Premier League clockwatch – as it happened

QPR stunned Chelsea 1-0, Luis Suárez inspired Liverpool to a 3-0 victory over Sunderland, while Everton won 2-1 at Newcastle

FULL-TIME: Newcastle 1-2 Everton Distin clears a late, late cross - and that proves to be Newcastle's last chance. Given they are only two points from relegation now, they will be looking nervously around, fearing they could be locked into an almighty scrap in the next few months. Meanwhile Harry Redknapp is delighted with his side's 1-0 win over Chelsea. "I felt we were fantastic tonight," he says, pointed out his decision to play Taarabt up front worked as well as his team's effort. Anyway, that's it from me. Thanks for all your emails. Best, Sean.


Everton are having more of the ball here ... much to the frustration of the Newcastle fans. And Baines very nearly made it 3-1, ghosting past two Newcastle defenders before, up close with Krul, spurning a great chance. We're into the last minute now ...

[Famous last words alert] Everton look much more solid here. They have three minutes to hold on ... "Apologies to Roger Stokes," says Brett Collett. "I've inadvertently equalled his number of MBM published comments for 2013, and it isn't even my resolution. Hopefully I inadvertently lose weight or something too."

There will six added minutes of injury time ... which has certainly charged up the Newcastle fans. Think 2-2 wouldn't be an unfair result, but Everton could quite easily add a third with Newcastle overpressing.

That's just what Everton needed: a last-minute corner. Unsurprisingly, Oviedo is unable to find the three Everton players in the box ...

Meanwhile Gary Naylor is back. "Some people claimed that David Moyes could not produce an entertaining team," he writes. "They also say he couldn't manage a Champions League club. Of course, they are 100% correct about the second assertion." Not so sure Gary ....

Now Everton make a sub, Jelavic off, Oviedo on ... there are two minutes plus injury time left.

Another Newcastle sub: Perch off, Ranger on. Meanwhile Mohamed Yaser writes: "MBM is by far and away the best match coverage currently but one thing lets it down, a live 'as it stands' league table. Sort it out, Guardian. New year's gift?" Here you go, Mo.

Now Marveaux has a shot blocked ... before Santon's 25-yard fizzer is easily saved. it's all Newcastle now but time is running out.

There are six minutes and both sides are still going for it ... wouldn't be surprised to see a late goal here. Meanwhile just seen Santon's chance again - if he had squared it across the six-yard box Cisse would have had an open goal.

Anichebe and Neville are back on ... on the surface both look OK. But Everton's defence is still a bit dazzed and they need Howard to make a one-on-one save to preserve their lead. "HEY! The US only owns one Dishwasher Lager now," splutters Ken Houghton. Start blaming the Belgians, you Triple Stout drinkers!"

An awful clash of heads between Neville and Anichebe ... leaves the former with blood spewing from his head and Anichebe scratching his temple in pain.

GAME OVER AT STAMFORD BRIDGE! IT'S FINISHED CHELSEA 0-1 QPR! It's only the Rs' second win in the Premier League all season, although they are still five points from safety. Meanwhile Gene Solario reckons: "Frank Lampard's performance tonight looks like he's already playing for Uncle Harry at QPR."


Liverpool finish with a 3-0 win over Sunderland ... while we're deep into injury time in the Chelsea v QPR game.

... and misses by a whisker! Actually, looking at the replay it was several feet.

Felliani, who has been taken out about a yard from the penalty area, is getting treatment. The Newcastle fans are chanting "Cheat! Cheat!" which seems totally wide of the mark to me. Leighton Baines steps up ...

We're about to head into injury time at Stamford Bridge, with QPR still 1-0 up. Meanwhile Gary Naylor is unhappy. "So will squabbling at the corner, unnoticed by the officials, be picked up by whoever looks at the pictures and Everton invited back next week for a penalty (in fact, two)?" he fumes. "Or does that sort of thing only happen if Fellaini is involved?"

While Everton prepare to take a corner Anichebe and Tiote are shoving each other like kids in a playground. Meanwhile a dissenting view regarding Joe Cole from Tom Shaw. "I'm not sure how warmly Joe Cole would be welcome back at Upton Park," he writes. "He couldn't get out the door fast enough after being one of the players who got us relegated in 2003. Memories are long at our place and disloyalty doesn't go down well."

