Wigan produced an emphatic 3-0 win away at Reading at the Madjeski Stadium to move out of the relegation zone and give Roberto Martinez hope of another miraculous end of season escape from the drop.
Arouna Kone’s swift double, moments before the half time whistle, gave the Latics a deserved two goal advantage at the break and a Maynor Figueroa goal in the second half secured all three points for Roberto Martinez’s relegation defying side.
Reading’s day was worsened as their striker Pavel Pogrebnyak was shown a straight red card for a frustrated challenge on goalscorer Figueroa. The win moves Wigan out of the relegation zone, leapfrogging Reading and Aston Villa, whilst Brain McDermott’s side sit in 19th place just a point from safety.
Manchester United moved 15 points clear at the top of the Premier League as they overcame struggling QPR at Loftus Road 2-0. Goals from Rafael Da Silva and the inspirational Ryan Giggs sent United ever closer to reclaiming the Premier League title from neighbours Manchester City.
It was not all good news for Sir Alex Ferguson’s men as talisman Robin Van Persie limped off after colliding with a cameraman but is expected to be back for their Champions League clash with Real Madrid.
QPR are now six points behind at the bottom of the table and seven behind safety in what looks like a relegation bound season for the team who only escaped the drop last year on the final day.
Arsenal scraped a win over relegation threatened Aston Villa as a Santi Cazorla brace gave the Gunners a 2-1 victory at the Emirates. After back to back home defeats against Blackburn and Bayern Munich the pressure was firmly on Arsene Wenger’s shoulders but was lifted a little when Cazorla struck the opening goal to give Arsenal a comfortable lead.
However, Andres Weimann’s second half equaliser shocked the Emirates and looked to be sending Arsenal further and further from Champions League qualification. Cazorla’s 84th minute strike, to the relief of the Arsenal fans, earned his side all three points and moved them just a point behind Tottenham and well in with a chance of retaining their Champions League place.
On loan Chelsea forward Romelu Lukaku scored yet another brace for West Brom as they beat Sunderland 2-1 at the Hawthorns. Lukaku’s first of the game came from the penalty spot, after Craig Gardner was judged to have handled by referee Roger East.
His second came in the second half after he charged down a poor Titus Bramble backpass and the ball ricocheted off the Belgian’s leg and into the net. Sunderland did pull a goal back through Stephane Sessegnon but it wasn’t enough to deny Steve Clarke’s side gaining three points and moving to seventh in the table.
Norwich City came from behind to win their first game in eleven as they beat Champions League chasing Everton 2-1 at Carrow Road.
With the top four in their sights, it was no surprise David Moyes’ team took the lead through Englishman Leon Osman from a well taken header. However, Norwich produced a dramatic comeback as first Kei Kamara scored his first Norwich goal to equalise in the 84th minute and then finally, Grant Holt stabbed home in the 94th minute to give the Canaries all three points and dent Everton’s dreams for Champions League football.
Dimitar Berbatov proved to be the difference between Fulham and Stoke at Craven Cottage in the early kick off as his goal gave Fulham a 1-0 win. With both sides boasting a strong defensive record in this seasons Premier League it was going to take a moment of magic to find a breakthrough and that’s exactly what occurred when Berbatov volleyed past Asmir Begovic in first half additional time.
The win pushes Martin Jol’s side to just a point behind Stoke, who sit in tenth, and also adds to their impressive home record in which they’ve now only lost five all season at the Cottage.