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Chelsea Lose Again Away From Home

john-terryPremier League leaders Chelsea suffered a major setback in the English title race after John Terry’s second-half own goal sent them crashing to a 1-0 defeat in the London derby at Crystal Palace.

Chelsea’s brief going into the derby at Selhurst Park had been to extend their one-point advantage over second-placed Liverpool– home to Tottenham Hotspur tomorrow – at the summit. However, 16th-ranked Palace deservedly went in front through John Terry’s 52nd-minute intervention. It prompted a second successive away defeat for José Mourinho’s men and signalled Palace’s first scalp of the Stamford Bridge club in 24 years. Liverpool can claim pole position tomorrow.

Manchester United, in seventh, came from behind to win 4-1 at home to Aston Villa in the early game. Ashley Westwood put Villa ahead with a free-kick but Wayne Rooney nodded in Shinji Kagawa’s cross and made it 2-1 from the penalty spot just before half-time. Juan Mata’s first goal for United – a low finish after good work from Marouane Fellaini – then gave under-fire manager David Moyes a welcome cushion, with Javier Hernández’s last-gasp tap-in completing the victory.

Southampton beat Newcastle United 4-0 with strikes either side of the interval from Jay Rodriguez and Ricky Lambert, supplemented by an Adam Lallana belter and a second for Rodriguez, to leapfrog their visitors into eighth position. Home advantage also told as Stoke City made it three straight wins, Peter Odemwingie’s solitary second-half effort felling Hull City.

There was a crucial victory for Swansea City, 3-0 at home to Norwich City, Jonathan De Guzmán’s double and another from Wayne Routledge enabling them to move above Norwich into 13th spot.

Further down the table West Brom surrendered leads of 2-0 and, at the death, 3-2 – and with it the opportunity to head towards safety – in a 3-3 home draw with third-bottom Cardiff City. Jordan Mutch and Steven Caulker nullified early goals by Jordan Amalfitano and Graham Dorrans, before Thievy Bifouma’s apparent stoppage-time clincher was instantly cancelled out by Cardiff’s Mats Møller Dæhli.