Ameobi escapes Neville's attention and then fires it into row ZZ. Chelsea, meanwhile, have five minutes to salvage a point against QPR.


The Everton fans are singing "Going down! Going down!" at the Newcastle fans. Meanwhile Newcastle attack at Cisse twice comes close to scoring. More PPV MBM debate. "How about 50p for us, each time you use one of our emails?" suggests Brad McMillan. "Seems fair(ish) to me. Actually, no, the thought of Gary Naylor building a commercial property empire on the back of his gains, then renaming St James' Park, is a little too much..."

Everton are pressing, looking for a third but Felliani's shot is blocked. Meanwhile Tiote is booked for a sliding tackle on Felliani.

Newcastle sub: Obertan, who has been impressive tonight, comes off and is replaced by Bigirimana. Meanwhile Robin Hazlehurst is back. "Presumably an MBM pay per view would be very easy to pirate into a live 'feed' (no doubt bombarding readers with adverts for poker and dating sites ...), which would be very naughty but would leave the Guardian in a slight pickle - would you hound naughty people through the courts for pirating your material or would you champion their right to free speech and the open internet, even against yourselves? This is probably the main reason why it won't happen I'd guess."

Lovely play from Obertan, who takes the ball 20, 30, 40 yards - evading the attentions of three blue shirts as he does so - before Howard saves at the near post.

Bloody hell! QPR have gone 1-0 up against Chelsea! Shaun Wright-Phillips' shot from just outside the area flying past Turnball and into the bottom corner ...

Liverpool are dominating at Anfield with only Mignolet making the 3-0 scoreline a tiny bit respectable. "I'm a West Ham fan old enough to know better but I would cry hot salty tears of joy if Joe Cole were to come back. Make of that what you will," says Mark Jelbert.


Goal! Newcastle 1-2 Everton (Anichebe 60) Jelavic has supposedly been wildly out of form recently but that was lovely play there. He hustled and jinked down the left before his cross found the recent substitute Anichebe, who slotted home from up close.

It's still Chelsea 0-0 QPR ... even though they are dominating. They've had 15 shots and 11 corners so far. "It's one of the sad mysteries of modern life that Joe Cole will end his career with fewer England caps than Gareth Barry," says Dan MacDonald. "As for Simon McMahon's pay per view concept, thanks to the amount of F5 generated clicks we do to boost your advertising revenue, you should be paying us."

So close for Newcastle! First a jinking run from Marveaux comes to undistinguished end when his cross fails to find a black and white shirt. Then Marveaux finds Ameobi with a lovely 30-yard dink but his flicked shot is just wide ...

It's an ugly, messy, scrambled egg of a tussle in the six-yard box ... as Everton prepare to take a corner. Coluccini might have pushed someone there and Tiote perhaps brought someone down but there was so much argy-bargy going on the referee Martin Atkinson feels it unwise to intervene.


Another yellow card, this time for Williamson for clipping Jelavic as he wizarded past him ... "Whoah, now, Simon McMahon," splutters Matt Dony. "Pay-per-view MBMs? It's a slippery slope. Professionalism will ruin the charm, and soon the writers will be demanding literally 10's of pounds per blog, with agents getting involved and taking advantage. There'll be a soulless sponsorship with some weak American dishwater lager, and we'll all tell stories about the good old days before money ruined everything. Don't do it." Tens of pounds you say? Interesting ...


Newcastle have made a decent start to this half ... they're definitely doing more of the pressing at the moment. A corner comes to nothing when Cisse is whistled for having his hands all over Howard.


Chelsea continue to press without much purpose against QPR. Meanwhile Brett from Melbourne writes: "Yeah, I could imagine punters, as good as the coverage would be, paying for the final day's play in an Ashes Test. As long as they like paying for day three after you Poms have us pinned to the wall."

A cynical, Van Bommelesque foul from Heitinga earns him a booking ... Ameobi was bursting through so Heitinga made sure he went down. Marveaux smashes the resulting free-kick into the wall, however.

