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Everton 0 Manchester United 3: Rooney ends Goodison goal drought

Wayne Rooney scored his first goal at Goodison Park since 2007 as Manchester United recorded an impressive 3-0 win over Everton in the Premier League on Saturday.

Morgan Schneiderlin’s first competitive goal for United in the 18th minute gave them the lead before Ander Herrera headed in a second just four minutes later.

David de Gea continued his fine recent form with strong reaction saves to deny Romelu Lukaku and Ross Barkley as United weathered an early storm in the second half.

But Rooney, who had been urged before the game by manager Louis van Gaal to end his Everton hoodoo, finished a quick counter-attack on 62 minutes to move joint-second with Andy Cole on 187 goals on the all-time Premier League scoring charts.

Barkley did his best to inspire some hope for Everton in the closing stages but United saw out a victory which will restore confidence following their damaging 3-0 loss to Arsenal.

United started with far greater composure than they displayed in the opening stages of that defeat to the Gunners, with Rooney smashing a shot wide after good link-up play with Juan Mata in the 10th minute.

Herrera brought the first save out of Tim Howard with a fierce drive from 20 yards and United took the lead from the following corner. A combination of Marcos Rojo and Chris Smalling kept the ball alive after Mata’s delivery bounced awkwardly in the box and the ball broke to Schneiderlin, who finished low into the bottom far corner from 12 yards.

Rojo was the architect for United’s second on 22 minutes. The Argentina defender, playing at fullback, aimed a pin-point cross from the left to find Herrera’s run through the middle and the Spaniard headed down and past Howard.

Anthony Martial was denied a third goal by a combination of John Stones and Brendan Galloway after Rooney had sprung the offside trap and picked out the France forward, before De Gea parried Barkley’s effort from a tight angle in a rare first-half chance for Everton.

De Gea saved superbly from Lukaku’s stabbed finish on 54 minutes before reacting well to keep out a Barkley free-kick, as Everton started the second half firmly on the front foot.

But a devastating counter-attack from United crushed the Goodison faithful’s hopes of a comeback. Phil Jagielka’s loose pass was pounced on by Schneiderlin, allowing Herrera to find Rooney behind the defence, and the England captain finished right-footed with aplomb past Howard.

Rooney almost added a fourth after Martial sent him clean through on goal but Jagielka and Howard did enough to thwart his run inside the area, and Martial himself was then denied at the near post after a brilliant piece of close control inside the area.

Barkley fizzed a late free-kick over the bar but United eased through the final 10 minutes to inflict upon Everton only a second league defeat of the season.

Sat 17 Oct, 2015
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