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|Premier League - How a dramatic final day unfolded|
|Sunday, 13 May 2012 20:28|
IN one of the most thrilling climaxes to a season in the history of the English game, Manchester City won the title as two goals in injury time saw them defeat QPR 3-2
Manchester United had been on course to hold onto their crown after defeating Sunderland 1-0 at the Stadium of Light, but strikes from Edin Dzeko and Sergio Aguero left Sir Alex Ferguson and his players devastated.
In a dramatic afternoon, the race for third and fourth place witnessed plenty of twists and turns, while the issue of the final relegation spot was only finally settled in injury time as well.
Here is how 90 sensational minutes, plus a few crucial extra ones, unfolded on Sunday...
15.00: Kick-off around the grounds as the 2011-12 season begins its final flourish.
15.02: Emmanuel Adebayor puts Tottenham in front at home to Fulham after converting following a one-two with Rafael van der Vaart. Spurs move ahead of Arsenal in the table and into third.
15.03: But Arsenal respond almost immediately as Yossi Benayoun benefits from a horrible mistake from West Brom goalkeeper Marton Fulop. Arsenal take charge of the race for the final automatic Champions League place.
15.11: Another twist at the Hawthorns. Shane Long levels for the Baggies, despite appearing offside, to peg Arsenal back and hand the advantage back to Tottenham.
15.12: Disaster for Bolton. The Trotters, who need to win to have any chance of staying up, fall behind to a goal by Stoke's Jon Walters, who bundles Bolton keeper Adam Bogdan over the line. It looks a foul but a goal is given.
15.14: Incredible scenes in the Midlands. Arsenal slip 2-1 behind when Graham Dorrans latches onto a pass from James Morrison and slips the ball past Wojciech Szczesny. Tottenham look set fair for third place.
15.17: Newcastle, who need to win at Everton and for results elsewhere to go into their favour to qualify for the Champions League, fall behind to a deflected strike from Steven Pienaar.
15.20: Wayne Rooney puts Manchester United in front away at Sunderland when nodding home from a cross from Phil Jones. The goal means United are top of the table with Manchester City still drawing 0-0 at home to QPR.
15.28: More woe for Newcastle. Nikica Jelavic converts on the rebound after Tim Krul saves his initial effort. It looks a long road back for the Magpies.
15.29: A lifeline for Arsenal. Andre Santos slams a shot home inside the near post to make it 2-2 at West Brom. With Tottenham winning against Fulham though, it is still not enough.
15.39: Mark Davies gets Bolton back in contention when Robert Huth accidentally thumps the ball against the midfielder and back over the line. They still need another though.
15.40: Bedlam at the Etihad Stadium. Pablo Zabaleta's shot squirms through the palms of Paddy Kenny and over the line as Manchester City take the lead, and take control in the title race.
15.45: Bolton turn things around and in the space of five minutes it is suddenly the Trotters, and not QPR, who are staying in the Premier League. Kevin Davies nets with a stunning long-range strike.
16.08: Shock at City. Djibril Cisse levels for QPR completely against the run of play as he exploits a mistake from Joleon Lescott. 1-1, and the title is now heading to Old Trafford.
16.12: Advantage Arsenal. Another horrid mistake from Fulop allows Laurent Koscielny to turn the ball from close range as Arsenal complete their turnaround to snatch third place away from Tottenham for a second time.
16.15: Joey Barton explodes. With QPR holding City to a 1-1 draw, the midfielder is shown a red card for elbowing Carlos Tevez and then proceeds to kick Sergio Aguero and aim a headbutt at Vincent Kompany as he leaves the pitch. QPR find themselves firmly up against it.
16.17: Moussa Dembele rattles the post for Fulham but Tottenham cling onto their narrow 1-0 lead at White Hart Lane.
16.20: Jermain Defoe makes Tottenham's victory certain when pouncing after Aaron Lennon's shot is deflected into his path. The onus is now all on Arsenal as they resist a determined West Brom.
16.24: Jonny Heitinga finishes off Newcastle when heading home unmarked from close range. It is now clear that the Magpies will be settling for fifth place and Europa League football.
16.26: Incredible scenes at City. Roberto Mancini's side are exposed on the break as Jamie Mackie puts 10-man QPR in front. City now need to score twice to seal their first Premier League title.
16.33: Newcastle pull a goal back when Tony Hibbert puts the ball into his own net but it is surely too little, too late for the Magpies with both Tottenham and Arsenal winning.
16.36: Disaster for Bolton. Bogdan brings down Peter Crouch in the box and Walters slots home the penalty to make it 2-2. Bolton now need to score and hope QPR are beaten by City to stay up.
16.44: Bolton are almost killed off altogether as Cameron Jerome has the ball in the net, only for a linesman's flag to deny the Stoke striker.
16.49: Arsenal just about cling on as they need a superb saving tackle from Kieran Gibbs to prevent Billy Jones from equalising deep into injury time. Gibbs's intervention secures third place for the Gunners as Tottenham have to settle for fourth.
16.50: Heartbreak for Bolton. Thomas Sorensen makes a tremendous save to deny Tim Ream from a corner. The win Bolton need to claim to have any chance of staying up eludes them in injury time. However, with QPR winning, it looks like being largely inconsequential.
16.52: Drama on the cards at the Etihad Stadium as Edin Dzeko gives City a lifeline, his finish two minutes into added time drawing Mancini's side level. But they still need one more goal to overtake rivals United at the top of the table.
16.53: The full time whistle sounds at Sunderland as Manchester United win 1-0. They will be champions unless City can find a goal.
16.54: Goal for City! One of the most dramatic conclusions to any season is complete when Aguero weaves his way into the box and beats Paddy Kenny to make it 3-2 to City. The Ethiad Stadium erupts.
16.55: The full time whistle blows and Manchester City are confirmed as English champions for the first time since 1968 as their delirious fans invade the pitch.(Eurosport)
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