Tag Archives: Didier Drogba

Seasonal Records: 2009-2010

For all the statistical fans out there, here are some of the season’s records from the 2009-2010 Premier League campaign. After three years of Manchester United dominance, Chelsea managed to wrestle the title back to the capital as Carlo Ancelotti achieved the league and FA Cup double in his first season as manager. Chelsea also became the first team to score 100 goals in a PL season.

FINAL TABLE

Position Team P W D L F A GD PTS
1 Chelsea 38 27 5 6 103 32 +71 86
2 Manchester United 38 27 4 7 86 28 +58 85
3 Arsenal 38 23 6 9 83 41 +42 75
4 Tottenham Hotspur 38 21 7 10 67 41 +26 70
5 Manchester City 38 18 13 7 73 45 +28 67
6 Aston Villa 38 17 13 8 52 39 +13 64
7 Liverpool FC 38 18 9 11 61 35 +26 63
8 Everton 38 16 13 9 60 49 +11 61
9 Birmingham City 38 13 11 14 38 47 -9 50
10 Blackburn Rovers 38 13 11 14 41 55 -14 50
11 Stoke City 38 11 14 13 34 48 -14 47
12 Fulham 38 12 10 16 39 46 -7 46
13 Sunderland 38 11 11 16 48 56 -8 44
14 Bolton Wanderers 38 10 9 19 42 67 -25 39
15 Wolverhampton Wanderers 38 9 11 18 32 56 -24 38
16 Wigan Athletic 38 9 9 20 37 79 -42 36
17 West Ham United 38 8 11 19 47 66 -19 35
18 Burnley 38 8 6 24 42 82 -40 30
19 Hull City 38 6 12 20 34 75 -41 30
20 Portsmouth* 38 7 7 24 34 66 -32 19

*Portsmouth were docked 10 points for entering administration in February 2010

 

THE BASIC STATS

Goals Scored 1053
European qualifiers Chelsea (UEFA Champions League)

Manchester United (UEFA Champions League)

Arsenal (UEFA Champions League)

Tottenham Hotspur (UEFA Champions League)

Manchester City (UEFA Europa League)

Aston Villa (UEFA Europa League)

Liverpool FC (UEFA Europa League)

Longest winning run 6 games (Arsenal & Chelsea)
Longest unbeaten run 12 games (Birmingham City)
Longest winless run 14 games (Sunderland)
Longest losing run 7 games (Portsmouth)
Highest attendance 75,316 (Manchester United vs. Stoke City)
Lowest attendance 14,323 (Wigan Athletic vs. Portsmouth)

 

AWARDS

PFA Players’ Player of the Year Wayne Rooney (Manchester United)
PFA Young Player of the Year James Milner (Aston Villa)
Football Writers’ Award Wayne Rooney (Manchester United)
PFA Team of the Year Joe Hart, Richard Dunne, Patrice Evra, Branislav Ivanovic, Thomas Vermaelen, Darren Fletcher, Cesc Fabregas, James Milner, Antonio Valencia, Didier Drogba, Wayne Rooney
Manager of the Year Harry Redknapp (Tottenham Hotspur)
Premier League Goal of the Season Maynor Figueroa (Stoke City vs. WIGAN ATHLETIC)

 

HAT-TRICK HEROES

Player Teams Score Date
Jermain Defoe Hull City vs. Tottenham Hotspur 1-5 19th August 2009
Yossi Benayoun Liverpool FC vs. Burnley 4-0 12th September 2009
Robbie Keane (4) Tottenham Hotspur vs. Burnley 5-0 26th September 2009
Fernando Torres Liverpool FC vs. Hull City 6-1 26th September 2009
Aruna Dindane Portsmouth vs. Wigan Athletic 4-0 31st October 2009
Jermain Defoe (5) Tottenham Hotspur vs. Wigan Athletic 9-1 22nd November 2009
Wayne Rooney Portsmouth vs. Manchester United 1-4 28th November 2009
Carlos Tevez Manchester City vs. Blackburn Rovers 4-1 11th January 2010
Wayne Rooney (4) Manchester United vs. Hull City 4-0 23rd January 2010
Darren Bent Sunderland vs. Bolton Wanderers 4-0 9th March 2010
Frank Lampard (4) Chelsea vs. Aston Villa 7-1 27th March 2010
Carlos Tevez Manchester City vs. Wigan Athletic 3-0 29th March 2010
Salomon Kalou Chelsea vs. Stoke City 7-0 25th April 2010
Didier Drogba Chelsea vs. Wigan Athletic 8-0 9th May 2010

 

