Manchester United Thrash Birmingham 5-0 At Old Trafford

Manchester United thrashed Birminham 5-0 at Old Trafford to go two points ahead of Arsenal, who are in second place after beating Wigan 3-0 at the Emirates. Manchester City have the opportunity go level on points with United, if they beat Aston Villa in the evening kick off.

The team news was that Rio Ferdinand was missing with a groin injury, Chris Smalling started alongside Nemanja Vidic and John O'Shea came in for the suspended Rafael Da Silva.

Manchester United took the lead within 90 seconds from a Ryan Giggs corner, which was flicked on by John O'Shea and Dimitar Berbatov was there to head past Ben Foster from a yard out. That was immediately followed by strikes from Berbatov, which was saved by Foster and an effort from Michael Carrick but that fell wide of the post.

Michael Carrick picked up a knock after a challenge from Alexander Hleb, he played on for a bit but was unable to carry on so was replaced by Darron Gibson.

Man United had applied a lot of pressure on the Birmingham goal after Berbatov scored but as the half went on there was less pressure until Berbatov scored his second. On the half hour mark Anderson passed to Rooney, who found Berbatov and his close range strike went past Foster.

The third goal of the first half came in injury time. Rooney had another assist to his name after Giggs fired into the left corner of the goal.

Sir Alex Ferguson made an immediate substitution for the second half, bringing Fabio Da Silva on, he replaced Patrice Evra.

Only minutes into the second half, Rooney missed a sitter from two yards out, he should have put Man United 4-0 up. Luis Nani's cross into the area was headed wide of the post from Rooney.

United did take a 4-0 lead with Berbatov bagging himself a hat-trick. Giggs' low ball into the area was finished by Berbatov for his third hat-trick of the season. This season Berbatov has scored three against Liverpool, five against Blackburn and now three against Birmingham.

Birmingham should have pulled a goal back but Keith Fahey missed an open goal from a yard out.

Man United's fifth goal was a stunning one from Nani. The Portuguese had fired wide a few times in the second half but finally scored after smashing the ball into the bottom left-hand corner.

The scoreline finished 5-0 to Man United, who remain unbeaten in the league this season. A fantastic performance from Man United. Smalling and Vidic didn't have to do much but what they did do, they did well. Giggs, Anderson and Rooney all had brilliant games for United, Berbatov was very clinical with his finishing. United are top of the table, remain unbeaten in the league and have kept another clean sheet.

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