|Rediff India Abroad Home | All the sections|
Adebayor double puts Arsenal top
September 16, 2007 01:23 IST
Last Updated: September 16, 2007 01:46 IST
Arsenal continued their domination over north London [Images] rivals Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday, winning 3-1 to move top of the English Premier League.
Togo striker Emmanuel Adebayor scored twice for the slick Gunners either side of a stunning effort from Cesc Fabregas after a Gareth Bale strike had raised Tottenham hopes of a first victory over their arch-rivals since 1999.
Liverpool slipped to second after drawing 0-0 at Portsmouth and Chelsea, who could have joined Arsenal on 13 points, were also frustrated in a goalless home draw with Blackburn Rovers.
Manchester United moved into the top four for the first time this season with a scrappy 1-0 victory at Everton.
West Ham United rose to fifth with a 3-0 home victory over Middlesbrough, Sunderland ended a run of three league defeats with a 2-1 win over Reading and Bolton Wanderers lost for the fifth time in six league matches, 1-0 at Birmingham City.
England [Images] striker Emile Heskey limped off with a suspected broken bone in his foot during Wigan Athletic's 1-1 draw with visitors Fulham.
Tottenham manager Martin Jol has been under scrutiny after a poor start to the season but things were looking better for the Dutchman when Bale's free kick after 14 minutes beat Spanish keeper Manuel Almunia at the near post.
Arsenal wasted several chances as did Dimitar Berbatov for Spurs before Adebayor made it 1-1, heading in a Cesc Fabregas free kick after 65 minutes.
Fabregas later left Tottenham's midfield trailing in his wake before smashing a shot past England goalkeeper Paul Robinson from 25 metres.
Substitute Darren Bent made a hash of a chance to equalise for Spurs before Adebayor sealed the victory deep in stoppage time with a superb volley that Thierry Henry [Images], now with Barcelona, would have been proud of.
"It's a bit early to talk about being on top, but we are consistent, it's pleasant to watch," Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger told reporters.
"We will never forget Thierry Henry but we have shown the team is growing, there is something exciting about our quality and our mental strength."
United claimed their third consecutive 1-0 victory when Nemanja Vidic met Nani's corner seven minutes from the end of a forgettable match at Goodison Park.
"It was a great result," manager Alex Ferguson told Manchester United's TV channel. "A lot of teams will drop points here. It was a real battle. It looked to me like it was going to be a draw, but then we got a lifeline with Nemanja's goal."
United defender Mikael Silvestre was carried off in the first half and is waiting for scans on a knee injury.
Liverpool were below-par at Fratton Park and had a let-off in the first half when Kanu had his shirt tugged in the area by Alvaro Arbeloa but his penalty was saved by Pepe Reina.
Substitutes Steven Gerrard and Fernando Torres nearly combined to earn Liverpool a winner, but Torres sent his shot high over the bar.
Chelsea failed to capitalise on Liverpool's dropped points, although they felt they should have had a winner in the second half when Salomon Kalou's effort was harshly ruled offside by referee Howard Webb.
Keeper Brad Friedel was inspired for Rovers, saving a thunderbolt from Michael Essien and denying Andriy Shevchenko from close range late on as Chelsea piled on the pressure.
Blackburn defender Christopher Samba was carried off on a stretcher after suffering a head injury, connecting with Shevchenko's boot, as he tried to clear the ball.
Blackburn manager Mark Hughes told Setanta Sports Samba had been taken to hospital for tests.