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Abena Alice|myghanalinks - League leaders Chelsea could only manage a point in a scoreless and pulsating encounter against the tough defence of Sunderland with Southampton and Manchester City set to clash on Sunday in a match that will surely determine which team will close in on Chelsea's lead and also occupy the second spot on the EPL log.

West Ham continued their push for a top four position, Glen Johnson's late header gave Liverpool a narrow home win over Stoke, Manchester United maintained their fourth spot with a comfortable win over Hull City and Arsenal managed a narrow win over West Brom.

West Brom 0 - 1 Arsenal

 Danny Welbeck’s second-half header sealed a 1-0 win for Arsenal over West Brom at The Hawthorns. The striker scored his seventh goal for the club and first since mid-October when he beat his marker to power home Santi Cazorla’s cross on 60 minutes.

Arsene Wenger’s side, who sealed their first victory in three Premier League games, had a string of chances to take a first-half lead, with Welbeck going closest.

West Brom is stuck on 13 points and remains dangerously close to the drop-zone.

QPR 3 - Leicester City 2

Queens Park Rangers are off the bottom of the Premier League after a dramatic 3-2 victory at home to fellow strugglers Leicester. Charlie Austin headed in the winner on 73 minutes - his seventh league goal of the season after the Foxes failed to clear from an umpteenth Rangers corner.

Leicester City had to come from behind in the first half, drawing level from Wes Morgan’s own goal after Esteban Cambiasso fired the Foxes into a fourth-minute lead.

Leroy Fer blasted Rangers into the lead just before the break before Jeffrey Schlupp equalized early in the second half from distance.

Lively Leicester striker Jamie Vardy could also have scored with a glancing header that rattled the crossbar before Austin's winner. The loss leaves Leicester on the bottom of the log with 11 points.

 Swansea 1 - 1 Crystal Palace

Swansea City missed the opportunity to climb the table as Mile Jedinak's first-half penalty rescued a point for Crystal Palace in a 1-1 draw at the Liberty Stadium.

Wilfried Bony’s 15th-minute strike had handed the hosts a well-earned lead, It was the Ivorian's 18th Premier League goal of the calendar year - the best record in the division but Jedinak, who entered the field with a cricket bat and cap in a mark of respect to the late Australian cricketer Phillip Hughes, levelled proceedings to grab a point for his side.

West Ham 1 - 0 Newcastle

Aaron Cresswell scored a second-half winner as West Ham continued their unexpected push for a top-four position with a 1-0 home win over Newcastle.

The Hammers full-back scored his first goal for the club as a mishit shot from Kouyate bounced perfectly into his path. He steered his shot into the bottom corner thus lifting them into fifth in the Premier League table.

Moussa Sissoko's late dismissal capped off a frustrating afternoon for Newcastle at Upton Park on Saturday.

Liverpool 1 - 0 Stoke

Liverpool ended a run of three straight Premier League defeats as Glen Johnson's late header gave them a 1-0 win over Stoke after a nervy encounter at Anfield on Saturday.

Johnson reacted quickest to a Rickie Lambert header which hit the bar - charging in to head the ball low into the net after the visitors went close on numerous occasions, with Bojan Krkic hitting the post and Mame Biram Diouf denied by Raheem Sterling’s clearance.

Both sides spurned some superb opportunities. Lucas and Joe Allen both missed chances inside the box, while Bojan drew a spectacular stop from Simon Mignolet in stoppage time.

It was a huge blow for Stoke, who would have felt they could have taken all three points, but they couldn’t get back on level terms despite some late pressure inside the Liverpool half.

Burnley FC 1 - 1 Aston Villa

A late Danny Ings penalty helped Burnley grab a share of the spoils in an entertaining 1-1 draw against Aston Villa at Turf Moor. Villa looked to be on course for their first win in nine games when Cole grabbed his first top flight goal on the season on his first start for the club in the first half. The former England International slotted home Andreas Weimann's sliderule pass seven minutes before the break.

Jores Okore however dragged down Lukas Jutkiewicz in the area for a penalty late on in the game and Ings made no mistake from the spot for the equaliser.

Manchester United 3 - 0 Hull City

Manchester United beat struggling Hull City 3-0 at Old Trafford on Saturday afternoon thanks to goals from Chris Smalling, Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie.

Switching to a flat back four from the three-man defence they utilised in their 2-1 win at Arsenal last weekend the home side dominated proceedings right from the kick-off, and it was no real surprise when centre-back Smalling gave them a 16th-minute lead following a Juan Mata corner on the left to poke the ball over a crowded goal-line. TV replays subsequently confirmed that the whole of the ball had indeed crossed the goal-line.

The Reds doubled their lead three minutes before half-time through in-form striker Rooney who side-footed the ball past McGregor after a good build-up play from Ander Herrera and Van Persie.

The icing on the cake came midway through the second period when the previously misfiring Van Persie finally ended his recent goal drought, and in some style too after the Dutchman rifled home an unstoppable finish from the left-hand corner of the penalty area.

Sunderland 0 - 0 Chelsea

Chelsea was unable to break down a determined Sunderland side despite an excellent exhibition of crisp short passes and ball movement. Both sides hit the woodwork in the first half as Willian struck the post with a low shot and Santiago Vergini saw an effort bounce off the bar.

Sunderland frustrated the Premier League leaders with excellent defensive work throughout the game and held firm to record their third draw in a row.

The stalemate sees Chelsea extend their advantage at the top to seven points while Sunderland moves up to 13th.

The Black Cats were fully deserving of their point too after an impressive defensive display at the Stadium of Light. Substitute Jozy Altidore threatened Chelsea a couple of times during the waning moments of the game but could not find the back of the net.

Sunday Matches

Southampton 0 - 3 Manchester City

Ten-man Manchester City moved up to second in the Premier League table with a convincing 3-0 win at Southampton on Sunday afternoon.

The champions claimed all three points despite seeing France international Eliaquim Mangala dismissed with 15 minutes remaining at St Mary’s after the centre-back picked up a second yellow card for a foul on substitute Shane Long.

Second-half goals by Yaya Toure, substitute Frank Lampard and left-back Gael Clichy allowed the north-west outfit to cut the gap on Chelsea at the top of the table to just six points after the Blues were held at Sunderland on Saturday.

Tottenham 2 - 1 Everton

Tottenham staged a superb first-half comeback as they came from behind to beat Everton 2-1 at White Hart Lane on Sunday.

Kevin Mirallas put the visitors in front inside the opening quarter of an hour with a stunning curling effort, but Christian Eriksen levelled things seven minutes later before Roberto Soldado completed the turnaround in first-half stoppage time with a cool finish.


Match reports from skysports, eurosports were used in this report.

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