Manchester United beat Everton 3-2

Updated: 25 February 2007 08:48 IST

Manchester United reclaimed top spot in the English Premier League on Saturday with a nerve-jangling 3-2 win over Everton.

Manchester United beat Everton 3-2

Manchester:

Manchester United were looking to regain the lead of the English Premier League against Everton after losing it to Arsenal who had beaten Wolverhampton Wanderers 3-0 earlier on Friday. Sir Alex Ferguson sent out a United side for the 951st time and a victory would mean their total of all-time Premier League points will have reached 951, in the week of the manager's birthday. Ferguson, who will be 62 on New Year's Eve (December 31), left Ruud van Nistelrooy, Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs on the bench, while captain Roy Keane was out injured. Everton struggled to cope against a virtual second-string United line-up. Ronaldo released Kleberson with a superb reverse pass. Alan Stubbs could only head his clearance straight into the path of the advancing Nicky Butt, who smashed it in to the net from the edge of the box. 1-0 to United after nine minutes. Excitement builds The United faithful were left stunned four minutes later when Everton equalised. Thomas Gravesen swung a free-kick deep into the United box which caused panic among the home defence and, under pressure from Kevin Campbell, stand-in skipper Gary Neville planted a header into his own net. The red shirts dominated after that. Diego Forlan forced Nigel Martyn to produce a flying one-handed stop after Quinton Fortune had delivered a hanging cross from deep. With the first half about to draw to a close, the home side re-took the lead. Neville atoned for his earlier blunder with a superb in swinging cross, which Brazilian international Kleberson met perfectly with a powerful header. Second half The second half failed to live up to the excitement of the first, but it provided David Bellion with the first Premiership goal of his United career. Ronaldo danced to the by-line and drilled a deflected low cross along the face of the Everton goal and the Frenchman was left with a tap in to put United 3-1 ahead on 68 minutes. United needed Tim Howard to be at his best when he turned round a James McFadden shot for a corner on 73 minutes. In the final minute, substitute Duncan Ferguson nodded Kevin Kilbane's deep cross into the net from close range to provide United with a few anxious moments before they could claim the points. The result allowed United to leapfrog Arsenal and return to the summit of the Premiership. (AP)

Topics : Football
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