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Man Utd   3 - 0   Wolverhampton

Wayne Rooney scores his penalty against Wolves
England striker Rooney calmly tucks away from the spot to give United the lead

By Mark Ashenden

Mick McCarthy's vastly-changed Wolves survived for half an hour before losing out to a lacklustre Manchester United.

With 10 new faces from the team that beat Tottenham, Wolves fell behind to a Wayne Rooney penalty after Ronald Zubar handled Darron Gibson's corner.

Defender Nemanja Vidic soon made up for a wild volley by nodding in United's second from another Gibson corner.

An uninventive Wolves rarely threatened and Antonio Valencia fired in the third after clever work by Dimitar Berbatov.

After their shock defeat by Aston Villa, United boss Sir Alex Ferguson will be pleased with the three points which draw them level on points with leaders Chelsea, but the flat performance might give him a few concerns.

The talking point before kick-off could have been Ferguson's previous 899 league games in charge, but instead it was the visitors' surprising line-up that caught the attention.

606: DEBATE
Indo

After Saturday's 1-0 win at Tottenham, the Wolves team sheet revealed 10 changes by manager McCarthy with goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann the only survivor from their White Hart Lane heroics.

Premier League rules state that clubs should "field a full strength team", although the governing body told BBC Radio 5 live it was unlikely they would launch any investigation into the Old Trafford match.

These are worrying times for Wolves with this defeat pushing them back into the bottom three after Bolton saw off West Ham on Tuesday night.

Despite regulars Stephen Ward, Jody Craddock, Richard Stearman and Nenad Milijas all being absent from the squad, McCarthy's team of unfamiliar faces justified their selection at the start as they shut out United's strike partnership of Rooney and the recalled Berbatov.

McCarthy bullish over selection

After firing a one-on-one at Hahnemann's legs and then seeing a deflected shot dribble just wide of the post, Rooney finally got the all-important opener with a penalty on the half-hour to settle the early jitters.

Gibson's corner looped into the box and, as Zubar leaped with the towering Vidic, the Wolves defender flapped with his arm and referee Steve Bennett pointed to the spot.

The diving Hahnemann could do nothing to prevent the England striker hammering in his 12th league goal of the season and his 20th in the Premier League in 2009.

Just before the interval, the league champions doubled the lead after Vidic made up for an earlier high-and-wide volley that sailed over the bar.

It was another Gibson corner that created further havoc in the defence as the Serbian defender nodded the ball down and saw it squirm through the American keeper's hands.

The tepid exchanges continued in the second half and it was the visitors who almost pulled one back with a rare attack, but George Friend could only blaze over.

Phelan relieved United back on track

It was time for a change in personnel and McCarthy stoked up his attacking options by replacing the hard-working but largely ineffective Stefan Maierhofer with Chris Iwelumo.

Wolves soon conceded a third though, thanks to some trickery from Berbatov.

The Bulgarian picked up the ball on the right after a raking pass from Paul Scholes and hooked the ball over his head to Valencia, who hammered in a half-volley.

United's victory was a canter in the end, and after the Wolves fans chanted "we want our money back" it will be interesting to see which 11 they will be watching when they come up against fellow-strugglers Burnley at the weekend.

Live text and stats

 

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Premier League

Home Team Score Away Team Time
Man Utd 3-0 Wolves FT
(HT 2-0)
  • Rooney (pen) 30
  • Vidic 43
  • Valencia 66

