Premier League - as it happened

Manchester City win 2-0 to relegate Wolves and close the gap on Manchester United after the Premier League leaders are held to a 4-4 draw by Everton, while West Brom win at Liverpool.

22 April 2012 Last updated at 19:02

Get involved

To get involved contact us in any of the following ways

As it happened

  1. 1849: 

    It still seemed a distant possibility at the start of the day, but it now looks like we have 24-carat climax to the season lined up. Red v blue with three games to go, three points in it and a derby to come. Enjoy it all. Goodbye for now.

  2. 1843:  
    MOTD's Steve Wilson at Molineux:Wolves 0-2 Manchester City

    "It's a day to celebrate if you're a blue Mancunian but a day of relegation for Wolves. They did really well today but ultimately they haven't done enough. City are now favourites for the title."

  3. 1843: 
    MOTD's Alistair Mann at Anfield:Liverpool 0-1 West Brom

    "A famous victory for West Brom as they record their first win at Anfield since 1967, but it's same old story for Liverpool as missed chances cost them dearly."

  4. 1842: 
    BBC Sport's Alistair Magowan at Old Trafford:Manchester United 4-4 Everton

    "Manchester United scored some fine goals today and four of them usually guarantee victory to Old Trafford. But the way they conceded had echoes of their early-season form and they will need to improve their defence at the Etihad a week on Monday."

  5. 1841: 

    Let's close out today with the thoughts of the men on the ground at Old Trafford, Anfield and Molineux, starting with the shell-shocked reporter who witnessed Manchester United v Everton first hand.

  6. 1838: 

    Some stark numbers demonstrate the gap between Liverpool's pre-season expectations and today's reality. Not only are they 37 points off the top, but they are 16 points off fourth and two behind financially stretched neighbours Everton. Would even two Cup wins paper over those problems?

  7. 1836: 

    From Tim in York, via text: "Liverpool have been embarrassing in the Premier League this year. The fans think they have a God given right to a top four finish, the players have under performed and the club have made shocking buys and dealt with Saurez in the wrong way. They have got everything they deserve in my eyes!"

    From Josh, via text: "Wonder what the odds on Liverpool finishing 14th were at the beginning of the season. Very real prospect now."

  8. 1829: 

    Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish: "It's not the first time we've stood here and said exactly the same things. It has been the same theme, hitting the cross bar, people clearing it off the line, us missing chances or hitting our own players.

    "They are playing well enough so I can't complain about their effort or spirit. It's difficult for them to take but it's great credit that it doesn't seem to be knocking them down."

  9. 1828: 

    Terry Connor looked close to tears in that interview and has never looked comfortable in the Wolves hot-seat since replacing Mick McCarthy. Steve Morgan will cop plenty of flak for getting rid of McCarthy, but his apparent failure to have a clear replacement lined up should attract more attention perhaps.

  10. 1826: 

    From Rob, via text: "Re Tom: it's not an awful team. It's one that can't convert the countless chances we make."

    From Neil in Staffs, via text: "Me thinks Hodgson a better manager than King Kenny, they should have stuck with him."

  11. 1822: 

    Wolves manager Terry Connor: "It's a very difficult day, a raw day for me the staff the players everyone connected with the club and it will be a tough few days to come.

    "Over 38 games we've proved not good enough to stay in the Premier League.

    "The last three games will be difficult but I've said to the lads that's what we'll need to do.

    "It's an honest league and we've signed up for 38 competitive games and the matches might have a bearing on other teams so we'll show honesty, integrity and try to win as many points as we can."

  12. 1819: 

    From Umang in London, via text: "Rafa Benitez wants nothing more than to be back at Liverpool, and I think we ought to grant him his wish."

    From Chris, Man Utd fan, via text: "Surely Kenny is to blame for the strikers he has signed and the tactics employed? That's why the chances aren't being put away. Maybe signing a striker who can put the ball in the net?"

  13. 1819: 

    Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini: "They have three more points, they have a game not as difficult as us, for this reason.

    "I think that United is in the top, they have three more points and after the derby they have two easy games.

    "I think that we didn't have a good performance like against Norwich. I don't know why but I told the players it was difficult because Wolves don't deserve to be relegated."

  14. 1814: 

    Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has just been asked who are favourites for the title now. "United always," he replies. That tack has been working for him since City were eight points off the pace. Why change it now?

  15. 1812: 

    West Brom manager Roy Hodgson: "I can't deny that we rode our luck and Liverpool played very well and put us under pressure but it was a fantastic rearguard action.

    "It was nice that at this stage of the season we have the fight in us to hang on to the result.

    "We weren't without our own efforts but on the balance of the game they had so many chances that they must be disappointed they came away with nothing."

  16. 1809: 

    Drylunch on Twitter: "Terry Connor can now take his place amongst the other greats such as Les Reed, Ricky Sbragia, Sammy Lee & Alan Shearer."

    Paul Bernal on Twitter: "Lots of reasons for the decline of Wolves this year, but by far the largest part of the blame lies with Steve Morgan."

  17. 1808: 

    From Matt Klesel, a Wolves fan, via text: "Proud of our three seasons in the Premier League. Hopefully next year we will be challenging in the Championship."

    From Tom, via text: "Re 1757 (Robin) it is Kenny's fault because he has signed an awful team for far too much money."

  18. 1808: 

    Much has been made of City's trickier run-in, but United might not have it all their own way against Sunderland at the Stadium of Light on the final day. City certainly didn't on their trip there earlier this season. United fans will hope the Martin O'Neill effect has worn off a little since then.

  19. 1804: 

    Manchester City showed little mercy as they despatched Wolves to the Championship. Regardless of winning the derby, they will need to show a bit of that steely-eyed edge against a buoyant Newcastle and battling QPR if they are to clinch the title.

  20. 1757: 

    Kevin Beirne on Twitter: "Liverpool are closer to the relegation zone than to the Champions League. Think that tells it all really."

    Robin Higson on Twitter: "Question, how is it Kenny's fault? The build up play was fantastic it is not his fault they can't score from easy opportunities."

  21. 1756: 

    Liverpool racked up 28 shots on goal at Anfield today. A more telling stat is that they have converted that sort of dominance into less home wins than Blackburn this season.


    Graham Taylor on 5 live at Molineux: "Wolves have given everything they could, you neither win a Championship or get relegated in one game it's what you produce in a season and you can go on about the Mick McCarthy dismissal and the Terry Connor appointment but it's over a season. In terms of the title - it's really on now. Before a ball was kicked I went for Man City so I have to stay with them, that's where my money is."

    FULL-TIME- Liverpool 0-1 West Brom
  24. 1753: 

    Joe Hart screams his encouragement at the travelling City fans as the final whistle blows. Wolves fans have stuck about admirably to applaud their team off as a three-year stay in the top flight come to an end.

    FULL-TIME- Wolves 0-2 Manchester City - WOLVES ARE RELEGATED
  26. 1750: 

    The raining is lashing down at Molineux as Yaya Toure curls narrowly wide and Wolves hopes head down the gutter. Two minutes of injury time to go.

  27. 1749: 

    From Chris in Belfast, via text: "Time for Kenny to be given his P45. Don't blame the woodwork, blame his usless signings."

    From Ade, via text: "As a Liverpool fan I don't like saying it but this team is the worst I have seen in 22 years of supporting them. Cup wins or not, this league campaign has been pathetic."

  28. 1749: 

    Chris Lloyd on Twitter: "Something has to change at Anfield this summer, being nearly 40 points behind Man U is embarrassing for Liverpool."

    Will Hopson-Hill on Twitter: "Dalglish should face the truth of his team's ineptitude in the post-match press conf. He won't - it'll be someone else's fault."

  29. 1749: 

    West Brom are still game to try and play football rather than batten down the hatches and Keith Andrews has fans cowering for cover behind Pepe Reina's goal with a rocket from the apex of the penalty box that fizzes across the face.