TOP SCORERS

Position Player Teams No of Goals
1 Didier Drogba Chelsea 29
2 Wayne Rooney Manchester United 26
3 Darren Bent Sunderland 24
4= Carlos Tevez Manchester City 23
4= Frank Lampard Chelsea 22
6= Jermain Defoe Tottenham Hotspur 18
6= Fernando Torres Liverpool FC 18
6= Cesc Fabregas Arsenal 15
6= Emmanuel Adebayor Manchester City 14
10= Gabriel Agbonlahor Aston Villa 13
10= Louis Saha Everton 13
10= Florent Malouda Chelsea 12
10= Dimitar Berbatov Manchester United 12
10= Nicolas Anelka Chelsea 11
10= Andrey Arshavin Arsenal 10
16= Craig Bellamy Manchester City 10
16= John Carew Aston Villa 10
16= Cameron Jerome Birmingham City 10
16= Hugo Rodallega Wigan Athletic 10
16= Carlton Cole West Ham United 10
16= Steven Gerrard Liverpool FC 9
16= Robin van Persie Arsenal 9
16= David Dunn Blackburn Rovers 9
16= Kenwyne Jones Sunderland 9
25 Kevin Doyle Wolverhampton Wanderers 9

BIGGEST VICTORIES

Tottenham Hotspur 9-1 Wigan Athletic 22nd November 2009
Chelsea 8-0 Wigan Athletic 9th May 2010
Chelsea 7-0 Stoke City 25th April 2010
Chelsea 7-1 Aston Villa 27th March 2010
Chelsea 7-2 Sunderland 16th January 2010
Everton 1-6 Arsenal 15th August 2009
Burnley 1-6 Manchester City 3rd April 2010
Liverpool FC 6-1 Hull City 26th September 2009
Chelsea 5-0 Blackburn Rovers 24th October 2009
Wigan Athletic 0-5 Manchester United 22nd August 2009

 

HIGHEST SCORING GAMES

No of Goals Teams Date
10 Tottenham Hotspur 9-1 Wigan Athletic 22nd November 2009
9 Chelsea 7-2 Sunderland 16th January 2010
8 Chelsea 8-0 Wigan Athletic 9th May 2010
8 Chelsea 7-1 Aston Villa 27th March 2010
8 Arsenal 6-2 Blackburn Rovers 4th October 2009
8 West Ham United 5-3 Burnley 28th November 2009
7 Chelsea 7-0 Stoke City 25th April 2010
7 Everton 1-6 Arsenal 15th August 2009
7 Burnley 1-6 Manchester City 3rd April 2010
7 Liverpool FC 6-1 Hull City 26th September 2009
7 Aston Villa 5-2 Burnley 21st February 2010
7 Sunderland 5-2 Wolverhampton Wanderers 27th September 2009
7 Manchester United 4-3 Manchester City 20th September 2009
7 Manchester City 4-3 Sunderland 19th December 2009
6 Manchester City 5-1 Birmingham City 11th April 2010
6 Aston Villa 5-1 Bolton Wanderers 7th November 2009
6 Everton 5-1 Hull City 7th March 2010
6 Arsenal 4-2 Bolton Wanderers 20th January 2010
6 Manchester City 4-2 Arsenal 12th September 2009
6 Burnley 4-2 Tottenham Hotspur 9th May 2010

 

YOUNGEST PLAYERS USED

Player Teams Age at the time Date
Jack Robinson Hull City 0-0 Liverpool FC 16 years, 8 months, 7 days 9th May 2010
Lennard Sowah Portsmouth 0-0 Blackburn Rovers 17 years, 7 months, 11 days 3rd April 2010
Jack Wilshere Arsenal 3-1 Birmingham City 17 years, 9 months, 15 days 17th October 2009
Louis Moult Burnley 1-1 Stoke City 17 years, 9 months, 24 days 10th March 2010
Frank Nouble Wolverhampton Wanderers 0-2 West Ham United 17 years, 10 months, 22 days 15th August 2009
Jose Baxter Everton 2-0 Manchester City 17 years, 11 months, 9 days 16th January 2010
Jeffrey Bruma Chelsea 5-0 Blackburn Rovers 17 years, 11 months, 11 days 24th October 2009
Mark Cullen Hull City 0-1 Sunderland 18 years, 3 days 24th April 2010
Phil Jones Blackburn Rovers 1-1 Chelsea 18 years, 1 month 21st March 2010
Liam Cooper Liverpool FC 6-1 Hull City 18 years, 1 month, 23 days 26th September 2009

 

OLDEST PLAYERS USED

Player Teams Age at the time Date
David James Portsmouth 3-1 Wolverhampton Wanderers 39 years, 8 months, 30 days 1st May 2010
Edwin van der Sar Manchester United 4-0 Stoke City 39 years, 6 months, 10 days 9th May 2010
Brad Friedel Aston Villa 0-1 Blackburn Rovers 38 years, 11 months, 21 days 9th May 2010
Maik Taylor Manchester City 5-1 Birmingham City 38 years, 7 months, 7 days 11th April 2010
Graham Alexander Burnley 4-2 Tottenham Hotspur 38 years, 6 months, 29 days 9th May 2010
Mike Pollitt Chelsea 8-0 Wigan Athletic 38 years, 2 months, 10 days 9th May 2010
Marcus Hahnemann Wolverhampton Wanderers 2-1 Sunderland 37 years, 10 months, 24 days 9th May 2010
Mark Schwarzer Arsenal 4-0 Fulham 37 years, 7 months, 3 days 9th May 2010
Kevin Phillips Aston Villa 1-0 Birmingham City 36 years, 9 months 25th April 2010
Ryan Giggs Manchester United 4-0 Stoke City 36 years, 5 months, 10 days 9th May 2010

