Monday, February 1, 2010

Terrific Manchester United at the Emirates Stadium

Arsenal 1
- Vermaelen 80

Manchester United 3
- Almunia (og) 33,
- Rooney 37,
- Park 52

United now stand only one point behind Chelsea having played a game more, but the manner of this victory will send out the message that no-one will find it easy to wrest the title away from Ferguson's side

Nani opened the scoring in the 33rd minute when his chip across goal was palmed in by Arsenal goalkeeper Manuel Almunia, before in-form England striker Wayne Rooney swept home a second following a quick counter attack.

Followed by yet another goal from Wayne Rooney - his 100th Premier League goal - saw United go in 2-0 at the break. Ji-Sung Park added a third early in the second half to complete United's dominance before and after halftime. Arsenal pulled a goal back late on a deflected volley from Thomas Vermaelen in the 80th minute, but could get no closer as they saw Theo Walcott and William Gallas miss headers in the last 10 minutes.

The Portuguese winger was instrumental in the second goal as well in the 37th minute. After clearing a corner, United countered through Rooney and Nani. The English striker found Nani on the right, who sped forward and squared back to Rooney in the area. Rooney finished brilliantly past Almunia, and United had done their damage. Nani nearly scored himself in the 41st, but side-footed his effort wide, missing the goal his first half deserved

Again Nani was the provider, dashing clear after picking the ball up from Rooney before squaring it for the England striker to sweep home his 22nd goal of the season, low into the corner.

Ji-Sung Park graphically illustrated the gulf between Arsenal and United just after half-time when he took advantage of a path lack of resistance to run unchallenged from inside his own.

This time is was Park who broke clear, The winger skipped easily in between two defenders then chipping the ball back across goal. Almunia pushed it inside his far post, with Park Ji-Sung ready to tap the ball into the net sprinting onto Fletcher's chip into the Arsenal half and then slotting past Almunia from just inside the box. Theo Walcott came on as substitute - and Arsenal pulled a goal back with 11 minutes to go when Vermaelen's volley took a deflection off Jonny Evans to wrong-foot van der Sar.

Teams :

Arsenal: Almunia, Sagna (Bendtner 72), Gallas, Vermaelen, Clichy, Fabregas, Song Billong, Denilson (Walcott 61), Nasri, Arshavin, Rosicky (Eboue 72).

Manchester United:
Van der Sar, Rafael Da Silva, Jonathan Evans, Brown, Evra, Scholes (Giggs 71), Carrick, Fletcher, Nani (Berbatov 89), Rooney, Park (Valencia 87).


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