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Rediff.com  » Sports » PHOTOS: Man City lose, Chelsea and Arsenal win

PHOTOS: Man City lose, Chelsea and Arsenal win

Last updated on: February 10, 2013 18:39 IST

Southampton shock Manchester City 3-1

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Manchester City's Premier League title defence fell apart at the seams in a 3-1 defeat to Southampton on Saturday when goalkeeper Joe Hart committed a howler and Gareth Barry scored a bizarre own goal.

Southampton had previously managed two draws and a defeat since Argentine Pochettino replaced the sacked Nigel Adkins in an unpopular move, but their home victory over City was fully deserved even if the visitors gave them a big helping hand.

First Barry lost the ball in midfield after seven minutes and Jason Puncheon stormed forward before coolly finishing off a rebound after Hart's sprawling stop.

Hart, who saved a Ronaldinho penalty during an excellent display for England in a friendly against Brazil on Wednesday, then let a Rickie Lambert shot go through his legs and Steven Davis slid the ball in midway though the first period.


Image: Manchester City players
Photographs: Scott Heavey/Getty Images

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Incompetence rather than heroics

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Roberto Mancini had been confidently predicting his side would make up the gap to United, like last season, but he looked stunned in the dugout as City struggled with midfielder Javi Garcia at centre back after Vincent Kompany was again ruled out.

A rampant break from the edge of their own area gave City hope in the 39th minute, with Edin Dzeko flicking the ball home while falling over after tremendous work by the Bosnian, David Silva and Pablo Zabaleta.

City fans have been used to great comebacks in recent times, not least when they beat QPR 3-2 in stoppage time on the final day last season to clinch the title, but this time there was to be incompetence rather than heroics.

A weak cross came in just after the break and, under no pressure, Barry decided to divert the ball towards Hart only to send it into the corner of the net with the keeper beaten.


Image: Manchester City's Gareth Barry (right) scores an own goal
Photographs: Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

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Bale double lifts Spurs to victory

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The unstoppable Gareth Bale scored twice in Tottenham Hotspur's 2-1 victory over Newcastle United.

Spurs' Wales midfielder Bale netted his fourth and fifth goals in four games for club and country to again almost single-handedly inspire the north Londoners in the fourth and final Champions League qualifying spot.

Bale struck first with a dipping free kick after five minutes with James Perch failing to jump in the visitors' wall before Lewis Holtby wasted three chances to increase the lead.

Newcastle's French forward Yoan Gouffran then grabbed his first Premier League goal since signing last month when his effort was deflected in midway through the first half but he later needed oxygen for a shin injury and was substituted.

Spurs lost their way slightly and introduced Emmanuel Adebayor with the Togo striker only having returned from the African Nations Cup on Friday despite his team being knocked out last Sunday.

The home side's pressure eventually paid off against a side who had won their last two games when Bale ran through and finished with aplomb after 78 minutes before missing an easy chance for a hat-trick in stoppage time.


Image: Gareth Bale scores the winning goal for Tottenham Hotspur
Photographs: Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

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Chelsea stay third after crushing Wigan 4-1

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Chelsea stayed third in the standings, a point ahead of Spurs, after a 4-1 home success over third-bottom Wigan Athletic.

Ramires finished off in style after a good pass by Fernando Torres for the 23rd-minute opener and Eden Hazard doubled the lead 11 minutes into the second half.

Shaun Maloney pulled one back after 58 minutes but England's midweek goal hero Frank Lampard again underlined why most Chelsea supporters want him to be offered another contract when he made it 3-1. Marko Marin added a fourth in injury time.


Image: Ramires scores the first goal for Chelsea
Photographs: Julian Finney/Getty Images

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Arsenal edge past Sunderland

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10-man Arsenal lost Jack Wilshere to injury but still beat Sunderland 1-0 away thanks to Santi Cazorla's strike.

Arsenal duo Wilshere and Theo Walcott, instrumental in England's 2-1 friendly win over Brazil on Wednesday, again combined to set up Cazorla for the 35th-minute winner at Sunderland.

The Londoners were utterly dominant in the first half but the situation changed after the break with midfielder Wilshere limping off and defender Carl Jenkinson being sent off for two bookings after 62 minutes.


Image: Santi Carzola celebrates after scoring a goal
Photographs: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

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Michu continues golden run for Swansea

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Basement side Queens Park Rangers suffered a big blow in a 4-1 defeat at Swansea City but fourth-bottom Reading failed to increase the six-point gap with a 2-1 loss at Stoke City. Mid-table Norwich City and Fulham managed a goalless stalemate.

Cut-price Spanish striker Michu continued his sensational debut Premier League season with two more goals in the 4-1 thumping to take his season's tally to 15.

QPR, four points adrift at the bottom, were never in the game at Swansea with striker Loic Remy missing through injury and fans will be aghast at their weak display.


Image: Michu celebrates scoring the opening goal for Swansea
Photographs: Warren Little/Getty Images

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