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Rediff.com  » Sports » Spurs floor Chelsea, answer Man U prayers

Spurs floor Chelsea, answer Man U prayers

April 18, 2010 00:33 IST

A fast and fluid Tottenham Hotspur floored Premier League leaders Chelsea 2-1 on Saturday in a lively London derby to give a massive boost for Manchester United's hopes of retaining the title.

United, who started the day four points adrift of Chelsea, ended it just a point behind with three matches remaining and everything to play for after beating Manchester City 1-0 with a last-gasp goal from Paul Scholes.

Chelsea remain on 77 points while United have 76 and third-placed Arsenal, who visit struggling Wigan Athletic on Sunday, are on 71 with a game in hand.

Jermain Defoe opened the scoring for Spurs at White Hart Lane with a 15th minute penalty after a handball by Chelsea captain John Terry, who had a nightmare evening and was sent off in the 66th minute for a second yellow card.

Gareth Bale had hammered in Tottenham's second goal just before halftime with a low shot past Petr Cech at the near post that left the visitors reeling.

As the clock ticked towards 90 minutes, 10-man Chelsea were lucky not to have conceded more goals as Spurs fans began to celebrate -- only for the chants of 'Ole' to stick in their throats when Frank Lampard pulled a goal back in stoppage time.

But Chelsea's response came too late to affect the outcome.

In Manchester, United had all the luck in a sunlit derby at Eastlands where veteran midfielder Paul Scholes celebrated his new contract by burying a header in the dying seconds just when the visitors' hopes of victory had seemed buried.

While United manager Alex Ferguson will doubtless ring Tottenham's Harry Redknapp to thank him for services rendered, Spurs had plenty of motivation of their own in a lively and at times hot-tempered London derby.

Fighting for the final Champions League qualifying slot after beating north London rivals Arsenal 2-1 on Wednesday, Tottenham;s victory moved them into the coveted fourth place on 64 points and ahead of Manchester City on 62.

Source:
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