  30. 1746: 

    Wolves fans have been chanting "you only scored two" at their City counterparts. Richard Stearman almost helps the visitors out with that stat as his header requires a great save from his own goalkeeper Dorus De Vries to keep it out of the Wolves net.

  31. 1744: 

    Graham Taylor on 5 live at Molineux: "Wolves keep coming at them but when it comes to getting that pass right, getting that finish right, there are better players in the Manchester City side than the Wolves side."

  32. 1744: 

    City have a stand-out chance to make it three as Adam Johnson's pass exposures acres of space behind the Wolves defence and Sergio Aguero goes clean through. The Argentine inexplicably opts to slow and attempt to nutmeg Richard Stearman though and the chance is gone.

  33. 1741: 

    Liverpool have already brought on Stewart Downing and Craig Bellamy in place of Dirk Kuyt and Maxi Rodriguez. Now Jonjo Shelvey joins the fray in place of Jay Spearing.

  34. 1740: 

    Adam Johnson, on as a substitute for Carlos Tevez, fires narrowly wide from distance with City fans still celebrating Samir Nasri's goal.

  35. 1738: 

    Tim Dugdale on Twitter: "King who? Liverpool just an average mid table team."

    Dale Roberts on Twitter: "Dominating is never as important as the taking of chances. Liverpool need to learn that."

  36. 1738: 

    "There is only one Roy Hodgson" echoes round Anfield from the away fans' end.

    GOAL- Liverpool 0-1 West Brom - Odemwingie (75 mins)

    Glen Johnson gives the ball away to Youssuf Mulumbu, who instantly feeds Peter Odemwingie. The Nigerian gives Reina the eyes and slots home. It's West Brom's first goal at Anfield since Garth Crooks in 1985 and it could be their first win there since 1967.

    GOAL- Wolves 0-2 Manchester City - Nasri (74 mins)

    Breathing space for City and quite probably the killer blow for Wolves' Premier League status. Wolves are enraged as referee Lee Probert awards a free-kick for a foul on Carlos Tevez. City take it quickly and with the Wolves defence is at sixes and sevens thanks to a hamstring injury to Sebastien Bassong, Samir Nasri is free to line up his shot and blast past Dorus de Vries.

  39. 1731: 

    Graham Taylor on 5 live at Molineux: "I just hope he hasn't got into a 'what we have we hold' because they are at their best when they attack are Manchester City, with the talent they have got."

  40. 1731: 

    Wolves are refusing to lie down at Molineux and they are making City sweat hard in pursuit of second goal with no reward so far. Carlos Tevez momentarily gets one-on-one with the last defender, but the gold shirts flood back to snuff out the threat.

  41. 1727: 

    Chris Walker on Twitter: "LIVERPOOL!! Put the ball BETWEEN the sticks! So infuriating."

    Ridhwaan on Twitter: "Liverpool, we hit the woodwork whenever we want, hit the woodwork whenever we want!"

  42. 1727: 

    Liverpool somehow fail to score as the ball refuses to cross the line despite Jay Spearing and Luis Suarez best efforts, Kemar Roofe clearing off the line from the latter. Jordan Henderson strokes a side-foot effort just wide from the edge of the box shortly after and the shot clock ticks up to 23 for Liverpool.

  43. 1723: 

    Andy Carroll gets his head to Glen Johnson's cross but the big striker is a off balance and directs his effort over the bar.

  44. 1721: 

    Andy Wilson on Twitter: "Mohammad is watching a different match. LFC have dominated this match, passing has been excellent, but as usual no end-product."

    Amrit Mann on Twitter: "Re Mohammed 1706, this is one of the most fluid coherent performances I've seen this season, much improved &hit the bar again!"

  45. 1721: 

    From David in London, via text: "Liverpool's main rival this season has been the woodwork, seems to always stop us winning anything. [What about the Carling Cup David?]

    From Matt, a Liverpool fan, via text: "Henderson actually scoring a goal would definitely complete an astonishing day of football."

  46. 1720: 

    Roberto Mancini may be looking to lock this one down now as City remove David Silva in favour of Nigel de Jong. Wolves respond by bringing on Kevin Doyle for Dave Edwards. Could be heading for an interesting last 20 minutes.

  47. 1718: 

    Liverpool are within a post's width again as Dirk Kuyt's deflected shot ricochets back off the woodwork before Andy Carroll skies a shot from the Dutchman's cross.


    Former Wolves boss Graham Taylor on Molineux at 5 live: "It's always been the same here, if the Wolves supporters see their team giving their best and attacking they will get behind them, and they're doing that now."

  49. 1716: 

    City hearts are in mouths for a moment before goalkeeper Joe Hart plunges to his right to palm away Stephen Fletcher's header. Karl Henry's free-kick and Sebastien Bassong header set up the chance for Fletcher.

  50. 1713: 

    From Jackson, Brighton, via text: "I don't understand why people think if City beat United then they will win the league. City still need to go to Newcastle who are chasing Champions League football and then entertaining QPR who are in a relegation battle. They aren't exactly easy? While United play two mid-table teams with nothing much to play for."

    Freddie, United fan, via text: "A lot of people seem to think City will just automatically win next week. How often do United make it hard for themselves just to prove all the doubters wrong? This title isn't over. Not by a long, long way."

  51. 1710: 

    Luis Suarez dances into the West Brom box from out near the corner flag but the Uruguyan blazes high and wide from a tight angle after a trademark mazy run. More frustration for Liverpool fans who have plenty of it at home this season.


    Graham Taylor on 5 live at Molineux: "Wolves have started the second half like they started the first, they just couldn't sustain it for 45 minutes then."

  53. 1710: 

    Wolves have made a bright start to the second half with Matt Jarvis almost worming his way into a shooting position before he is crowded out by a mob of City defenders.

  54. 1708: 

    Liverpool chalk up up another strike against the woodwork. They are leading the charts in that if nothing else. Jordan Henderson is the latest to test the frame as he curls an effort against the bar from Andy Carroll's lay-off. The ball could have gone in off Ben Foster's back from the rebound but the Baggies survive.

  55. 1706: 

    From Muhammad, Birmingham, via text: "Another diabolical home performance by Kenny's extravagantly assembled team. The relegation form of 2012 continues, and the deep irony of it all would be if Hodgson, the former employee, records a win at Anfield."

  56. 1705: 

    Luis Suarez hooks a volleyed cross through the six-yard box but only Daniel Agger, still a bit behind the play, is anywhere near it. Number nine Andy Carroll is conspicious by his absence.

  57. 1703: 

    Wolves kick us off at Molineux.

  58. 1702: 

    Back under way at Anfield, but only after Andy Carroll and Luis Suarez have had another moan at referee Neil Swarbrick.

  59. 1702: 

    Wolves meanwhile need at least two goals in this next 45 minutes to stay in the Premier League. It could get messy at Molineux.

  60. 1701: 

    From Dave in Hitchin, via text: "As a City fan of 39 years I can see us winning the next three games before losing the title at home to QPR."

    From Tom, Man Utd fan, via text: "Let's not forget that after the derby, City have to go to Newcastle, tough game for anyone."

  61. 1658: 

    Sloven Lama on Twitter: "My 0-7 prediction looking a bit of a non-runner at present. Though saying that there were six goals in the second half at Old Trafford."

    Arthur Wilson on Twitter: "20 more minutes of dominance from Man City in the second half will tire Wolves. This could be another City thrashing."

  62. 1658: 

    It may be time to start making plans for next Monday evening. The Manchester derby is shaping up to be the sort of head-to-head slug-out we haven't seen in a title race since Manchester United against Newcastle in March 1996 or, dare I say it, Arsenal against Liverpool in 1989. It will be an absolute monster. But only if City can hang onto this lead.

