Nistelrooy hits hat-trick for Man United

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src=' ' class='caption'> Ruud van Nistelrooy fired a hat-trick as Manchester United romped to a 4-1 victory at Leicester.

Updated: February 25, 2007 09:48 IST
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Ruud van Nistelrooy fired a hat-trick as Manchester United romped to a 4-1 victory at Leicester while Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink's lone strike earned Chelsea a 1-0 triumph over Aston Villa. The results meant both clubs stayed a point behind leader Arsenal with the Blues ahead of the Reds on goals scored. Arsenal had moved four clear yesterday by beating Newcastle 3-2 at Highbury in a game brought forward for the benefit of live TV. Van Nistelrooy, at the center of two incidents that led to a red card for Patrick Vieira and a near brawl in a 0-0 tie between United and Arsenal on Sunday, scored in the 16th, 45th and 52nd minute after Roy Keane had given the Reds the lead at the Walkers Stadium. Frank Sinclair replied for the Foxes to stop American 'keeper Tim Howard posting a fourth league and cup shutout in a row. At Stamford Bridge, Hasselbaink prodded the ball home two minutes before half time after Villa 'keeper Thomas Sorensen had failed to hold a shot from Frank Lampard. Although Claudio Ranieri had a full squad of 30 players to choose from his team didn't overwhelm Villa which had chances to capture a point. In today's other results, Birmingham stayed unbeaten in six games by beating promoted Portsmouth 2-0, Bolton was held 1-1 at home by last place Wolves and Southampton lost 1-0 at home to Middlesbrough. (AP)

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