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Page last updated at 13:39 GMT, Saturday, 2 April 2011 14:39 UK

West Ham   2 - 4   Man Utd

Man Utd striker Wayne Rooney grabbed a hat-trick against West Ham and gives the ball a kiss
Rooney showed his finishing prowess for Man Utd at West Ham

By Mandeep Sanghera

Wayne Rooney's hat-trick inspired Premier League leaders Manchester United to fight back from two goals down to beat West Ham.

A Patrice Evra handball and Nemanja Vidic foul on Carlton Cole allowed Mark Noble to twice score from the spot for the relegation-battling Hammers.

Vidic escaped a red card for a foul on Demba Ba before Rooney curled in a free-kick and powered in a shot.

A Rooney penalty put the visitors ahead and Javier Hernandez poked in a fourth.

The importance of the win was signified as United increased their lead over Arsenal, who were held by Blackburn, to seven points and moved 11 points in front of a Chelsea side held 1-1 at Stoke as their rivals slipped up in the later games.

West Ham will point to the decision not to send off Vidic and Rooney's penalty being awarded courtesy of a harsh handball against Matthew Upson as key decisions against them.

The visitors, on the other hand, again showed the resilience and resolve that will let their title rivals know they will not be knocked off the top of the league without a battle.

Vidic could have been sent off - Grant

With depleted resources and under challenging circumstances, Sir Alex Ferguson's side proved that although they might not have the flamboyance of United sides of the past they make up for it with their fighting qualities.

Upton Park has proved the scene of some difficult memories for the Red Devils, who had been limited to six wins at the east London ground in their last 17 visits before the game.

Most recently, United had their unbeaten start to the season ended by an emphatic 4-0 loss in the Carling Cup at West Ham in November and, along with a revitalised home side breathing new life into their attempts to beat the drop, the visitors had cause to be wary.

Injuries, suspensions and with half an eye on their Champions League last-eight tie at Chelsea on Wednesday only increased the size of a task United ultimately passed, despite the scare provided by the Hammers.

Ferguson, watching from the stands as he served the second of a five-match touchline ban, had opted to start with a 4-5-1 formation.

Giggs 'really pleased' with Man Utd comeback

The attacking threat of Nani, Dimitar Berbatov and Hernandez had been left on the bench and, despite a promising opening, United's afternoon quickly began to disintegrate.

West Ham launched a counter-attack with Thomas Hitzlsperger's long ball out of defence releasing striker Cole and he earned a penalty when an attempted chip over left-back Evra was handled by the defender.

Noble stepped up to confidently send keeper Tomasz Kusczsak the wrong way with the resultant penalty before another Hammers break gave him another chance to score from the spot.

This time Cole's nifty footwork deceived Vidic, who tripped the striker before suggesting that the offence took place marginally outside of the area.

Referee Lee Mason disagreed as he awarded another penalty for the home side which Noble again unerringly sent in as he went for power rather than placement.

The visitors had seen plenty of the ball as they were caught out by two counter-attacks but found their probing nullified by a determined West Ham defence.

Ferdinand is back in training - Phelan

When the Red Devils did get a sight of goal keeper Robert Green responded by palming a ferocious Park Ji-Sung shot over his goal.

Manchester United's defence was looking shaky and, when Vidic hauled down Ba to deny the Hammers forward what might have been a clear goalscoring opportunity, the Red Devils centre-back escaped with a yellow card just before half-time.

The Premier League leaders were stumbling but, having salvaged a draw at Aston Villa and win at Blackpool from similar positions, they are a side you cannot write off and so it proved.

Ferguson brought Hernandez on at the break before Berbatov also came off the bench as his side manufactured another comeback as they dominated the second half and were rewarded through the finishing prowess of Rooney.

The England striker brilliantly curled in a 25-yard free-kick before he controlled a pass, which took two defenders out of the game, and powered a drive past the despairing dive of Green.

Upson's handball from a Fabio Da Silva cross gave Rooney the opportunity to slot in a penalty for a 14-minute hat-trick as the Hammers, who would have at-least temporarily moved 13th with victory, capitulated to ensure they would close the day in the bottom three.

Hernandez also got in on the scoring for Ferguson's side as they completed only a fifth away win in 16 league games this season.

