You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Liverpool win to keep touch with Chelsea

AAP logoAAP 31/12/2016 Simon Cambers

Chelsea will take a six-point lead into the new year after they beat Stoke 4-2 on Saturday while second-placed Liverpool matched them with a 1-0 win over rivals Manchester City.

Willian scored twice and Diego Costa scored again as Chelsea fought off a strong challenge from Stoke, while Georginio Wynaldum headed Liverpool's winner at Anfield.

Chelsea's 13th straight league win means they remain six points clear of Liverpool, whose total of 43 is their best at this stage of any Premier League season. City stayed third.

Gary Cahill put Chelsea in front, but Bruno Martins Indi equalized at the start of the second half.

Willian restored their lead soon after and though Peter Crouch levelled for a second time, Willian doubled his tally and then Costa scored his 14th league goal of the season to seal victory.

"We have to keep grounded and focused on what we are doing," said Cahill.

"This was difficult. We have a feeling at the minute that we don't think we will get beaten, but that is because we're working hard."

"We showed good character. We never felt like we were beaten, but it was a tough game."

Liverpool stayed on their heels thanks to Wynaldum's eighth-minute goal, a powerful header from Adam Lallana's superb cross.

City dominated possession, especially in the second half, but couldn't create a clear-cut chance and Liverpool held on for an important victory.

Manchester United scored two late goals to beat Middlesbrough 2-1 at home.

Grant Leadbitter's goal looked like winning it for Middlesbrough but Anthony Martial equalized and Paul Pogba won it for United, who have now won six on the bounce.

"It's beautiful; it's why we love football," Pogba said. "The win was very important.

"We had a lot of chances and we could have won the game easier, but we are very happy with the three points."

West Brom climbed to eighth with a 2-1 victory at Southampton while Burnley hammered Sunderland 4-1 thanks to an Andre Gray hat-trick, the club's first in the Premier league.

"My first Premier League hat-trick is something I have dreamed of," Gray said.

"It has been a stop-start season for me. Luckily I have managed to get a run of games and score some goals.

"Not many teams play with two up front, we do it and did it quite well. It was a big game, but nothing is over with."

Bournemouth won 3-0 at bottom side Swansea, and champions Leicester moved away from trouble with a 1-0 win over West Ham thanks to Islam Slimani's first-half header.

"I am very proud because we made a clean sheet - finally," Leicester manager Claudio Ranieri.

"Today's result is very good for everybody here in Leicester, and of course it is very good for the team.

"We made a very good performance for the team; they had a few good chances, but we closed the space very well.

"We needed the crowd's support today, and when I called them they were together with us. The support of our fans is very important."

Fourth-placed Arsenal and fifth-placed Tottenham play on Sunday.

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon