Manchester United survived the second-half sending-off of right back Rafael to hold Tottenham to a 0-0 draw at White Hart Lane on Sunday and remain unbeaten in the Premier League.
The Brazilian defender picked up a second booking for tripping Benoit Assou-Ekotto in the 74th minute but the visitors hung on to remain atop the standings, above Manchester City on goal difference.
Tottenham needed a win to go above Chelsea into fourth place and almost took maximum points when Rafael van der Vaart's curling shot in the 80th flew narrowly over.
Liverpool drew 2-2 with local rival Everton while Birmingham-Aston Villa and Sunderland-Newcastle both finished 1-1.
Barca crush Malaga
MADRID: Barcelona took full advantage of Real Madrid's shock slip-up at Almeria when they thumped Malaga 4-1 to stretch their lead over their great rivals at the top of La Liga to four points midway through the season. Real had squandered two crucial points in what is already a two-horse title race when they had to come from behind to secure a 1-1 draw at bottom side Almeria, the team with the league's worst home record.
Valencia stayed hard on the heels of third-placed Villarreal when they secured a 2-0 home win over Deportivo Coruna.