    Man Utd

    Substitutes

    Wolverhampton

    Substitutes

    Ref: BennettAtt: 73,709
    MAN UTD
    WOLVES

    Possession

    • Man Utd 61%
    • Wolves 39%

    Attempts on target

    • Man Utd 10
    • Wolves 1

    Attempts off target

    • Man Utd 3
    • Wolves 3

    Corners

    • Man Utd 8
    • Wolves 3

    Fouls

    • Man Utd 11
    • Wolves 11
    • Final Result
    • Full Time
    • 90:00+3:04 The referee signals the end of the game.
    • 90:00+0:58 Unfair challenge on Dimitar Berbatov by David Jones results in a free kick. Michael Carrick takes the free kick.
    • 89:39 Unfair challenge on Andrew Surman by Patrice Evra results in a free kick. Free kick taken by Kevin Foley.
    • 88:55 The ball is crossed by Antonio Valencia.
    • 86:42 Antonio Valencia produces a cross.
    • 86:23 Darron Gibson takes a shot. Blocked by Michael Mancienne.
    • 85:36 Andrew Surman takes a shot. Blocked by Paul Scholes. Short corner worked by Matthew Jarvis.
    • 84:58 Danny Welbeck takes a shot. Save by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 83:59 Patrice Evra takes a shot. Save made by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 83:33 Foul by Matthew Hill on Dimitar Berbatov, free kick awarded. Direct free kick taken by Dimitar Berbatov.
    • 82:14 The official flags Chris Iwelumo offside. Indirect free kick taken by Tomasz Kuszczak.
    • 81:25 Patrice Evra crosses the ball.
    • 80:13 Darron Gibson delivers the ball, George Elokobi makes a clearance.
    • 78:47 Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Andrew Surman, save made by Tomasz Kuszczak.
    • 77:25 Corner taken by Matthew Jarvis, save made by Tomasz Kuszczak.
    • 77:19 Centre by David Jones, Ritchie De Laet makes a clearance.
    • 75:52 Unfair challenge on Dimitar Berbatov by George Elokobi results in a free kick. Darren Fletcher restarts play with the free kick.
    • 75:19 Substitution Greg Halford goes off and David Jones comes on.
    • 74:44 Substitution (Man Utd) makes a substitution, with Michael Owen coming on for Wayne Rooney.
    • 74:44 Shot by Darron Gibson from outside the box goes high over the crossbar.
    • 74:03 Danny Welbeck takes a shot. Save by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 71:48 Centre by Darren Fletcher, clearance made by Ronald Zubar.
    • 69:53 Substitution Danny Welbeck on for Gabriel Obertan.
    • 68:40 Shot comes in from Greg Halford from the free kick.
    • 68:40 Booking Darron Gibson receives a yellow card.
    • 68:23 Darron Gibson gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Segundo Castillo.
    • 68:01 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Matthew Jarvis by Antonio Valencia. Matthew Hill takes the free kick.
    • 65:26 Assist by Dimitar Berbatov.
    • 65:26 GOAL - Antonio ValenciaMan Utd 3 - 0 Wolverhampton A goal is scored by Antonio Valencia from deep inside the penalty area to the top right corner of the goal. Man Utd 3-0 Wolverhampton.
    • 64:00 The ball is sent over by Greg Halford, Darren Fletcher manages to make a clearance.
    • 63:14 Darron Gibson takes a shot. Save by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 61:57 Chris Iwelumo concedes a free kick for a foul on Michael Carrick. Tomasz Kuszczak takes the free kick.
    • 60:15 Substitution Matthew Jarvis comes on in place of George Friend.
    • 59:30 Substitution Darren Fletcher replaces Nemanja Vidic.
    • 58:37 Free kick awarded for a foul by Michael Mancienne on Patrice Evra. Patrice Evra takes the free kick.
    • 57:18 The ball is sent over by Gabriel Obertan, Segundo Castillo manages to make a clearance.
    • 57:03 Antonio Valencia crosses the ball, Segundo Castillo makes a clearance.
    • 56:42 The ball is crossed by Antonio Valencia, clearance made by Michael Mancienne.
    • 55:01 Ronald Zubar crosses the ball, Nemanja Vidic makes a clearance.
    • 53:42 Substitution Chris Iwelumo on for Stefan Maierhofer.
    • 52:54 Shot from deep inside the area by George Friend clears the bar.
    • 51:45 Effort on goal by Gabriel Obertan from just inside the penalty box goes harmlessly over the target.
    • 50:24 Stefan Maierhofer challenges Nemanja Vidic unfairly and gives away a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Nemanja Vidic.
    • 49:27 Gabriel Obertan challenges Ronald Zubar unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 45:52 Antonio Valencia concedes a free kick for a foul on Matthew Hill. Marcus Hahnemann takes the free kick.
    • 45:16 Centre by Antonio Valencia.
    • 45:01 The match restarts for the second half.
    • Half Time
    • 45:00+1:23 The referee blows for half time.
    • 45:00+0:54 Gabriel Obertan takes a shot. Save made by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 44:34 Centre by Wayne Rooney, save made by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 42:52 Assist by Darron Gibson.
    • 42:52 GOAL - Nemanja VidicMan Utd 2 - 0 Wolverhampton Nemanja Vidic finds the net with a headed goal from inside the six-yard box. Man Utd 2-0 Wolverhampton.