Live text and stats

 

Saturday, 2 April 2011

Barclays Premier League

Home Team Score Away Team Time
West Ham 2-4 Man Utd FT
(HT 2-0)
  • Noble (pen) 11
  • Noble (pen) 25
  • Rooney 65
  • Rooney 73
  • Rooney (pen) 79
  • Hernandez 84

West Ham

Substitutes

Man Utd

Substitutes

Ref: MasonAtt: 34,546
WEST HAM
MAN UTD

Possession

  • West Ham 37%
  • Man Utd 63%

Attempts on target

  • West Ham 2
  • Man Utd 9

Attempts off target

  • West Ham 4
  • Man Utd 9

Corners

  • West Ham 0
  • Man Utd 16

Fouls

  • West Ham 10
  • Man Utd 9
  • Final Result
  • Full Time
  • 90:00+4:00 The referee signals the end of the game.
  • 90:00+2:19 Dimitar Berbatov is ruled offside. Robert Green takes the indirect free kick.
  • 90:00+1:34 Short corner taken by Antonio Valencia.
  • 87:52 Frederic Piquionne has an effort at goal from close in which goes wide right of the target.
  • 86:57 Substitution Luis Nani joins the action as a substitute, replacing Wayne Rooney.
  • 85:50 Manuel da Costa takes a shot. Chris Smalling gets a block in.
  • 83:35 The assist for the goal came from Ryan Giggs.
  • 83:35 GOAL - Javier HernandezWest Ham 2 - 4 Man Utd Javier Hernandez fires in a goal from close in to the bottom left corner of the goal. West Ham 2-4 Man Utd.
  • 82:04 Substitution Robbie Keane comes on in place of Mark Noble.
  • 82:04 Substitution Victor Obinna on for Gary O'Neil.
  • 80:08 Effort on goal by Darron Gibson from just inside the penalty area goes over the target.
  • Correction - 78:46 The referee gives a against Matthew Upson for handball. The assist for the goal came from Fabio Da Silva.
  • 78:46 Matthew Upson is penalised for handball and concedes a .
  • 78:46 GOAL - Wayne RooneyWest Ham 2 - 3 Man Utd Wayne Rooney scores a penalty. West Ham 2-3 Man Utd.
  • 75:24 Outswinging corner taken left-footed by Ryan Giggs, Manuel da Costa makes a clearance.
  • 75:01 Dimitar Berbatov takes a shot. Save made by Robert Green.
  • 74:25 Demba Ba is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Indirect free kick taken by Ryan Giggs.
  • 72:32 Assist by Antonio Valencia.
  • 72:32 GOAL - Wayne RooneyWest Ham 2 - 2 Man Utd Wayne Rooney grabs a goal from the edge of the area to the bottom left corner of the goal. West Ham 2-2 Man Utd.
  • 71:19 Frederic Piquionne concedes a free kick for a foul on Nemanja Vidic. Nemanja Vidic takes the direct free kick.
  • 70:12 Effort on goal by Wayne Rooney from long range goes over the bar.
  • 69:44 Corner taken short by Antonio Valencia.
  • 67:43 Substitution Frederic Piquionne replaces Carlton Cole.
  • 65:32 Corner taken right-footed by Antonio Valencia to the near post, Michael Carrick produces a right-footed shot from deep inside the six-yard box which goes wide of the right-hand post.
  • 65:23 Darron Gibson takes a shot. Scott Parker gets a block in.
  • 64:18 Mark Noble challenges Michael Carrick unfairly and gives away a free kick.
  • 64:18 GOAL - Wayne RooneyWest Ham 2 - 1 Man Utd Wayne Rooney gets on the score sheet with a goal from outside the area to the bottom right corner of the goal. West Ham 2-1 Man Utd.
  • 63:26 Substitution (Man Utd) makes a substitution, with Dimitar Berbatov coming on for Ji-Sung Park.
  • 60:47 Ji-Sung Park fouled by Gary O'Neil, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Ryan Giggs.
  • 59:47 Antonio Valencia concedes a free kick for a foul on Wayne Bridge. Robert Green takes the free kick.
  • 58:17 Manuel da Costa challenges Wayne Rooney unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Ryan Giggs.
  • 58:17 Booking Manuel da Costa is cautioned.
  • 56:12 Free kick awarded for a foul by Javier Hernandez on Manuel da Costa. Direct free kick taken by Robert Green.
  • 55:18 Inswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Antonio Valencia, clearance made by Matthew Upson.
  • 53:20 Wayne Rooney takes a shot. Blocked by Scott Parker.
  • 49:31 Right-footed shot by Scott Parker went harmlessly over the bar.
  • 48:52 Nemanja Vidic concedes a free kick for a foul on Demba Ba. Direct free kick taken by Manuel da Costa.
  • 45:35 Javier Hernandez produces a right-footed shot from close range that goes over the bar.
  • 45:01 The second half has started.
  • 45:01 Substitution Javier Hernandez joins the action as a substitute, replacing Patrice Evra.
  • Half Time
  • 45:00+2:03 The half-time whistle blows.
  • 45:00+0:55 Darron Gibson takes a shot. Thomas Hitzlsperger gets a block in.