We're back underway in the Newcastle v Everton game ...Surely there are more goals in this. 2-2 anyone? Meanwhile Robin Hazlehurst reckons: "Phil Sawyer is halfway right about the MBM-cam, but surely it should focus on the writer's fingers, not the face. We could watch Scott Murray gently caress his keys like a jazz pianist, Glendenning battering away like a demented jack-hammer, Smyth's fingernails visibly receding with each entry, and your own delicate staccato woodpecker dabs. Now what could possibly be more exciting to do than that on a winter's evening or Saturday afternoon? Eh? Oh."

It's still Chelsea 0-0 QPR with 30 minutes to go ... Meanwhile Phil Sawyer says: "I think the most impressive thing about Cole's spell in France was that he made an effort to actually learn French rather than conduct interviews in a cod-French accent."

It's game over at Anfield ... Liverpool are now 3-0 up, with Suarez scoring his second of the night.

Liverpool are pressing for a third against Sunderland early in the second half.  Meanwhile Simon McMahon poses an intriguing question. "Will 2013 see the first ever Pay Per View (read?) live blog?" he asks. "Maybe something like the Champions League or Wimbledon final. Or the final day's play at the Open or Ashes Test matches? You could even pay in advance at a reduced rate. I know I'd pay at least 50p to get my regular fix." Really? Anyone else? Perhaps we could ease the

Peep! Peep! It's Newcastle 1-1 Everton at half-time after a thoroughly enjoyable opening 45 minutes. Meanwhile the Joe Cole fan club continues to grow apace. "Long ago made my peace with the fact that Joe Cole will never actually be the player we all thought he was going to be, but he was mighty impressive in France last year," says Matt Dony. "Still not completely consistent, but more so than he has been in England since the early Chelsea days. Maybe the emotional return to West Ham will coax that stability out of him. And before anyone starts patronisingly disparaging the French league, just take a step back and look at the current Premier League."

What a free-kick from Leighton Baines! Newcastle 1-1 Everton (Baines 43) It's an old-fashioned shoelaces through the ball job, of the like your third-year junior school PE teacher would roar with approval, and it whizzes this way and that before flying past Krul at a rate of knots. Superb goal, and it's what Everton probably deserve. This is a cracking game ...


Krul punts another long ball downfield but this time Howard is alert to the danger and sweeps up. Meanwhile Andy Murray writes: "As both north-east clubs are playing tonight, I’m emailing on the off-chance that the MBM’ers among them may be able to shed light on something that nobody I speak to believes ever happened. In the mid 1980’s, I swear I went to a Commentator’s vs Athletes charity football match at Durham’s Ferens Park. As far as I can remember it was organised by Steve Cram. He played for the athletes obviously, the only other athlete I can remember playing was Daley Thomson. For the commentators, well Motty, Gubba and Jim Rosenthal are the only ones I can recall. I believe the score ended up something like 9-8. Then everyone got drunk in the bar (I didn’t, I was about 10). Are any MBM followers from the north-east able to confirm this happened? If not, well, maybe I’ll book some time with a clinical psychologist." Well?


Ameobi flops to the floor after a challenge from Phil Neville. The home crowd bay for a penalty but it looked a dive to me. Meanwhile Martin Atkinson has just booked Papiss Cisse for a challenge for Leighton Baines.

More Cole talk, this time from William Walsh. "Cole provided a sound performance in France last year," he insists. "He is not going to suddenly score ten goals if given a starting position each week, but he would add depth and experience to either West Ham or QPR and provide some valuable support in the middle of the pitch." Personally don't think he adds much to what QPR already have in similar positions (Taarabt, Fuarlin, Hoillett etc) but he would give West Ham a little more creativity in midfield.


Another chance, this time for Newcastle! Classic wing-play from Santon, whose swirling cross is inviting but evades everyone. This could easily be 2-1 here ...

It's half-time in the Chelsea and Liverpool games ... Chelsea 0-0 QPR, which has been a post-Christmas turkey so far, and Liverpool 2-0 Sunderland.

