Chelsea aresix points clear at the summit of the Premier League, despite a 1-1 drawagainst top-four chasing Southampton at Stamford Bridge.

Diego Costascored for the Blues after just 11 minutes, as he placed a towering header froma pin-point Branislav Ivanovic cross from the right-flank. This was Costa’s 18thgoal of the season, which took him to the top of the Premier League goldenboot table.

The Saintsthen cancelled Chelsea’s lead only eight minutes later from the penalty spot,with Serbian Dusan Tadic scoring his fourth goal of the season.

Thecontroversial penalty was given after Saido Mane, who was a constant hassle behindthe Chelsea defence,  was fouled by Serbian midfielder Nemanja Matic.

JoseMourinho’s wise words at half-time looked to have worked, as he brought onRamires, which gave the Blues control; they were on the front foot for most ofthe second half, piling the pressure on Southampton.  The Brazilian gavethe injection of pace that their midfield needed, however they came up against inform Fraser Forster.  

TheSouthampton goalkeeper, who was the man of the match, made a catalogue of finesaves to preserve a point in a much better second-half performance from theBlues.  He made a vital point-blank save from Loic Remy at the death, andalso excellent saves from Oscar, Hazard and Cezar Azpilicueta.

Forster’sbrilliant form will be alerting Roy Hodgson.

The hosts alsohad grounds for a penalty appeal of their own, when Ivanovic appeared tobe tripped by Tadic, but the referee waved away appeals, as he lookedtheatrical going down.

With afirst title since 2010 in sight, Jose Mourinho will rue not grabbing the threepoints and putting eight points between Chelsea and Manchester City, going intotheir last ten games of the season, but on reflection, a draw was probably afair result, despite Chelsea’s spirited second-half performance.

Southampton leapfrogged Tottenham into sixth,after the result which they really were the better side in the openingperiod and should have gone in up for the break.