Home>News Center>Sports

Chelsea, Man United, Arsenal all win in Premier League
Updated: 2005-03-20 08:55

Chelsea edged closer to its first title in 50 years with a 4-1 win over Crystal Palace on Saturday, and Manchester United and Arsenal also won in the fight for second place.

Congratulating Ronaldo : Manchester United's Rio Ferdinand (L) celebrates with Cristiano Ronaldo (R) during today's English Premiership football match against Fulham at Old Trafford, Manchester. Manchester won 1-0. [AFP]

Frank Lampard and Joe Cole scored a goal each for Chelsea, and substitute Mateja Kezman added two more at Stamford Bridge. Aki Riihilahti briefly leveled for Palace in the first half.

 Robin van Persie scored for Arsenal in a 1-0 win at Blackburn, while Manchester United beat Fulham by the same score off a Cristiano Ronaldo strike.

Chelsea leads the league with 77 points, followed by United with 66 and Arsenal with 64.

"The league is looking beyond us," Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson said. "But you have to keep going."

Newcastle couldn't continue its European form, drawing 1-1 with Portsmouth. Newcastle beat Olympiakos 4-0 on Thursday to advance to the UEFA Cup quarterfinals - its eighth consecutive win.

Also, Manchester City lost 2-1 at Tottenham in the first match under caretaker manager Stuart Pearce, West Bromwich Albion won its first away match this season 4-1 at 10-man Charlton, and Bolton beat Norwich 1-0.

Robert Earnshaw scored a hat trick for West Brom, while Charlton played with 10 men for 61 minutes after Talal El Karkouri was sent off.

Bolton got a 42nd-minute goal from Greece international Stelios Giannakopoulos to jump into fifth place ahead of Liverpool.

Chelsea needs only 14 points from its eight remaining matches to win its first title since 1955. The Blues are also in the running for the Champions League.

"I'm just so excited," Cole said. "I can't stop looking at the fixture list and thinking if we win this game, this game and this game. But it's important to check yourself and just think about winning the next game."

If Chelsea beats Southampton, Birmingham City, Arsenal and Fulham, the title could be theirs at Bolton on April 30 or against Charlton a week later. And that's only if Manchester United continues to win.

The Red Devils were lucky to beat Fulham.

In the final minutes, Lee Clark hit the post and former United striker Andy Cole had a shot saved by the heel of Reds goalkeeper Tim Howard.

"It was a bit ridiculous really because it was a game we really should have been comfortably winning," Ferguson said. "It was farcical at times, laughable. We totally lacked a killer instinct."

At Ewood Park, Van Persie scored Arsenal's match-winning goal two minutes before halftime.

Van Persie, who was a late addition to the starting lineup after Freddie Ljungberg twisted his ankle in the warmup, darted around Blackburn goalkeeper Brad Friedel and scored into an empty net in the 43rd minute.

Arsenal was also missing Thierry Henry, Dennis Bergkamp and Robert Pires.

"There were lots of positives because it was a very physical game against a team fighting not to go down," Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said. "We will try to do as well as we can and we want to finish at least second and as close as possible to Chelsea."

On Sunday, Everton seeks to maintain fourth place and the final Champions League spot against crosstown rival Liverpool at Anfield in the 201st Merseyside derby. Everton has 51 points - seven more than of Liverpool.

Everton hasn't finished above its rival since it won the league title in 1987 - ahead of second-place Liverpool.

Also Sunday, it's Birmingham vs. Aston Villa and Middlesbrough vs. Southampton.

In the Football League Championship, Sunderland opened up a two-point lead in the standings with a 1-0 win over Coventry. Second-place Wigan drew 1-1 with Nottingham Forest, while Ipswich drew 0-0 with Gillingham. Sunderland has 78 points, followed by Wigan with 76 and Ipswich with 73.

Here comes 2005 China Laureus Awards
Inter hold off holders Porto 3-1
Rockets hold off Warriors 97-94
  Today's Top News     Top Sports News

Coal mine explosion kills 17, traps 52 in Shanxi



Banker calls to improve trade policy



Thousands in Taipei protest shooting



Japan rejects comfort women claims



HIV/AIDS proposals announced for 2005



Wen talks cooperation with Russia army chief


  Davenport stops Sharapova at Pacific Life
  Agassi pulls out of Indian Wells tourney
  Gil Morgan leads Toshiba Senior Classic
  ESPN to broadcast Chinese football league across Asia
  Russians crowned after Chinese quit
  Heat roll over Lakers 102-89
  Go to Another Section  
  Story Tools