- West Brom 1-1 Chelsea, Premier League
Anichebe halts Chelsea progress
Victor Anichebe grabbed a late equaliser for West Brom on a night when Jose Mourinho's Chelsea barely looked like potential Premier League champions.
Chelsea were poised to move four points clear at the top of the table on the back of defender Branislav Ivanovic's injury-time strike in the first half at The Hawthorns.
But substitute Anichebe flicked home his third goal of the season in the 87th minute to make it 1-1 and thwart the Blues, who had lost on their last two visits to this part of the West Midlands.
West Ham make late leap
- West Ham 2-0 Norwich City
- West Ham secured a vital three points thanks to a star turn from substitute Mohamed Diame. Six minutes from time he provided the cross for James Collins to flick a header beyond John Ruddy and into the Norwich net. Then, with virtually the last kick of the game, Diame struck with a deflected effort to seal three points that catapult West Ham from 15th to 10th in the Premier League table.
- Hull City 0-1 Southampton
- Southampton scored the only goal of the game at the KC Stadium as Hull slid to 13th in the table, just four points above the relegation zone. It was a scrappy goal that won the match, with a goalmouth scramble seeing four attempts on goal. Ricky Lambert was initially credited with the goal at the fourth attempt, but it was later confirmed by the Goal Decision System that Jose Fonte's effort - the third of the scramble - had in fact crossed the line.
- Cardiff City 0-0 Aston Villa
- Only in the closing stages did Villa threaten to break the deadlock in Wales, with Gabriel Agbonlahor wasting a fine opportunity before David Marshall produced an astonishing save to deny Andreas Weimann. Villa move up to 11th thanks to Hull's defeat, but Cardiff could go to the foot of the table on Wednesday evening if Fulham defeat Liverpool at Craven Cottage.
After all the hype in the wake of their stunning win at Manchester City and Eden Hazard-inspired thumping of Newcastle on Saturday, Mourinho's side were undoubtedly off the boil against West Brom.
Perhaps Mourinho does have a point after all, that his side are the "little horses" in this year's championship race, as Arsenal and City will have the chance to take over at the summit on Wednesday.
Only Willian can claim to have had an impressive game as it was he who primarily pulled the strings, and who crucially set up the only goal of the first half just as Albion were on the brink of heading into the interval on the back of a creditable 0-0 scoreline.
From Willian's corner into the near post, centre-back David Luiz was left unmarked to flick the ball on with his right foot to the far post where Ivanovic slotted home from three yards.
After the break Willian enjoyed a further three driven efforts, all of which were superbly saved by home goalkeeper Ben Foster.
At least the home side showed greater attacking intent in the second period as James Morrison fired wide, Thievy Bifouma flashed a shot through the six-yard box, while skipper Chris Brunt hammered a half -volley beyond the left-hand post.
With Anichebe on for Bifouma in the 73rd minute, the Nigerian glanced home Saido Berahino's cross three minutes from time to lift Albion back out of the relegation zone.
Come the conclusion it was a fair result, and all credit to Albion who pressed and harried admirably throughout the entire game, even if they failed to record a single shot on target in the first 45 minutes.
It has been the desire of new head coach Pepe Mel to see his players give the opposition not a minute's respite, and Chelsea were rarely allowed any time on the ball at any stage.
That was underlined by the minimal number of chances that came their way during the opening half prior to Ivanovic's injury-time effort.
The key ones fell Willian's way as he first saw a fierce 27th-minute drive flash just over the angle of bar and post.
Three minutes from the break he picked up a loose ball on the edge of the area before chesting it down and sending a half-volley dipping over the goal.
Then came Ivanovic's goal - a blow for Albion, although they had conjured just one chance of note in the first period.
That came as Morgan Amalfitano, Berahino and Bifouma - making his first start since his recent loan move from Espanyol - combined to tee up Brunt for a searing shot two yards wide.
The first half was most notable for the boos that rang in the ears of Ramires - playing in place of Frank Lampard in the only change to the Chelsea team that beat Newcastle.
Ramires was the player who contentiously earned Chelsea a penalty in the 2-2 draw at Stamford Bridge in October, when Albion were seconds away from a shock victory.
The Albion fans certainly had not forgotten that moment as Ramires' every touch was greeted with jeers and calls.
After the break Willian came the closest to extending Chelsea's lead, but found Foster in fine form.
As the half wore on the home side finally found some impetus up front and began to create their opportunities prior to Anichebe coming up trumps to send the home fans into raptures.
Just nine days ago, Anichebe had again come off the bench to salvage a point for Albion in a 1-1 home draw with Liverpool.