Liverpool claim vital victory
A review of Sunday's action in the Barclays Premier League.
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Liverpool took a giant stride towards the Barclays Premier League title with a thrilling 3-2 victory over Manchester City at Anfield.
Philippe Coutinho scored the winning goal with a superb first-time finish from the edge of the box 12 minutes from time after a blunder from Vincent Kompany.
City had fought back from 2-0 down but Liverpool took the three points for a 10th victory in a row.
The Merseyside club now have a seven-point advantage over Manuel Pellegrini's men, although the Etihad Stadium outfit still have two games in hand.
With the 25th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster falling on Tuesday, floral tributes were presented to Kenny Dalglish and Ian Rush by City's Mike Summerbee, Joe Corrigan and Tony Book before the kick-off and there was a '96 25 Years' Kop mosaic for the impeccably observed minute's silence.
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Liverpool started quickly and took the lead with just six minutes on the clock as Raheem Sterling was picked out by Luis Suarez's excellent pass and the youngster showed incredible composure to bamboozle both Kompany and Joe Hart before rolling home.
Hart produced a superb save to deny Steven Gerrard after he was given a free header from Coutinho's corner, but the lead was doubled from the next corner as Martin Skrtel got away from Kompany at the near post to glance home.
City hit back in style in the second half with David Silva (57) converting James Milner's low cross, before Glen Johnson could only divert the Spain international's shot beyond Simon Mignolet at his near post.
Liverpool though were not to be denied as they claimed victory thanks to Coutinho's strike, although Jordan Henderson saw red deep into added time for a late challenge on Samir Nasri.
In the day's other match, Demba Ba struck another priceless goal following his Champions League heroics to keep Chelsea firmly in the title race.
Ba's 68th-minute strike finally broke 10-man Swansea's Liberty Stadium resistance for a 1-0 win that leaves Chelsea two points behind leaders Liverpool with four games remaining.
It followed the winner he struck against Paris St Germain five days ago that booked the Blues' place in this season's Champions League semi-finals.
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Chelsea, who visit Anfield in a fortnight's time, were made to sweat and toil by the Swans following Chico Flores' 17th-minute sending off.
Flores was dismissed after picking up his second yellow card - his cautions came just over two minutes apart - but Swansea scrapped for everything before Ba struck and left Garry Monk's men just three points above the relegation zone.