Team of the Week
A sentimental choice perhaps, but there's no doubt Edwin Van der Sar's final Premier League appearance for Manchester United was a busy one. As Blackpool threw the kitchen sink, oven and dishwasher at the champions, the veteran Dutchman was called into action on several occasions and demonstrated his reactions are still razor sharp with the pick of his saves, a reflex stop from Ian Evatt.
There's no escaping the fact that for 20 minutes at Stoke, Wigan got battered. Final day nerves infested Roberto Martinez's side and they looked shakier than a wigwam in a gale, but the Latics pulled themselves together, largely thanks to Gary Caldwell. The Scot never shirked an aerial challenge - plenty of which have to made at Stoke - and his tireless efforts to preserve Wigan's clean sheet meant he was fully deserving of it.
Manchester City's landmark season ended on a perfect note with a victory at Bolton and entry into the group stage of the Champions League. A stout defensive display from Joleon Lescott and others held Wanderers at bay, while the central defender also notched the all important first goal - inadvertently finding the corner of the net with the side of his face from a corner, not that he knew much about it.
That Carlo Ancelotti's final act as Chelsea manager was a defeat at Everton owed much to a typically committed performance from Everton's Phil Jagielka. The Toffees were watertight, something that could not be said of the Italian's charges, as the former Sheffield United man marshalled his back line superbly, snuffing out the threat posed by Fernando Torres and Nicolas Anelka, and almost found the net with a header that clipped the bar.
Yes, he may have been on the losing side, but Blackpool captain Charlie Adam has had a stellar season and very nearly hauled his side back from the precipice at Old Trafford. He created an early chance that Keith Southern should have gobbled up, before firing the Tangerines level with a pinpoint free kick. He nearly repeated the dose in the second half, but was thwarted by Van der Sar. Unlike his club, the Scot will surely be plying his trade in the Premier League next year.
Newcastle's final day party was well and truly spoiled by Somen Tchoyi's half an hour hat-trick at St James' Park. Trailing by three goals with an hour on the clock, the Cameroon international galloped clean through on goal and finished coolly to give the Baggies hope before jinking inside Fabricio Coloccini and firing home with ten minutes left. And his coup de grace arrived just before full time as his diving header made it 3-3 and kept Roy Hodgson's side above Newcastle in the table.
If Liverpool arrived at Villa Park with one eye on Ashley Young, they may well have left with the other fixed on Stewart Downing. Both were excellent, providing Villa with a youthful, creative energy that King Kenny's side struggled to cope with. Downing supplied the winning goal, with a deft piece of chest control and a fine finish to ensure Villa, and the recovering Gerard Houllier, ended the campaign with a smile on their face.
Wolves' first half capitulation at Molineux owed much to the precocious talent of Junior Hoilett. The Canada-born winger frightened the life out of Mick McCarthy's side with his blistering pace and direct running. After going close on several occasions he slotted home the goal his excellent performance deserved just before half time, as he cut inside two defenders inside the box before slamming a low shot into the net.
Much to Blackpool's chagrin, Park Ji-Sung showed why he will almost certainly start against Barcelona in the Champions League next weekend. The South Korean gave his manager a timely reminder of his quality with a diligent display in midfield. He opened the scoring with a deft dink over Matt Gilks, and was unfortunate not to win his side a penalty, after a foul by Adam. He also supplied the second for Anderson, with a neat cutback.
Bobby Zamora took full advantage of Arsenal's defensive frailties as Fulham made their opponents sweat for a draw at Craven Cottage. After missing much of the season through injury, Zamora has looked sharp since his return, and laid on the opener for Steve Sidwell after an intelligent run and pass. He then grabbed one for himself with a powerful, point blank header from Jonathan Greening's cross.
The irony of Roman Pavlyuchenko's double for Tottenham will not be lost on Birmingham, who tried to sign the player last season. The Russian has had a disappointing year in front of goal but consigned Alex McLeish's side to the drop with two expertly taken goals. His first was a precise, curling shot into the far corner from 25 yards out, while his second - the final nail in Blues' coffin - was also from range, this one thundering into the net off the bar.
Just when Roberto Martinez thought life couldn't get any better, he is crowned our gaffer of the week. The Spaniard engineered back-to-back wins in the final two games of the season - the first time the Latics have achieved the feat all season. After a frantic start, Wigan eased into their role as the game progressed, steadily pushing forward as result elsewhere went against them, and after Hugo Rodallega's goal they held firm under pressure to claim three points, Premier League survival and another £90 million next year.