of Manchester United.  
Note: For whatever reason, the embedded videos do not seem to play on the Internet Explorer web browser.  We are not sure why, but we do know they work on Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Safari.  The moral of the story? Drop Internet Explorer.  I mean.. how can you possibly live without a fully-functioning Free Kicks and French Toast?
Sincerely,
The Toast

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