Manchester City survived the 10th-minute dismissal of captain Vincent Kompany to win 2-0 at Hull City on Saturday and reduce Chelsea's lead in the Premier League to six points.
Kompany saw red for a last-man foul on Nikica Jelavic, but David Silva put City ahead with a glorious curling effort just four minutes later and Edin Dzeko made sure of victory at the death.
It was City's first league match for three weeks and they still have two games in hand on Chelsea, although the leaders were poised to reassert their nine-point advantage at Aston Villa later.
City's success at the KC Stadium saw them climb to second place above Liverpool, who visit Manchester United on Sunday, and Arsenal, who travel to Tottenham Hotspur later on the same day.
"We needed to win today and playing with one player less for 80 minutes is very difficult, but I think we had a very good performance," said City manager Manuel Pellegrini, who saw his side eliminated from the FA Cup and the Champions League last week. "We defended well … but we also attacked a lot. It was a very professional response from the players."
Bottom club Fulham gave their chances of avoiding relegation a boost with a 1-0 win at home to Newcastle United that kept them four points from safety. Ashkan Dejagah's swerving 68th-minute shot crept beneath visiting goalkeeper Tim Krul to consign Newcastle to defeat on the day manager Alan Pardew began a seven-game ban for headbutting Hull midfielder David Meyler.
West Bromwich Albion manager Pepe Mel tasted victory for the first time as an 85th-minute Youssouf Mulumbu goal saw his side complete a 2-1 comeback win at Swansea City.
Sunderland remain in the bottom three after a 0-0 draw at home to Crystal Palace, but they moved above Cardiff City, who fell to an injury-time Seamus Coleman strike in a cruel 2-1 defeat at Everton.
Goals from Morgan Schneiderlin, Rickie Lambert, Jay Rodriguez and Sam Gallagher saw Southampton beat Norwich City 4-2, while Peter Odemwingie scored twice as Stoke City sank West Ham United 3-1 at the Britannia Stadium.