Chelsea 0-0 Tottenham
Tottenham maintained their five-point advantage over Chelsea after shading a poor draw at Stamford Bridge.
Harry Redknapp's side improved after the break and came close to a late winner when Gareth Bale headed against the crossbar.
Emmanuel Adebayor also had a shot cleared off the line by Gary Cahill.
Chelsea's Juan Mata had earlier struck a post with a free-kick but the home side face a difficult task to qualify for the Champions League next season.
Since interim boss Roberto di Matteo replaced Andre Villas-Boas earlier this month, the Blues have secured against the odds and
But their hopes of a top-four finish in the league look no brighter and here the hosts lacked any sort of attacking spark on a frustrating afternoon that saw both teams continually giving away possession.
Tottenham were not much better than Chelsea in a first half devoid of quality, but were stronger in the closing stages and showed enough to suggest they may have arrested their recent run of poor performances.
Despite Redknapp's of the idea that his side's form has anything to do with speculation linking him to the England job, there could be no denying that Tottenham's early season form had evaporated in the space of six short weeks.
They have still not won in the league since on 11 February, a run that has ended their outside chances of winning the title, but this point at least makes them favourites to end the season as Champions League qualifiers.
Redknapp's side crafted the solitary chance of a turgid first half in stoppage time when Luka Modric found space inside the penalty area to pick out Rafael van der Vaart.
The Dutchman's first shot was well saved by Petr Cech - making his 250th Premier League appearance - before Ashley Cole made a fine block to keep out the forward's second effort.
Modric has been marginalised for much of Tottenham's slump by being deployed wide on the left, but here the Croatian played through the middle from the start, with Bale looking a threat on the wing.
Chelsea posed a serious threat just once in the second half when Mata floated a delicate free-kick against the post, before replacement David Luiz inadvertently took the rebound away from the waiting Didier Drogba.
Adebayor could then have put Spurs ahead when he raced clear of the defence to round Cech, but the impressive Cahill recovered well to block his shot.
Bale lost Luiz at a corner to hit the bar and then saw a low free-kick turned around the post by Cech as Chelsea held on for a point.
Chelsea manager Roberto di Matteo: "We are disappointed but it's a fair result.
"Both teams had chances to win the game. Juan Mata hit a great free-kick against the post. Sometimes you need a bit of luck to unlock the win but we didn't get it.
"Defensively we were good but we had no edge going forward. It's a step back for finishing in the top four but we have eight games left and we will try to win them all."
Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp: "I thought we did enough to win the game. We edged it. We kept the ball great and we looked the more likely.
"Petr Cech has made a couple of great saves but he is top class. It's a good point but there is a long way to go and there will be twists and turns.
"It's wide open for the top four. Everyone is capable of winning six or seven in a row."
- 01 Cech
- 03 Cole
- 17 Bosingwa (Luiz - 60' )
- 24 Cahill
- 26 Terry
- 05 Essien Booked (Torres - 75' )
- 07 Ramires
- 08 Lampard
- 10 Mata
- 11 Drogba
- 23 Sturridge (Kalou - 89' )
- 22 Turnbull
- 04 Luiz
- 12 Mikel
- 15 Malouda
- 16 Meireles
- 09 Torres
- 21 Kalou
- 24 Friedel
- 04 Kaboul
- 13 Gallas
- 28 Walker
- 32 Assou-Ekotto Booked
- 03 Bale
- 08 Parker
- 11 Van der Vaart (Saha - 76' )
- 14 Modric
- 30 Sandro Booked (Livermore - 76' )
- 10 Adebayor
- 23 Cudicini
- 33 Nelsen
- 21 Kranjcar
- 25 Rose
- 29 Livermore
- 15 Saha
- 18 Defoe
Live Text Commentary
Full Time The referee signals the end of the game.90:00 +4:40
Corner taken right-footed by Luka Modric.90:00 +3:29
David Luiz concedes a free kick for a foul on Emmanuel Adebayor. Shot comes in from Gareth Bale from the free kick, save made by Petr Cech.90:00 +2:31
