London: Queens Park Rangers boosted their Premier League survival bid by coming from behind to beat Sunderland 3-1 on Saturday, moving the bottom-place team just four points from safety. Goals from Loic Remy, Andros Townsend and Jermaine Jenas ensured QPR won back-to-back games for the first time this season.
QPR are level on points with Reading, who lost 2-1 at Aston Villa, but remained last because of fewer goals scored. Harry Redknapp's QPR are just a point behind Wigan and four adrift of Villa.
Villa climbed out of the drop zone by coming from behind to beat relegation rivalS Reading 2-1. Gabriel Agbonlahor clinched victory with a brilliant volley seconds before halftime, dropping Wigan into the bottom three on the day they won 3-0 at Everton in the FA Cup quarterfinals.
Nathan Baker's own goal had put Reading ahead in the 32nd minute but, as so often this season, Brian McDermott's side couldn't keep hold of a lead and Christian Benteke equalized less than two minutes later to maintain his impressive form in his debut season in England.
Artur Boruc saved Grant Holt's injury-time penalty Saturday as Southampton held on for a 0-0 draw at Norwich for an important point in the fight against relegation. Southampton players were furious when Norwich were awarded the penalty for Luke Shaw's challenge on Holt, but Boruc dived the right way to keep out the Norwich striker's effort and maintain the scoreless result.
The draw means Southampton are four points out of the relegation zone in 16th place with nine games to go, while Norwich are another five points ahead. With heavy rain being replaced by sleet during the game, there were few clear-cut chances for either team before the penalty. Southampton captain Adam Lallana blasted over when in front of an open goal, while Japan defender Maya Yoshida made vital blocks to prevent Holt and Robert Snodgrass scoring.
West Bromwich Albion's bid to qualify for the Europa League was boosted by a 2-1 comeback win against Swansea thanks to a second-half own goal. Swansea midfielder Jonathan de Guzman inadvertently turned the ball into his own net in the 61st minute at the Hawthorns, five minutes after West Brom forward Romelu Lukaku missed a penalty in the Premier League match.
Lukaku had already equalized in the 40th minute following Luke Moore's goal in the 33rd - his second in as many weeks - for Swansea. West Brom rose two spots to seventh place in the standings, overtaking Swansea and moving within four points of fifth-place Arsenal in the automatic qualification berth for the Europa League, albeit having played one more match.