Football: Chelsea beat valiant Hull City to go six points clear

LONDON (REUTERS) - Chelsea regained their six-point lead over Manchester City at the top of the Premier League table and took a step closer to the title thanks to a hard-fought 3-2 victory at Hull City on Sunday.

Eden Hazard's thumping strike gave Chelsea the advantage inside the first two minutes and Diego Costa added a second before Hull responded in blistering fashion to score twice in 74 seconds through Ahmed Elmohamady and Abel Hernandez.

Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois made a fantastic treble-save to deny Hull in the second half and substitute Loic Remy restored the visitors' lead with a shot that squirmed under Hull stopper Allan McGregor.

Chelsea, who still boast a game in hand over Manchester City, have 67 points from 29 matches, while Hull are 15th with 28 points from 30 games.

Queens Park Rangers' hopes of Premier League survival were dealt a blow by 13th-placed Everton, who stole a 2-1 win at Loftus Road through on-loan Tottenham Hotspur winger Aaron Lennon. QPR remain 19th, four points adrift of fourth-bottom Sunderland.

Earlier, Juan Mata struck twice, including a sublime volley, for Manchester United in a 2-1 Premier League victory over Liverpool who had substitute Steven Gerrard sent off for a stamp 38 seconds after the break at Anfield.

Fourth-placed United have 59 points from 30 matches, five more than Liverpool in fifth.