  63. 1653: 

    From Matty, via text: "About six weeks ago I was certain City will win the title on goal difference, and it's looking like they will. The ten goal swing following the first Manchester derby will prove to be the deciding factor."

  64. 1651:  
    MOTD's Steve Wilson at Molineux:Wolves 0-1 Manchester City

    "Give Wolves credit. For 25 minutes they gave Manchester City real problems. But Sergio Aguero was then released by a brilliant Gael Clichy pass and tucked his finish past Dorus de Vries to give City the lead they were looking for."

  65. 1649: 

    Luis Suarez departed the pitch for the interval having warmed referee Neil Swarbrick's ears with complaints about a couple of free-kicks he feels he should have won.

  66. 1648: 
    MOTD's Alistair Mann at Anfield:Liverpool 0-0 West Brom

    "Plenty of opportunities for both sides, Luis Suarez has been lively for Liverpool but West Brom have had the best two openings and Pepe Reina has made the best two saves."


    Graham Taylor on 5 live at Molineux: "The pace of the game has just dropped a little bit, Manchester City are keeping the ball from Wolves and are controlling the game now."

    HALF-TIME- Wolves 0-1 Manchester City
    HALF-TIME- Liverpool 0-0 West Brom
  70. 1647: 

    David Silva is not quite on the same wavelength as Carlos Tevez as the Spaniard rolls a gentle pass in for a run his team-mate never quite made.City still on top, but they could do with the comfort of a second goal.

  71. 1644: 

    Abhinav Reddy on Twitter: "Although a bit far fetched at the moment, which would be bigger? City winning the league or Newcastle finishing fourth?"

    Luke Johnston on Twitter: "Sadly, it now looks like London won't be getting a glimpse of me running in my pants! Gutted.."

  72. 1644: 

    From Peter (United fan), via text: "We've gone from going to the Etihad to potentially seal the league to going to there and potentially losing it, all in the space of a few hours. The Premier League. I hate it. I love it."

  73. 1643: 

    Daniel Agger shows a classy bit of control in the attacking third as he takes down a steepling cross, cuts inside a covering defender and fires a shot goalwards which West Brom goalkeeper Ben Foster keeps out with an outstretched boot. Still goalless at Anfield.

  74. 1641: 

    Manchester City look a lot more dangerous with Carlos Tevez, a more natural complement to the way that David Silva, Samir Nasri and Sergio Aguero, in their attack than with suspended Mario Balotelli. Plenty of nip and zip around the fringes of the Wolves box.

  75. 1637: 

    Graham Taylor on 5 live at Molineux: "Even though Wolves are putting on a good show they are playing against a better team with better players so City are always going to cause them problems."

  76. 1637: 

    Jim in Ipswich, via text: "[Re 1541] I still proudly display a half Ipswich Town- half Inter Milan scarf on my wall, following our brief venture into Europe in the 00's. I don't think that one commemorating my away trip to Coventry in the snow this Feb would have been quite as appealing!"

    Eden Allardyce in Leicester, via text: "Think there's gonna be "half/half" commemorative scarf at the FA Cup final..."I saw Torres score/I saw Carroll score..."

  77. 1636: 

    Mykey Winstanley on Twitter: "Wolves are down now. Can't see City giving this away, Aguero goal was only a matter of time."

    Matt Williams on Twitter: "All the momentum is with City going into the crunch end of the season. Tevez to win the title for City?"

    James Bottomley on Twitter: "I've not been too impressed with Clichy this season but that assist was perfect."

  78. 1636: 

    West Brom are unfortunate not to be ahead as Liam Ridgewell meets a deep corner with a side-foot volley six yards out. His effort thuds into Pepe Reina's chest, but anywhere else and the Liverpool goalkeeper would not have been able to react in time to keep it out.

  79. 1632: 

    A chance at each end at Anfield. West Brom almost take the lead against the run of play as Chris Brunt's volley draws a one-handed save from Pepe Reina. Then Luis Suarez's header loops over Ben Foster but lands on the roof of the net.

  80. 1632: 

    The City fans are chanting manager Roberto Mancini's name after that opener.


    Graham Taylor on 5 live at Molineux: "Wolves have been first class in their approach but the clear-cut chances have fallen to Manchester City. They were always going to have opportunities, as I think they will have for the rest of the game."

    GOAL- Wolves 0-1 Manchester City - Aguero (27 mins)

    Gael Clichy makes probably the biggest contribution of his City career so far as he nutmegs Michael Kightly and sweeps a raking pass in from left that pulls the Wolves defence apart. Sergio Aguero collects and slots home. City have been about value for that lead.

  83. 1626: 

    Brett McCormick on Twitter: "C'mon ref, that's been 90 minutes already. MUFC."

    Rachel T on Twitter: "If Wolves win today, then I will change my name to Mick McCarthy."


    Tony Leighton's full time round-up from Sunday's matches in the Women's Premier League and Super League: "The Women's Premier League's top two teams, Leeds United and Sunderland, are set to clash in the League Cup final after two contrasting semis. Leeds had to batttle to beat Coventry City 2-0, but Sunderland smashed Blackburn Rovers 8-0 to emphatically earn their place in next month's final at Northampton Town's Sixfields.

    "The day's two Super League games both ended in draws, goalless between Everton and Birmingham while Chelsea hauled back a two-goal deficit against Liverpool to claim a 2-2 draw and a point that edged them ahead of Lincoln at the top of the table on goal difference."

  85. 1625: 

    Graham Taylor on 5 live at Molineux: "You can see perhaps why Wolves are in the position they're in, that was terrible defending, you can't afford to do that kind of thing."

  86. 1625: 

    Liverpool are having one of those wasteful afternoons at Anfield so far as Luis Suarez fires straight at Ben Foster before Maxi Rodriguez blazes the follow-up miles over the top.

  87. 1623: 

    Manchester City are within a foot of an opener for the third time in the opening 20 minutes as Sergio Aguero fires just wide from the edge of the box. The visitors are getting closer.

  88. 1621: 

    Graham Taylor on 5 live at Molineux: "First-class shot by Davis but a very good save by Joe Hart. You would never think Wolverhampton Wanderers were in a relegation position, they really have taken the game to Manchester City."

  89. 1621: 

    From Stu in Edinburgh, via text: "Why is Mancini so frustrated by that miss? I thought this season was over?"

    From Mich, via text: "If Man City win this match and are three points behind Man Utd, what are the odds of Mancini saying in his post match interview that his team still have no chance winning the title?"

    From Ali, via text: "Re 1609 Josh it will be a big ask for Carroll to score anyway!"

  90. 1621: 

    Big penalty shout for the hosts at Anfield as Billy Jones appears to trip Maxi Rodriguez as the Argentine heads towards the byeline. Nothing doing from referee Neil Swarbrick though.

  91. 1619: 

    A lovely slick passing move from Manchester City as Pablo Zabaleta ventures in off the right flank, swapping passes with David Silva, before picking out Samir Nasri's dart behind the Wolves defence. The Frenchman flicks the ball past Dorus de Vries but it trundles past the far post.

  92. 1616: 

    West Brom are also giving their more celebrated opponents some problems as Chris Brunt strikes one clean across the face of Pepe Reina's goal from distance.

  93. 1614: 

    It is an entertaining game at Molineux and Wolves have been matching Manchester City for attacking intent. David Davis draws a decent save from visiting goalkeeper Joe Hart with a curling effort from the edge of the box.

  94. 1612: 

    Andy Carroll robs Youssuf Mulumbu in midfield allowing Luis Suarez to slip the ball into the path of Dirk Kuyt. The Dutchman chokes his side-foot shot wide though.

  95. 1609: 

    From Jonny in Swansea, via text: "Dorus De Vries' last league game saw him gain promotion to the Premiership. Today could see him relegated from it."

    From Josh, via text: "No Downing or Bellamy today. Will be a big ask for Carroll to score with no wide men in the team."

