Manchester United FC breezed to the top of the table as Dimitar Berbatov scored five in a 7-1 victory against Blackburn Rovers FC, but Arsenal FC are hot on their heels after winning 4-2 at Aston Villa FC on a day when the eight Premier League matches produced 36 goals.
With Chelsea FC not in action until their game at Newcastle United FC on Sunday, United had the chance to move three points clear of them. They wasted no time at Old Trafford, streaking three goals ahead inside 27 minutes with Berbatov grabbing a couple, either side of Park Ji-Sung's effort. The Bulgarian striker, who had not scored since 19 September, added three more after the break to take his tally to 11 for the season with Nani also registering.
Arsenal had moved a point ahead of Chelsea and Manchester United earlier in the day. Andrey Arshavin and Samir Nasri gave the visitors half-time supremacy at Villa Park with Marouane Chamakh and Jack Wilshere each restoring the Gunners' two-goal advantage after Ciaran Clark strikes in the second period.
The other chasers lost ground as fourth-placed Manchester City FC drew 1-1 at Stoke City FC and fifth-placed Bolton Wanderers FC were held 2-2 by Blackpool FC. Sunderland AFC, in seventh, lost 3-2 at Wolverhampton Wanderers FC, Everton FC succumbed 4-1 at home to West Bromwich Albion FC, bottom side West Ham United FC beat Wigan Athletic FC 3-1, and Fulham FC drew 1-1 with Birmingham City FC.
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|Last updated: 18/07/2011 11:10 CET|
|Venue: West Bromwich|