Roberto Di Matteo saw his Chelsea side battle to a 1-0 win over Stoke courtesy of Didier Drogba's 100th Premier League goal and the Italian felt it was positive for his players to show their fighting skills in a physical affair.

35697 - Winning ugly is good for Di Matteo

Di Matteo said: "When you play against Stoke City you know it is going to be difficult to break them down because they defend well and they defend with a lot of players,' noted Di Matteo after the final whistle.

"The sending off really didn't change much because they still had two banks of four and defended very deep, so it was just a case of getting one goal, and if you get an early goal it obviously makes it easier.

"Sometimes you have to win like this, it is not always going to be pretty. Sometimes you have to win playing scrappy."

Owen Coyle saw his Bolton side claim a vital three points with a late win over QPR. He said "Today is a very valuable three points, we've managed to leapfrog them and it was important to win that game today. We've had to change shape but with 15 minutes to go we thought it was there to win.

"I think I said it would be two teams going out to win the game and so it proved. It was incident-packed from the early stages."

Bolton's win was overshadowed by a series of blunders from officials, the most serious of which was the failure to award QPR a goal despite Clint Hill's headed effort being at least two feet over the line. And R's boss Mark Hughes was far from happy with the outcome.

Hughesaid: "I gave myself a little bit of time to calm down before seeing the press, but I'm still desperately disappointed. The officials really let themselves down today.

"Martin Atkinson is a good referee, I acknowledge that, but he was hugely let down by his assistants today. How they missed the Hill header which crossed the line is beyond me. Everyone else in the ground knew it was a goal. That's why the assistant is in the position he is in from corner kicks, so how has he missed it?

"Someone has told me the FA have released a statement saying they're fully behind the bid for goal-line technology, which does nothing for our situation - that's laughable. The timing of that statement staggers me. They're just covering themselves because they know how much criticism they'll get for the displays of officials that they supply.

"All we want is a fair crack of the whip and we didn't get that again today. I feel we should have had two penalties, but the assistant on the near side had lost his nerve by then.

"We've benefitted from an equaliser that was slightly offside, but that doesn't matter. The key decision, at the key moment, went against us. All we're asking for is a fair wicket, which we're not getting at the moment."

Sunderland claimed a 1-0 win over Liverpool courtesy of a bizarre goal from Nicklas Bendtner. The ball struck the post twice, once via the back of Liverpool keeper Pepe Reina, before Bendtner stabbed home and lack Cats boss Martin O'Neill felt his side deserved the win.

O'Neill said: "I thought we played very strongly today - we had to. It was a game where there were very few chances, but it was very entertaining nonetheless.

"The crowd got behind us and stayed with us, which was great - very encouraging.

"Eventually, I thought we just about deserved to win the game. It was probably even but we had a chance and Bendtner took it and I'm delighted we got the win. With the goal we got that little bit of luck that we needed."

Liverpool boss Kenny Dalglish did not think it was the greatest game at the Stadium of Light. He said: "I don't think it was much of a game. It was always going to be a bit of good fortune, rather than a bit of brilliance, that won it.

"I think we matched all the attributes Sunderland have. They've been on a good run, but I don't think there was much in the game other than the bit of luck that decided it.

"It never happened for anyone. It wasn't much of a game. It was a bit of luck that decided the difference between a draw and a victory - and Sunderland got the good fortune."

"Although we lost today, I thought we matched them and then when we went behind I thought it was a good reaction from everyone to try and rescue something from the game."