Spurs move up to fourth

Spurs leapfrog City and Liverpool in race for Champions League spot.

    Stewart Downing and Gabriel Agbonlahor celebrate Villa's win [GALLO/GETTY]
    Tottenham Hotspur and Aston Villa gained ground in the English Premier League's increasingly tight battle for the lucrative fourth spot in which the winner will get a shot at next season's Champions League.

    Roman Pavlyuchenko scored two late goals as Tottenham captured fourth place with a 3-0 victory at Wigan, and Aston Villa scored four goals in 13 minutes to come from behind to beat Burnley 5-2.

    Manchester City and Liverpool drew 0-0 meaning that after Sunday's games only a point separates fourth place Tottenham and seventh place Villa, although City and Villa both have a game in hand on their rivals.

    Spurs have 46 points, ahead of Man City on goal difference.

    Liverpool and Villa are both on 45.

    Chelsea are top on 61 points after their 2-0 win at Wolverhampton Wanderers on Saturday, taking full advantage of Manchester United's surprise 3-1 defeat at Everton which left the champions on 57.

    Arsenal are third on 55 following their 2-0 home win over Sunderland.

    Battle ground

    The battle for fourth was to the fore on Sunday and Villa were first up at home to second-bottom Burnley.

    The hosts trailed to an early Steven Fletcher goal before Ashley Young levelled after 32 minutes.

    Villa then produced a spell of terrific attacking as two for Stewart Downing and one each for Emile Heskey and Gabriel Agbonlahor left Burnley reeling.

    Villa, who face Manchester United in the League Cup final next Sunday, then eased off the gas but Martin Paterson's late score for the visitors was no consolation.

    "That was pretty remarkable, really great stuff," Villa manager Martin O'Neill told BBC Radio 5-Live.

    "When you get good players playing with confidence and ability, there is nothing like it."

    Spurs win

    EPL results & fixtures

    Saturday February 20

     Arsenal 2-0 Sunderland
     Everton 3-1 Man Utd
     Portsmouth 1-2 Stoke
     West Ham 3-0 Hull
     Wolves 0-2 Chelsea

    Sunday February 21

     Aston Villa 5-2 Burnley
     Blackburn 3-0 Bolton
     Fulham 2-1 Birmingham
     Man City 0-0 Liverpool
     Wigan 0-3 Tottenham

    Tottenham, who beat Wigan 9-1 at White Hart Lane, looked likely to settle for a 1-0 win courtesy of Jermain Defoe's offside opener in a strength-sapping game on a muddy pitch.

    Wigan keeper Chris Kirkland made two good saves and Luka Modric hit a post before out-of-favour striker Roman Pavluychenko came off the bench to score twice in the last six minutes.

    In a tedious match with few scoring chances, Man City had a penalty claim turned down near the end when Emmanuel Adebayor went down under a challenge by Daniel Agger. Liverpool also had a late penalty appeal through Yossi Benayoun denied.

    Blackburn beat next-to-last neighbour Bolton 3-0 after goals from Nikola Kalinic, Jason Roberts and Gael Givet. Bobby Zamora scored a last-minute winner as Fulham came from behind to beat Birmingham 2-1.

    Birmingham was given an early boost when Fulham defender Chris Baird headed a cross from Lee Bowyer into his own net in the third minute. But Damien Duff equalised in the 59th minute before Zamora fired home the winner from a free kick.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    Lost childhoods: Nigeria's fear of 'witchcraft' ruins young lives

    Lost childhoods: Nigeria's fear of 'witchcraft' ruins young lives

    Many Pentecostal churches in the Niger Delta offer to deliver people from witchcraft and possession - albeit for a fee.

    The priceless racism of the Duke of Edinburgh

    The priceless racism of the Duke of Edinburgh

    Prince Philip has done the world an extraordinary service by exposing the racist hypocrisy of "Western civilisation".

    Why a hipster, vegan, green tech economy is not sustainable

    Why a hipster, vegan, green tech economy is not sustainable

    Improving eco-efficiency within a capitalist growth-oriented system will not save the environment.