Superb save by Krul! Baines plays in Pienaar, who takes it into the area and holds off a challenge but Krul is out smartish and makes the save. "Regarding Ryan Dunne's suggestions for innovation, surely the obvious one, a la 606 and other radio shows, would be for an MBM webcam?" suggests Phil Sawyer. "Who could resist watching John Ashdown morosely surveying the contents of a mug that's been sat on the desk for three days? Robbie Smyth squirming in his seat, desperate for that half time dash to the loo? The possibilities are non-existent/endless."

Perch hits the post with a downward header ... with Howard beaten! Meanwhile Graeme Thorn writes: "Do Liverpool currently have the goalkeeper/defence combination with the shortest hair? Of the five playing tonight (Reina/Wisdom/Skrtel/Agger/Johnson), only Agger has significant hair, but he has been known to have it shaved apart from a strip on the top of his head." Er, off the top of my head yes, but am willing to be proved wrong.

Now Newcastle push forward and the crowd bellow for a penalty when Obertan is challenged by Jagielka ... but the winger doesn't think there was a foul and immediately picks himself up. It's still very open, this.

Meanwhile Paul Cockburn has this to say about Joe Cole ... "I've always been a Cole fan, and feel he was poorly used at Chelsea and Liverpool. But that ship has sailed; West Ham are decent in midfield, and probably need one less Cole, not one more." The best game I saw him in the flesh was England 2-2 Sweden in Germany 2006. If memory serves - and it infrequently doesn't these days - he was England's best player in their best game of that World Cup. But he flitting in and out at Chelsea after that and has slipped, sadly, since.

A better-than-decent chance for Naismith ... but his header is straight at Krul. Less than a minute later Felliani has a great opportunity, 12 yards out and central, but his shot is blocked at the death. 23 minutes gone and it's still Newcastle 1-0 Everton.

Everton are harder pressing now ... but when Pienaar finds space down the left his cross hits the first defender's right toe. Meanwhile Ryan Dunne writes. "Happy New Year Sean! As you're one of Guardian sport's high heid yins, I was wondering if you could tease us with the cutting-edge plans for Clockwatches/MBMs in 2013 - 3D? In-game sponsored betting links? As-live goal clips, but performed in Lego so as to not breach any copyrights? A 'player-cam' style feature with the option of an MBM devoted solely to the activity of one player (alongside the usual romantic desperation riffs of course)? The possibilities are endless!" Want a job, Ryan?

Everton attack but Jagielka's cross from the right fizzes over everyone. "Do you think, what with the transfer window now being open, Fellaini may have moved to Manchester for reasons other than being harassed by 'crawling women'?" suggests the cynical Mark Judd.

The Newcastle v Everton game looks as open and tasty as a 24/7 diner. You'd expect more goals here. "Kudos to Sturridge for being creative in his obligatory description of the size and status of his new club as 'humongous'," writes Peter Oh. "Which at least is less boring than the usual 'massive' and 'huge'. He’s raised the bar now and future signings will have to break out adjectives such as 'ginormous' or 'mammoth' to compete."

Liverpool are 2-0 up against Sunderland now ... Suarez scoring after holding off Cuellar before slotting it between Mignolet's legs.


A good start this for Newcastle ... First Obertan speeds down the left only for Distin to clear with Cisse on the sniff in the centre. Then Howard has to palm another cross from the left for a corner.

Joe Cole to West Ham ... discuss? Surely Cole is a midfield version of Michael Owen these days - ie good once, but a very, very long time ago ...

What a save from Krul ... who at full stretch palms a lovely left-to-right swirler of a free-kick from Leighton Baines around the post.

Liverpool have gone 1-0 up through Sterling after a throughball from Suarez. Meanwhile Matt Dony is near-speechless. "For one glorious moment, I though that Felliani quote earlier was attributable to Gary Naylor himself. I like the idea of Scouse girls throwing themselves at him, burning in their loins for his knowledgable opinions on every sport ever. Brightened up my evening."


Wow! What a start for Newcastle who go 1-0 up against Everton (Cisse 2) And it was as English and old-school as sticky pudding toffee. A long punt forward is missed by Distin and Heitinga and Cisse flicks it over the advancing Howard.