  • 45:00+0:07 Wayne Rooney fouled by Manuel da Costa, the ref awards a free kick. Wayne Rooney takes the direct free kick.
  • 42:51 Chris Smalling fouled by Carlton Cole, the ref awards a free kick. Nemanja Vidic takes the direct free kick.
  • 40:49 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Demba Ba by Nemanja Vidic. Strike comes in from Thomas Hitzlsperger from the free kick.
  • 40:49 Booking The referee shows Nemanja Vidic a yellow card for unsporting behaviour.
  • 38:16 Matthew Upson gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Ji-Sung Park. Darron Gibson takes the free kick.
  • 36:50 Effort from just outside the box by Antonio Valencia goes over the bar.
  • 36:27 Ryan Giggs takes a short corner.
  • 35:44 Antonio Valencia gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Wayne Bridge. Wayne Bridge takes the direct free kick.
  • 34:57 Thomas Hitzlsperger has an effort at goal from deep inside the area missing to the left of the goal.
  • 33:20 Scott Parker concedes a free kick for a foul on Ji-Sung Park. Darron Gibson takes the direct free kick.
  • 32:55 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Mark Noble by Darron Gibson. Free kick taken by Robert Green.
  • 32:55 Booking Darron Gibson booked.
  • 30:59 Inswinging corner taken by Ryan Giggs, Chris Smalling produces a header from close range which goes wide of the left-hand upright.
  • 30:39 Ji-Sung Park takes a shot. Robert Green makes a save.
  • 27:34 Corner taken left-footed by Ryan Giggs, Wayne Rooney gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Robert Green. Robert Green restarts play with the free kick.
  • 27:05 Ryan Giggs decides to take a short corner.
  • 24:15 Penalty awarded for an unfair challenge on Carlton Cole by Nemanja Vidic. Assist by Carlton Cole.
  • 24:15 GOAL - Mark NobleWest Ham 2 - 0 Man Utd Mark Noble scores a penalty. West Ham 2-0 Man Utd.
  • 22:40 Unfair challenge on Ji-Sung Park by Thomas Hitzlsperger results in a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Darron Gibson.
  • 21:02 Handball by Demba Ba. Tomasz Kuszczak restarts play with the free kick.
  • 20:25 The assistant referee flags for offside against Carlton Cole. Chris Smalling takes the indirect free kick.
  • 19:13 Demba Ba takes a shot. Comfortable save by Tomasz Kuszczak.
  • 18:31 Darron Gibson takes a shot.
  • 18:09 Ryan Giggs takes a short corner.
  • 17:16 Outswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Ryan Giggs, Manuel da Costa manages to make a clearance.
  • 15:47 Short corner taken by Ryan Giggs.
  • 13:24 Inswinging corner taken by Ryan Giggs from the right by-line.
  • 10:50 Handball by Patrice Evra. The assist for the goal came from Carlton Cole.
  • 10:50 GOAL - Mark NobleWest Ham 1 - 0 Man Utd Penalty scored by Mark Noble. West Ham 1-0 Man Utd.
  • 8:47 Outswinging corner taken by Ryan Giggs from the left by-line, Manuel da Costa makes a clearance.
  • 8:12 Chris Smalling fouled by Mark Noble, the ref awards a free kick. Darron Gibson restarts play with the free kick.
  • 7:25 Shot by Michael Carrick from a long way out goes over the crossbar.
  • 5:20 Wayne Bridge fouled by Fabio Da Silva, the ref awards a free kick. Thomas Hitzlsperger delivers the ball from the free kick left-footed from left wing, Tomasz Kuszczak makes a save.
  • 3:22 Corner taken left-footed by Ryan Giggs, Chris Smalling has a headed effort at goal from deep inside the area missing to the left of the target.
  • 2:11 Inswinging corner taken by Ryan Giggs, Chris Smalling takes a shot. Robert Green makes a save.
  • 0:00 The match begins.

Live text and data provided by The Press Association.



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Barclays Premier League table snapshot

As it stood on 2 Apr 2011 23:59 UK

Position Team P GD PTS
1 Man Utd 31 36 66
2 Arsenal 30 30 59
3 Chelsea 30 29 55
4 Man City 30 18 53
5 Tottenham 30 7 50
6 Liverpool 31 4 45
7 Everton 31 1 41
8 Bolton 31 0 40
9 Newcastle 31 2 39
10 Stoke 31 -2 38
11 Sunderland 30 -4 38
12 West Brom 31 -14 36
13 Fulham 30 0 35
14 Blackburn 31 -12 34
15 Birmingham 30 -12 34
16 Aston Villa 31 -14 34
17 Blackpool 30 -15 33
18 West Ham 31 -15 32
19 Wolves 31 -17 32
20 Wigan 31 -22 31

see also
Vidic could have been sent off - Grant
02 Apr 11 |  West Ham
Saturday football as it happened
02 Apr 11 |  Football
Saturday's football photos
02 Apr 11 |  Football


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