Man Utd 12 points clear; Villa climb

  • Last Updated: February 10 2013, 18:21 GMT

A review of Sunday's action in the Barclays Premier League, with wins for Manchester United and Aston Villa.

Robin van Persie celebrates his goal at Old Trafford
Robin van Persie celebrates his goal at Old Trafford

Manchester United warmed up for their reunion with Cristiano Ronaldo by marching 12 points clear in the Premier League title race courtesy of a 2-0 home victory over Everton.

  • Premier League
Position Player Score
1 Man Utd 65
2 Man City 53
3 Chelsea 49
4 Tottenham 48

Even with Jose Mourinho watching on, Real Madrid seemed to be the last thing on United minds as Ryan Giggs and Robin van Persie scored the first-half goals that were enough to see off a dogged visiting side.

Giggs has now scored in a remarkable 23 successive league seasons, yet another milestone in an unparalleled career.

For Van Persie, it was the 23rd goal of a sensational debut campaign.

Yet both men were more focused on the fight to be champions for the 20th time, of which Giggs would be a factor in 13, and Van Persie, finally, one.

Earlier, Aston Villa moved out of the bottom three as second-half goals from Christian Benteke and Charles N'Zogbia earned them a 2-1 victory over West Ham at Villa Park.

  • Premier League
Position Player Score
17 A Villa 24
18 Reading 23
19 Wigan 21
20 QPR 17

Benteke broke the deadlock from the penalty spot with his 15th goal of the campaign and N'Zogbia made the points safe with a superb free-kick.

Ashley Westwood's late own-goal could not prevent Villa's first win in nine league games and ended a run of four successive home league defeats.

Paul Lambert's side also looked more secure in defending set-pieces than in recent games with Ciaran Clark impressive and this was a vital three points for the midland club ahead of successive matches away to Arsenal and at home to Manchester City.

But West Ham have now lost five successive away games and are in danger of being sucked towards the relegation zone.

  • Manchester United celebrate after Ryan Giggs scores the opening goal in their 2-0 win over Everton, which stretches their lead to 12 points.
  • Giggs puts United on the front foot with the opener after 14 minutes, applying the tidy finish in off the post.
  • Jose Mourinho looks on from the Old Trafford stands, eyeing up the competition ahead of Real Madrid's Champions League visit of United.
  • Phil Jones tries his luck with a shot for United in the first half at Old Trafford.
  • United youngster Jones is pitted in a battle against Everton danger-man Marouane Fellaini in midfield.
  • Everton left-back Leighton Baines battles for the ball with United winger Antonio Valencia.
  • Sir Alex Ferguson gets some attention from Manchester United mascot Fred the Red.
  • Robin van Persie atones for an earlier miss by tucking home his 23rd goal of the season to stretch United's lead to 2-0 going into half-time.
  • Toffees defender Johnny Heitinga is helpless to stop Van Persie slotting home after the striker rounds goalkeeper Tim Howard.
  • Christian Benteke celebrates netting the penalty that opens the scoring for Aston Villa in the much-needed 2-1 win over West Ham at Villa Park.
  • Hammers manager Sam Allardyce is welcomed to Villa Park by counterpart Paul Lambert as the two sides go head-to-head.
  • West Ham striker Andy Carroll vies for the ball with Villa's Dutch defender Ron Vlaar in a goalless opening half.
  • Andreas Weimann misses a gilt-edged chance to put Aston Villa ahead in the opening minutes.
  • A disbelieving Jordan Bowery and relieved Jussi Jaaskelainen look on following Weimann's glaring miss.
  • Matthew Lowton goes full-stretch to try and dispossess Hammers midfielder Matthew Taylor.
  • West Ham's Mark Noble tangles with Villa forward Charles N'Zogbia and concedes a second-half penalty.
  • Benteke slides home a 74th-minute spot-kick to make it 1-0 to Villa.
  • N'Zogbia celebrates after scoring Villa's second of the afternoon with a well-struck free-kick.
  • Joe Cole's curling cross set up Ashley Westwood's own-goal for Villa but it was too little too late to rescue West Ham from defeat.
All the best pictures from Sunday's action in the Premier League as Aston Villa host West Ham and Man Utd entertain Everton.

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