Ramires challenges Jake Livermore unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick crossed left-footed by Gareth Bale from right wing, clearance by Gary Cahill.90:00 +1:30
Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Luka Modric played to the near post, Frank Lampard manages to make a clearance.90:00 +1:20
Gareth Bale takes a shot. Gary Cahill gets a block in.90:00 +0:45
The referee penalises Ashley Cole for handball. Free kick taken by Brad Friedel.89:55
Emmanuel Adebayor gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Gary Cahill. Free kick taken by Gary Cahill.89:26
Effort on goal by Didier Drogba from just outside the penalty area goes harmlessly over the target.88:59
Juan Mata produces a cross, Brad Friedel makes a save.88:02 Substitution
Substitution Salomon Kalou is brought on as a substitute for Daniel Sturridge.87:50
Luka Modric has an effort at goal from outside the box which goes wide left of the goal.85:37
Shot from 25 yards from Frank Lampard. Save made by Brad Friedel.83:59
The ball is sent over by Kyle Walker, clearance by John Terry.83:08
Effort from 18 yards by Gareth Bale. Save made by Petr Cech.82:40
Louis Saha is penalised for handball and concedes a free kick. Frank Lampard takes the indirect free kick.79:55
Emmanuel Adebayor has a header from close in and clears the crossbar.79:02
Emmanuel Adebayor takes a shot. Blocked by Gary Cahill. Outswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Luka Modric, Gareth Bale takes a shot.78:23
Louis Saha produces a left-footed shot from just outside the box that goes wide left of the goal.78:03
Free kick awarded for a foul by Ramires on Scott Parker. Luka Modric takes the direct free kick.
Didier Drogba takes a shot. Save by Brad Friedel.74:27
A cross is delivered by Luka Modric, William Gallas has a headed effort at goal from close range which goes wide of the left-hand upright.74:27 Substitution
Substitution Jake Livermore joins the action as a substitute, replacing Raniere Sandro.74:27 Substitution
Substitution Rafael Van der Vaart goes off and Louis Saha comes on.74:27 Substitution
Substitution Fernando Torres joins the action as a substitute, replacing Michael Essien.74:27
David Luiz challenges Luka Modric unfairly and gives away a free kick.72:57
Frank Lampard concedes a free kick for a foul on Benoit Assou-Ekotto. Brad Friedel restarts play with the free kick.70:35
Gareth Bale challenges Ramires unfairly and gives away a free kick. Strike on goal comes in from Juan Mata from the free kick.67:57
Foul by Rafael Van der Vaart on Michael Essien, free kick awarded. Direct strike on goal from the free kick comes in from Didier Drogba.67:35
Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Frank Lampard from the left by-line, Kyle Walker manages to make a clearance.67:25
The ball is sent over by David Luiz, clearance by Kyle Walker.65:55
Michael Essien restarts play with the free kick.65:55 Booking
Booking Booking for Raniere Sandro for unsporting behaviour.65:48
Raniere Sandro concedes a free kick for a foul on Michael Essien.65:31
The ball is delivered by David Luiz, save by Brad Friedel.64:41
The free kick is swung in right-footed by Didier Drogba, Kyle Walker makes a clearance.64:41 Booking
Booking The referee books Benoit Assou-Ekotto for unsporting behaviour.63:36
Benoit Assou-Ekotto concedes a free kick for a foul on Ramires.61:48
Corner taken right-footed by Frank Lampard, Close range headed effort by Daniel Sturridge clears the crossbar.61:41
The ball is sent over by Daniel Sturridge, clearance made by Benoit Assou-Ekotto.60:57
The referee blows for offside. Indirect free kick taken by Brad Friedel.59:57
Free kick awarded for a foul by Emmanuel Adebayor on Gary Cahill. Petr Cech takes the free kick.59:02 Substitution
Substitution David Luiz on for Jose Bosingwa.58:48
Gareth Bale has an effort at goal from outside the box which goes wide right of the goal.56:12
Kyle Walker has an effort at goal from just inside the box that misses to the right of the target.53:05
Didier Drogba takes a shot. Benoit Assou-Ekotto gets a block in.51:54
