Soccer-Arsenal and Chelsea grind out bleak 0-0 draw in the rain


By Martyn Herman

LONDON, Dec 23 (Reuters) - Arsenal's hopes of reclaiming top spot in the Premier League in time for Christmas fizzled out in a soggy 0-0 draw with Chelsea at a rain-lashed Emirates Stadium on Monday.

Festive cheer was in short supply during a turgid 90 minutes in which Chelsea came closest to victory when Frank Lampard's first-half volley cannoned off the underside of the crossbar.

Arsenal huffed and puffed to break down the rigid blue lines in front of them but never really looked like scoring as the game ended in stalemate to leave Liverpool top of the standings ahead of Arsene Wenger's London side on goal difference.

Chelsea moved back into fourth spot, above Everton on goal difference, two points behind the top two in the table. (Reporting by Martyn Herman; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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