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Snodgrass stalls Spurs’ top-4 bid Henderson strike sinks valiant Swansea

NORWICH, United Kingdom, Feb 23, (AFP): Tottenham Hotspur lost ground in the race for Champions League qualification as Norwich City boosted their hopes of Premier League survival with a 1-0 victory on Sunday. Robert Snodgrass claimed the decisive goal in the 47th minute at Carrow Road to give Norwich only a second win in 12 games and lift Chris Hughton’s side four points clear of the relegation zone. Tottenham were bidding to return to within three points of fourth-place Liverpool, 4-3 victors against Swansea City earlier on Sunday, but instead were left six points below the Champions League berths in fifth place. Ricky van Wolfswinkel was drafted back into the Norwich line-up and he saw an early chance pass him by when he was unable to make telling contact with a bouncing ball inside the Spurs box after a corner. The visitors received an early blow when holding midfielder Etienne Capoue was forced off through injury in the 13th minute, with Nacer Chadli coming on in his place. The first half was a tame affair, with a curling effort from Spurs midfielder Paulinho that drifted over the bar the best effort that either side could muster. However, the game received an injection of intrigue early in the second half when Snodgrass put Norwich ahead. Bradley Johnson’s pass inside Spurs left-back Danny Rose released the Scotland international and he shaped a left-foot shot into the bottom-left corner from the edge of the area.

Liverpool 4, Swansea 9
In Liverpool, Jordan Henderson’s 74th-minute winner gave Liverpool an extraordinary 4-3 win over Swansea City on Sunday that maintained the club’s impressive bid for a top-four Premier League finish.
The Liverpool midfielder claimed his second goal of the game by converting at the second attempt after Luis Suarez’s shot had been deflected into his path by visiting captain Ashley Williams.
Daniel Sturridge also scored twice, while Swansea responded impressively with a brace from Wilfried Bony and a goal from Liverpool old boy Jonjo Shelvey seeing them level the game at 2-2 and 3-3.
An entertaining first half featured five goals in the opening 36 minutes and left Liverpool in command, although far from convincing, as they took a 3-2 lead into the half-time break.
The three goals also took Liverpool’s tally of first-half league goals this season to an astonishing 46 — 16 more than free-scoring Manchester City — but it was to Swansea’s credit that they refused to be swept aside.

Newcastle 1, Villa 0
In Newcastle, United Kingdom, French international striker Loic Remy marked his return to the Newcastle line-up after serving a three game suspension with a late goal to give his side a much-needed 1-0 win over Aston Villa in their Premier League clash on Sunday.
The 27-year-old’s 12th goal of the season was Newcastle’s first since they beat West Ham 3-1 in a disastrous run, which also coincided with the departure of playmaker Yohan Cabaye to Paris Saint Germain, that has seen them lose six of their nine league matches.
Defeat for Villa — they have just two wins in their last 13 matches — keeps them very much in the relegation battle, as they lie just four points above third from bottom Sunderland, who have a game in hand.
Newcastle manager Alan Pardew will also be relieved that the return from injury of Argentinian central defender Fabricio Coloccini saw the previously leaky defence succeed in keeping a clean sheet.
The hosts had the first chance of the game as Paul Dummett, also recalled to the starting line-up, set up Papiss Cisse and his shot should have been easily gathered by Villa goalkeeper Brad Guzan but he fumbled it and it had to be cleared for a corner by a Villa defender.
Villa then had two clear chances to break the deadlock, both falling to Gabriel Agbonlahor, first his fierce effort was tipped away by Tim Krul and then his long range effort was on target but went over the bar.

Standings
    P    W    D    L    GF    GA    Pts
Chelsea    27    18    6    3    49    21    60
Arsenal    27    18    5    4    52    27    59
Man City    26    18    3    5    69    27    57
Liverpool    27    17    5    5    70    35    56
Tottenham    27    15    5    7    36    33    50
Man Utd    27    13    6    8    43    31    45
Everton    26    12    9    5    37    27    45
Newcastle    27    12    4    11    33    38    40
Southampton    27    10    9    8    38    32    39
West Ham    27    8    7    12    31    34    31
Hull     27    8    6    13    29    31    30
Swansea    27    7    7    13    36    40    28
Aston Villa    27    7    7    13    27    37    28
Norwich    27    7    7    14    19    39    28
Stoke    27    6    9    12    27    42    27
Crystal Palace    26    8    2    16    18    36    26
West Brom    27    4    13    10    31    39    25
Sunderland    26    6    6    14    26    42    24
Cardiff    27    5    7    15    19    48    22
Fulham    27    6    3    18    27    59    21
Note: Standings read as played, won, draw, lost, goals for, goals against & points.
 

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