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Team of the Weekend, Dec. 20-21

Premier League
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Rodgers hails 'warrior' Skrtel

Liverpool
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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Chelsea suffer shock Palace defeat

Chelsea's Premier League title hopes were dealt a major blow as John Terry's own goal was enough to give Crystal Palace a 1-0 win and first league victory over the Blues since 1990 at Selhurst Park on Saturday.

Delaney: United still unconvincing

Jose Mourinho stood frustrated and making notes for much of the first 15 minutes as the home side stifled Chelsea's attempts to exert early pressure, and Palace looked the stronger side during the first half.

Their dominance paid off seven minutes into the second half as they finally found the breakthrough when Joel Ward's dangerous cross from the left was headed past his own goalkeeper by captain John Terry, under pressure from Joe Ledley.

The Blues were unable to provide a response and Tony Pulis' men claimed a victory that will provide an unexpected boost to their survival hopes while causing serious damage to their visitors' title bid.

Arsenal came back from an early David Silva goal to draw 1-1 with Manchester City at the Emirates, thanks to Mathieu Flamini's second half effort.

The home supporters felt they should have been awarded a penalty on 12 minutes when Tomas Rosicky went down under a challenge from Pablo Zabaleta. There looked to be some contact, but referee Mike Dean pointed for a goal kick.

Man City were lightning on the break and swept into the lead on 18 minutes. Podolski was dispossessed in midfield, as Silva carried the ball forwards and to the edge of the Arsenal penalty area before feeding Edin Dzeko on the left. His shot cannoned back off the near post, with the ball dropping at Silva's feet and bouncing into the far corner.

Arsenal came out of the break looking a different side as Santi Cazorla's drive stung the hands of England keeper Hart before Arsenal levelled on 53 minutes.

Patient build-up by the home side was rewarded when the ball was worked out to the left for Podolski, and his low centre into the penalty area was swept into the far corner by Flamini as he arrived on cue 12 yards out.

Manchester United came from a goal down to beat Aston Villa 4-1 at Old Trafford and ease the pressure on manager David Moyes.

Wayne Rooney scored twice and Juan Mata got his first goal in United colours as Moyes was given reason to smile rather than look to the heavens for a change. Had he done so, he would have seen an aeroplane carrying a much-publicised banner: "Wrong One -- Moyes Out."

More turbulence followed as Ashley Westwood curled home a superb free kick from the edge of the box to give Villa a surprise lead. However, Rooney soon equalised when left unmarked in the area and then converted a penalty -- won by Mata -- to put United 2-1 up at the break. Mata then seized upon a scrappy passage of play in the visitors' box to sweep home a low shot and Javier Hernandez rounded off the scoring in injury time.

An astonishing finish at the Hawthorns saw West Bromwich Albion denied a vital three points against Cardiff City, with both sides scoring deep into injury time in a 3-3 draw.

Morgan Amalfitano put West Brom in front after two minutes when his spectacular effort looped over David Marshall and into the far corner of the net. Marshall then made a fine save to deny fellow Scotland international James Morrison but found himself picking the ball out of his net once again on nine minutes when another Scot, Graham Dorrans, was in the right place to finish off Matej Vydra's knockdown from an Amalfitano cross.

Cardiff pulled one back before half-time as Jordon Mutch matched Amalfitano's effort with a stunning strike from range that -- like his teammate's -- may well have been intended as a cross. Steven Caulker hauled Cardiff level with 17 minutes to go, meeting Gary Medel's free kick from deep with a looping header over Ben Foster, but the drama was only just beginning.

Koulossa Thievy had looked to have given West Brom victory with a goal in the 94th minute, but Mats Daehli still had time to equalise.

Swansea City jumped above Norwich City in the table with a crushing 3-0 win at the Liberty Stadium.

Jonathan de Guzman broke through for Swansea on 30 minutes with a low shot from the edge of the box after Norwich only half-cleared Jonjo Shelvey's cross. He doubled his tally eight minutes later after being set through on goal by Wilfried Bony before dinking a composed finish over John Ruddy.

A crisp strike from Wayne Routledge in the final quarter of the game wrapped up all three points and opens up a seven-point gap between Swansea and Welsh rivals Cardiff in the drop zone.

Southampton move above Newcastle United after a 4-0 victory over their lacklustre visitors at St Mary's.

Southampton dominated the first half with 14 goal attempts to Newcastle's nil, but it was not until the last of those efforts that they took the lead, with Jay Rodriguez tapping home after being set up by Rickie Lambert. The provider then turned scorer four minutes in the second half as he converted Adam Lallana's cross.

Lallana got in on the goalscoring act with 20 minutes remaining as he charged towards a retreating Newcastle defence then curled a terrific shot into the top corner. Rodriguez then claimed his second of the match when he took the ball down, cut inside Mike Williamson then converted.

A blunder from Ahmed Elmohamady helped Stoke City to a 1-0 victory over Hull City at the Britannia Stadium.

There seemed little threat when Elmohamady gave away possession midway through the second half, allowing Peter Odemwingie to charge through and score the only goal of the game.

Stoke remain 10th with Hull 14th, seven points clear of the relegation places.

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