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Rediff News  All News  » Sports » Chelsea hit five as 'Big Four' all win

Chelsea hit five as 'Big Four' all win

Last updated on: October 19, 2008 00:55 IST

Chelsea romped to a 5-0 win at Middlesbrough, Manchester United thumped West Bromwich Albion 4-0 and Liverpool and Arsenal produced stirring fightbacks to claim home wins over Wigan Athletic and Everton Saturday.

The results mean the Premier League now looks more familiar with the 'Big Four' filling the top four slots.

Chelsea's lunchtime demolition job gave the leaders 20 points from eight games but Liverpool joined them on the same total after scoring twice in the last 10 minutes to snatch a 3-2 victory over Wigan.

Arsenal moved up to third on 16 points after netting three second-half goals to record a 3-1 victory against Everton.

United are up to fourth on 14, along with Aston Villa, who drew 0-0 at home to Portsmouth, and Hull City, who host West Ham United Sunday.

Chelsea travelled to Middlesbrough shorn of several injured regulars but went ahead through Salomon Kalou after 14 minutes.

Their dominance bore fruit with four goals in 16 minutes early in the second half, starting with another stunning 30-metre shot by Brazilian long-range specialist Juliano Belletti.


A second for Kalou and goals by Frank Lampard and Florent Malouda secured Chelsea's best away win in the league for five years.

"From the first moment our football, our movement and passing... that was the best we've played for a long time," Lampard told Sky Sports television.

Egyptian striker Amr Zaki scored twice, including a superb scissors kick, as Wigan outplayed Liverpool to lead 2-1 at halftime after Dirk Kuyt had replied for the hosts.

Wigan received a big blow when Antonio Valencia was sent off 15 minutes from time and Liverpool piled on the pressure, culminating in Albert Riera's equaliser and Kuyt's miss-hit winner with five minutes left.

Arsenal, who lost to Hull and drew with Sunderland in their last two games, fell behind to an early Leon Osman goal.

But the second-half introduction of England winger Theo Walcott changed the game and goals for Samir Nasri, Robin van Persie and Walcott turned things round.

Manchester United also found it hard going in the first half but eventually overwhelmed Albion, who barely mustered a shot.

In-form England striker Wayne Rooney drove powerfully into the box to open the scoring in the 56th minute, then set up Cristiano Ronaldo for the second.

Dimitar Berbatov then scored his first league goal for the club, from point-blank range, before Nani finished things off with an excellent counter-attacking goal.

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