By Lee Savery.
Manchester United clinched their 20th league title with a comfortable win over struggling Aston Villa thanks to a Robin van Persie hat-trick.
All three goals came in the first half. The first came with just 1:23 on the clock. A terrific Wayne Rooney pass found Antonio Valencia on the right. He laid the ball off to Rafael whose deep cross found Ryan Giggs before his shot/cross found van Persie for a tap in.
The first was a wonderful move but the second was just even better. Rooney again was involved with his ball over the top of the Villa defence, from deep, found van Persie who smashed it with a left footed volley. An incredible strike that only so many words can describe. With 13 minutes gone, the title was all but assured already.
The away side began to get more of the ball but without really threatening. The inevitable hat trick for van Persie came on 33 minutes. Shinji Kagawa set Giggs away. The Welshman ran into the box before squaring the ball to van Persie who found the net with the help of the post.
With the game already won, the second half sauntered to a finish as the celebrations waited. Villa had a few opportunities. Andreas Weimann had a header cleared off the line by the hat trick hero while Christian Benteke and Karim El Ahmadi both forced smart saves from David de Gea. Kagawa had arguably United’s best chance of the second half but he blazed over from close range.
It was a comfortable victory for the now champions. Once 3-0 up the team strolled to a deserved victory and the deserved celebrations that followed. Van Persie’s three goals took his tally to 24 in the league and return to the being top scorer. He has 27 goals in all competitions.
United are champions and deservedly so. People can compare past teams but tonight they got the job done as part of an overall successful job in regaining the title. Congratulations to Sir Alex Ferguson and the players.
Man of the Match: Robin van Persie – Who else? A great hat-trick and an all round lively display. That second goal will rank as one of the best in his career.
United team and player ratings – De Gea 7 Rafael 8 Jones 8 Evans 8 Evra 6 Carrick 7 Giggs 8 Valencia 7 Rooney 7 (Welbeck ’72 – 6) Kagawa 6 van Persie 9 Unused substitutes: Lindegaard, Ferdinand, Hernandez, Nani, Cleverley, Buttner
SEA Forum’s Man of the Match Poll & Player Ratings: Manchester United vs. Aston Villa HERE.
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