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Page last updated at 17:44 GMT, Saturday, 16 January 2010

Man Utd   3 - 0   Burnley

Wayne Rooney scores
Rooney (left) kept his cool and picked his spot to score United's second

By Phil Dawkes

Three second-half goals secured a hard-fought win for Manchester United against a spirited Burnley.

The Clarets could have taken the lead early on but David Nugent fluffed a good chance when through on goal.

And Dimitar Berbatov made them pay on 64 minutes with a deflected effort before Wayne Rooney dispatched a low drive after Berbatov's shot was saved.

Substitute Mame Diouf headed Antonio Valencia's cross over the onrushing Brian Jensen to complete the scoring.

The win means United remain a point behind Premier League leaders Chelsea, who hammered Sunderland 7-2 at Stamford Bridge.

While the final 20 minutes of the game were comfortable for Sir Alex Ferguson's team, for the preceding 70 they were frustrated by a determined visiting side.

New Burnley boss Brian Laws would undoubtedly have preferred an easier first test of his reign.

The Clarets may have beaten United at Turf Moor earlier in the season but the man who masterminded that result, Owen Coyle, is now Bolton manager and this result means they have failed to improve upon a record of only one away point this season.

We took our chances - Phelan

Having only been in charge for three days, it is too soon to judge Laws but despite the final result he will be pleased with the application shown by his side.

They worked hard to stifle United's attack while also producing some incisive play of their own to fashion a number of openings on the counter-attack.

It was from one such break that the visitors should have taken the lead within the first 10 minutes.

Nugent broke free down the right and played it across to two Burnley players, one of which was Steven Fletcher, exploiting a lack of home defenders and bearing down on goal, but he flashed his shot across goal and wide.

The focus given this week to the crisis at Liverpool has somewhat taken the heat off United, who have courted criticism since their FA Cup third round defeat by Leeds, followed by a draw at Birmingham last time out.

Unsurprisingly, they dominated possession and posed the greater attacking threat but they looked a side short of confidence and too often players were indecisive when it came to providing a final ball.

When this was provided the shooter fluffed their effort, with Nani and Berbatov chief culprits with miscued attempts at goal.

606: DEBATE
Owen7Legend

Portuguese midfielder Nani drew a good save from Brian Jensen in the Burnley goal with a spectacular overhead kick effort late in the half, but this was as close as the home side came to scoring before the break.

The start of the second half picked up where the first had left off with United pressing but making little inroads.

Jensen was able to comfortably save a header from Paul Scholes - looking to score his 100th Premier League goal - and a Nani long-range shot.

Rooney's workrate alone made him the most likely to fashion something for the home side and just before the hour he almost did just that.

Laws praises Burnley performance despite loss

Patrice Evra cut into the box on the right and teed up the England striker but he snatched at the shot and hit it over.

Rooney's strike partner Berbatov had a wonderful chance to give United the lead minutes later when he skilfully pulled the ball down from an Valencia pass and turning on goal but his shot from 10 yards was less impressive, striking the post and going wide.

In response, Burnley gave further warning of their threat when Chris Eagles carried the ball into the United half and found Nugent, who held off the challenge of Jonny Evans but was unable to get his shot on target, instead poking it harmlessly wide.

Having survived that scare and with Burnley in the ascendancy, United took the lead.

Rooney picked up the ball on the edge of the box before finding Berbatov who held off Michael Duff and digging out a shot that found its way past Jensen via a deflection from the defender.

Their frustration lifted, United doubled their lead shortly after when Rooney collected following a Jensen save from Berbatov, delayed his shot before finding the bottom corner with a well-placed side-foot effort.

Despite this double blow Burnley continued to work hard and almost snatched a lifeline in the 83rd minute when Steven Thompson rose to head at goal but his effort struck the post and went wide.

Cruelly, the visitors conceded a third in injury time when Valencia's long ball forward found substitute Diouf whose cute header looped over Jensen and in.


Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson:

"We could have been embarrassed.

"We had a number of opportunities to punish them in the final third but there was a bit of nervousness and anxiety about our game.

