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banner Monday, 5 November, 2001, 07:36 GMT
Arsenal win battle of reserves
Arsenal's Sylvain Wiltord scores a hat-trick in the opening half against Manchester United in the Worthington Cup
Sylvain Wiltord completes his hat-trick
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Arsenal 4-0 Manchester United

Arsenal overpowered Manchester United as they effortlessly progressed into the fourth round of the Worthington Cup, where they will meet Grimsby.

The game was over as a contest by the end of the first half after Sylvain Wiltord had bagged a hat-trick, his second goal coming from the penalty-spot.

Just past the hour Kanu further emphasised Arsenal's superiority when he converted a second penalty.


We had a little bit more experience
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger

Wiltord won the penalty after he was fouled by Ronnie Wallwork.

Even when Arsenal defender John Halls was sent-off for two bookable offences with 18 minutes left, Arsene Wenger's side remained in control.

Just over 24 hours after both clubs suffered Premiership defeats, the two teams fielded unfamiliar sides.

But Arsenal with the likes of Wiltord, Giovanni van Bronckhorst, Ray Parlour and Kanu in their side had too much experience for United.

The United manager Sir Alex Ferguson had included only one player - Dwight Yorke - who had featured in Sunday's 3-1 defeat at Liverpool.

Yorke was deployed in an unfamiliar central midfield role.

  Key facts
15 mins: Wiltord puts Arsenal ahead
30 mins: Wiltord scores from the penalty-spot
45 mins: Wiltord completes his hat-trick
66 mins: Kanu scores a second Arsenal penalty
72 mins: Arsenal's John Halls is sent-off

Wiltord gave Arsenal the lead on 15 minutes as he intelligently held his run, before collecting Kanu's through pass and sliding the ball underneath Roy Carroll.

On the half-hour Carroll felled Kanu in the box after the Nigerian was released by a Wiltord pass.

The United goalkeeper guessed correctly as to where Wiltord would place his penalty-kick, but the French international striker's shot had too much power.

The pick of Wiltord's goals was his third in first-half stoppage time.

He controlled Parlour's chip with his head and before the ball had touched the ground, the Frenchman had flicked his shot past Carroll.

United had momentarilty rallied after Arsenal's opening goal.


Michael Stewart is going to be a top player
Man Utd boss Sir Alex Ferguson

Bojan Djordjic flashed a shot just the past and Richard Wright was out quickly to deny Danny Webber.

Just past the hour Djordjic also rattled the Arsenal bar from a free-kick.

Another plus for Ferguson was the performance of Michael Stewart in central midfield.


Arsenal: Wright, Grimandi, Stepanovs, Tavlaridis, Luzhny, Parlour, van Bronckhorst, Edu, Pennant, Wiltord, Kanu. Subs: Lauren, Taylor, Halls, Inamoto, Ricketts.

Man Utd: Carroll, Wallwork, Phil Neville, Roche, O'Shea, Stewart, Chadwick, Djordjic, Yorke, Davis, Webber. Subs: Van Der Gouw, Clegg, Tierney, Nardiello, Tate.

Referee: M Riley (Leeds).

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
BBC Sport's Simon Brotherton
"Ferguson and Wenger made 19 changes from Sunday's games"
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger
"We had more hunger and power"
Man Utd boss Sir Alex Ferguson
"It was a good test for my side tonight"
Links to more Worthington Cup stories are at the foot of the page.

 

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