Two goals from Ruud van Nistelrooij gave Manchester United FC a 2-0 win against RC Deportivo La Coruña at Old Trafford to continue their winning run in UEFA Champions League Group D.
Van Nistelrooij had already forced a fine save out of Juanmi in the Deportivo goal with a shot from the edge of the area when he gave United the lead after just seven minutes. With the home side attacking relentlessly, Paul Scholes drifted an excellent cross in from the right which the Dutchman rose to meet ahead of a pack of defenders before powering it past Juanmi from six metres.
At that point it appeared Deportivo were in for a painful evening, but due to a combination of disciplined play from the visitors and poor finishing from the hosts they managed to keep the deficit down. After 21 minutes, Scholes missed an easy chance as Giggs rounded Lionel Scaloni before crossing low from the left only for the English international to stab his shot wide from ten metres, and six minutes later it was Van Nistelrooij's turn to be wasteful.
Van Nistelrooij misfires
Ole Gunnar Solskjær, playing on the right flank, produced an excellent cross, but with the goal gaping, the Dutchman managed to glance his header wide of Juanmi's right-hand post. A minute later, Juan Sebastián Verón's cross found Van Nistelrooij's head again, and although the striker managed to force the ball into the net this time, the referee ruled the goal out for an unfair challenge on Juanmi.
Diego Tristán joined Makaay up front in the second half, but despite a fine run on goal within seconds of the restart, could do little to enliven a sluggish Deportivo performance. Van Nistelrooij was at the heart of the action after 51 minutes as he tested Juanmi from 20 metres, and was stifled again two minutes later.
Off the post
Giggs had cut in from the left and beaten Juanmi with a terrific shot which rattled agonisingly into the goalpost. The Dutch striker was on hand to launch the ball into the empty net but the referee's assistant had already flagged him for offside.
United were almost made to pay for their profligacy when Makaay finally found some space down the right only to power his angled shot straight at Fabien Barthez in the United goal. Within a minute, all that was forgotten as United doubled their advantage. Scholes's long-range effort was saved by Juanmi, but the loose ball was collected by Solskjær who wriggled through a challenge before laying the ball off for Van Nistelrooij to plant it into the empty net.
From that point on, Deportivo were beaten, and even introducing Alberto Luque as a third striker could not restore their ardour. The only frustration for United was that they did not score more and that an early yellow card for Verón means he will be suspended for Juventus FC's visit on Matchday Nine. However, the good news for United was that David Beckham returned from injury as a second-half substitute.