PREMIER LEAGUE WRAP: Man Utd go 12 clear as Chelsea, Tottenham, Arsenal all consolidate

Manchester United are now 12 points clear on top of the Premier League table after beating Everton 2-0 on Sunday.

The Red Devils have put themselves in pole position over crosstown rivals Manchester City who were beaten 3-1 at Southampton and are now looking in extremely good shape to take out their 20th title.

Ryan Giggs and Robin van Persie gave Sir Alex Ferguson’s men they victory they required and the Old Trafford club now only have themselves to blame if they are unable to maintain their runaway lead at the summit.

City have been in mediocre form of late, dropping points left, right and centre with draws against QPR and Liverpool and this heavy defeat at the hands of the Saints. It appears as though their title defence has already been relinquished.

Just behind them on the standings sits Chelsea who are within four points of second place courtesy of a 4-1 home triumph over Wigan Athletic thanks to goals from Ramires, Eden Hazard, Frank Lampard and Marko Marin.

The Blues are a point ahead of Tottenham in fourth following their 2-1 win over Newcastle United with Gareth Bale netting a double whilst their North London rivals, Arsenal, are clear in fifth after a 1-0 victory at Sunderland despite playing the final 30 minutes with ten men.

Elsewhere on the weekend, Norwich City and Fulham drew 0-0, Michu hit a brace as Swansea City cruised past a hapless QPR 4-1, Stoke City edged Reading 2-1 and Aston Villa moved out of the relegation zone with a 2-1 salute at home over West Ham United.

Monday night will round out the weekend’s play with eighth-placed Liverpool hosting West Bromwich Albion who sits ninth.

2012/13 Barclays Premier League season scores

Tottenham: 2 (Gareth Bale 5’/78’)
Newcastle United: 1 (Yoan Gouffran 24’)
White Hart Lane, London – 36,244

Chelsea: 4 (Ramires 23’, Eden Hazard 56’, Frank Lampard 86’, Marko Marin 90+2’)
Wigan Athletic: 1 (Shaun Maloney 58’)
Stamford Bridge, London – 41,562

Norwich City: 0
Fulham: 0
Carrow Road, Norwich – 26,816

Stoke City: 2 (Robert Huth 67’, Cameron Jerome 81’)
Reading: 1 (Adrian Mariappa 83’)
Britannia Stadium, Stoke-on-Trent – 26,737

Sunderland: 0
Arsenal: 1 (Santi Cazorla 35’, red card: Carl Jenkinson 62’)
Stadium of Light, Sunderland – 46,402

Swansea City: 4 (Michu 8’/67’, Angel Rangel 18’, Pablo Hernandez 50’)
Queens Park Rangers: 1 (Bobby Zamora 48’)
Liberty Stadium, Swansea – 20,529

Southampton: 3 (Jason Puncheon 7’, Steven Davis 22’, Gareth Barry (og) 48’)
Manchester City: 1 (Edin Dzeko 39’)
St Mary’s Stadium, Southampton – 31,738

Aston Villa: 2 (Christian Benteke (p) 74’, Charles N’Zogbia 78’)
West Ham United: 1 (Ashley Westwood (og) 87’)
Villa Park, Birmingham – 30,503

Manchester United: 2 (Ryan Giggs 13’, Robin van Persie 45+1’)
Everton: 0
Old Trafford, Manchester – 75,525

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