ANDREW VORCE - Monday, October 4, 2010
Tim Howard and Everton picked up their first win while Eddie Johnson and Clint Dempsey started up top together for Fulham in a full slate of English action.
Birmingham 0 – 2 Everton
Tim Howard had little to do as Everton pushed their way to their first Premier League victory of the season.
Referee Phil Dowd was at the center of attention as the packed St. Andrews Stadium protested for five penalties, all of which went uncalled.
The first goal finally came in the 54th minute as Roger Johnson stole the ball out of Ben Foster's path to score an own goal.
Leon Osman sent a dangerous ball across the face of goal, and as Foster came out of his goal to collect, the big defender got a toe to it soaring his misclearance into an empty net.
The game was put to rest by the evening's most welcomed returner in Tim Cahill.
The Australian capped his return to the Everton line up with a classic 93rd minute goal that seemingly came out of nothing.
Leighton Baines danced around the edge of the box unchallenged before picking out Cahill on a cross who scored a diving header to seal the result.
No cards were issued in the game, but the Toffees have a stern test as Merseyside giants Liverpool make the short trip to Goodison Park on the 17th.
West Ham 1 - 1 Fulham
Clint Dempsey and Eddie Johnson started together as striking partners against a West Ham squad without Jonathan Spector.
Johnson, making his first Premier League start since 2008, was outraged when not awarded a first half penalty in addition to Dempsey getting abused twice in the opening stages.
Fulham drew first blood as Johnson and Dempsey both got touches on the build up to Simon Davie's looped pass for Dempsey which the former Furman Paladin volleyed past Robert Green in the 33rd minute.
Frederic Piquionne was denied a goal in the first half with a quality header that was cleared off the line, but he would not be denied again as his 54th minute goal settled the game.
Fulham cheaply gave away possession through Brede Hangeland as Luis Boa Morte who searched out Victor Obinna. The front man picked out his strike partner who headed past Mark Schwarzer with ease.
Danny Gabbidon, Scott Parker, and Matthew Upson were all booked for West Ham while Dickson Etuhu picked up the only yellow for Fulham. Up next for the Cottagers, a home visit from Tottenham.
Tottenham 2 – 1 Aston Villa
Brad Friedel and Aston Villa gave up an early lead to allow Tottenham to take all three points at home.
Villa scored first when Emile Heskey manhandled stand-in center back Sebastien Bassong in the corner of the field before breaking free into the penalty area.
Heskey kept his strength and picked out the onrushing Marc Albrighton who stretched out to poke home the 16th minute opener.
Spurs got back in the game using all of the pieces to the puzzle as Roman Pavlyuchenko sent in a long ball into the box to pick out Peter Crouch.
Rising the highest, Crouch headed the ball back across the face of net sending Friedel scrambling when Rafael van der Vaart finished from close range with a header just three minutes in to the second half.
Crouch got another assist in the same fashion, this time with Aaron Lennon providing the long ball into the box.
Crouch then cushioned his header in front of van der Vaart, who had the composure to evade the diving Richard Dunne before firing past Friedel with 15 minutes left on the clock.
Gareth Bale picked up the only yellow for Tottenham, while Albrighton, James Collins, and Ashley Young were all booked for Villa. Up next for Friedel and company is a home test against Chelsea.
West Brom 1 – 1 Bolton
Stuart Holden's Bolton Wanderers were again held to a draw as West Brom battled back to earn a share of the spoils.
The opening goal in the 64th minute was one to remember as four one-touch passes in the air sent Johann Elmander streaking in to the box.
Holden gave away possession with a hopeful long ball forward, but the successive touches worked the ball up the field and Kevin Davies laid his pass off into Elmanders pass for a terrific goal.
Holden could have felt he was to blame after losing ground in the footrace to James Morrison with only 12 minutes to go.
September's Player of the Month Peter Odemwingie showed patience to allow his teammates time to get in the box, and his inch perfect cross to Morrison allowed a spoil of the shares to stay at The Hawthornes.
Gonzalo Jara, Morrison, and Gabriel Tamas were all booked for West Brom, while Mark Davies and Elmander were booked for Bolton. Up next for Wanderers is a home visit from Stoke City.
Wigan 2 – 0 Wolverhampton
Marcus Hahnemann and Wolverhampton Wanderers were forced to play 80 minutes with 10 men as Karl Henry was sent off in the 11th minute at DW Stadium against Wigan Athletic.
Even with a man advantage, it took Wigan until a 65th minute foul just outside of the box to allow Jordi Gomez to open the scoring for Wigan.
Just a yard outside of the area, Gomez stepped up full of confidence to bend in a sublime free kick that left Hahnemann flapping in the air as the ball soared into his upper corner.
With five minutes to go, Wigan got their second goal which looked very close to an own goal from Christophe Berra.
The Wolves back line was cut open by a ball to Hugo Rodallega, and as Berra went to lunge for the ball, the Wigan front man got a toe to it to send his shot past the onrushing Hahnemann and into the back of the net.
Hendry Thomas was booked for Wigan, while Berra and Steven Fletcher joined Herny in the book for Wolves.
Up next for Hahnemann and company is a home test from fellow strugglers West Ham.
Carlisle United 0-1 Peterborough United
Frank Simek and Carlisle United lost their second game in a row in League One action to Peterborough United.
Simek started and went the full ninety minutes at defense for Carlisle once again.
The Cumbrians lost their first game of the season at home while last week's loss was their first of the whole season.
Peterborough scored the only goal of the game in the 32nd minute as an Aaron Davies through-ball found Craig Mackail-Smith who calmly shot passed goalie Adam Collin.
The 77th minute saw Carlisle come close after a Simek cross found Gary Madine in close range for a header. His effort though was saved by Peterborough goalie Joe Lewis.
The Posh now find themselves second in the League One standings.
Aaron Mclean received the only booking of the game for Peterborough United.
The Cumbrians next play Port Vale in a Johnstone's Paint Trophy game on Tuesday, while Peterborough take on Huddersfield Town in the same tournament.
Port Vale 1-2 Oxford United
Jemal Johnson came off the bench to play in Port Vale's loss to Oxford United in League Two play this weekend.
The American forward came on in the 58th minute for the Valiants.
The 61st minute saw Oxford United take the lead as Tom Craddock scored on an eight-yard header that passed goalie Stuart Tomlinson.
Once in injury time, Gareth Owen leveled the score for Port Vale with a 15-yard strike.
The Valiants' celebration was short-lived however, as the U's scored the game winner only a minute later. Tom Craddock slotted home a Matt Green pass to score his second goal of the game.
Oxford United's Leigh Franks and Craddock received yellow cards while Adam Yates was booked for the Valiants.
Port Vale next takes on Carlisle United in a Johnstone's Paint Trophy game on Tuesday. Oxford plays Aldershot Town next weekend in league play.
Mike Grella did not make the game-day roster as Leeds United lost 2-1 to Ipswich Town.
Conor Doyle did not feature for Derby County as they tied Swansea City.
Anton Peterlin did not dress as Plymouth lost 1-0 to Hartlepool United.
Seb Harris never left the bench as Northampton Town lost to Macclesfield Town.