Robin van Persie scored his 100th Premier League goal as Manchester United FC came from behind to defeat Southampton FC 3-2, while Arsenal FC swept aside Liverpool FC 2-0 at Anfield to collect their first three points of the season.
The Saints had not scored a goal at home in the top flight since May 2005, but those demons were exorcised when Rickie Lambert found the net with a towering back-post header after 16 minutes. The joy inside St Mary's Stadium was tangible but it lasted just seven minutes, Van Persie controlling with his chest and sweeping the ball in with a trademark left-footed finish.
Southampton's approach play was undertaken at pace, the touch and interchange superb, and it duly brought them a second goal shortly after the break. Lambert was the creator, floating a cross to the back post, where Morgan Schneiderlin planted a firm header past Anders Lindegaard.
The home side began to feel the pressure 13 minutes later, however, Jos Hooiveld upending Van Persie in the penalty area. The Dutchman's chipped spot kick was palmed to safety by Kelvin Davis, but he made amends four minutes from time as he followed up Rio Ferdinand's header, which had bounced back off a post. And better was to come as the irrepressible Van Persie then headed in an added-time corner.
The Netherlands forward's old club also celebrated a victory as Santi Cazorla fed Lukas Podolski to open his Arsenal account 31 minutes into their meeting with Liverpool. The two newcomers then reversed roles with 22 minutes to go as Cazorla beat Pepe Reina at the goalkeeper's near post. In Sunday's other game, Newcastle United FC drew 1-1 with Aston Villa FC, who remain winless.
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|Last updated: 16/01/2013 14:40 CET|
Ben Arfa 59
Van Persie 23, 87, 90+2
S. Fletcher 40, 45+7
|Venue: West Bromwich|
|2||Swansea City AFC||3||7|
|3||West Bromwich Albion FC||3||7|
|4||Manchester City FC||3||7|
|5||Manchester United FC||3||6|
|7||West Ham United FC||3||6|
|9||Wigan Athletic FC||3||4|
|10||Newcastle United FC||3||4|
|12||Stoke City FC||3||3|
|14||Tottenham Hotspur FC||3||2|
|15||Norwich City FC||3||2|
|17||Aston Villa FC||3||1|
|19||Queens Park Rangers FC||3||1|