Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Manchester United 3-0 Wolverhampton Wanderers

Manchester United beat Wolverhampton Wanderers 3-0 thanks to goals from Wayne Rooney, Nemanja Vidic and Antonio Valencia.

Wolves manager Mick McCarthy made 10 changes from the side that defeated Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 last weekend and Wolves paid the price at Old Trafford.

For half an hour the hardy band of travelling fans had plenty to cheer as their representatives gave everything in the Wolverhampton cause.

If Rooney had taken the third-minute opening that presented itself when Darron Gibson's shot crashed into him, the defeat could have been far worse for Wolves.

low cross
Instead, Marcus Hahnemann, the one player to keep his place from White Hart Lane, made a close-range save, as he did to deny the England striker when he got on the end of Patrice Evra's low cross midway through the half.

United won a penalty when Ronald Zubar rose to head away Gibson's corner under minimal pressure and instead punched it out of the area.

Having been so lethargic before, Rooney upped the pace by drilling home his 13th goal of the season from the penalty spot.

Once in front, there was never any real suggestion United would not join Chelsea at the Barclays Premier League summit, having failed in that objective against Aston Villa at the weekend.

enough power
On his first league start, Gabriel Obertan was guilty of taking too much time to get his crosses in, a failing that Cristiano Ronaldo received a few admonishments for earlier in his career.

If the young French winger needed any proof the direct route was best, he got it when Vidic rose highest at a Gibson corner and got enough power into his header to carry it over the line, even though Hahnemann attempted a goal-line block.

The effort secured victory and the hosts knew it, which probably explained the sense of lethargy that gripped them at the start of the second period.

Vidic's departure was the most notable aspect of that period. The defender did raise his hands to say he was willing to continue after originally indicating a desire to come off and Sir Alex Ferguson will be hopeful of having him fit for Saturday's testing trip to Fulham.

It did not matter on this occasion, though, and the scene was set for a brilliant piece of skill from Dimitar Berbatov.

The Bulgarian first collected Paul Scholes' lofted pass before delivering a brilliant overhead kick into the path of Valencia, who drove a first-time shot into the roof of the net.

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