Newcastle snatch point while Manchester City cruise
Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez inspired another second-half comeback but the Magpies remain rooted in the Barclays Premier League relegation zone after a 2-2 draw at his former club Liverpool.
Benitez is still fondly remembered at Anfield for the 2005 Champions League final when the Reds recovered from 3-0 down to beat AC Milan, but Saturday's stirring revival was not so welcome on Merseyside.
Daniel Sturridge's second-minute strike and a second goal from Adam Lallana seemed certain to send Jurgen Klopp's men into their Europa League clash against Villarreal with a win.
But Papiss Cisse reduced the deficit shortly after half-time then Jack Colback's deflected shot made it 2-2 in the 66th minute, sealing a surprise point for the visitors which could yet prove invaluable.
Manchester City built up for their upcoming Champions League clash with Real Madrid with a 4-0 win over Stoke.
Fernando's header and a Sergio Aguero penalty put City 2-0 up at the break before Kelechi Iheanacho's double sealed his side's move back up to third place in the table.
Manuel Pellegrini clearly had Europe on his mind as he left Kevin De Bruyne on the bench while Vincent Kompany was left out of the matchday squad completely.
But his gamble proved worthwhile with Fernando nodding in the opener then Aguero making sure from the spot after Iheanacho was hauled down by Ryan Shawcross.
Iheanacho's double sealed a bad day for the Potters, who had confirmed before kick-off Ibrahim Afellay is set to be ruled out until next year due to a knee ligament injury sustained in training.
Aston Villa's dismal season went from bad to worse as they crashed to a 4-2 home defeat to Southampton amid a poisonous atmosphere at Villa Park.
The already-relegated hosts were booed onto the pitch and a pair of defensive blunders let in Shane Long and Dusan Tadic to give the Saints a 2-0 lead.
Tadic bagged his second after the break and Sadio Mane added a fourth at the death, with only Ashley Westwood's double sparing the home side outright humiliation.
Cesc Fabregas had a hand in all the goals as Chelsea eased to a 4-1 win at Bournemouth.
A superb pair of through-balls set up Pedro and Eden Hazard fired home the second before Tommy Elphick briefly reduced the deficit for the Cherries before the break.
Fabregas was again instrumental in the second half as he set up the third for Willian and a late fourth for Hazard.