Because of the FA Cup quarter finals taking place at the weekend, just five Premier League matches went ahead. The three of the “big four” were in action, however, and one of them Manchester United, didn’t pass up the chance to take advantage of Chelsea not playing a league game to move into first position, winning scrappily, but winning nonetheless at Wolves thanks to Paul Scholes’s goal.
Arsenal kept up the pressure at the top though, seeing off Burnley 3-1 at the Emirates Stadium. Cesc Fabregas opened the scoring for the hosts, but David Nugent pulled the Clarets back level. Theo Walcott and Andrey Arshavin helped the Gunners push on in the second half to secure the win though, condemning Burnley to their fourteenth away defeat of the season. Indeed, Brian Laws’s side are so bad on the road, that the players are rumoured to have sought advice from Chelsea pair John Terry and Ashley Cole on how to perform away from home.
Liverpool had a dreadful Monday night, slipping to defeat at Wigan, who will be delighted with the three points earned as a result of Hugo Rodallega’s goal, the only one of the game, but fans of their local rivals Everton were celebrating the day before after their side thrashed relegation-threatened Hull by five goals to one. The fit-again Mikel Arteta found the goal twice, and, despite Yakubu’s penalty miss, his teammates Landon Donovan and Jack Rodwell were also on target, while Hull’s Richard Garcia put through his own net. Teenage midfielder Tom Cairney did get the Tigers on the scoresheet with his first ever league goal, giving the travelling fans something to cheer.
Owen Coyle’s Bolton did their survival chances a lot of good on Saturday, pulling off a fine away win at West Ham. Kevin Davies and Jack Wilshere put the Trotters two to the good inside sixteen minutes and although Alessandro Diamanti’s eighth goal of the campaign after Bolton had Tamir Cohen sent off set up a nervy finish, the away side held on to claim a very welcome three points.