"You need a goal to open teams up in matches like that, although while they will probably feel 3-0 was unfair, I didn't believe it was too unjust."

Burnley manager Brian Laws:

"If you look at key moments in games we should have taken the lead when Nugent went through.

"When you come to places like this you have got to take your chances.

"I don't there are many teams who come to Manchester United and have the chances we had."

Live text and stats

 

Saturday, 16 January 2010

Premier League

Home Team Score Away Team Time
Man Utd 3-0 Burnley FT
(HT 0-0)
  • Berbatov 64
  • Rooney 69
  • Diouf 90+1

    Man Utd

    Substitutes

    Burnley

    Substitutes

    Ref: ProbertAtt: 75,120
    MAN UTD
    BURNLEY

    Possession

    • Man Utd 61%
    • Burnley 39%

    Attempts on target

    • Man Utd 10
    • Burnley 4

    Attempts off target

    • Man Utd 12
    • Burnley 6

    Corners

    • Man Utd 7
    • Burnley 1

    Fouls

    • Man Utd 10
    • Burnley 6
    • 68:12 Dimitar Berbatov takes a shot. Save by Brian Jensen.
    • 67:14 Corner taken right-footed by Luis Nani from the left by-line, Stephen Jordan makes a clearance.
    • 66:14 Wade Elliott concedes a free kick for a foul on Oliveira Anderson. Free kick taken by Paul Scholes.
    • 65:49 Chris Eagles takes a shot. Save by Edwin Van der Sar.
    • 65:02 Substitution Oliveira Anderson comes on in place of Michael Carrick.
    • 63:16 Wayne Rooney provided the assist for the goal.
    • 63:16 GOAL - Dimitar BerbatovMan Utd 1 - 0 Burnley Dimitar Berbatov scores a goal from close in to the bottom right corner of the goal. Man Utd 1-0 Burnley.
    • 60:15 Effort from deep inside the area by Wayne Rooney misses to the left of the goal.
    • 59:15 David Nugent produces a right-footed shot from deep inside the six-yard box which goes wide of the right-hand upright.
    • 57:50 Outswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Antonio Valencia.
    • 55:47 Dimitar Berbatov takes a shot from inside the six-yard box that bounces off the post.
    • 54:49 Dimitar Berbatov is penalised for a handball. Michael Duff restarts play with the free kick.
    • 53:52 Luis Nani produces a right-footed shot from just outside the box that goes wide right of the target.
    • 53:28 The referee gives a free kick against Graham Alexander for handball. Direct free kick taken by Paul Scholes.
    • 52:13 David Nugent takes a shot. Save by Edwin Van der Sar.
    • 51:33 Effort on goal by Wayne Rooney from inside the penalty area goes harmlessly over the bar.
    • 48:26 Chris Eagles takes a shot. Save made by Edwin Van der Sar.
    • 46:50 Luis Nani takes a shot. Save by Brian Jensen.
    • 45:43 Paul Scholes takes a shot. Save by Brian Jensen.
    • 45:01 The referee blows his whistle to start the second half.
    • Half Time
    • 45:00+2:15 The referee blows for half time.
    • 45:00+1:56 Free kick awarded for a foul by Steven Thompson on Gary Neville. Direct free kick taken by Gary Neville.
    • 45:00+1:28 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Michael Duff by Wayne Rooney. Free kick taken by Brian Jensen.
    • 45:00+1:03 Foul by David Nugent on Jonathan Evans, free kick awarded. Jonathan Evans takes the free kick.
    • 44:59 Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Luis Nani, clearance by Kevin McDonald.
    • 44:45 Shot from 12 yards by Luis Nani. Save by Brian Jensen.
    • 43:47 Wes Brown gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Steven Thompson. The free kick is swung in right-footed by Chris Eagles, Luis Nani makes a clearance.
    • 43:11 Wayne Rooney has an effort at goal from just outside the penalty box which goes wide of the left-hand post.
    • 42:43 The ball is swung over by Steven Thompson, Edwin Van der Sar makes a save.