 

CLEAN SHEETS

Position Player Teams No of Clean Sheets
1= Petr Cech Chelsea 17
1= Pepe Reina Liverpool FC 17
3 Brad Friedel Aston Villa 15
4= Heurelho Gomes Tottenham Hotspur 13
4= Paul Robinson Blackburn Rovers 13
6= Edwin van der Sar Manchester United 12
6= Thomas Sorensen Stoke City 12
6= Mark Schwarzer Fulham 12
9= Shay Given Manchester City 11
9= Tim Howard Everton 11
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Seasonal Records: 2006-2007

For all the statistical fans out there, here are some of the season’s records from the 2006-2007 Premier League campaign. After a three-year period watching dominance from the capital, Manchester United regained that winning feeling to claim their ninth Premier League title, spearheaded by Cristiano Ronaldo, who began to show why he would become one of the greatest players to ever play football.

FINAL TABLE

Position Team P W D L F A GD PTS
1 Manchester United 38 28 5 5 83 27 +56 89
2 Chelsea 38 24 11 3 64 24 +40 83
3 Liverpool FC 38 20 8 10 57 27 +30 68
4 Arsenal 38 19 11 8 63 35 +28 68
5 Tottenham Hotspur 38 17 9 12 57 54 +3 60
6 Everton 38 15 13 10 52 36 +16 58
7 Bolton Wanderers 38 16 8 14 47 52 -5 56
8 Reading 38 16 7 15 52 47 +5 55
9 Portsmouth 38 14 12 12 45 42 +3 54
10 Blackburn Rovers 38 15 7 16 52 54 -2 52
11 Aston Villa 38 11 17 10 43 41 +2 50
12 Middlesbrough 38 12 10 16 44 49 -5 46
13 Newcastle United 38 11 10 17 38 47 -9 43
14 Manchester City 38 11 9 18 29 44 -15 42
15 West Ham United 38 12 5 21 35 59 -24 41
16 Fulham 38 8 15 15 38 60 -22 39
17 Wigan Athletic 38 10 8 20 37 59 -22 38
18 Sheffield United 38 10 8 20 32 55 -23 38
19 Charlton Athletic 38 8 10 20 34 60 -26 34
20 Watford 38 5 13 20 29 59 -30 28

 

THE BASIC STATS

Goals Scored 931
European qualifiers Chelsea (UEFA Champions League)

Manchester United (UEFA Champions League)

Liverpool FC (UEFA Champions League)

Arsenal (UEFA Champions League)

Tottenham Hotspur (UEFA Cup)

Everton (UEFA Cup)

Bolton Wanderers (UEFA Cup)

Blackburn Rovers (UEFA Intertoto Cup)

Longest winning run 9 games (Chelsea)
Longest unbeaten run 14 games (Chelsea)
Longest winless run 11 games (Aston Villa, Watford & West Ham United)
Longest losing run 8 games (Wigan Athletic)
Highest attendance 76,098 (Manchester United vs. Blackburn Rovers)
Lowest attendance 13,760 (Watford vs. Blackburn Rovers)

 

AWARDS

PFA Players’ Player of the Year Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United)
PFA Young Player of the Year Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United)
Football Writers’ Award Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United)
PFA Team of the Year Edwin van der Sar, Patrice Evra, Rio Ferdinand, Gary Neville, Nemanja Vidic, Steven Gerrard, Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs, Cristiano Ronaldo, Dimitar Berbatov, Didier Drogba
Manager of the Year Sir Alex Ferguson (Manchester United)
Premier League Goal of the Season Wayne Rooney (MANCHESTER UNITED vs. Bolton Wanderers)

 

HAT-TRICK HEROES

Player Teams Score Date
Wayne Rooney Bolton Wanderers vs. Manchester United 0-4 28th October 2006
Didier Drogba Chelsea vs. Watford 4-0 11th November 2006
Peter Crouch Liverpool FC vs. Arsenal 4-1 31st March 2007

 

TOP SCORERS

Position Player Teams No of Goals
1 Didier Drogba Chelsea 20
2 Benni McCarthy Blackburn Rovers 18
3 Cristiano Ronaldo Manchester United 17
4= Wayne Rooney Manchester United 14
4= Mark Viduka Middlesbrough 14
6= Kevin Doyle Reading 13
6= Darren Bent Charlton Athletic 13
8= Dirk Kuyt Liverpool FC 12
8= Dimitar Berbatov Tottenham Hotspur 12
8= Yakubu Middlesbrough 12
11= Frank Lampard Chelsea 11
11= Robin van Persie Arsenal 11
11= Robbie Keane Tottenham Hotspur 11
11= Andy Johnson Everton 11
11= Nicolas Anelka Bolton Wanderers 11
11= Obafemi Martins Newcastle United 11
11= Bobby Zamora West Ham United 11
18= Thierry Henry Arsenal 10
18= Jermain Defoe Tottenham Hotspur 10
18= Kanu Portsmouth 10
18= Gilberto Arsenal 10
22= Peter Crouch Liverpool FC 9
22= Mikel Arteta Everton 9
22= Gabriel Agbonlahor Aston Villa 9
22= Brian McBride Fulham 9

