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Premier League round-up

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16 May 2009 16:45:49

Premier League round-up

Manchester United wrapped up the Premier League title as Hull City climbed out of the bottom three to leave Middlesbrough on the brink of relegation. Newcastle United are back in the relegation zone after losing at home to Fulham, who will fight out with Tottenham Hotspur for the final European berth. With the Red Devils clinching the title at lunchtime, the main focus later in the afternoon was on the battle to beat the drop and Hull are now favourites to survive after drawing at Bolton Wanderers. Former Bolton assistant Phil Brown now knows his team's destiny is in their own hands as they will entertain the new champions next Sunday. Middlesbrough have a mountain to climb as they need results to go their way as they are three points from safety after being held by Aston Villa. Martin O'Neill's men will play a decisive role in the fight for survival as Villa play host to Newcastle next weekend. Manchester United got the point they needed to make it three titles in a row after a 0-0 draw at home to Arsenal. The champions failed to produce the powerhouse performance which knocked Arsenal out of the UEFA Champions League earlier this month, but they did enough to claim a draw. In a game of few clear-cut chances, Gunners captain Cesc Fabregas came closest to breaking the deadlock when he struck the post inside the final 10 minutes. United saw out the closing stages to wrap up an 11th title of Sir Alex Ferguson's reign and move the club level on 18 championship successes with Liverpool. Newcastle failed to build on a morale-boosting win over Middlesbrough after crashing to a 1-0 defeat to European-chasing Fulham at St James' Park. Fulham took the lead four minutes before half-time when Erik Nevland broke clear and laid the ball square for Diomansy Kamara to take his time before steering a shot high into the net. Mark Viduka's header early in the second half was ruled out after Kevin Nolan obstructed Fulham keeper Mark Schwarzer before the Magpies were reduced to 10 men on the hour mark. Sebastien Bassong was the man to receive the red card, with the Newcastle defender sent off for bringing down Kamara as the duo chased a long ball. Hull City have given themselves an excellent chance of staying in the top flight after battling back for a 1-1 draw at Bolton. Bolton edged ahead on 26 minutes when the Tigers failed to clear the danger and the ball broke for Gretar Steinsson 25 yards from goal and his low drive flew under the arm of Boaz Myhill. The Tigers rallied in the second half and equalised two minutes after the break when Danny Shittu made a hash of a long ball and Craig Fagan guided his shot past Jussi Jaaskelainen. Trotters keeper Jaaskelainen produced a number of eye-catching saves to deny the Tigers what would have been a priceless win. Middlesbrough are staring at the prospect of Championship football next season after being held to a 1-1 draw by Aston Villa at the Riverside. Boro enjoyed a dream start by taking the lead on 14 minutes with a stunning acrobatic finish from Tuncay Sanli after Stewart Downing's shot had been deflected up into the air. But Villa improved after half-time and they earned a point on 56 minutes through John Carew's neat finish after poor defending from Boro. Everton leapfrogged Villa into fifth position in the table after coming from behind to claim a 3-1 win over 10-man West Ham United at Goodison Park. The Hammers made the breakthrough on 24 minutes when Radoslav Kovac fired a swerving shot from 30 yards which deceived Everton keeper Tim Howard. Everton were back in the game on 38 minutes when Louis Saha scored from the penalty spot after James Tomkins was sent off for tripping Tim Cahill. And Everton took full advantage in the second half by taking the lead on 48 minutes when Joseph Yobo was left unmarked at the far post from Steven Pienaar's corner, with the Nigerian having time to bring the ball under control and firing past Robert Green. Pienaar created the Toffees' third goal on 76 minutes as he got to the by-line and rolled the ball across goal to provide Saha with a simple tap-in. Robbie Keane converted a late penalty to keep Spurs in the hunt for European football after a 2-1 win over Manchester City, who will miss out on seventh spot. Spurs were ahead on 29 minutes when Jermain Defoe did well to steer Tom Huddlestone's cross beyond City keeper Shay Given. City levelled on 65 minutes through Valeri Bojinov's first goal for the club, with the Bulgarian volleying home from 12 yards after a neat passing move. But the hosts stole the points four minutes from time when Keane sent Given the wrong way from the spot after Micah Richards bundled substitute Fraizer Campbell over. Stoke leapfrogged Wigan Athletic in the table after a 2-0 victory over Steve Bruce's side at the Britannia Stadium. The Potters edged in front on 69 minutes when Ricardo Fuller fired home after Wigan had fluffed numerous chances to clear the ball away from danger. And the points were made safe on 76 minutes when James Beattie headed home at the far post after Matthew Etherington's effort had spun into the air.


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