Jose Bosingwa delivers the ball, William Gallas makes a clearance.50:13
Daniel Sturridge has an effort at goal from just inside the box that misses to the right of the goal.49:27
Benoit Assou-Ekotto takes the direct free kick.49:27 Booking
Booking Michael Essien booked.49:22
Michael Essien gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Luka Modric.48:33
Unfair challenge on Brad Friedel by Daniel Sturridge results in a free kick. Brad Friedel takes the free kick.46:07
A cross is delivered by Kyle Walker, Ashley Cole gets a block in. Luka Modric takes the outswinging corner, clearance made by John Terry.45:01
The referee blows his whistle to start the second half.45:00 +2:03 Half time
Half Time The first half comes to an end.45:00 +1:39
Close range header by Emmanuel Adebayor goes over the bar.45:00 +1:25
Rafael Van der Vaart takes a shot. Ashley Cole gets a block in.45:00 +1:14
Rafael Van der Vaart takes a shot. Petr Cech makes a save.44:40
Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Juan Mata from the right by-line, Close range header by Didier Drogba goes over the bar.44:33
The ball is delivered by Ramires, Younes Kaboul gets a block in.44:00
The ball is swung over by Benoit Assou-Ekotto.42:19
Rafael Van der Vaart is penalised for handball and concedes a free kick. Indirect free kick taken by Ashley Cole.41:45
Shot from just outside the box by Gareth Bale goes over the target.39:54
Benoit Assou-Ekotto takes a shot. Ashley Cole gets a block in.39:14
Unfair challenge on Gareth Bale by Frank Lampard results in a free kick. Rafael Van der Vaart delivers the ball from the free kick left-footed from left wing, clearance made by Jose Bosingwa.37:03
Ashley Cole crosses the ball, save by Brad Friedel.35:55
Jose Bosingwa fouled by Gareth Bale, the ref awards a free kick. Michael Essien takes the free kick.31:36
The referee penalises Scott Parker for handball. Frank Lampard crosses the ball from the free kick right-footed from left wing, clearance by Kyle Walker.30:28
Effort from just outside the box by Gareth Bale goes over the bar.29:54
A cross is delivered by Daniel Sturridge, clearance made by Younes Kaboul.29:34
Corner taken by Juan Mata from the right by-line, Scott Parker manages to make a clearance.28:18
Inswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Frank Lampard, clearance made by William Gallas.27:17
Ramires gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Benoit Assou-Ekotto. Benoit Assou-Ekotto takes the direct free kick.26:25
A cross is delivered by Benoit Assou-Ekotto, Rafael Van der Vaart has a headed effort at goal from just inside the penalty area that misses to the left of the goal.26:17
Benoit Assou-Ekotto produces a cross, John Terry makes a clearance.24:02
John Terry fouled by Emmanuel Adebayor, the ref awards a free kick. Michael Essien takes the direct free kick.22:22
Younes Kaboul challenges Didier Drogba unfairly and gives away a free kick. Michael Essien takes the direct free kick.20:18
Michael Essien produces a drilled right-footed shot from 35 yards. Blocked by Scott Parker.20:02
Jose Bosingwa produces a cross, clearance made by William Gallas.19:41
Didier Drogba produces a cross, clearance by Younes Kaboul.16:25
Daniel Sturridge is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Brad Friedel restarts play with the free kick.15:37
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Michael Essien by Raniere Sandro. Frank Lampard restarts play with the free kick.13:24
Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Juan Mata from the right by-line, clearance by Younes Kaboul.12:40
Centre by Jose Bosingwa, blocked by Benoit Assou-Ekotto.9:47
Free kick awarded for a foul by Scott Parker on Daniel Sturridge. Direct free kick taken by Ashley Cole.7:36
Benoit Assou-Ekotto takes a shot. Blocked by John Terry.7:27
The ball is swung over by Kyle Walker, John Terry manages to make a clearance.7:05
Inswinging corner taken by Rafael Van der Vaart, clearance by John Terry.6:58
Kyle Walker crosses the ball, Ashley Cole gets a block in.0:00
The referee gets the game underway.
Live data and text provided by our data suppliers