BIGGEST VICTORIES

Reading 6-0 West Ham United 1st January 2007
Arsenal 6-2 Blackburn Rovers 23rd December 2006
Manchester United 5-1 Fulham 20th August 2006
Tottenham Hotspur 5-1 Charlton Athletic 9th December 2006
Middlesbrough 5-1 Bolton Wanderers 20th January 2007
Bolton Wanderers 0-4 Manchester United 28th October 2006
Chelsea 4-0 Watford 11th November 2006
Wigan Athletic 0-4 Liverpool FC 2nd December 2006
Reading 0-4 Arsenal 22nd October 2006
Manchester United 4-0 Watford 31st January 2007

 

HIGHEST SCORING GAMES

No of Goals Teams Date
8 Arsenal 6-2 Blackburn Rovers 23rd December 2006
7 West Ham United 3-4 Tottenham Hotspur 4th March 2007
6 Reading 6-0 West Ham United 1st January 2007
6 Manchester United 5-1 Fulham 20th August 2006
6 Tottenham Hotspur 5-1 Charlton Athletic 9th December 2006
6 Middlesbrough 5-1 Bolton Wanderers 20th January 2007
6 Everton 2-4 Manchester United 28th April 2007
6 Blackburn Rovers 4-2 Manchester City 17th September 2006
6 Watford 4-2 Portsmouth 9th April 2007
6 Wigan Athletic 3-3 Tottenham Hotspur 15th April 2007
6 Blackburn Rovers 3-3 Reading 13th May 2007
6 West Ham United 3-3 Fulham 13th January 2007
6 Watford 3-3 Fulham 2nd October 2006
5 Manchester United 4-1 Bolton Wanderers 17th March 2007
5 Manchester United 4-1 Blackburn Rovers 31st March 2007
5 West Ham United 1-4 Chelsea 18th April 2007
5 Liverpool FC 4-1 Arsenal 31st March 2007
5 Tottenham Hotspur 4-1 Bolton Wanderers 25th February 2007
5 Everton 4-1 Fulham 6th April 2007
5 Blackburn Rovers 4-1 Charlton Athletic 28th April 2007

 

YOUNGEST PLAYERS USED

Player Teams Age at the time Date
Matthew Briggs Middlesbrough 3-1 Fulham 16 years, 2 months, 4 days 13th May 2007
Daniel Sturridge Manchester City 0-2 Reading 17 years, 5 months, 2 days 3rd February 2007
Theo Walcott Arsenal 1-1 Aston Villa 17 years, 5 months, 3 days 19th August 2006
Ben Sahar Chelsea 4-0 Wigan Athletic 17 years, 5 months, 3 days 13th January 2007
Sam Hutchinson Chelsea 1-1 Everton 17 years, 9 months, 10 days 13th May 2007
Adel Taarabt West Ham United 3-4 Tottenham Hotspur 17 years, 9 months, 8 days 4th March 2007
Scott Sinclair Arsenal 1-1 Chelsea 18 years, 1 month, 11 days 6th May 2007
Andy Carroll Wigan Athletic 1-0 Newcastle United 18 years, 1 month, 19 days 25th February 2007
Micah Richards Chelsea 3-0 Manchester City 18 years, 1 month, 27 days 20th August 2006
Emiliano Insua Portsmouth 2-1 Liverpool FC 18 years, 3 months, 21 days 28th April 2007

 

OLDEST PLAYERS USED

Player Teams Age at the time Date
Alec Chamberlain Watford 1-1 Newcastle United 42 years, 10 months, 23 days 13th May 2007
Teddy Sheringham West Ham United 0-1 Manchester City 40 years, 8 months, 28 days 30th December 2006
Pavel Srnicek Bolton Wanderers 2-1 Newcastle United 38 years, 9 months, 16 days 26th December 2006
Gary Speed Bolton Wanderers 2-2 Aston Villa 37 years, 8 months, 5 days 13th May 2007
Chris Powell Reading 0-2 Watford 37 years, 7 months, 27 days 5th May 2007
Jens Lehmann Arsenal 1-1 Chelsea 37 years, 5 months, 26 days 6th May 2007
John Filan Wigan Athletic 0-3 West Ham United 37 years, 2 months, 20 days 28th April 2007
Arjan de Zeeuw Sheffield United 1-2 Wigan Athletic 37 years, 27 days 13th May 2007
David James Portsmouth 0-0 Arsenal 36 years, 9 months, 11 days 13th May 2007
Tugay Blackburn Rovers 3-3 Reading 36 years, 8 months, 19 days 13th May 2007

