2001–02 FA Premier League
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The 2001–02 FA Premier League (known as the FA Barclaycard Premiership for sponsorship reasons) was the tenth season of the competition. It began with a new sponsor, Barclaycard, and was titled the FA Barclaycard Premiership, replacing the previous sponsor, Carling. The title race turned into a battle between four different sides – Arsenal, Manchester United, Liverpool and Newcastle United.
|Dates||18 August 2001–11 May 2002|
2nd Premier League title
12th English title
|UEFA Cup||Leeds United|
|Intertoto Cup||Aston Villa|
|Goals scored||1,001 (2.63 per match)|
|Top goalscorer||Thierry Henry (24 goals)|
|Biggest home win||Blackburn Rovers 7–1 West Ham United|
(14 October 2001)
|Biggest away win||Ipswich Town 0–6 Liverpool|
(9 September 2001)
|Highest scoring||Tottenham Hotspur 3–5 Manchester United|
(29 September 2001)
Blackburn Rovers 7–1 West Ham United
(14 October 2001)
Charlton Athletic 4–4 West Ham United
(19 November 2001)
West Ham United 3–5 Manchester United
(16 March 2002)
Newcastle United 6–2 Everton
(29 March 2002)
|Longest winning run||13 games|
|Longest unbeaten run||21 games|
|Longest winless run||16 games|
|Longest losing run||7 games|
Manchester United v Middlesbrough
(23 March 2002)
Leicester City v Middlesbrough
(18 September 2001)
Arsenal clinched the title on 8 May 2002 after a convincing win against Manchester United at Old Trafford, in the penultimate game of the season. This new attacking Arsenal side had won the FA Cup five days before and made history by accomplishing their third double, their second under the reign of Arsène Wenger, who showed his commitment by signing a new four-year deal with Arsenal.
The season started on 18 August 2001 and ended on 11 May 2002.
At the start of 2002 the title race was wide open, with the likes of Newcastle United and Leeds United contesting at the top of the table along with the usual likes of Arsenal and Manchester United. Newcastle, after back-to-back away wins at Arsenal and Leeds during the Christmas period, confirmed themselves as genuine title challengers and led the league at the turn of the year. Leeds had topped the table at Christmas prior to losing at Elland Road to Newcastle.
Despite being top of the table at the start of December – eleven points clear of Manchester United – Liverpool underwent a severe slump, falling to fifth place, five points behind United. Would-be contenders Chelsea, Newcastle United and Leeds United had by this point disappeared into the chasing pack.
January saw Liverpool travelling to both Highbury and Old Trafford in the space of a fortnight. Liverpool's Danny Murphy scored a late winner to give the Merseyside club all three points against United, and John Arne Riise then salvaged a point for Liverpool against Arsenal, allowing Manchester United to top the table for the first time that season.
In March, Arsenal were installed as strong favourites for the Premiership title after Liverpool's defeat to Tottenham Hotspur. Arsenal's April triumph against Bolton Wanderers brought them to within three points of a second Premier League title under Arsène Wenger.
Fittingly, the Premiership title would be decided at Old Trafford as Arsenal and Manchester United faced one another in a decisive encounter. Arsenal only required a draw to guarantee their second title in five seasons to go with their FA Cup victory against London rivals Chelsea four days previously; United had to win to take the title race to the last day. In the end, Arsenal emerged victorious as their record signing Sylvain Wiltord scored the only goal of the game as Arsenal was confirmed Premiership champions with a game to spare. Manchester United's disappointment was compounded by Liverpool leapfrogging them into second place by virtue of their 4-3 victory against Blackburn Rovers.
On the final day of the season Liverpool confirmed second place by trashing soon to be relegated Ipswich Town 5–0 at Anfield. Arsenal rounded off their successful league campaign in style, beating Everton 4–3 at Highbury. Manchester United limped to a poor draw against Charlton Athletic, completing a disappointing campaign for the deposed league champions.
For the first time in the history of the Premier League, all three promoted teams avoided relegation – Fulham, Bolton Wanderers and Blackburn Rovers. Blackburn Rovers & Bolton Wanderers avoided relegation until 2011–12, when the three promoted teams of 2010–11 coincidentally avoided relegation again, whilst Fulham avoided relegation until the 2013-14 season.
