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Saturday, 6 April, 2002, 12:57 GMT 13:57 UK
Man Utd relegate Leicester
Diego Forlan skips past Leicester's Matt Elliott
Leicester City 0-1 Manchester United
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Manchester United kept their title hopes alive and pushed Leicester City through the Premiership trapdoor with a scrappy win at Filbert Street.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's second half goal kept Sir Alex Ferguson's champions in the hunt, despite a mediocre performance from his reshaped side.

It maintained United's dream of a fourth successive championship, but confirmed Leicester City's inevitable relegation to the First Division.

Solskjaer wrestles with Leicester's Rowett
Leicester boss Dave Bassett received a League Managers' Association award from Ferguson prior to kick-off after 1,000 matches in the hot-seat in a turbulent career.

And it was the high point of a bitterly disappointing day for Bassett as he handed over the reins to successor Micky Adams at the final whistle.

United still face a difficult run-in - and they will have to perform much better than this to overhaul Arsenal to claim the title.

United boss Ferguson shuffled his pack to keep key men fresh for the Champions League encounter with Deportivo La Coruna on Wednesday.


I hope Dave Bassett enjoys his new role at the club and I'm sorry it's ended this way for him
Manchester United Sir Alex Ferguson
Roy Keane and David Beckham were out injured, while Ryan Giggs and Ruud van Nistelrooy were restricted to the substitutes' bench.

And the makeshift nature of United's line-up was exposed in an opening 45 minutes that was almost totally dominated by doomed Leicester.

Brian Deane was in particularly wasteful mood, and he set the tone for his afternoon as he squandered a glorious chance from six yards inside two minutes.


I think this performance was the story of our season and we've not been good enough in both penalty areas - defending and attacking
Leicester's Dave Bassett
Roy Carroll was making a rare appearance in the United goal with Fabien Barthez rested, and he distinguished himself with a brilliant save from the lively Paul Dickov.

Dickov should have given Leicester the lead seven minutes before half-time when Gary Rowett headed on Stefan Oakes' free kick, but he blazed wildly over the top from close range.

United's response had been lightweight in the extreme, and Ferguson had clearly seen enough when he replaced Quinton Fortune with Van Nistelrooy five minutes after the interval.

Leicester manager-elect Adams looks on
Leicester were still making the running, and Deane was guilty of another glaring miss, heading wide from eight yards when unmarked.

It was almost inevitable that United would punish such generosity - and they broke the deadlock with a finish of the quality that was beyond Leicester's strike force.

Phil Neville's long throw created no more than a half chance for Solskjaer, but he turned and lashed a right foot finish past Ian Walker.

It was all United needed to claim victory - and for Leicester it was the despair of relegation.


Leicester: Walker, Rowett, Elliott, Sinclair, Davidson, Marshall, Savage, Oakes, Piper, Deane, Dickov. Subs: Flowers, Ashton, Reeves, Heath, Stevenson.

Man Utd: Carroll, Irwin, Gary Neville, Blanc, Silvestre, Phil Neville, Butt, Scholes, Fortune, Solskjaer, Forlan. Subs: Van Der Gouw, Giggs, Brown, O'Shea, van Nistelrooy.

Referee: A D'Urso (Billericay)

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 ON THIS STORY
BBC Sport's Ian Brown
"Man Utd scratched out a victory from a disjointed display"
Leicester boss Dave Bassettt
"Today sums up our season"
Man Utd boss Sir Alex Ferguson
"I don't think we deserved to win the game"
Links to more Eng Prem stories are at the foot of the page.

 

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