 

CLEAN SHEETS

Position Player Teams No of Clean Sheets
1 Pepe Reina Liverpool FC 19
2 Tim Howard Everton 14
3= Petr Cech Chelsea 13
3= Marcus Hahnemann Reading 13
5= Edwin van der Sar Manchester United 12
5= Jussi Jaaskelainen Bolton Wanderers 12
5= David James Portsmouth 12
5= Thomas Sorensen Aston Villa 12
9 Scott Carson Charlton Athletic 11
10 Jens Lehmann Arsenal 10

Memorable Matches: Chelsea 8-0 Wigan Athletic (May 2010)

Goalscorers: Nicolas Anelka 6, 56, Frank Lampard 32 PEN, Salomon Kalou 54, Didier Drogba 63, 68 PEN, 80, Ashley Cole 90

Teams:

Chelsea: Petr Cech, Alex, Ashley Cole, Branislav Ivanovic (Juliano Belletti 58), John Terry, Michael Ballack (Nemanja Matic 70), Frank Lampard, Florent Malouda, Nicolas Anelka, Didier Drogba, Salomon Kalou (Joe Cole 58)

Wigan Athletic: Mike Pollitt, Emmerson Boyce, Gary Caldwell (SENT OFF), Maynor Figueroa, Steve Gohouri, Mario Melchiot, James McCarthy, Ben Watson (Hendry Thomas 61), Mohamed Diame (Paul Scharner 72), Charles N’Zogbia, Hugo Rodallega (Victor Moses 82)

Referee: Martin Atkinson, Attendance: 41,383

The 2009-2010 title battle had gone down to the final day of the season. It was a straight shootout between Chelsea and Manchester United. Chelsea had the advantage with a one-point lead over Sir Alex Ferguson’s side. If they beat Wigan Athletic at Stamford Bridge, they would become Premier League champions for the third time and end United’s three-year stranglehold on the crown.

Wigan had nothing to play for with safety secured a fortnight earlier and many believed it should be a routine afternoon for Carlo Ancelotti’s champions-elect. They were to be proven right as Chelsea put in a dominant and emphatic display on an afternoon of goals, rather than tense nerves in west London.

Any doubts the home supporters might have had before kick-off were silenced inside six minutes. Wigan failed to clear Didier Drogba’s free-kick and from a flick-on by Florent Malouda, Nicolas Anelka drilled a shot inside Mike Pollitt’s near post. It was a perfect start for the Blues. The visitors did enjoy plenty of possession but rarely threatened Petr Cech in the Chelsea goal and their task got even harder 13 minutes before half-time.

Frank Lampard was played through by Drogba and was hauled to the ground by defender Gary Caldwell. Referee Martin Atkinson gave a penalty and with Caldwell being the last man, had little option but to send him off. Drogba wanted to take the penalty but was stopped from doing so by Lampard. The midfielder dispatched the spot-kick with ease to virtually end any lingering hopes of a slip-up. Drogba had wanted the penalty so he could topple Wayne Rooney in the race for the Golden Boot. He showed clear petulance at not being allowed his personal glory but that would come later.

There was now a party atmosphere around the ground and Chelsea really turned on the style in the second half. Salomon Kalou made it 3-0 nine minutes into the second half, exchanging passes with Lampard before slotting the ball beyond Pollitt’s grasp. Two minutes later, Branislav Ivanovic, with virtually his last contribution of the afternoon, picked out Anelka who produced a brilliant right-foot strike that left the goalkeeper without any hope of saving.

This allowed Ancelotti the chance to bring on Juliano Belletti and Joe Cole for their farewell appearances before the pair were to be released in the summer. Drogba had been sulking after not getting his earlier chance to score but his mood lifted when he headed home goal number five of the afternoon. This prompted the Ivorian to score a 17-minute hat-trick which ensured he would pip Rooney to the Golden Boot. There was still time for Ashley Cole to put the seal on a magnificent display of shooting excellence.

Manchester United might have beaten Stoke City 4-0 but it counted for nothing. With more wins than any other side and over 100 Premier League goals, Chelsea had sealed the 2009-2010 title in style. It was also their biggest victory in their 105-year history. The celebrations could well and truly begin.

Premier League Rewind: 13th-15th March 2010

Results: Tottenham Hotspur 3-1 Blackburn Rovers, Birmingham City 2-2 Everton, Bolton Wanderers 4-0 Wigan Athletic, Burnley 1-2 Wolverhampton Wanderers, Chelsea 4-1 West Ham United, Stoke City 0-0 Aston Villa, Hull City 1-2 Arsenal, Manchester United 3-0 Fulham, Sunderland 1-1 Manchester City, Liverpool FC 4-1 Portsmouth

The race for the title, Champions League qualification and the fight to stay in the Premier League was really starting to liven up by the time these mid-March fixtures came around in 2010.