    • 42:35 Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Darron Gibson from the right by-line to the near post,
    • 42:29 The ball is crossed by Ritchie De Laet, clearance by George Elokobi.
    • 40:32 Direct free kick taken by Michael Carrick.
    • 40:32 Booking Segundo Castillo shown a yellow card.
    • 40:27 Kevin Foley concedes a free kick for a foul on Wayne Rooney.
    • 39:49 The ball is swung over by Ronald Zubar.
    • 34:40 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Matthew Hill by Antonio Valencia. Direct free kick taken by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 32:44 A cross is delivered by Ritchie De Laet, clearance by George Elokobi.
    • 30:47 Unfair challenge on Nemanja Vidic by Stefan Maierhofer results in a free kick. Nemanja Vidic restarts play with the free kick.
    • 29:44 Assist on the goal came from Darron Gibson.
    • 29:44 GOAL - Wayne RooneyMan Utd 1 - 0 Wolverhampton Power penalty scored by Wayne Rooney. Man Utd 1-0 Wolverhampton.
    • 28:47 Ronald Zubar is adjudged to have handled the ball.
    • 28:28 Corner taken by Darron Gibson from the right by-line.
    • 28:22 The ball is sent over by Dimitar Berbatov.
    • 27:44 The ball is delivered by Patrice Evra.
    • 25:36 Kevin Foley concedes a free kick for a foul on Patrice Evra. Direct free kick taken by Paul Scholes.
    • 24:44 Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Darron Gibson from the right by-line, Effort on goal by Nemanja Vidic from inside the area goes harmlessly over the bar.
    • Correction - 24:25 Wayne Rooney takes a shot. Blocked by Michael Mancienne.
    • 24:25 Wayne Rooney takes a shot. Michael Mancienne gets a block in.
    • 23:27 Matthew Hill crosses the ball.
    • 21:45 Stefan Maierhofer fouled by Nemanja Vidic, the ref awards a free kick. Andrew Surman delivers the ball from the free kick left-footed from right channel, save by Tomasz Kuszczak.
    • 20:51 Nemanja Vidic fouled by Andrew Surman, the ref awards a free kick. Nemanja Vidic takes the direct free kick.
    • 19:22 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Stefan Maierhofer by Paul Scholes. Free kick taken by Ronald Zubar.
    • 18:42 Shot from deep inside the area by George Friend clears the crossbar.
    • 17:38 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Kevin Foley by Darron Gibson. Direct free kick taken by Michael Mancienne.
    • 14:32 Gabriel Obertan fouled by Ronald Zubar, the ref awards a free kick. Patrice Evra restarts play with the free kick.
    • 10:38 Inswinging corner taken by Darron Gibson from the left by-line.
    • Correction - 9:58 Antonio Valencia delivers the ball, Kevin Foley gets a block in. Outswinging corner from right by-line crossed in by Darron Gibson.
    • 9:58 Antonio Valencia crosses the ball, Kevin Foley gets a block in. Darron Gibson delivers the ball in from the corner,
    • 9:37 Darron Gibson decides to take the corner short.
    • 9:06 Patrice Evra delivers the ball, blocked by Ronald Zubar. Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Darron Gibson played to the near post, clearance made by Greg Halford.
    • 6:27 Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Darron Gibson from the right by-line, George Elokobi fouled by Nemanja Vidic, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 6:04 The ball is sent over by Wayne Rooney, clearance made by Ronald Zubar.
    • 5:35 Centre by Patrice Evra, clearance by Michael Mancienne.
    • 4:46 The ball is delivered by Ronald Zubar.
    • 3:36 Ritchie De Laet produces a cross.
    • 2:59 Wayne Rooney takes a shot. Save by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 1:12 The ball is sent over by Greg Halford.
    • 0:46 Foul by Dimitar Berbatov on George Elokobi, free kick awarded. Direct free kick taken by George Elokobi.
    • 0:00 The match has kicked off.

    Live text and data provided by The Press Association.



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    Premier League results

    15 Dec 2009 23:59 UK


    Premier League table

    Tuesday, 15 December 2009 22:02 UK

    Position Team P GD PTS
    Full Premier League table
    1 Chelsea 16 27 37
    2 Man Utd 17 23 37
    3 Aston Villa 17 14 32
    4 Arsenal 15 21 31
    5 Tottenham 16 13 27
    6 Birmingham 17 1 27
    7 Man City 15 8 26
    8 Liverpool 16 10 24
    9 Fulham 16 3 23
    10 Sunderland 17 -2 21
    11 Stoke 16 -4 21
    12 Blackburn 17 -13 19
    13 Burnley 16 -14 18
    14 Wigan 16 -17 18
    15 Everton 16 -8 17
    16 Hull 17 -17 17
    17 Bolton 16 -10 16
    18 Wolves 17 -16 16
    19 West Ham 17 -9 14
    20 Portsmouth 16 -10 11

    see also
    McCarthy branded 'disrespectful'
    16 Dec 09 |  Wolves
    McCarthy defends Wolves selection
    16 Dec 09 |  Premier League
    Tuesday's football photos
    15 Dec 09 |  Football
    Tuesday football as it happened
    15 Dec 09 |  Football



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