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Gunners fire back against Reds

Draws for Arsenal - against Liverpool - and Tottenham saw Everton gain ground in the race for fourth in the Premier League on Wednesday, as Chelsea threw away a 2-0 lead to draw with Reading.

Elsewhere, Manchester United opened up a seven-point lead at the top of the table with a somewhat uncertain home win over Southampton, while Fulham held on to beat West Ham United in the London derby at Craven Cottage.

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Two goals in as many minutes saw Arsenal come from 2-0 down to claim a 2-2 draw against Liverpool at the Emirates Stadium.

Goals from Luis Suarez and Jordan Henderson had given the Merseysiders a healthy advantage heading into the final half-hour of the game, but Olivier Giroud and Theo Walcott both beat Pepe Reina with emphatic finishes to set up a pulsating last 20 minutes.

Both sides had chances to score a late winner - Giroud being denied by Reina in his side's closest attempt, while Wojciech Szczesny was lucky to keep out a very late Suarez attempt - but neither could convert as the game finished level.

Chelsea failed to move six points clear of Spurs in the Premier League after Adam Le Fondre's late brace gave Reading a share of the spoils in a 2-2 draw.

Strikes from Juan Mata - just before half-time - and Frank Lampard had Rafa Benitez's side cruising towards the finish line at the Madejski Stadium, but an 87th-minute finish from Le Fondre put the visitors on edge for the final five minutes. And the substitute would complete the turnaround, as he was on hand in injury time to slide the ball home as Chelsea's desperate defending proved unsuccessful.

Manchester United had to come from behind to pick up all three points as they beat Southampton 2-1.

Forward Jay Rodriguez put the visitors ahead after just three minutes at Old Trafford, as the ex-Burnley player took advantage of some confusion between Ryan Giggs and David de Gea to slip the ball home.

United were back on level terms just minutes later, though, as Wayne Rooney drove home from a deflected Shinji Kagawa cross, and after 27 minutes Sir Alex Ferguson's side were ahead, as Rooney was again on hand to tap home from close range after Patrice Evra had headed the ball into his path.

United had further chances to extend their advantage but failed to take them - Robin van Persie seeing one strike chalked off in the second half - and Ferguson's men nearly paid the price for that, but Southampton could not quite manage to find a late equaliser despite some threatening late advances.

A late strike from Gareth Bale gave Tottenham a share of the points in a 1-1 draw against Norwich at Carrow Road.

Andre Villas-Boas' side fell behind after 32 minutes to Wesley Hoolahan's strike, but with ten minutes remaining Bale rescued a point - getting the ball from Jermain Defoe before running with it and unleashing a left-footed shot that was beyond Mark Bunn before he could get down to it.

Elsewhere, a brace from Leighton Baines was enough for Everton to stave off a spirited West Brom fightback and claim a 2-1 win at Goodison Park - moving them within a point of fourth-placed Spurs.

Baines opened the scoring on the half-hour, and in fine fashion too: after receiving the ball from Leon Osman, Baines used his trusty left-foot to rifle the ball beyond Ben Foster through a crowd of players.

In injury time at the end of the first-half, he made it 2-0, this time from the penalty spot. Claudio Yacob was the guilty party for the Baggies - bringing down Victor Anichebe - and Foster was unable to bail his midfielder out as Baines duly converted.

The Baggies created few clear-cut chances in the game but they were given a lifeline after 65 minutes, when Shane Long headed home from close range. An equaliser would not be forthcoming, however, as the Toffees improved their bid for Champions League football.

Finally, Fulham picked up a valuable 3-1 victory over West Ham at Craven Cottage.

Dimitar Berbatov opened the scoring after ten minutes to give the Cottagers the lead, but the Hammers restored parity minutes after half-time through Kevin Nolan. Hugo Rodallega got Fulham back ahead almost instantly, though, before the home side wrapped up the points in injury time - Mladen Petric's intervention ending with Joey O'Brien putting the ball into his own net.

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