Premier League round-up: Chelsea seven points clear as Man City rescue draw against Hull

first_imgJames Milner came to Manchester City’s rescue with a late free-kick to avoid a huge upset against Hull City, the substitute’s strike sealing a fortunate 1-1 draw at the Etihad Stadium.The defending champions were staring down the barrel of a shock defeat which would have seen title rivals Chelsea race eight points clear at the top flight summit, until the England international stepped up to spare City’s blushes in the 90th minute.Hull took a surprise lead in the first-half as David Meyler took advantage of some shambolic defending to fire in on 35 minutes, poking in the rebound after Gaston Ramirez’s effort came back out off the post.City, who haven’t won in the league since New Year’s Day, were, predictably, the dominant team throughout but only managed to land five of their 18 shots on target as Steve Bruce’s men managed to frustrate Argentine hitman Sergio Aguero.They piled on the pressure in the closing stages but found themselves repeatedly shut out by the resilient Tigers, until Tom Huddlestone’s reckless foul on the edge of the box gifted City their opportunity, which was pounced on by Milner who fired past Allan McGregor to bail out the hosts.The draw, which saw Hull climb out of the bottom-three, still allowed Chelsea to extend their lead at the summit to seven points, as they saw off a brave fightback from Aston Villa to win 2-1 at Villa Park.It seemed it would be another long day for Paul Lambert after Eden Hazard handed the Blues an early lead after eight minutes, but his side responded well to falling behind and looked the more threatening team at times.For all their attacking endeavour, though, the Villans – who started with misfiring forward Christian Benteke on the bench – struggled to turn their pressing into clear-cut chances.But that all changed after the break as the hosts scored their first goal in more than ten hours of football to draw level, Jores Okore netting with a free header in the box from January signing Charles Gil’s superb delivery on 48 minutes.Villa looked on the up, with Lambert introducing Benteke off the bench in search of the lead, but Chelsea’s superior quality eventually was the difference, Branislav Ivanovic rifling a left-foot volley into the top corner after the hosts failed to clear to claim three points.Southampton climbed to third as Sadio Mane’s 93rd-minute winner sealed 1-0 win over managerless Queens Park Rangers.The Super Hoops – led by caretaker boss Chris Ramsey following Harry Redknapp’s exit as manager this week – slumped to their fifth straight defeat as the Senegal star’s late low shot won it, with defender Jose Fonte hitting the bar earlier on.Elsewhere, Ki Sung-Yueng came back to haunt former side Sunderland, as the Swansea midfielder’s diving header helped the Jacks claim a 1-1 draw at the Liberty Stadium.South Korea captain Ki spend last season on loan at the Stadium of Light, and his ex-team-mates took the lead in the first-half through January signing Jermain Defoe’s second Black Cats goal.The hosts battled back after the break, Ki equalising in fine style on 66 minutes, and while Garry Monk’s side looked the favourites to go in front, Gus Poyet’s men stood firm to hold onto a point.And Crystal Palace continued their renaissance under Alan Pardew, as Joe Ledley’s second-half header helped the Eagles beat rock-bottom Leicester City at the King Power Stadium. Manchester City midfielder James Milner scores his late equaliser against Hull City 1last_img read more