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Chelsea, Man City play out goalless draw

London, Nov 25, 2012, Reuters:

Southampton blank New Castle; Liverpool held by Swansea City

Interim manager Rafael Benitez was given a hostile welcome by Chelsea fans angry at Roberto Di Matteo's sacking when the Spaniard, serenaded with jeers, began his Stamford Bridge reign with a 0-0 draw against Manchester City on Sunday.

Chelsea axed the popular Di Matteo on Wednesday - hours after their Champions League defeat by Juventus which continued their poor run of results, and appointed the former Liverpool man for the rest of the season.

Benitez's arrival in the dugout shortly before kickoff was greeted by boos with home fans continuing to chant Di Matteo's name throughout the first half.

Chelsea, now without a Premier League win in five games, improved after a sluggish opening period but created few openings to test City keeper Joe Hart.

City, knocked off top spot by Manchester United's 3-1 win over Queens Park Rangers on Saturday, closed to within one point in second while Chelsea are fourth, five points behind the leaders.

Redknapp, who has agreed a 2-1/2 year deal with Rangers, will take control for the first time against Sunderland on Tuesday aiming to deny the north-east club a second win in west London in just over a week after they beat Fulham last weekend.

Jermain Defoe's double, including a superb first-half strike, and Gareth Bale's goal just before the hour jolted Tottenham Hotspur out of the doldrums with a 3-1 London derby victory over West Ham United at White Hart Lane.

Southampton moved out of the bottom three with a 2-0 home victory over Newcastle United, ensuring an unhappy return to the south coast club for former Saints manager Alan Pardew, whose Newcastle side are struggling to match last season's exploits which carried them to a fifth-place finish.

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers was also unable to get one over former club Swansea City on his return to Wales as the Anfield side continued their mediocre Premier League start with a 0-0 draw at the Liberty Stadium. Liverpool, anchored in mid-table with just three league wins from 13 games, created the better openings in a lively encounter.

Teenage winger Raheem Sterling rattled the crossbar with a rasping volley on 33 minutes and 60 seconds later the visitors had a goal disallowed when Luis Enrique, who slid in to turn home Luis Suarez's cross, was denied by the offside flag.

Swansea, who appointed Dane Michael Laudrup to succeed Rodgers after he left in June, moved up to eighth on 17 points.

Arsenal held

Arsenal stayed sixth place after a tame 0-0 draw at Aston Villa who climbed out of the relegation zone into 17th place despite making little impact against a less than inspired Arsenal side.


Results: Chelsea: 0 drew Manchester City: 0; Southampton: 2 bt Newcastle United: 0; Swansea City: 0 drew Liverpool: 0; Tottenham Hotspur: 3 bt West Ham United: 1.


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