    From Jon Coller from London, via text: "I always thought the point in buying Downing was so he could supply balls for Big Andy... Apparently not. Instead we've gone for Maxi, who has never been known as a crosser.

  96. 1609: 

    Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini hurls a bottle to the floor after Sergio Aguero skips through the offside trap before dragging a shot just wide from a tight angle. It was a whisker away from the Argentine.

  97. 1607: 

    Nothing to report of note from Anfield so far. Both teams still checking each other out, before Glen Johnson has a shot blocked on the edge of the area after Andy Carroll holds up play well around halfway.

  98. 1605: 

    Wolves striker Stephen Fletcher is apparently available at 16-1 as first goalscorer. The bookies don't seem too optimistic about Wolves' chances either.

  99. 1603: 

    Jamie Batten on Twitter: "I thought at least Wolves would be first on MOTD for a change if we took a battering today. Everton soon ruined that ray of hope."

    Julian Croker on Twitter: "Expecting Wolves to be relegated today. They should never have sacked Mick McCarthy."

  100. 1603: 

    Wolves are not too far away either at the other end. Sebastien Bassong's shot from the edge of the area deflects narrowly wide off Gareth Barry.

  101. 1602: 

    Carlos Tevez is keen as beans as he bursts forward and lashes a shot over the bar from 25 yards with 17 seconds on the clock.

  102. 1601: 

    We are up and running at Anfield, shortly followed by Manchester City kicking off at Molineux.

  103. 1600: 

    Roy Hodgson gets a warm reception fom the home fans as he makes his way to the away team's dug-out at Anfield and returns the favour as he waves to all corners of the ground. Kenny Dalglish has a nice long chat with his predecessor as well. Everyone's friends now then it seems.

  104. 1558: 

    The stadium announcer at Molineux gives a rousing shout of 'never say never' as the teams emerge onto the pitch. How long is that optimism going to last today?

  105. 1555: 

    Luke Darmanin on Twitter: "Those three goals in the last four minutes of City's 6-1 win at Old Trafford could be all the difference. They are worth six goals of goal difference."

    Yony Seyoum on Twitter: "Raheem Sterling must get the opportunity to showcase his talent in the first team for Liverpool in the remaining three games."

    Nick on Twitter: "The scarves have been needed since Anfield started flushing copious amounts of money down the toilet."

  106. 1555: 

    Anything other than victory would see Wolves relegated but manager Terry Conner insists: "I am not resigned to it and, more importantly, the team are not resigned to it. If we can get three points then all well and good." Manchester City are fighting at the other end of the table yet boss Roberto Mancini says: "I'm staying with my opinion about the title, that it has gone."

  107. 1554: 

    Disclaimer on the forthcoming entry: Roberto Mancini was speaking before this afternoon's result at Old Trafford. His opinion may have changed since then. It certainly should have.

  108. 1551:  
    MOTD's Steve Wilson at Molineux:Wolves v Manchester City (1600 BST)

    "Manchester City are close to their best again, whacking 10 goals past West Brom and Norwich in the space of a few days, whilst Wolves are in a horrible spiral which is only taking them one way. On paper, this must go down as one of the mismatches of the season."

  109. 1549: 
    MOTD's Alistair Mann at Anfield:Liverpool v West Brom (1600 BST)

    "This has been a 2012 of astonishing contrasts for Liverpool. Their fans have witnessed them collect just 12 points from 14 league matches, yet those who were lucky enough to be at Wembley for the cup games against Cardiff and Everton will treasure those experiences for a very long time.

    "So is the glass half empty or full? The answer may well lie in the final month of the campaign, which continues with the visit of former Liverpool boss Roy Hodgson, who has already realised his target by comfortably preserving West Brom's top-flight status."

  110. 1547: 

    Nathan, City fan, via text: "Wolves WILL beat us today. Go on put it on the live text I'm that sure. Typical City."

    Rob J, Birmingham, via text: "I wish everyone would stop going on about United. That was a great performance from Everton and it would not have been a travesty if they had gone on to win it. As for calls to get rid of SAF from so called fans-Ridiculous!"

  111. 1543: 

    The sun is beating down at Molineux where the City squad are split between those taking potshots at goal and some gentle warm-up drills. The visitiors could do with an early goal to dampen down Wolves hopes of sticking a spanner in the works of the title race as they rage against the dying of the light.

  112. 1541: 

    Just seen one of those 'half-half' commemorative scarves on display at Anfield, mixing West Brom and Liverpool colours in one piece of neckwear. When did these become part of the offering at every big club's Premier League game? I always thought they were saved up for rare ventures into Europe and the exotic opposition that followed.

  113. 1537: 

    Paul Alec Johnson on Twitter: "Carroll would need 3 hat tricks a game until the end of the season before anyone even dared utter his name for a euro place."

  114. 1535: 

    James Campbell on Twitter: "A bet on United, City and Liverpool all to lose today.....

  115. 1534: 
    Wolves v Manchester City (1600 BST)

    Dorus de Vries makes his first Premier League start in place of the injured Wayne Hennessey and is one of four Wolves changes from last weekend's 0-0 draw at Sunderland. Sebastien Bassong returns from suspension to replace for Christophe Berra, David Edwards comes in for Anthony Forde and Matt Jarvis is preferred to Sylvan Ebanks-Blake.

    Manchester City make just one alteration to the side that won 6-1 at Norwich, Yaya Toure picked ahead of Nigel de Jong, as Argentine duo Sergio Aguero and Carlos Tevez lead the line once again.

  116. 1533: 
    LINE-UPS- Wolves v Manchester City (1600 BST)

    Wolves: De Vries, Foley, Stearman, Bassong, Ward, Kightly, Davis, Henry, Jarvis, Edwards, Fletcher. Subs: Ikeme, Ebanks-Blake, Johnson, Berra, Milijas, Zubar, Doyle.

    Man City: Hart, Zabaleta, Kompany, Lescott, Clichy, Silva, Toure Yaya, Barry, Nasri, Tevez, Aguero. Subs: Pantilimon, Milner, Dzeko, Johnson, Kolarov, Toure, De Jong.

    Referee: Lee Probert (Wiltshire)

  117. 1532: 

    Let's see how the teams turn out at Molineux.

  118. 1531: 

    Andy Carroll emerges into the Merseyside sunshine and returns the applause of the early arrivers at Anfield. I heard some speculating earlier this week that if he converts winners in his last two games into a bona fide late-season run of form he could make England's Euro 2012 squad. It would have to be one heck of a run of form for me...

  119. 1526: 
    Liverpool v West Brom (1600 BST)

    Steven Gerrard is not in the Liverpool squad for the visit of West Brom after suffering what we believe is a hamstring injury. Goalkeeper Pepe Reina returns from suspension, Jose Enrique is recalled to the back four in place of Jamie Carragher, with Maxi Rodriguez and Dirk Kuyt on the flanks. Jonas Olsson returns from a groin strain to bolster the West Brom defence, while Shane Long replaces hamstring victim Marc-Antoine Fortune up front.

    LINE-UPS- Liverpool v West Brom (1600 BST)

    Liverpool: Reina, Johnson, Skrtel, Agger, Jose Enrique, Kuyt, Henderson, Spearing, Maxi, Suarez, Carroll. Subs: Doni, Coates, Downing, Carragher, Shelvey, Kelly, Bellamy.

    West Brom: Foster, Jones, McAuley, Olsson, Ridgewell, Brunt, Dorrans, Mulumbu, Thomas, Odemwingie, Long. Subs: Fulop, Tchoyi, Andrews, Shorey, Dawson, Cox, Scharner.

    Referee: Neil Swarbrick (Lancashire)

  121. 1524: 

    Terry Connor's Wolves side need all three points to keep alive the distant possibility of them competing in the Premier League next season. There could be plenty more goals this afternoon with them duty bound to attack City and chase the game if they fall behind.