Fulham had splashed out £34 million on new players during the close season, their owner Mohamed Al-Fayed one of the wealthiest benefactors in English football. He even boasted that they would win the Premiership title in 2001–02, and most pundits tipped Fulham, managed by former French international Jean Tigana, to push for a place in Europe. However, Fulham finished thirteenth, 47 points away from Arsenal.
Bolton Wanderers went top of the Premiership after winning their first three fixtures of the season, causing an upset by beating Gérard Houllier's Liverpool in the latter stage of the game. Manager Sam Allardyce was boasting that his side were good enough to win their first ever league title, but Bolton's league form slumped after the first two months of the season and they finished 16th place – their survival confirmed in the penultimate game of the season.
Blackburn Rovers were the most successful of the promoted sides. Graeme Souness' men beat Tottenham Hotspur 2–1 in the League Cup final to lift the trophy for the first time, and then climbed from 18th place in the Premiership in late February to finish in a secure 10th place – higher than any other newly promoted team that season. Blackburn secured a UEFA Cup place for 2002–03.
Leicester City was the first team officially relegated from the Premiership, finishing bottom of table with just five Premiership wins in their last season at 111-year-old Filbert Street before relocation to the new 32 000-seat Walkers Stadium. The club went through the regime of two different managers during the season – Peter Taylor was replaced by Dave Bassett in early October; six months later Bassett joined the club's board to be replaced by former assistant manager Micky Adams.
Just after the start of the 2002–03 season, Leicester's relegation (which cost them extensive television revenue) and the cost of their new stadium had created debts in excess of £30 million, and the club went into administration before being taken over by a new owner. Despite this setback, Leicester gained promotion back to the Premiership at the first time of asking, although they slipped back down again after just one season and Adams had since resigned to make way for new manager Craig Levein.
Next to go down were Derby County, who had been promoted alongside Leicester six years earlier. Manager Jim Smith was sacked in early October to be replaced by assistant manager Colin Todd, who was sacked three months later after Derby were knocked out of the FA Cup by Division Three strugglers Bristol Rovers.
The last team to be relegated were Ipswich Town, who had qualified for the UEFA Cup and earned manager George Burley the Manager of the Year award the previous season after finishing fifth. Ipswich made a terrible start to the season, winning just one of their first 18 Premiership games. They then went on a strong run of form, winning seven out of eight games, which looked to have secured their Premiership survival, but they then suffered another setback which George Burley's men were unable to reverse, and their relegation was confirmed on the final day of the season by a 5–0 thrashing at Liverpool.
Twenty teams competed in the league – the top seventeen teams from the previous season and the three teams promoted from the First Division. The promoted teams were Fulham, Blackburn Rovers and Bolton Wanderers, returning after a top flight absence of thirty-three, two and three years respectively. This was also Fulham's first season in the Premier League. They replaced Manchester City, Coventry City and Bradford City, ending their one, thirty-four and two year top flight spells respectively.
Stadiums and LocationsEdit
Personnel and kitsEdit
|Team||Outgoing manager||Manner of departure||Date of vacancy||Position in table||Incoming manager||Date of appointment|
|Middlesbrough|| Bryan Robson
|Mutual consent||5 June 2001||Pre-season||Steve McClaren||12 June 2001|
|Leicester City||Peter Taylor||Sacked||30 September 2001||20th||Dave Bassett||10 October 2001|
|Southampton||Stuart Gray||1 October 2001||12th||Gordon Strachan||1 October 2001|
|Derby County||Jim Smith||Resigned||7 October 2001||19th||Colin Todd||8 October 2001|
|Colin Todd||Sacked||14 January 2002||19th||John Gregory||30 January 2002|
|Aston Villa||John Gregory||Resigned||24 January 2002||7th||Graham Taylor||5 February 2002|
|Everton||Walter Smith||Sacked||10 March 2002||16th||David Moyes||16 March 2002|
|Leicester City||Dave Bassett||Promoted to director of football position||6 April 2002||20th||Micky Adams||7 April 2002|
|Pos||Team||Pld||W||D||L||GF||GA||GD||Pts||Qualification or relegation|
|1||Arsenal (C)||38||26||9||3||79||36||+43||87||Qualification for the Champions League first group stage|
|3||Manchester United||38||24||5||9||87||45||+42||77||Qualification for the Champions League third qualifying round|
|5||Leeds United||38||18||12||8||53||37||+16||66||Qualification for the UEFA Cup first round[b]|
|7||West Ham United||38||15||8||15||48||57||−9||53|
|8||Aston Villa||38||12||14||12||46||47||−1||50||Qualification for the Intertoto Cup third round|
|10||Blackburn Rovers||38||12||10||16||55||51||+4||46||Qualification for the UEFA Cup first round[c]|
|13||Fulham||38||10||14||14||36||44||−8||44||Qualification for the Intertoto Cup second round|
|18||Ipswich Town (R)||38||9||9||20||41||64||−23||36|
|19||Derby County (R)||38||8||6||24||33||63||−30||30||Relegation to the Football League First Division|
|20||Leicester City (R)||38||5||13||20||30||64||−34||28|
Rules for classification: 1) points; 2) goal difference; 3) number of goals scored.
