Gunners win against Cardiff after late goals from Bendtner and Walcott; Man City, Chelsea and Liverpool register easy wins to stay in the hunt
Arsenal left it very late to defeat Cardiff and hold onto their position at the top of the English Premier League table.
It looked like Manchester City would take over after their lunchtime victory over Swansea as the Gunners toiled against Cardiff, who were being watched at the Emirates by prospective new manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
Theo Walcott (centre) scores Arsenal’s second goal past Cardiff City’s ’keeper David Marshall (left) at the Emirates Stadium. PIC/AFP
But Nicklas Bendtner netted in the 88th minute and Theo Walcott made the points safe in injury time.
Manuel Pellegrini’s City side have now won seven straight matches and the 3-2 victory at the Liberty Stadium left them a point behind Arsenal.
Wilfried Bony cancelled out Fernandinho’s 14th-minute opener for City on the stroke of half-time but Yaya Toure put City back in front in the 58th minute.
Fernandinho scores Manchester City’s opening goal against Swansea City at the Liberty Stadium. PIC/Getty Images
Aleksandar Kolarov seemingly put the game beyond Swansea eight minutes later and Bony’s injury-time second came too late to make a difference.
Oscar stars in Blues’ 3-0 win
Two second-half substitutions proved key in Chelsea’s 3-0 victory over Southampton.
Oscar was instrumental in the first two goals, with his cross being deflected against a post for Fernando Torres to score the opener on the hour mark before the Brazilian set up fellow substitute Willian in the 71st minute.
Oscar then found the net himself with eight minutes to go courtesy of a deflection.
Liverpool climb to fourth
Liverpool climbed back into fourth place with a 2-0 victory over Hull, the goals coming from Daniel Agger (36) and a stunning free-kick from Luis Suarez (50).
The Reds were also grateful to one of their own at the Britannia Stadium as on-loan winger Ossama Assaidi netted in Stoke’s 1-1 draw with Everton.
Chelsea’s Fernando Torres celebrates after scoring at Stamford Bridge. PIC/Getty Images
It looked like Assaidi’s 49th-minute goal would be the winner but in the 90th minute Jermaine Pennant fouled Leon Osman and Leighton Baines levelled from the penalty spot.
It was not enough to prevent Everton slipping behind Liverpool, though, the Reds now one point ahead of their city rivals.
Elsewhere, Kevin Nolan’s red card proved costly as West Ham slumped to a 2-1 defeat at fellow strugglers Fulham.
Nolan picked up his second red card in four games just before half-time for kicking out at Fernando Amorebieta.