  122. 1521: 
    BREAKING TEAM NEWS- Wolves v Manchester City (1600 BST)

    Manchester City recall Yaya Toure to their starting line-up while Carlos Tevez and Sergio Aguero continue up front.

  123. 1519: 

    The general Twitter buzz on Steven Gerrard's absence from the Livwerpool 18 appears to be that he has suffered a hamstring tweak. Still awaiting official confirmation.


    Everton midfielder Marouane Fellaini talking to the BBC: "We're very happy because when United are winning 3-1 it's difficult to come back. We had to keep going, work hard and it was a good game for Everton. You would never believe Everton could fight to try and win the game - it was a great performance and we have four games left, we need to try and win every game.

    "For 25 minutes the team played well, we had one or two chances but it is difficult to score when you play Manchester United - they are a big team with big players but Everton played well. Now Man United and Man City fight for title, it's good for the league."

  125. 1515: 

    A nice touch at Anfield where Roy Hodgson waited in the corridor to greet his former Liverpool charges as they arrived at the stadium. Hearty handshakes and smiles for all those he managed at Anfield and hugs for Dirk Kuyt and Pepe Reina, the lucky things.

  126. 1509: 

    From Harshad, via text: "The second half was absolutely remarkable looking at it from a United view point. It was probably one of the best attacking displays I've seen from United this season but at the same time up there with one of the worst defending displays."

    From Red Devil in London, via text: "Our season has imploded at the wrong time. Our over-paid mercenaries do not have the spirit that "Citeh" do. Get SAF out and Mourinho in this summer."

    From Matt in Brighton, via text: "With what's happening at the bottom of the table, the four way chase for the Champions League and now potentially a title deciding derby match, might this just be the best Premiership season ever?"

    Really Red Devil? I can't promise that that is not a wind-up. I'm sure that won't stop you replying though.

  127. 1508: 
    BREAKING TEAM NEWS- Liverpool v West Brom (1600 BST)

    Liverpool start with Andy Carroll and Luis Suarez up front, with Jordan Henderson and Dirk Kuyt in midfield. Steven Gerrard is left out of the matchday squad.


    Round-up from Sunday's Women's Premier League and Super League matches from Tony Leighton: "It's half-time in all four women's games and in the Premier League Cup semi-finals Sunderland are battering Blackburn Rovers 4-0. It's closer in the other semi, Leeds are ahead 1-0 against Coventry City. The two Super League games are also close, Liverpool winning 2-1 at Chelsea while the Everton-Birmingham City game is goalless at the interval."

  129. 1506: 

    Aravin Srithar on Twitter: United haven't had Vidic for almost the whole season and they are first. I'd love to see where City would've been without Kompany."

    Joshua Hill on Twitter: "Re Jay Longe what are you on? Evans has been one of our best defenders this year and raf has given everyone trouble this season!

  130. 1505: 

    Roy Hodgson has already made his way back through the corridors at Anfield, turning left into the away dressing room after a friendly chat with part of the Liverpool backroom staff.

  131. 1501: 

    What a contrast to yesterday's early kick-off when Arsenal and Chelsea bored each other and everyone else into submission in a goalless draw that was possibly the worst game of the season so far.

    We have another two games this afternoon with kick-off an hour away at Anfield where Liverpool play West Brom as well as that clash between Wolves and City.

  132. 1501: 

    David Smith on Twitter: "As a United fan I'm devestated but can't take anything away from Everton. Every goal in this game was quality. Moyes for United?"

    Jamie Sheehan on Twitter: "4-4 great for title race. Both sides now have it in their own hands. City can take a massive step by boosting goal difference."

  133. 1458: 

    More from Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson: "We had a chance to make it 5-2, hit the post and they went up the other end and gave themselves hope. There was a lot of rain on the pitch - it slowed our possession down.

    "We've got to get a result at Etihad Stadium now, it's a derby of amazing proportion - probably the most important derby game in my time. We have to go there, perform in right way and not give away goals."

  134. 1457: 

    Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson speaking to the BBC: "We've thrown it [the match] away, no question about that. It's hard to imagine it happened, how poor we defended.

    "It was a bad performance by us, they were soft goals, yet some of our football was magnificent and our forward play didn't deserve that. Their goals were very soft, easy, no challenges on their goals. That's unusual for a team going for a championship; you should see the game out."

  135. 1452: 

    Anthony Duhig on Twitter: "Late inclusion for Premier League's best game? Every goal was fantastic, free flowing football. Superhuman effort from Everton."

  136. 1452: 

    That Patrice Evra header against the post with United leading 4-2 seemed like an incidental detail at the time, just another chance decorating a United win. It is carrying a lot more significance now.

  137. 1448: 

    Jay Longe on Twitter: "Evans and Rafael don't deserve to be in a Premier League team. Poor positioning, no pace and no heading ability. Enough said."

    Marwood on Twitter: "Full credit to Everton today, but United's defence was a shambles from the start. They looked confused and disorganised."

  138. 1448: 

    Everton boss David Moyes: "The effort they put in was absolutely brilliant. We came to win the game, we felt we had been a bit hard done by lately. Today was a chance to play in another big game and stop people thinking our season was over. I don't think at any time we deserved to be two goals down."

  139. 1446: 

    With a two-goal lead and seven minutes remaining, Manchester United's defence did not look dominant enough in the air against the height of Marouane Fellaini, or on the ground, against Steven Pienaar's industry, to keep Everton at bay. There will be an inquest this week at Carrington and it may not be a fun video session for either Rio Ferdiand or Jonny Evans.

  140. 1440: 

    Luke Johnston on Twitter: "If Wolves beat City, I will run next year's London Marathon in my pants. Promise."

    Peter Steele on Twitter: "A draw was the perfect result for me as a Liverpool fan."

  141. 1440: 

    I wonder how that result is sinking in amongst the Manchester City squad as they head to Molineux? For the money spent, surely they cannot afford to miss this chance to shut the gap and set up the mother of all derbies?

  142. 1433: 

    Joe Ballard on Twitter: "Rafael was at fault for three of Everton's goals. Right-back position still not sorted out fully..."

    Roy on Twitter: "It's simple, United can't lose to City next week! but damm they could have made it easier for themselves. Goal difference crucial?"

    Richard Langley on Twitter: "Wolves to beat Man City now? Crazy title race."

  143. 1432: 

    Here is a stat for you: Manchester United still have not won a game after falling behind this season.

  144. 1431: 

    Perhaps I failed to make enough of that Tim Howard save right at the death from Rio Ferdinand's shot amid all the excitement. The American flung a brilliant instinctive fingertip skywards to send the ball over the top. It summed up Everton's excellent endeavour and determination as they battled on to the very end.

  145. 1427: 

    MOTD presenter Gary Lineker on Twitter: "What an extraordinary game! Wonderful stuff."

    Brooker Ralph on Twitter: "Best 45 mins of the season? superb entertainment for the neutral. Alas, I'm not neutral."

  146. 1427: 

    Extraordinary, extraordinary stuff. Nerves jangling like wind charms in both dug-outs as United throw the kitchen sink at the Everton goal, the Toffees cling on for a point and the title race opens up invitingly for Manchester City.

    FULL-TIME- Manchester United 4-4 Everton
  148. 1424: 

    What a save! Tim Howard denies former team-mate Rio Ferdinand with a great tip over the top. Is that United's last chance?

  149. 1423: 

    Five men in the United forward line as we enter the last of five minutes of injury time.

  150. 1422: 

    Noone on Twitter: "I can't believe I am missing this unbelievable match. Thankfully there is the BBC live commentary page."

    Guv on Twitter: "This is why the EPL, although not technically at the level of La Liga, is the best spectacle in the world."

    Colm Moore on Twitter: "Oh no, here comes Fergie time..."

  151. 1421: 

    Nani pumps the ball back into the Everton box but Marouane Fellaini is doing a sterling job helping out his defenders and the visitors have a goal-kick to relieve the pressue.