(C) Champion; (R) Relegated.
- Ipswich Town qualified for the UEFA Cup qualifying round as the winners of Premiership Fair Play League by The Football Association, one of the UEFA Fair Play ranking winners.
- Since Arsenal qualified for the Champions League, their UEFA Cup place as FA Cup winners defaulted to Chelsea, the losing finalists.
- Blackburn Rovers qualified for the UEFA Cup as League Cup winners.
|Home \ Away||ARS||AST||BLB||BOL||CHA||CHE||DER||EVE||FUL||IPS||LEE||LEI||LIV||MUN||MID||NEW||SOU||SUN||TOT||WHU|
|West Ham United||1–1||1–1||2–0||2–1||2–0||2–1||4–0||1–0||0–2||3–1||0–0||1–0||1–1||3–5||1–0||3–0||2–0||3–0||0–1||—|
Colours: Blue = home team win; Yellow = draw; Red = away team win.
|2||Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink||Chelsea||23|
|Ruud van Nistelrooy||Manchester United||23|
|Alan Shearer||Newcastle United||23|
|6||Ole Gunnar Solskjær||Manchester United||17|
|7||Robbie Fowler||Liverpool/Leeds United||15|
|10||Andrew Cole||Manchester United/Blackburn Rovers||13|
- Most wins – Arsenal (26)
- Fewest wins – Leicester City (5)
- Most draws – Aston Villa, Fulham and Charlton Athletic (14)
- Fewest draws – Manchester United (5)
- Most losses – Derby County (24)
- Fewest losses – Arsenal (3)
- Most goals scored – Manchester United (87)
- Fewest goals scored – Sunderland (29)
- Most goals conceded – Ipswich Town and Leicester City (64)
- Fewest goals conceded – Liverpool (30)
|Month||Manager of the Month||Player of the Month|
|August||Sam Allardyce (Bolton Wanderers)||Louis Saha (Fulham)|
|September||John Gregory (Aston Villa)||Juan Sebastián Verón (Manchester United)|
|October||Glenn Hoddle (Tottenham Hotspur)||Rio Ferdinand (Leeds United)|
|November||Phil Thompson (Liverpool)||Danny Murphy (Liverpool)|
|December||Bobby Robson (Newcastle United)||Ruud van Nistelrooy (Manchester United)|
|January||Gordon Strachan (Southampton)||Marcus Bent (Ipswich Town)|
|February||Bobby Robson (Newcastle United)||Ruud van Nistelrooy (Manchester United)|
|March||Gérard Houllier & Phil Thompson (Liverpool)||Dennis Bergkamp (Arsenal)|
|April||Arsène Wenger (Arsenal)||Freddie Ljungberg (Arsenal)|
- "English Premier League 2001–02". statto.com. Retrieved 11 March 2015.
- "Robson leaves Middlesbrough". BBC Sport. 5 June 2001. Retrieved 22 August 2007.
- "McClaren is new Boro boss". BBC Sport. 12 June 2001. Retrieved 26 February 2008.
- "Todd's tough test". BBC Sport. 8 October 2001. Retrieved 17 December 2007.
- "Derby sack Todd". BBC Sport. 14 January 2002. Retrieved 17 December 2007.
- "Gregory resigns as Villa boss". BBC Sport. 24 January 2002. Retrieved 2 October 2007.
- "Leicester appoint Adams". BBC Sport. 7 April 2002. Retrieved 22 July 2007.