While some teams were still trying to catch up in terms of fulfilling their fixtures due to cup commitments and winter weather, the majority only had eight more games to make the decisive difference in all these areas.

At the top of the table, just two points covered Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal. All three sides won again to ensure status quo in the title race. Chelsea were first to play on this weekend and they cruised to a 4-1 victory over London rivals West Ham United. Didier Drogba, competing for the Golden Boot against Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney, scored twice for the home side. However, the goal of the match came from ex-Chelsea midfielder Scott Parker, who struck a wonderful shot from distance that left third-choice goalkeeper Ross Turnbull completely stranded. Parker’s performances were sensational in a team that were fighting relegation.

The win briefly took Chelsea top and Arsenal would join them on 64 points after scrapping to a 2-1 away win at Hull City in the Saturday evening kick-off. Despite having George Boateng sent off before half-time, Hull held on for a point until Nicklas Bendtner struck in stoppage-time. The defeat left Hull rooted in the bottom three and having lost their last four matches, they decided to place manager Phil Brown on “gardening leave” two days later.

Manchester United’s chance to respond came 24 hours later and after a stubborn first half display from Fulham, United wore them down in the second half. Rooney responded to Drogba’s double the previous day with his own brace and Dimitar Berbatov’s late goal ensured a 3-0 success over the Cottagers. United were two points clear again but Chelsea did have a game in-hand on their rivals.

In the race for fourth place and the final Champions League qualification spot, it was advantage to Tottenham Hotspur. Spurs beat Blackburn Rovers 3-1 in the opening game of the weekend. There were two goals for Russian forward Roman Pavlyuchenko. Previously having made the headlines for a desire to leave the club, Pavlyuchenko had now scored four goals in his last three matches to keep Harry Redknapp’s side one point clear of the chasing pack.

Big-spending Manchester City dropped to sixth after drawing 1-1 at Sunderland. Only a last-minute equaliser saw them avoid defeat at The Stadium of Light. This allowed Liverpool FC into fifth position in the table. There was another two goals for the Fernando Torres tally as bottom-club Portsmouth were routed 4-1 at Anfield.

At the wrong end of the table, Wolverhampton Wanderers gave themselves a three-point cushion over Burnley after defeating the Clarets 2-1 at Turf Moor. Matt Jarvis and a Clarke Carlisle own goal was enough for Mick McCarthy’s side to complete a league double over their rivals in distress. Bolton Wanderers eased their concerns with a 4-0 triumph against Wigan Athletic with goals coming from Johan Elmander, Kevin Davies, Fabrice Muamba and Matt Taylor. However, with just eight points covering the Trotters in 13th to Hull in 19th, there was still plenty to fight for in the battle to survive.

What else happened in March 2010?

  • Former leader of the Labour Party Michael Foot dies at the age of 96. He was leader of the opposition from 1980 to 1983.
  • The last analogue television services are switched off in Wales, making it the first part of the UK to have a fully digital service.
  • BBC Director-General Mark Thompson confirms proposals to close down BBC Radio 6 Music and the Asian Network as part of cost-cutting measures.
  • A 41-year-old man, who is already two years into a life sentence for murdering two women, is charged with the murder of Surrey teenager Milly Dowler, who disappeared in 2002.
  • Less than a year after their relegation from the Football League, Chester City F.C. goes out of business after 125 years.
  • Prime Minister Gordon Brown gives evidence to the Chilcott inquiry.
  • The Kasubi Tombs, Uganda’s only cultural World Heritage Site, are destroyed by fire.

Premier League Rewind: 25th-27th October 2014

Results: West Ham United 2-1 Manchester City, Liverpool FC 0-0 Hull City, Southampton 1-0 Stoke City, Sunderland 0-2 Arsenal, West Bromwich Albion 2-2 Crystal Palace, Swansea City 2-0 Leicester City, Burnley 1-3 Everton, Tottenham Hotspur 1-2 Newcastle United, Manchester United 1-1 Chelsea, Queens Park Rangers 2-0 Aston Villa

Nine games into the 2014-2015 season and Chelsea were in pole position to regain the Premier League title from Manchester City. The Blues were still undefeated in the campaign and looking tough to catch for the chasing pack.

On the 25th-27th October weekend, Jose Mourinho took his team to Old Trafford to take on Manchester United. It was a first meeting between Mourinho and Louis van Gaal since the 2010 UEFA Champions League final. There was plenty of mutual respect between the managers in the build-up to this clash but it looked like Mourinho would have the final say. Didier Drogba headed the visitors infront and it looked like the league leaders would hold onto a 1-0 lead at full-time. However, with moments remaining, Manchester United won a free-kick which led to the late dismissal of Branislav Ivanovic. From the resultant set-piece, Robin van Persie thrashed home an equaliser to ensure Chelsea dropped points for only the second time this season.

