ANDREW VORCE - Monday, May 16, 2011
Jermaine Jones and Blackburn gave up the draw at home that made Manchester United Champions while Jonathan Spector's starting performance wasn't enough for West Ham who were relegated after an away collapse at Wigan.
Blackburn 1 - 1 Manchester United
Jermaine Jones and Blackburn squandered all three points at home to Manchester United as Paul Robinson brought down Javier Hernandez in the box.
Blackburn went in front just 20 minutes in as Brett Emerton was was played a cross inside the 18 yard box. Emerton's original cross was deflected wide by stand in keeper Tomasz Kuszczak, with Blackburn keeping the ball in play. The eventual cross found Emerton on the far side, and the midfielder volleyed his chance home.
United only needed a point to secure a record breaking 19th Premier league title and were able to wrap up the point after Robinson's clumsy challenge on the Mexican forward Hernandez. After deliberation between the center referee and his linesman, the spot kick was awarded. Wayne Rooney stepped up and smashed home the Premier League winning goal.
The cards went all Blackburn's way as Jones picked up yet another yellow card, joined in the book by Steven N'Zonzi and Michel Salgado. Blackburns last game of the season comes at home against Wolves.
West Brom 1 - 0 Everton
Tim Howard and Everton were beaten just once at West Brom but could not muster a goal of their own as they lost away from home.
West Brom's buy of the season Peter Odemwingie came up with the goods as he danced past and out muscled the Everton back line. Howard tried to close the angles but Odemwingie's cross found Youssouf Mulumbu inside the area just 10 minutes in.
Victor Anichebe should have gotten Everton back in the game but he shot straight at the keeper in his one-on-one chance, squandering any chance at a draw. It went from bad to worse for Everton as substitute Diniyar Bilyaletdinov was shown a straight red just four minutes after coming on for a slide tackle on James Morrison.
Everton will look to end the season on a high note as they face Chelsea at home next Sunday.
Arsenal 1 - 2 Aston Villa
Michael Bradley came on as a sub as Aston Villa won away at Emirates Stadium.
Darren Bent was the difference maker as he scored both of Villa's goals in quick succession in the first half. His first came in the 11th minute as a big ball in from Kyle Walker left the striker alone inside the area. The striker took the ball off of his chest before acrobatically puting it over Wojciech Szczesny for the opener.
Bent made it two just four minutes later as Ashley Young slipped him in behind the defenders with relative ease. The striker again timed his run to perfection, going one on one with Szczesny before tucking his shot past the young goal keeper.
Robin van Persie thought he had scored in the first half as his shot beat everyone including Friedel, but the far post was it's target as it bounced away harmlessly. Van Persie would eventually get on the score sheet as the ball bounced around dangerously inside the 18 yard box, and the striker lifted his shot over the rooted Friedel.
Nicklas Bendtner came off the bench for Arsenal and picked up a yellow card as Richard Dunne, Stiliyan Petrov, Nigel -Reo-Coker and Ashley Young were all booked for Villa. Up next for the Vilans is an home game against Liverpool at Villa Park.
Birmingham 0 - 2 Fulham
Clint Dempsey and Fulham won away from home at St. Andrews Stadium to push their team into eight place.
Dempsey thought he had scored after a clever free kick found Danny Murphy with the ball on the byline. Squaring it across the penalty area Dempsey's out side of the foot shot deflected over for a corner kick, but the American really should have scored. Fulham were able to score from the resulting corner kick, with Brede Hangeland powering home a header just five minutes in.
Fulham were out of sight the entire game with chance after chance going astray. Bobby Zamora and Steve Sidwell both hit the post, but it was Hangeland that eventually sealed the deal in the 49th minute. The ball was cleared off the line but only as far as the big defender who side footed his chance home with a list of blue shirts in front of him.
The yellow cards all went to Fulham with Dempsey picking up a yellow alongside Eidur Gudjohnsen, Andrew Johnson, Murphy, and Carlos Salcido. Fulham round out the season at home playing Arsenal at Craven Cottage.
Wigan 3 - 2 West Ham
Jonathan Spector went 62 minutes before getting replaced by Scott Parker as West Ham collapsed away at Wigan.
West Ham were in heaven at the end of the first half as Demba Ba pushed his team two goals ahead of their hosts. Ba got his first just 12 minutes in as a successive slew of chances rained into the Wigan area. The front man found himself free in between two players before heading Thomas Hitzlesbergers cross in from six yards out.
His second came from another Hitzlesberger set piece, but this time his cross soared beyond Ba and to the back post for the awaiting James Tomkins. The entire Wigan back line shifted to meet the new challenge of Tomkins, but his clever header back across the face of goal for the awaiting Ba to head home in the 26th minute.
West Ham held on for dear life for the rest of the half but were able to stop everything Wigan threw at them until the 57th minute. Tomkins felt hard done by the referee as Wigan were awarded a free kick on the edge of the area after a foul on Charles N'Zogbia. The midfielder picked himself up to take a brilliant free kick to kick start Wigan's attack.
Conor Sammon came on at half time for Wigan and provided the difference in the 68th minute. A minute before Ba could have sealed his hat trick, only for Ali Al Habsi to make a brilliant save, pushing Wigan on to score in their next attack. Sammons picked up possession just outside the 18, cutting in onto his right foot around the defender before tucking past Robert Green.
West Ham's fates were sealed as N'Zogbia's clever step over on the edge of the 18 allowed him all the space he needed once inside the area. His fierce effort squirmed under the arms of Green in the 94th minute. The loss at DW Stadium confirmed that West Ham have been relegated to Championship play next season.
The future of Parker is up in the air, but the player picked up a yellow card in his short outing in the second half. N'Zogbia was also booked in the game. Coach Avram Grant was fired at DW Stadium immediately after his press conference. Their final game in the Premier League will be at home to Sunderland next Sunday.
Stuart Holden's Bolton got edged out by Blackpool, losing away from home at 4-3.
Marcus Hahnemann's Wolverhampton Wanderers won 3-1 at Stadium of Light against Sunderland.