David Silva cancelled out Loic Remy’s opener but Premier League leaders Chelsea held out for a 1-1 draw against Manchester City.
Champions Manchester City failed to make inroads into Chelsea’s five-point lead as the Premier League’s top two shared an absorbing 1-1 draw.
Jose Mourinho continued his tempestuous relationship with the media by shunning a pre-match interview with Sky Sports – apparently angered by both a £25,000 fine for comments about referees and Diego Costa’s retrospective ban for a stamp on Emre Can during the League Cup semi-final second leg this week.
That indiscretion earned the Spain striker a three-match suspension, but the man to benefit from Costa’s absence – recalled striker Loic Remy – took centre stage at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.
He gave the hosts a 41st-minute lead, before a rare mistake from Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois allowed David Silva to equalise in the final minute of the first half.
Although Manuel Pellegrini’s team controlled much of the second period, their winless league run extended to three matches.
City overhauled deficits in late runs to the Premier League crown in 2012 and 2014, and a similar effort may now be required, as Mourinho’s men remain in the driving seat with 15 games remaining.
Aside from Costa’s absence, Ramires came into the Chelsea midfield as Cesc Fabregas missed out with hamstring injury, while Bacary Sagna was a surprise inclusion at right-back