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Chelsea slam four past the Hammers

sports Updated: Mar 14, 2010 00:16 IST

Agencies
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Didier Drogba scored twice as Chelsea grabbed back top spot in the Premier League on Saturday with a 4-1 home win over London rivals West Ham United.

The Ivory Coast striker took his league tally for the season to 21 with two goals after the break to finish off struggling West Ham who had drawn level when former Chelsea player Scott Parker cancelled out Alex's early header.

Chelsea, for whom Florent Malouda was also on target, moved to 64 points from 29 games while champions Manchester United, who host Fulham on Sunday, have 63. Arsenal can also reach 64 points with victory at Hull City later.

Two goals by Roman Pavlyuchenko helped fourth-placed Tottenham Hotspur maintain their push for Champions League qualification with a 3-1 home defeat of Blackburn Rovers.

The Russian, largely ignored by manager Harry Redknapp until last month, struck twice after the break to take his tally to eight goals in his last six appearances.

Victory kept Tottenham in pole position for fourth spot in the Premier League, three points above Manchester City who have two games in hand including their visit to Sunderland on Sunday.

Pavlyuchenko was never far from the action at White Hart Lane, squandering two good chances before Jermain Defoe nudged Tottenham ahead in first-half stoppage time with his 23rd goal of the season in all competitions.

Aston Villa, one of Tottenham's rivals for fourth spot, lost ground with a 0-0 draw at Stoke City. Fifth-placed Manchester City play at Sunderland on Sunday.

Burnley look increasingly likely to make a quick return to the Championship (second division) after a morale-sapping 2-1 home defeat by fellow strugglers Wolverhampton Wanderers.

Bolton Wanderers thrashed Wigan Athletic 4-0 and Birmingham City recovered from a two-goal deficit to draw 2-2 with Everton.