MANCHESTER — Sergio Aguero rescued Manchester City with a late goal in a 2-2 draw with Liverpool on Sunday, but two more dropped points further dented the champions' hopes of reeling in Manchester United in the Premier League title race.
Steven Gerrard's dipping volley in the 73rd minute looked like earning Liverpool all three points at the Etihad Stadium, only for Aguero to conjure up a stunning goal of his own from an acute angle six minutes later.
City had earlier seen Edin Dzeko's opening goal canceled out by a long-range strike by its former striker Daniel Sturridge.
United now holds a nine-point advantage over second-place City with 13 matches remaining, with the champions having dropped four points this week after a 0-0 draw at Queens Park Rangers on Tuesday.
Chelsea's week went from bad to worse on Saturday as Newcastle's French legion of new players inspired a second successive Premier League victory.
Moussa Sissoko, one of four signings from across the English Channel in the January transfer window, scored twice on his St. James' Park debut to claim a 3-2 victory.
As Newcastle moved further clear of the relegation zone, Chelsea missed a chance to close the gap on second-placed Manchester City, which retains a six-point cushion going into Sunday's match against Liverpool.
And the pressure is being cranked up on Rafa Benitez, whose Chelsea side also drew against relegation-threatened Reading on Wednesday after being held by third-tier club Brentford in the FA Cup on Sunday.
But Arsenal responded to its midweek draw against Liverpool by beating Stoke 1-0 to go a point behind Tottenham and Everton, who are fourth and fifth respectively.
Everton's pursuit of the fourth Champions League spot was held up by a 3-3 draw against Aston Villa, which missed a chance to climb out of the relegation zone.
Wigan also remains in the danger spots with Villa, although ahead of goal difference, after being held to a 2-2 draw by Southampton.
It was also a frustrating day for bottom-place Queens Park Rangers, which was held to a 0-0 draw.
Reading, however, moved two points clear of the bottom three by beating Sunderland 2-1, while West Ham climbed to 10th with a 1-0 victory over Swansea.
In the late game Manchester United increased their lead at the top over Manchester City to 10 points with a 1-0 win over Fulham thanks to Wayne Rooney 79th minute strike. Manchester City play Liverpool on Sunday.