  152. 1420: 

    Jonny Evans heads wide and there are heads in hands and nails back somewhere near the molars in the stands at Old Trafford.

  153. 1419: 

    Five minutes of injury time and Everton boss David Moyes looks incredulous.

  154. 1419: 

    Everton fend away the free-kick as Alex Ferguson throws on Javier Hernandez in place of Antonio Valencia.

  155. 1418: 

    Manchester United are scrapping around to try and find some sort of way to snatch back the lead. Marouane Fellaini might have given them a route with a clumsy foul 45 yards out.

    GOAL- Manchester United 4-4 Everton - Pienaar (85 mins)

    Stunned silence at Old Trafford. Phil Neville plays the ball into the feet of Marouane Fellaini deep in the United box and the Belgian swivels to slip the ball into the path of Steven Pienaar who slides in to stab the ball past David de Gea. The title race takes another twist.

    GOAL- Manchester United 4-3 Everton - Jelavic (83 mins)

    What a barnstorming second half of football! Nikica Jelavic hammers home on the half-volley from 12 yards out after Maroaune Fellaini has contested header from Phil Nevile's free-kick. Game on.

  158. 1411: 

    Patrice Evra almost adds a fifth as he stoops to head a skidding Antonio Valencia cross against the base of the post.

  159. 1409: 

    Twelve minutes of normal time remain, United are doing a good job of holding on to the ball and snubbing out any lingering Everton of taking something from the game.

  160. 1405: 

    Barnaby Chesterman on Twitter: "Welbeck's had an absolute shocker, scored one and made two. Get him off!"

    Darius Azarmi on Twitter: "Manchester Utd showing what their experience does, being in positions down + getting back up, something I don't think City have."

    Amar Mehta on Twitter: "Rooney and Welbeck's lethal partnership must start at the Euros after the first two matches!"

  161. 1405: 

    To their credit, Everton are still pressing. Nikica Jelavic gets a glimpse of goal but shanks a finish into the side netting as the ball breaks to him in the box.

  162. 1404: 
    Alistair Magowan reports from Old Trafford:

    "Nani, Danny Welbeck and Wayne Rooney have linked superbly for the second-half flurry of Manchester United goals. It's a shame that Marouane Fellaini's volley may appear as a footnote, but four goals of exceptional quality since the break."

  163. 1403: 

    Nikhil Parmar on Twitter: "Rooney and Welbeck's link up play reminds me of Cole and Yorke."

  164. 1402: 

    Not sure that Everton will clamber off the canvas after that goal. Sir Alex Ferguson certainly does not look like he is too concerned about the destiny of this match, enjoying a giggle with the fourth official on the touchline.

    GOAL- Manchester United 4-2 Everton - Rooney (69 mins)

    The match swings back in United's favour as Danny Welbeck and Wayne Rooney combine in electrifying fashion. Welbeck plays the final pass through the legs of Phil Jagielka to lay the finish on a plate for Rooney after the pair had swapped and scampered past a dazed-looking Everton defence.

    GOAL- Manchester United 3-2 Everton - Fellaini (67 mins)

    Hang on a cotton-picking... Marouane Fellaini comes over all Mark Hughes, crashing home a hip-high volley from Tony Hibbert's cross. As the man next to me says, a terrific finish to set up a terrific finish.

  167. 1355: 

    United are straining at the leash now and are looking hungry for the goal that would surely kill off the games and lob the gauntlet down at the feet of Manchester City ahead of their match away at Wolves at 1600 BST.

  168. 1352: 

    Chris Harrod on Twitter: "Re: Paul and Precious at 13:00. Still wish Hernandez was playing?

    Joel Sparks on Twitter: "All the doubters of Welbeck need to see that goal. A young lad who has every potential to be a top class striker. Great finish!"

    GOAL- Manchester United 3-1 Everton - Nani (61 mins)

    Game over? It might well be and it is a goal worthy of winning it. United suddenly burst into life on the edge of the box as Michael Carrick finds Danny Welbeck amid a flurry of angled runs and the ball is popped round the corner for Nani to dink over Tim Howard.

    GOAL- Manchester United 2-1 Everton - Welbeck (57 mins)

    United edge ahead with a pearler from the edge of the D from Danny Welbeck. The visitors are complaining that Steven Pienaar was down injured throughout the phase of play, but they had plenty of chances to make a decent clearance before Welbeck fooled Johnny Heitinga 20 yards out and swept a curling shot into the top corner.

  171. 1344: 

    Nani and Patrice Evra make inroads down the left with a neat interchange of passes, but the Portuguese winger's pull-back from the byeline is cut out by the Everton defence.

  172. 1341: 

    A bit of a break in play at the moment after a clash of heads between Patrice Evra and Leon Osman. Both are back on their feet after some smelling salts and the magic sponge...

  173. 1338: 

    Nani and Wayne Rooney attempt to reprise their earlier goal-scoring combination but the winger's cross is too close to Tim Howard and Tony Hibbert is keeping a close eye on Rooney in the middle anyway.

  174. 1337: 

    United see off the danger from the set-piece but Everton are enjoying the best of the possession and territory in the first few minutes of the second half.

  175. 1336: 

    Everton earn an early corner as Jonny Evans flicks a Tony Hibbert free-kick away from Marouane Fellaini...

  176. 1334: 

    No changes by either side at the interval, as United get the second half under way.

  177. 1334: 

    If United have to go chasing the game, they have some decent artillery to call up off the bench. If Ashley Young can't draw a foul in the box late on, Javier Hernandez looks a good candidate to fill the Ole Gunnar Solskjaer/ Federico Macheda supersub role.

  178. 1330: 

    Oliver Rhodes on Twitter: "35mins and Man Utd were too pedestrian. Since Jelavic's goal, they've upped the tempo resulting in Rooney goal. Great response."

    Sophie Gayter on Twitter: "How Barry continues to be picked for England over Carrick is beyond me. He was immense in the 1st half. Has to go to Euros."

    LudaCris on Twitter: "If England take Sturridge and Welbeck to the Euros, we wont be going very far."

  179. 1328: 

    United were not quite clicking in the final third before that Everton opener, but Nikica Jelavic's header seems to have focused the hosts' minds. There was a real glint of danger about them in the last few minutes. Can they carry that momentum through into the second 45 minues?

  180. 1324: 

    Jack Olins on Twitter: "United are going to win the league with a british CM pairing and neither of them will go to the Euros."

    Corin Wright on Twitter: "Rooney's hair looking a bit thin on top again. The rain probably doesn't help."

  181. 1323: 
    BBC Sport's Alistair Magowan reports from Old Trafford:

    "Wayne Rooney helps Manchester United recover from a slumberous start to put them level, but much will depend on whether Everton consider a point enough. Nani has been a bright light for the hosts so far."

    MOTD's Simon Brotherton at Old Trafford:

    "Honours even at half-time. All to play for in the second half with Everton making it difficult for Manchester United."

    HALF-TIME- Manchester United 1-1 Everton
  184. 1319: 

    Everton escape as Paul Scholes shovels and scuffs the ball wide in the midst of a six-yard box stramash.

  185. 1318: 

    Sylvain Distin is into the book as he bundles over Antonio Valencia as the pair canter after a ball down the United right. A decent position for United to sling over decent cross on the stroke of the break...

  186. 1316: 

    Mic Medeska on Twitter: "See how Valencia and Nani play wide, how hard is it for 'Arry to see that this is what he has to have Bale and Lennon doing??"

    Brian Charity on Twitter: "No celebration from Rooney either. Maybe him and Everton will be friends again..."

    Ali Horne on Twitter: "The two-in form strikers on the pitch have come up with the goods in the first-half."

  187. 1316: 

    Two minutes of injury time at the end of the first half and the home fans are going to enjoy their pie and pint and lot more with the scores level.

