Arsenal rallies to draw 2-2

Arsenal rallied from two goals down to salvage a 2-2 draw with Portsmouth on Saturday in the English Premier League.

updated: February 25, 2007 11:35 IST
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Arsenal rallied from two goals down to salvage a 2-2 draw with Portsmouth on Saturday, allowing Liverpool to move up to third place in the English Premier League after beating Charlton 3-0. Portsmouth went 2-0 up with goals from Noe Pamarot and Matthew Taylor. Arsenal pulled goals back from Emmanuel Adebayor in the 58th and Gilberto Silva in the 60th. Arsenal pushed forward but couldn't find the winner. It's now drawn five and won four of its league matches at its new stadium. "We had some disappointing draws here at the start of the season - but I cannot say that today because there was lots of quality and character in the team today," Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said. Also on Saturday, it was: Newcastle 2, Watford 1; Reading 1, Blackburn 2; Wigan 0, Sheffield United 1; and Aston Villa 0, Bolton 1. Manchester United leads with 44 points, followed by Chelsea with 39 - both clubs play Sunday. Liverpool's win gave it 31 points - one more than Arsenal. Bolton is behind the Gunners on goal difference, while Portsmouth dropped two places to sixth and has 29 points. Portsmouth goalkeeper David James made several saves from Robin van Persie and Cesc Fabregas before Pamarot headed in a rebound goal in the 45th minute after David Thompson had hit the post. Taylor's impressive volley in the 47th minute made it 2-0. Arsenal rallied with two quick goals, both set up by striker Theo Walcott who replaced the injured Fredrik Ljungberg early in the match. Adebayor, who came on as a substitute, scored in the 58th minute from the center of the penalty box and Gilberto Silva made it 2-2 from close range. Wenger was banned from the bench after complaining about the leadup to Pamarot's goal, but sat only a few rows back in the stands. Earlier this week Wenger was fined 10,000 pounds by the Football Association for his touchline spat with former West Ham boss Alan Pardew, and warned over his future conduct. "I do not know if I am brave or not," Wenger said of any possible FA reprisals. "I am not a guy who worries too much." Portsmouth happy with result Portsmouth striker Nwankwo Kanu and defender Sol Campbell lined up against their old club, while former captain Tony Adams sat on the Portsmouth bench. He became assistant to Portsmouth manager Harry Redknapp in June. "When you get 2-0 up you start dreaming, looking at the finishing line," Redknapp said. "But to come here and pick up a point, it's a fantastic result for us." Liverpool won its second away game in its 3-0 defeat of relegation-threatened Charlton. Xabi Alonso converted a third-minute penalty, earned when Djimi Traore's boot caught the head of Liverpool midfielder Jermaine Pennant. Craig Bellamy made it 2-0 in the 82nd minute, scoring into the bottom left corner after taking a pass from Steve Finnan. Steven Gerrard took a header from Peter Crouch to curl in Liverpool's third goal in the 88th minute. "It was a good game, we were creating a lot of chances and had a lot of opportunities to score two or three more goals," Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez said. "But we made mistakes and they could have scored." Liverpool's first league win away from its Anfield stadium was on December 2 when it beat Wigan 4-0. David Bentley scored an 84th-minute winner for Blackburn at Reading. James Harper put the home side ahead in the 41st minute, scoring from the edge of the area. Benni McCarthy leveled in the 64th with a header. Obafemi Martins scored twice for Newcastle - heading into goal in the 49th minute and adding his second in the 85th. Hameur Bouazza scored for Watford in the 57th, taking a headed cross from Tommy Smith. It was Martins' eight goal of the season - and his fifth in four games over the last 10 days. Gary Speed scored the winner for Bolton with a 75th-minute penalty. The spot kick was given when Villa's Stilian Petrov fouled Bolton striker Nicolas Anelka. Sheffield United striker Rob Hulse scored in the 45th minute at Wigan after taking a cross from Stephen Quinn. On Sunday, Alan Curbishley takes charge of his first game as West Ham manager when Manchester United visits Upton Park. In his 15 years as manager of Charlton, Curbishley never beat United. Chelsea travels to Everton and Manchester City hosts Tottenham in Sunday's other games. On Monday, Middlesbrough is at Fulham. In the Football League Championship, Birmingham stayed top with a 3-0 win at Sheffield on Wednesday, while Derby is second after a 1-0 win over Crystal Palace. Birmingham has 46 points, three more than Derby. (AP)