Their lead over the Red Devils was still a healthy 10 points. Worse still for Van Gaal, his team had won just three from nine matches so far and were languishing in eighth spot in the table. Chelsea’s nearest pursuers were Southampton. They regained second position after Sadio Mane’s goal was enough to beat Stoke City 1-0.

They replaced Manchester City in the top two after the reigning champions fell to a 2-1 defeat away at West Ham United. It was their second league loss of the season. The decisive goal ultimately came from Diafra Sakho, who scored in his sixth successive Premier League match for the club. Despite a wonderful strike from David Silva, City left Upton Park empty-handed and West Ham climbed into the top four much to the delight of Russell Brand. The Hammers’ fan interrupted a post-match interview to congratulate manager Sam Allardyce.

After their 8-0 mauling a week earlier to Southampton, Sunderland’s woes continued. At home to Arsenal, Vito Mannone made two terrible mistakes, allowing Alexis Sanchez to score twice and allow the visitors to leave with all three points in a 2-0 victory. In fact, just six points covered West Ham in fourth position to Aston Villa in 15th. Villa’s fifth successive defeat came on Monday Night Football, losing 2-0 to Queens Park Rangers. Charlie Austin scored a double which was enough to lift QPR off the foot of the Premier League table. Aston Villa had now failed to score in over 500 minutes of Premier League football. Another team struggling were Leicester City. They were now without a win in four games after losing 2-0 to Swansea City.

QPR were replaced at the bottom of the table by Burnley, who lost 3-1 at home to Everton. Veteran forward Samuel Eto’o scored twice for Everton who moved into the top half with back-to-back victories. Sunderland dropped into the bottom three at the expense of their Tyne & Wear rivals, Newcastle United. Having not won any of their first seven games, the Magpies were about to embark on a five-match winning sequence. The second of these came at White Hart Lane, defeating Tottenham Hotspur 2-1.

What else happened in October 2014?

  • UKIP receives its first MP when Douglas Carswell, who defected to the party from the Conservatives, wins the by-election in Clacton.
  • The SNP confirms Nicola Sturgeon will succeed Alex Salmond as leader of the party after she was the only candidate in a leadership ballot.
  • Johann Lamont resigns as leader of the Scottish Labour Party with immediate effect.
  • Nancy Birtwhistle wins the fifth series of “The Great British Bake Off.”
  • Racing driver Jules Bianchi is left with life-threatening injuries after spinning off and hitting a recovery truck during the Japanese Grand Prix at Suzuka. He will succumb to those injuries in July 2015.
  • EastEnders confirms omnibus editions of the soap from April 2015 will be stopped because of declining viewing figures.
  • IF Elfsborg manager and former Sheffield Wednesday player Klas Ingesson dies at the age of just 46 from the effects of multiple myeloma.

Memorable Matches: Everton 2-3 Chelsea (December 2006)

Goalscorers: Mikel Arteta 38 PEN, Tim Howard 49 OG, Joseph Yobo 64, Frank Lampard 81, Didier Drogba 87

Teams:

Everton: Tim Howard, Joleon Lescott, Phil Neville, Alan Stubbs, Joseph Yobo, Lee Carsley (James Beattie 90), Mikel Arteta, Leon Osman, Simon Davies, Victor Anichebe (James McFadden 90), Andy Johnson

Chelsea: Hilario, Geremi (Salomon Kalou 46), Ricardo Carvalho, Khalid Boulahrouz (Wayne Bridge 73), Ashley Cole, Claude Makelele, Michael Ballack, Michael Essien, Frank Lampard, Arjen Robben (Andriy Shevchenko 73), Didier Drogba

Referee: Mark Halsey, Attendance: 33,970

Reigning champions Chelsea knew they were going to be in for a tricky test away at Everton eight days before Christmas in 2006. The Blues had lost ground on Manchester United recently after drawing at home to Arsenal, whilst Everton had dropped to 10th after a 2-0 loss a week earlier away at Portsmouth.

Jose Mourinho had to cope without his leader and captain John Terry for this trip to Merseyside. Terry had sustained a back injury in training and his presence was missed in a first half which the home side largely controlled. Mikel Arteta was dominating the midfield and Andy Johnson was denied an early penalty when Terry’s replacement, Khalid Boulahrouz looked to have fouled the Everton frontman. Referee Mark Halsey wasn’t in the best position and rejected the claims after some advice from his better-placed officials.

Everton did get their spot-kick though on 38 minutes. The clumsy Boulahrouz wrestled Victor Anichebe to the ground. This time, there were no doubts. Arteta scored past Hilario, who was having an extended run in the side with Petr Cech out following his depressed skull fracture two months earlier.

Chelsea needed another attacking outlay and they brought on Salomon Kalou for the second half. Within five minutes, the west Londoners were level. Lee Carsley conceded an unnecessary free-kick and Michael Ballack made him pay. The German’s shot went in off the back of goalkeeper Tim Howard. Ballack would claim but it rightfully went down as an own goal against the luckless American.

