England round-up: United back in contention

Manchester United FC beat leaders Arsenal FC 2-0 to go third, while Chelsea FC to move up to second.

Manchester United FC's title challenge is back on course after a 2-0 win against reigning champions Arsenal FC that takes Sir Alex Ferguson’s side to third in the Premership table.

Goals from midfield


Fine saves
Ruud van Nistelrooij had already tested Arsenal goalkeeper Rami Shabaan with a long-range effort, and Thierry Henry had brought a fine save out of United's Fabien Barthez before Verón gave the home side the lead after 22 minutes. Van Nistelrooij fed the ball to Scholes who dashed to the by-line before delivering a fine pass for on-rushing Verón to slam the ball past Shabaan from close range.

Goalkeeper injured
An injury to Shabaan led to his replacement by Stuart Taylor before half-time, but Arsenal's third-choice goalkeeper could do little to stop Scholes scoring United's second after 73 minutes, as the midfield player gathered a perceptive through-ball from Van Nistelrooij before driving the ball confidently past Taylor to crown a fine afternoon's work for United.

Away win
Chelsa FC moved into second place thanks to a 3-1 away win at Everton FC. Goals from Mario Stanic and Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink put Claudio Ranieri’s team in control, although Gary Naysmith pulled a goal back for the home side before half-time.

Under pressure
Despite pressing for much of the second half, Everton were unable to find a way back into the game, and the dismissal of David Unsworth in added time effectively ended their challenge, before Jesper Grønkjær made the game safe for Chelsea with a late goal.

Liverpool lose again
Liverpool FC, who were second before Saturday’s game, slipped to fourth following a fourth defeat in five league games at Charlton Athletic FC, who won 2-0 with goals from Jason Euell and Paul Konchesky.

Newcastle leave it late
UEFA Champions League contenders Newcastle United FC left it late before securing a 1-0 win at Aston Villa FC, Alan Shearer getting the winning goal eight minutes from time. James Beattie’s fine run of form continued as he scored both goals for Southampton FC as they defeated Birmingham City FC 2-0.

Strugglers frustrated
At the bottom of the table, West Ham United FC were denied an important away win at Middlesbrough FC, who equalised through Ugo Ehiogu five minutes from time to steal a 2-2 draw. Meanwhile, fellow strugglers Bolton Wanderers FC were also denied a win as Craig Short’s final-minute equaliser gave Blackburn Rovers FC a 1-1 draw.

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