    GOAL- Manchester United 1-1 Everton - Rooney (41 mins)

    Trademark United goal as Nani buys himself some space out wide and sends over a peach of a cross that Wayne Rooney just needs to apply a solid forehead to in order to level the scores. Rooney is now joint fourth on United's all-time scorers' list with 179 goals, the same tally as George Best and Dennis Viollet.

  189. 1308: 

    All eyes on Mike Jones as Rafael flops to the floor just inside the box as he turns on to Antonio Valencia's pass. Leon Osman was at his back looking to make an interception, but the referee decides there is not enough to warrant a penalty. It would have been a brave call considering some of the soft spot-kicks United have had in their last two home matches.

  190. 1307: 

    Daily Telegraph football correspondent Henry Winter on Twitter: "Everton lead. Only \u00a35.5m and he keeps scoring: Jelavic looping header in after superb Hibbert cross. But why was Rafael marking Jelavic?"

  191. 1307: 

    United are close to an immediate response as a Paul Scholes long-ranger rattles around the six-yard box via a series of deflections, but Tim Howard does very well to re-adjust and get a hand up and keep it out.

    GOAL- Manchester United 0-1 Everton - Jelavic (33 mins)

    He has been the best player in blue so far and Nikica Jelavic has made the breakthrough. The Croat angles a superb header back across David de Gea after out-jumping Rafael in a battle to get to Tony Hibbert's looping cross from the right.

  193. 1302: 

    Darron Gibson did his former team-mates a favour earlier in the season with a long-range winner against City. The Everton midfielder has a crack from a similar distance here, but it is a yard or two the wrong side of the post.

  194. 1300: 

    Paul Beard on Twitter: "Re Sam 12:31. Bang on, I'm very tired of it. Welbeck's finishing is dire. Get JH in for a few games, + they'll be no going back.

    Precious McKenzie on Twitter: "United fans singing the Cantona song. Possibly a lament at being forced to watch Welbeck toil up front."

  195. 1259: 

    David de Gea looks a little shaky as he fails to claim the set-piece but he is let off the hook as Steven Pienaar's attempt to put the ball back into the box is badly over-cooked.

  196. 1258: 

    Nikica Jelavic peels off Rio Ferdiand's shoulder and the defender briefly looks stretched for pace before he makes up the ground to divert Marouane Fellaini's pass behind for Everton's first corner.

  197. 1256: 

    Phil Neville is having a moan to referee Mike Jones as the official awards United the first corner of the game after a challenge between himself and Nani. He needn't have worried as Tim Howard plucks Wayne Rooney's delivery out of the sky.

  198. 1253: 

    Paul Bernal on Twitter: "Don't worry, Man United fans: you don't need a result. We at Wolves will be giving City a real pasting.... #inmydreams"

    Billy Nimbus on Twitter: "Just waiting for the inevitable "PENALTY TO UNITED" on the #bbcfootball feed."

  199. 1253: 
    Alistair Magowan reports from Old Trafford:

    "Everton's five-man midfield is making a difference in central areas and Nikica Jelavic and Leon Osman had very good chances to take the lead. Manchester United have recovered from a slow start, with Nani looking most dangerous, but it's still a bit tense from the hosts."

  200. 1252: 

    The atmosphere seems a little flat at the moment as Wayne Rooney's cross clears Danny Welbeck in the centre and skids behind for a goal-kick. Twenty minutes gone.

  201. 1251: 

    Wayne Rooney almost springs Rafael with a neat flick but the ball just runs away from the right-back as he attempts to bring it under control.

  202. 1249: 

    Nikica Jelavic is finding space as he drops into the pocket with Rio Ferdinand reluctant to follow. The Croat almost threads a cross through a busy penalty box to Marouane Fellaini, but a United foot stretches out to get a block in.

  203. 1247: 

    Paul Scholes takes a swipe from 30 yards, it is a decent-enough connection but his low shot bashes into the advertising hoardings rather than the net.

  204. 1245: 

    Phil Broeders on Twitter: "Everton looking for all three points to overhaul distracted Chelsea and disintegrating Tottenham."

    Ben Shaw on Twitter: "Re George at 1216: You know United will score three now don't you?

  205. 1245: 

    United are warming up now. Wayne Rooney gets above Phil Jagielka, but plants his header wide from Patrice Evra's floated cross.

  206. 1243: 

    Closer from Nani as he darts in off the left flank again and slaps decent efforts straight at Tim Howard from a tight angle.

    He has looked keen to make an impression on his first start since United's win over Tottenham.

  207. 1241: 

    First effort on goal for United comes from Nani as he lines up a right-foot curler on the edge of the box, but the Portuguese fails to get any purchase on the ball and his shot drifts off target.

  208. 1240: 

    Nikica Jelavic is right up there with the best January signings. Plenty of doubts about the \u00a35m spent on him by David Moyes initially, but he has looked the part and neatly twists past Rio Ferdinand and almost picks out Marouane Fellaini's ruin into the box.

  209. 1238: 

    The combination of Michael Carrick and Paul Scholes in the centre of United's midfield gives them plenty of composure and passing ability when they have the ball, but might they be a little over-run when they lose possession?

  210. 1236: 

    Matthew Cleary on Twitter: "On the train to London - following the game via Twitter and #bbcfootball for the next half an hour til I get back to halls. Come on Reds!"

    Paul Lancashire on Twitter: "Rumour has it Young is being rested today in order to help his bid to join Tom Daley on the 10m platform at London 2012."

  211. 1236: 

    A canny slanted run in behind the United defence from Nikica Jelavic gives the former Rangers man and early sight of goal. He gets his shot away under pressure from the chasing Jonny Evans but David de Gea drops on it comfortably.

  212. 1233: 

    Everton are all hustle and bustle out of the blocks and Leon Osman heads wide after the ball loops up off Rio Ferdinand in the United box. It was never going to trouble David de Gea, but promising stuff from the visitors.

  213. 1231: 

    Sam on Twitter: "If I was a Man Utd fan I'd be getting tired of Fergie picking Welbeck ahead of Hernandez, as a Leeds fan I'm delighted."

  214. 1230: 

    Patrick Colm Devaney on Twitter: "Re:1206 Welbeck is a better all-round player than Hernandez. Only a matter of time before Danny goes on a scoring spree."

  215. 1230: 

    We are under way at Old Trafford....

  216. 1230: 

    Ashley Young is on the bench and I wouldn't say he is glowering, but maybe 'brooding', sums up his expression as he watches his team-mates line up.

  217. 1229: 

    The hand-shakes have passed off without incident, which is always nice to see, Fred the Red, the United mascot, has high-fived Sir Alex and we are almost ready to go.

  218. 1227: 
    BBC Sport's Alistair Magowan reports from Old Trafford:

    "A win today for Manchester United means they can win the title at Manchester City a week on Monday, before that though they must take on an Everton team still smarting from FA Cup semi-final defeat. The visitors are in a decent run of form as well with three wins in their last four league games."

  219. 1225: 
    BBC Sport's Alistair Magowan reports from Old Trafford:

    "Sir Alex Ferguson says in his programme notes that he regards Everton as the 'David Moyes Football Club' such has been his influence at Goodison over the last 10 years. Funny then that Moyes' team have not managed a win at Old Trafford in that time.

    "Moyes admits that the FA Cup semi-final defeat by Liverpool 'is not the sort of thing you can just shrug off' and he will be without the injured Leighton Baines, who has been linked with an Old Trafford move in one newspaper this morning."

  220. 1221: 

    You know that scenario I laid out for you at 1135? Let me give you another...

    If United match City's result today, they could win the title with victory at the Etihad Stadium on 30 April. I imagine that would keep the noisy neighbours from disturbing Sir Alex Ferguson for at least one evening.

  221. 1216: 

    Steven Broadbent on Twitter: "Re 12:06 - Tim Howard could get into United, Tim is the rock in the Everton team and much better than De Gea at present."

