LONDON  - Didier Drogba scored his 100th Premier League goal as Chelsea maintained the pressure on Arsenal in the race for fourth place with a 1-0 win over 10-man Stoke City on Saturday.
Drogba bagged his eighth goal of the season after 68 minutes of a tense encounter at Stamford Bridge as Chelsea notched their second victory since last week's sacking of manager Andre Villas-Boas. The win saw interim manager Roberto Di Matteo's side go level on points with fourth-placed Arsenal, who can restore their three-point lead with victory over Newcastle United on Monday.
Stoke, who were reduced to 10 men following the dismissal of Ricardo Fuller for a stamp on Branislav Ivanovic, slipped to 10th. With league leaders Manchester City and second-placed Manchester United playing today (Sunday), Saturday saw a reduced fixture schedule.
Liverpool's faint hopes of qualification for next season's Champions League suffered another blow as the Merseysiders crashed to a 1-0 defeat at Sunderland. Nicklas Bendtner scored the winner for the Black Cats on 56 minutes as Liverpool slumped to a second consecutive loss following their defeat against Arsenal at Anfield last weekend.
At the other end of the table, the problems mounted for struggling Queens Park Rangers and Wolverhampton Wanderers, who both suffered defeats that left the two clubs in the relegation zone.
Bolton snatched a dramatic late 2-1 win over QPR as the debate over goal-line technology was reignited by a blunder from match officials. An 86th-minute winner from substitute Ivan Klasnic bagged a vital three points for Bolton after Djibril Cisse's equaliser looked to have earned a draw for Rangers following Darren Pratley's opener.
But the main talking point from an entertaining game was a disallowed goal from QPR centre-back Clint Hill after 20 minutes. Replays showed Hill's powerful header had clearly crossed the goal-line yet despite QPR protests, neither the linesman nor referee Martin Atkinson were inclined to give the goal and Bolton escaped.
Fuming Rangers coach Mark Hughes said the incident was further proof of the need for goal-line technology, which world governing body FIFA have said they hope to introduce by the end of this year. "I'm really disappointed in the performance of the officials," Hughes told the BBC. "The referee was let down by his assistants. Clearly the ball was over the line. The linesman is there to see that -- that is what his job is.
"Laughably the FA have come out almost immediately and said they're in favour of goal-line technology. "What we're finding is that key moments and key decisions in games are going against us."
Hoilett opened the scoring on 43 minutes, lashing in from near the penalty spot after Wolves failed to clear Morten Gamst Pedersen's long throw. Hoilett doubled Rovers' lead in the 69th minute, gathering the ball in midfield before unleashing a long-range shot to beat Wayne Hennessey. The win -- Rovers' first clean sheet of the season -- saw the Lancashire club go three points clear of the relegation zone. In the other match on Saturday, Aston Villa scrambled an injury-time winner from Austrian youngster Andreas Weimann to score a precious 1-0 win over Fulham at Villa Park.