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Sunday, March 21, 2010

Arsenal beat West Ham to go top of the EPL - Spurs consolidate 4th spot

Arsenal overcame the sending-off of defender Thomas Vermaelen to battle back to the top of the Barclays Premier League with a 2-0 win over struggling West Ham.

Denilson fired the Gunners in front after only five minutes, however Vermaelen was deemed to have been the last man when he pulled down Guillermo Franco, and was shown a straight red card.

But Manuel Almunia saved Alessandro Diamanti's penalty and Arsenal captain Cesc Fabregas made it 2-0 with nine minutes left from the same spot following a handball by Matthew Upson.


Tottenham boosted their chances of playing Champions League football next season, moving four points clear in the chase for fourth place in the Premier League with a 2-1 win at Stoke.

Substitute Eidur Gudjohnsen put Spurs ahead just 18 seconds into the second half when he nipped onto the end of a delightful chip from Peter Crouch to fire a left-foot shot into the roof of the net.

And things got worse for the home side four minutes later when Dean Whitehead was sent off for his second bookable offence after clattering Luka Modric in the centre circle.

But Stoke City drew level when Benoit Assou-Ekotto was adjudged to have fouled Dave Kitson in the box and Matthew Etherington sent Heurelho Gomes the wrong way from the penalty spot.

Assou-Ekotto redeemed himself, though, when he crossed for Niko Kranjcar to net the winner for Spurs with 13 minutes remaining.


Aston Villa drew 2-2 with Wolves and it could have been even worse for Martin O'Neill's men.

John Carew salvaged a point for Villa after Wolves had looked set for their first win over their local rivals for 30 years, Jody Craddock's equaliser and James Milner's own goal putting them in front.

But Carew followed up his opener with his 13th goal of the campaign with only seven minutes remaining to make the final score 2-2, benefiting on each occasion from marginal offside decisions.

English Premier League Top Eight Standings

Team          Pl  GD Pts 
1 Arsenal     31 +40  67 
2 Man Utd     30 +46  66 
3 Chelsea     29 +42  64 
4 Tottenham   30 +26  55 
5 Liverpool   30 +19  51 
6 Man City    28 +17  50 
7 Aston Villa 29 +17  50 
8 Everton     30  +6  45

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