  222. 1216: 

    George in Leicester, via text: "I have never won a bet, but today is the day to change it. A whole pound on Everton to score two. You can thank me later Man City."

  223. 1213: 

    Despite being at home today, it looks like Manchester United have the trickier task of the two Manchester clubs today. Everton are in the midst of their customary strong finish to the season, unbeaten in their last four Premier League games and taking 10 points out of an available 12. Wolves, on the other hand, have been wretched.

  224. 1211: 

    Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson tells Sky that Ashley Young was not dropped because of the accusations of diving in recent matches: "Nani has come back to form, he's fresh and I think that could make a difference. Ashley is unfortunate, the press has been over the top because it's Manchester United, it was a penalty kick, there's no doubt about that."

  225. 1210: 

    Elsewhere on the site, chief football scribe Phil McNulty has been taking a look at the curious case of Tottenham's flatlining season and how much damage it has inflicted on Harry Redknapp's credentials for the England role.

    There were plenty of Newcastle fans who have been insisting yesterday that Redknapp should still be England's top target, but I think they were motivated more by the fear that Alan Pardew may be attracting a bit of attention at Football Association HQ.

  226. 1206: 

    Jonathan Brook on Twitter: "If Gibson delivers his first match winning performance at OT after leaving Utd, I'll cry big boy tears at the torment of it."

    Nayim Zaman on Twitter: "Still struggling to understand why Fergie persists with starting Welbeck ahead of our 2nd top scorer, Hernandez."

    Tom Spray on Twitter: "Everton have three ex-United players starting, none of which would get into today's United team."

  227. 1205: 

    Leighton Baines' absence may deny Sir Alex Ferguson a chance to run the rule over one of the contenders to replace Patrice Evra at left-back in the long term at Old Trafford. That is the word in the Sunday Mirror this morning and there is plenty more wild speculation and informed whispers in today's gossip column.

  228. 1202: 
    BBC Sport's Alistair Magowan reports from Old Trafford:Manchester United v Everton (1230 BST)

    "Ashley Young is taken out of the firing line by Manchester United after a week of vigorous discussion on whether he dives or not. Nani replaces the winger and makes his first Premier League start since the win at Tottenham on 4 March.

    "Everton make three changes as Tony Hibbert comes in for the injured Leighton Baines while Phil Jagielka and Steven Pienaar replace Tim Cahill and Magaye Gueye."

  229. 1200: 

    The crowd are filtering into Old Trafford through the Mancunian mizzle. Manchester United have trotted out, booting practice balls to all corners of the ground and are now huddled around, stretching off hamstrings and quads. Thirty minutes until the off.

  230. 1157: 

    Tahir Valli on Twitter: "Ashley Young does not start but is replaced by Nani who is equally as good as Young in the theatrical diving department."

    Dave Clements on Twitter: "Is it too optimistic to hope for a 1-0 Everton win courtesy of Tony Hibbert?"

    Almost certainly Dave, almost certainly.

  231. 1154: 

    As you will have noticed, the doors are aleady open for your messages. 81111 is where you want to aim the texts and #bbcfootball or @mikehensonbbc is the target for tweets. Get firing.

  232. 1152: 

    Time to mark your card for today's top-flight fixtures then. The powers-that-be have left a perfect Sunday lunch sized hole in the middle of your schedule as well. Who says they don't care about fans?

    Manchester United v Everton (1230 BST)

    Liverpool v West Brom (1600 BST)

    Wolves v Manchester City (1600 BST)

  233. 1149: 

    Speaking of comebacks, Roy Hodgson will stroll back through the Anfield corridors today for the first time since being unceremoniously relieved of his duties as Liverpool manager 15 months ago.

    He seems like a thoroughly nice man, but I'm sure there must be a little part of the West Brom boss that is thirsting for a bit of sweet revenge today.

  234. 1148: 

    Dave Gillet on Twitter: "Even if City win the Manchester derby, Newcastle away will be a huge test, especially considering their form at the moment."

  235. 1148: 
    LINE-UPS- Manchester United v Everton (1230 BST)

    Man Utd: De Gea, Rafael Da Silva, Ferdinand, Evans, Evra, Valencia, Scholes, Carrick, Nani, Rooney, Welbeck. Subs: Amos, Jones, Giggs, Smalling, Park, Hernandez, Young.

    Everton: Howard, Hibbert, Jagielka, Distin, Neville, Osman, Heitinga, Gibson, Pienaar, Fellaini, Jelavic. Subs: Mucha, Stracqualursi, McFadden, Cahill, Gueye, Barkley, Anichebe.

    Referee: Mike Jones (Cheshire)

  236. 1146: 

    He seemed washed-up and overweight after a series of bad behaviour and worse career choices. If City did pip United at the post, would Caros Tevez's comeback be the footballing equal of Elvis in Vegas in 1968?

  237. 1145: 

    So did that 'word' that Sir Alex Ferguson was going to have with Ashley Young about his tendency to hit the turf, include the phrase 'you're on the bench son'? Fergie has not been shy in sticking misbehaving stars in detention before as Beckham, Van Nistelrooy and Rooney can testify.

  238. 1141: 
    BREAKING TEAM NEWS- Manchester United v Everton

    Everton's Darron Gibson starts against his former club with Nani back in the Manchester United starting XI and Ashley Young dropped to the bench.

  239. 1138: 

    Barry Travis on Twitter: "Proper football weather today, got the feeling of one of those drama filled days!! Big, big game at OT and I can't wait."

  240. 1135: 

    The gap between Manchester United at the top and Manchester City in second stands at a healthy looking five points.

    But, let me paint you a picture. If United drop points at home to Everton today, City, with a superior goal difference, will go top if they consign Wolves to the drop with a win at Molineux and then emerge victorious from that massive Manchester derby on 30 April.

    Beyond the realms of credbility? Or might there be a sting in the tail to this season yet?

  241. 1130: 

    Cough... Splutter... Creak... What's that I hear? After the last rites were being read with Manchester United eight points clear earlier this month, it might just be the sound of a title race coming back to life. Return to your seats and fasten your belts, it could be about to get a bit bumpy at the high-altitude end of the table.

Latest Football

Sat 20 Sep 2014 - Premier League
  • QPR v Stoke 12:45
  • Aston Villa v Arsenal 15:00
  • Burnley v Sunderland 15:00
  • Newcastle v Hull 15:00
  • Swansea v Southampton 15:00
  • West Ham v Liverpool 17:30
Sun 21 Sep 2014 - Premier League
  • Leicester v Man Utd 13:30
  • Tottenham v West Brom 13:30
  • Everton v Crystal Palace 16:00
  • Man City v Chelsea 16:00
Sat 27 Sep 2014 - Premier League
  • Liverpool v Everton 12:45
  • Chelsea v Aston Villa 15:00

More fixtures

As It Stands Table

Barclays Premier League summary table; it charts each team by position, team name, games played, total goal difference and points
Position Team Played Goal Difference Points
No movement 1 Chelsea 4 9 12
No movement 2 Aston Villa 4 3 10
No movement 3 Swansea 4 3 9
No movement 4 Southampton 4 5 7
No movement 5 Man City 4 3 7
No movement 6 Tottenham 4 2 7
No movement 7 Arsenal 4 1 6
No movement 8 Liverpool 4 1 6
No movement 9 Man Utd 4 3 5
No movement 10 Hull 4 0 5
No movement 11 Everton 4 -1 5
No movement 12 Leicester 4 -1 5
No movement 13 West Ham 4 -1 4
No movement 14 Stoke 4 -1 4
No movement 15 Sunderland 4 -1 3
No movement 16 QPR 4 -8 3
No movement 17 Crystal Palace 4 -3 2
No movement 18 Burnley 4 -3 2
No movement 19 West Brom 4 -5 2
No movement 20 Newcastle 4 -6 2