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Sun 14 Dec 2008 03:35 AM

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Gerrard revives Liverpool in Hull of a battle

Man Utd and Arsenal also both held to draws as Chelsea eye chance to go top.

Steven Gerrard performed yet another rescue act for Liverpool by twice scoring for the Premier League leaders as they came from 2-0 down to draw 2-2 against surprise package Hull City at Anfield on Saturday.

Liverpool were left two points clear of Chelsea but the Londoners will go top by a point if they beat a West Ham side managed by former Blues hero Gianfranco Zola in Sunday's capital derby at Stamford Bridge.

"If we want to stay top we have to take three points from these kinds of games," Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez told Sky Sports.

Manchester United, in the reigning champions' last match before heading to Japan for the Club World Cup, remained six points behind Liverpool after a goalless draw away to Tottenham Hotspur in the day's late kick-off.

But it needed a superb, last minute, save from Spurs keeper Heurelho Gomes to deny United all three points after he tipped a curling Ryan Giggs free-kick onto the crossbar.

Aston Villa leapfrogged Arsenal into fourth place by coming from behind to beat Bolton Wanderers 4-2 after the Gunners lost ground with a 1-1 draw away to Middlesbrough - a result that left them eight points off top spot.

Under-pressure Blackburn Rovers manager Paul Ince saw the second-bottom side lose their sixth straight league match in a 3-0 defeat away to Wigan.

Elsewhere, Sunderland climbed out of the bottom three with a 4-0 thrashing of basement club West Bromwich Albion.

Australia midfielder Tim Cahill headed home in the 90th minute as Everton left it late to beat Manchester City 1-0 while Stoke and Fulham played out a goalless draw.

Newcastle will try to pull away from danger when they travel to Portsmouth, unbeaten in five league games, in Sunday's other match.

Hull, who've already won away to Arsenal, Newcastle and Tottenham in their first top-flight season, stunned Liverpool when Paul McShane headed the Tigers into a 12th minute lead at Anfield.

And they were 2-0 in front thanks to an own-goal from Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher.

However, barely two minutes later, Reds captain Gerrard scored from close range following a pass from Albert Riera.

England midfielder Gerrard, as he's so often done before, continued to drag Liverpool back into the game with his second goal in the 32nd minute after Dirk Kuyt's cross fell into his path.

"We are really disappointed because these are the kinds of games we have to win," Benitez said. "We started the game really well but then we conceded two goals with two big mistakes."

Villa were a goal behind against Bolton when Johan Elmander scored in the 17th minute. But Martin O'Neill's men equalised eight minutes later when Gabriel Agbonlahor shot home.

And Villa were ahead when Kevin Davies put Gareth Barry's cross through his own net five minutes before half-time under pressure from Martin Laursen.

The Villa Park faithful celebrated a third goal in the 67th minute when Agbonlahor scored his second after turning in Ashley Young's cross.

Roles were reversed 12 minutes from time as Young scored before Davies pulled a goal back for Bolton.

At the Riverside, former Arsenal striker Jeremie Aliadiere secured a point for Boro after Emmanuel Adebayor had given the Gunners the lead.

However, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger insisted: "We believe that champions are people who go on when everybody else stops. Nobody believes in us but we can show we still believe and keep going."

Wigan, managed by Ince's former Manchester United team-mate Steve Bruce, were 2-0 up in 12 minutes as Blackburn's porous defence again leaked goals.

England striker Emile Heskey opened the scoring in the 10th minute with a neat finish from Antonio Valencia's cross.

And two minutes later it was 2-0.

Blackburn keeper Paul Robinson's clearance went straight to Mario Melchiot, who headed the ball into Valencia's path and the unchallenged Ecuadorian struck a powerful shot into the bottom right corner. Lee Cattermole wrapped up the points in the 77th minute.

"To concede two goals in about 10 minutes, you don't give yourselves a chance," Ince said.

"We've brought a lot of supporters here and we've let them down."

Managerless Sunderland scored their first goals since Roy Keane quit as manager with Kenwyne Jones netting twice in two minutes at the Stadium of Light.

First Jones headed in Djibril Cisse's cross in the 22nd minute before following-up after Scott Carson blocked Cisse's shot.

Andy Reid's header made it 3-0 before the break and it was 4-0 soon afterwards when Cisse scored with a penalty.

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