Rovers hold Utd, Molineux bore draw

With leaders Chelsea in FA Cup action and Arsenal inactive this

weekend, a win over Rovers at Ewood Park would have taken the

champions back to the top of the table. But after a goalless

stalemate, the Red Devils stay second, a point behind the Blues who

now have a game in hand. Antonio Valencia wasted the best

opportunity of a hard-fought encounter when he shot tamely at the

legs of Paul Robinson when one-on-one with the Rovers keeper

shortly before the break. United dominated the second half, but

Dimitar Berbatov’s weak effort was the only effort that troubled

Robinson. Wolves took another step towards Premier League survival

after repelling a long-throw bombardment from Stoke in a 0-0 draw

at Molineux. The share of the spoils in a match of little quality

moved Mick McCarthy’s side six points clear of the bottom three

with four games remaining – and they also have a superior goal

difference. Stoke had the best chances in the first half during

which time Rory Delap reeled off 14 long throws – and 24 in total –

to cries of ‘boring, boring’ from the home fans. Centre-back

Abdoulaye Faye should have done better with some headed

opportunities and Mamady Sidibe wasted a clear-cut opening early in

the second period. But Wolves generally looked solid and their

determination was typified by centre-back Jody Craddock who was

made skipper on his 500th league appearance in place of the

suspended Karl Henry.