Tue, Dec 21, 2004 - Page 19 News List

Arsenal edges past Portsmouth

EUROPEAN FOOTBALL The Gunners moved back into second place in the English Premier League after handing Portsmouth a 1-0 loss at Fratton Park


Sol Campbell scored a rare goal from 25m on Sunday as Arsenal captured a 1-0 win at Portsmouth to regain second place in the Premier League and cut Chelsea's lead to five points.

There were only 14 minutes left at Fratton Park when the Pompey midfield allowed the England centerback, who occasionally scores from close range at set pieces, to charge forward into the huge space outside the area.

Campbell had plenty of time and room to drive a shot that flew past surprised 'keeper Jamie Ashdown to give the England defender his first goal for 16 months.

The victory means that Arsene Wenger's men climbed above Everton and have 38 points from 18 games while Chelsea, which outplayed Norwich 4-0 on Saturday, has 43. Everton dropped two points on Saturday when it was held 0-0 by struggling Blackburn and has 37.

"We are very hungry," said Wenger who has led the Gunners to three league titles in six seasons. "We needed to show great character today to win the game. We are determined, we are hungry and we have talent so we have the ingredients to make things interesting."

Milan Baros scored one goal and set up another as Liverpool came from behind to beat Newcastle 3-1 in Sunday's other Premier League game.

Shota Arveladze scored the only goal of the game as Rangers stayed a point behind traditional rival Celtic in the Scottish title race with a 1-0 beating of Kilmarnock.

The Georgian striker, who is expected to leave Rangers at the end of the season, netted in the 16th minute at an icy Rugby Park a day after Celtic edged lowly Dundee United 1-0 at Parkhead.

Celtic has 47 points from 19 games and Rangers 46. Third place Aberdeen is a distant 13 points off the lead in an all too familiar pattern to the Scottish championship campaign.

Aberdeen lost 1-0 on Saturday to Dundee which climbed away from last place.

Sunday's other schedule game between last place Livingston and Hearts was postponed because of a frozen pitch.

Espanyol drew 0-0 with last-place Numancia to extend its unbeaten run to four and reclaim second place in the Spanish league.

Espanyol, the far lesser known of Barcelona's two clubs which finished 16th last season and has finished no higher than ninth in the last five years, has lost only one of its last nine and has climbed from eighth place more than two months ago.

Valencia and Real Madrid moved ahead of Espanyol on goal difference on Saturday, but Sunday's draw kept it nine points behind league-leading FC Barcelona.

In Seville, defender Javi Navarro scored the winner in the opening minutes of the second half to give Sevilla a 2-1 win over crosstown rival Real Betis.

Barcelona heads the standings with 39 points from 16 games, with Espanyol one ahead of Real Madrid and Valencia.

Defender Sinisa Mihajlovic scored his second goal of the season in the 35th minute to give Inter Milan a 1-0 win over Brescia and lift it into fourth place in the Italian Serie A.

Inter remained the only unbeaten team in the league after 16 rounds, but trails leader Juventus by 15 points after winning only four and drawing 12 matches.

Udinese remained in third place, scoring three first-half goals to beat 10-man Lazio 3-0 for its eighth win in 10 games.

Juventus leads with 39 points following a goalless draw Saturday against AC Milan, which is second with 35 points, four ahead of Udinese. Inter is fourth with 24, the same as Sampdoria and Palermo.

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