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Gareth Barry's late winner helps Manchester City overcome Reading

Reuters
Dec 22, 2012 at 11:57pm IST

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London: Gareth Barry struck in stoppage time on Saturday to ensure Manchester City kept the pressure on Manchester United in the Premier League title race with 1-0 victory over Reading. The defending champions were being frustrated by bottom-place Reading until Barry rose over Nicky Shorey to head in David Silva's cross.

City are three points behind United ahead of the leaders' match at Swansea on Sunday. "It was difficult clearly, because we had a lot of possession and had the chances but didn't score," City manager Roberto Mancini said. "Our support know we try until the last seconds - always."

Everton relied on a fortuitous goal to win 2-1 at West Ham, with Kevin Nolan's clearance from Leon Osman's cross inadvertently coming off Steven Pienaar in the 73rd minute. Tottenham have an inferior goal difference to Everton's and strikers Emmanuel Adebayor and Jermain Defoe were both frustrated against a stubborn Stoke side at White Hart Lane.

Barry's late winner helps City overcome Reading

Barry's header broke Reading's resistance and moved City to 39 points, three behind United.

But West Brom's recent slump was halted by a 2-1 victory that ended Norwich's 10-match unbeaten run. Romelu Lukaku headed in the late winner after Zoltan Gera ended West Brom's near six-hour goal drought just before the break to cancel out Robert Snodgrass' opener for Norwich.

While West Brom are sixth, seventh-place Chelsea can return to third with a victory over Aston Villa on Sunday. In the relegation dogfight, Queens Park Rangers are five points behind Wigan but a point ahead of bottom-place Reading despite Harry Redknapp's unbeaten start as manager ending with a 1-0 loss to Newcastle.

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