Newcastle get their match against Everton underway ... "I went out today to buy a copy of New Scientist and absent-mindedly came home with a copy of New Statesman," splutters Phil Sawyer on the subject of new year's resolutions. "Quite how I managed to mistake 'Statesman' for 'Scientist' I don't know. So my resolution is to stop being so effing useless at this 'life' business. Starting with spending less time standing in the kitchen wondering why I went in there in the first place."

We're just about to kick-off in the Newcastle v Everton game. I'll be focusing more on this match than the other two, simply because the 'feeds' I have for the Chelsea and Liverpool games are bombarding me with adverts for poker and dating sites ...


Marko Marin gets yellow card for a cruncher of a tackle ... on Mbia, which could easily have been red. It's still goalless in both games so far.

It's been a quiet start in the Liverpool v Sunderland game ... while Chelsea are already pressing against QPR. Meanwhile Luke Stevenson isn't showing much new year cheer. "How highly would you rate the odds that Daniel Sturridge, who will play no part in tonight's match for Liverpool, still has more attempted shots than anyone playing this evening? ... combined." Am certainly hoping for the sake of my wallet that very little happens in the Liverpool game ...

We're off in the Liverpool v Sunderland and Chelsea v QPR games ... meanwhile Peter Harmer emails in with his new year's resolution. "I was going to go with 'have more faith in my own abilities' but thought I'd probably just screw it up so decided to scrap it," he says. "Instead I'm going with 'make more tenuous jokes'." Is that it?

Meanwhile Gary Naylor himself is back. "'I am living in Manchester now, because in Liverpool, the women were crawling for me. It was too much. In Manchester, people don't recognise me that much and tend to treat me in a more respectful way. I don't want to be a star. I just want to play football' - Marouane Fellaini in the Liverpool Echo. Yep - people
don't recognise him in Manchester."

Alan Pardew says he's "pleased" that Demba Ba has gone to Chelsea because "it ends the uncertainty around the club" ... but admits he prepared for the Everton game with Ba in the side. That's why Cisse starts on the right, with Ameobi in the centre ... although he says that will change in the weeks ahead.


Elsewhere, Oliver Lewis is unhappy with Alan Pardew's selection tonight ... "The main benefit of Ba going is at least allowing Cisse back up front to regain some confidence as the lone striker he needs to be, but Shola is up there," he sighs, before peering into his crystal ball. "He will either be decent for 60 mins then disappear or disappear from the get off (apart from concede loads of fouls) and Cisse 'playing' on the wing which is sheer suicide against Pienaar and Baines. Baffling selection which will cost us tonight."

Meanwhile an email ... "Happy new year to you too, Sean," says Roger Stokes. "My resolution this year is to be published more times than anyone else in Guardian minute-by-minute reports. This, hopefully, will be the first of many." Without meaning to sound unkind, that is a ridiculous resolution, Roger. How are you going to monitor that? Or, for that matter, beat Gary Naylor? Anyone else doing something more sensible?

Shola Ameobi leads the line for Newcastle in place of Demba Ba, who has scored 13 of Newcastle's 26 Premier League goals this season. Meanwhile Fellaini is back for what looks a near full-strength Everton side ...

Mata, Hazard, Ramires and Cole start on the bench for Chelsea tonight ... while Cech is injured and Marko Marin makes a rare start. Meanwhile QPR seem to be packing their defence and midfield, hoping to grind out a point ...

The Liverpool and Sunderland teams are in ... and they are pretty much as expected, with Reds' new signing Daniel Sturridge watching the game from the stands. If Liverpool win this they move up to eighth; a Sunderland victory lifts them to twelfth.


Good evening everyone, wherever you are in the world, and a very happy new year to you. Hope it's a good one. Anyway, enough flabby platitudes, and on to tonight's action. Yesterday we saw the Manchester clubs bound further in front of the Premier League - while Aston Villa, Southampton and Fulham put points and distance between themselves and those in the drop zone. Tonight there are three further Premier League games - Chelsea v QPR, Liverpool v Sunderland and Newcastle v Everton - all pitting Champions League chasers against teams that could go down. And yes, that very much includes Newcastle, who are now without Djemba Ba, and just two points off the drop. Couldn't happen? That's what they said at the start of 2009, when the Magpies began the new year in 14th, two points off the drop ... and finished getting relegated. It couldn't happen again, could it?


comments powered by Disqus