    • 40:22 Header from close in by Paul Scholes misses to the left of the goal.
    • 39:20 Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Luis Nani, Brian Jensen makes a save.
    • 39:09 Patrice Evra sends in a cross, clearance made by Michael Duff.
    • 37:16 Unfair challenge on David Nugent by Patrice Evra results in a free kick. Steven Thompson takes the free kick.
    • 35:29 Substitution Steven Fletcher leaves the field to be replaced by Steven Thompson.
    • 35:20 Gary Neville is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Brian Jensen restarts play with the free kick.
    • 34:17 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Patrice Evra by Wade Elliott. Jonathan Evans restarts play with the free kick.
    • 33:37 Dimitar Berbatov has a header from inside the six-yard box and clears the crossbar.
    • 32:06 Paul Scholes challenges Kevin McDonald unfairly and gives away a free kick. The free kick is delivered right-footed by Chris Eagles from left channel, clearance made by Michael Carrick.
    • 30:09 Antonio Valencia concedes a free kick for a foul on Steven Fletcher. Stephen Jordan takes the free kick.
    • 28:48 Corner from left by-line taken by Luis Nani.
    • 27:44 Wayne Rooney has a header from deep inside the six-yard box and clears the crossbar.
    • 26:12 The offside flag is raised against Antonio Valencia. Brian Jensen takes the free kick.
    • 23:33 Wayne Rooney takes a shot. Brian Jensen makes a save.
    • 23:12 Paul Scholes takes a shot. Blocked by Wade Elliott.
    • 20:10 Luis Nani takes a shot. Save by Brian Jensen.
    • 17:40 Foul by Luis Nani on Wade Elliott, free kick awarded. Michael Duff restarts play with the free kick.
    • 15:48 Kevin McDonald challenges Dimitar Berbatov unfairly and gives away a free kick. Paul Scholes takes the direct free kick.
    • 14:54 Foul by Wayne Rooney on David Edgar, free kick awarded. Free kick taken by David Edgar.
    • 14:07 Dimitar Berbatov produces a right-footed shot from just outside the area that goes harmlessly over the target.
    • 10:13 Antonio Valencia produces a cross, clearance made by Michael Duff.
    • 8:01 Luis Nani challenges Wade Elliott unfairly and gives away a free kick. Michael Duff takes the free kick.
    • 6:22 Effort from the edge of the penalty box by Steven Fletcher goes wide of the right-hand upright.
    • 6:04 Inswinging corner taken by Luis Nani from the left by-line played to the near post, clearance made by Michael Duff.
    • 5:06 Effort on goal by Wayne Rooney from just inside the penalty area goes over the target.
    • 3:37 Free kick awarded for a foul by Dimitar Berbatov on David Edgar. David Edgar takes the free kick.
    • 2:21 Foul by Tyrone Mears on Patrice Evra, free kick awarded. Free kick crossed right-footed by Luis Nani.
    • 1:45 The offside flag is raised against Steven Fletcher. Free kick taken by Edwin Van der Sar.
    • 0:00 The game begins.

    Live text and data provided by The Press Association.



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    Premier League table snapshot

    As it stood on 16 Jan 2010 23:59 UK

    Position Team P GD PTS
    1 Chelsea 21 34 48
    2 Man Utd 22 30 47
    3 Arsenal 20 30 42
    4 Tottenham 21 20 38
    5 Man City 21 12 38
    6 Aston Villa 20 11 35
    7 Liverpool 21 12 34
    8 Birmingham 21 2 33
    9 Fulham 20 4 27
    10 Everton 21 -4 26
    11 Stoke 21 -7 25
    12 Sunderland 21 -8 23
    13 Wigan 20 -21 22
    14 Blackburn 21 -18 21
    15 Burnley 21 -21 20
    16 Wolves 21 -21 19
    17 Hull 21 -22 19
    18 West Ham 20 -9 18
    19 Bolton 18 -10 18
    20 Portsmouth 20 -14 14

    see also
    Saturday football as it happened
    16 Jan 10 |  Football
    Saturday's football photos
    16 Jan 10 |  Football



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