Kalou then hit the post as Mourinho’s men started to take charge but against the run of play, Everton went back ahead. Joseph Yobo headed home from a set-piece for his first goal since November 2005. Heading into the last 10 minutes and it looked like Chelsea might be tasting defeat for only the second time in the season but their big-game players had other ideas.

First, Lampard was given too much time on the edge of the area and produced another of his trademark efforts from distance that flew past Howard. Three minutes from time, Drogba chested down a flick-on from substitute Andriy Shevchenko. He turned and struck a cracking long-range drive which convincingly beat Howard. He ran to the Chelsea fans, doing an iconic knee-slide on the turf on his way. This was a game that Chelsea had stolen without playing anywhere near their best.

Mourinho’s side won both domestic cups but ultimately had to play second-fiddle to Manchester United in the title race. Everton recovered from this late blow to finish an excellent sixth and qualify for the UEFA Cup.

Premier League Rewind: 16th-18th December 2006

Results: Charlton Athletic 0-3 Liverpool FC, Arsenal 2-2 Portsmouth, Newcastle United 2-1 Watford, Reading 1-2 Blackburn Rovers, Wigan Athletic 0-1 Sheffield United, Aston Villa 0-1 Bolton Wanderers, Everton 2-3 Chelsea, Manchester City 1-2 Tottenham Hotspur, West Ham United 1-0 Manchester United, Fulham 2-1 Middlesbrough

The Christmas programme in 2006 was about to get underway and already, the 2006-2007 title race looked to be a straight shootout between Manchester United and Chelsea. Going into the 16th-18th December weekend, it was the Red Devils who had a five-point advantage. By the end of the weekend, Jose Mourinho’s champions had whittled the lead down after a dramatic Sunday afternoon involving the title contenders.

The Blues’ kicked off first on Merseyside and were given a very tough game by David Moyes and his Everton side. Everton were only 10th going into the match but just four points off the coveted UEFA Champions League qualifying positions and they led Chelsea twice in this match. In fact, Chelsea trailed 2-1 going into the last 10 minutes before amazing goals from Frank Lampard and then, another long-range special by Didier Drogba steered the Londoners home to a nervy and exciting 3-2 victory.

Later that afternoon, Manchester United travelled to Upton Park where West Ham United were welcoming their new manager. Alan Curbishley had been appointed a few days earlier, replacing Alan Pardew who had been sacked following a 4-0 defeat at Bolton eight days earlier. West Ham went into the weekend in the bottom three and desperate for a victory. They collected three much-needed points as Nigel Reo-Coker scored the only goal of the match and gave Curbishley a winning start. The gap between the top two was now two points.

Arsenal and Portsmouth were holding the other two Champions League qualification spots at the start of the weekend and they met each other at the Emirates Stadium. Pompey were flying and when Matt Taylor scored a looping volley, they were 2-0 up and looking set to become the first Premier League team to win at Arsenal’s new home. Arsene Wenger’s frustrations got the better of him and he was sent from the touchline but he will have been pleased to see his team’s battling qualities. Emmanuel Adebayor and skipper Gilberto Silva scored to ensure the points were shared.

Their draw allowed Liverpool FC to cash in and take third spot. Liverpool kicked off in the Saturday lunchtime game at second-bottom Charlton Athletic and it was one of the most one-sided away games in Premier League history. Liverpool had 24 attempts on-goal against Les Reed’s gutless side but only had a Xabi Alonso third-minute penalty to their name, squandering a host of opportunities. Luckily, Charlton were so bad, it didn’t matter. Craig Bellamy and Steven Gerrard did find the back of the net in the last 10 minutes to ensure the score had a fairer reflection given the visitors’ dominance. Reed lasted just one more abject match before being sacked as Charlton manager.

Elsewhere, Bolton climbed into fifth spot after Gary Speed’s penalty beat Aston Villa at Villa Park. Blackburn Rovers came from behind to pick up a valuable 2-1 victory away to Reading with David Bentley scoring the pick of the goals. Middlesbrough’s 2-1 defeat at home specialists Fulham on the Monday Night Football meant Gareth Southgate’s side slipped to 17th and just outside the bottom three on goal difference.

What else happened in December 2006?

  • Leona Lewis wins the X-Factor, becoming the first female winner of the ITV talent show.
  • Forklift driver Steve Wright is charged with the murders of five women in Ipswich between the 30th October and 10th December. He is sentenced to life imprisonment in February 2008.
  • Aged 93, Gerald Ford dies after years battling ill health. He was the 38th President of the United States, serving in office from August 1974 to January 1977.
  • Actress Wendy Richard leaves EastEnders after her character Pauline Fowler dies on Christmas Day. She had been in Albert Square since the very first episode in 1985.
  • Equestrian Zara Phillips follows in her mother’s footsteps by becoming BBC Sports Personality of the Year for 2006.
  • 2,300 jobs are lost when the Ryton car factory closes in Warwickshire and production of the Peugeot 206 is moved to Slovakia.
  • An oil pipeline explodes on Boxing Day in Lagos, Nigeria, killing at least 200 people.