Man United 2 Sunderland 0

Wayne Rooney

Man­chester Uni­ted 2 Sun­der­land 0, Old Traf­ford, Eng­lish Pre­mier Lea­gue, Feb­ruary 28, 2015. Man­chester Uni­ted over­came Sun­der­land by 2-0 at thanks to a sec­ond ha­lf brace from Way­ne Roo­ney who fou­nd the net in the 66th and 84th min­utes re­spect­ively to be­come the fir­st play­er to score ten or more goals in el­ev­en con­sec­ut­ive sea­sons in the Pre­mier League.

In the re­verse Bar­clays Pre­mier Lea­gue en­counter on the sec­ond week­end of the 2014-15 sea­son, Man­chester Uni­ted had be­en held to a one-all draw by Sun­der­land at the Sta­dium of Light, wi­th Span­ish in­ter­na­tion­al Ju­an Ma­ta hand­ing the vis­it­ors the lead af­ter sev­en­teen min­utes and for­mer Man­chester City mid­field play­er Jack Rod­well lev­el­ling the score for the Tyne and Wear te­am on the ha­lf-hour ma­rk. At Old Traf­ford, how­ever, Uni­ted had won ten, and lost on­ly one, of their thir­teen Pre­mier Lea­gue mat­ches ag­ainst Sun­der­land, and they were strong fa­vour­ites to over­come The Sta­dium of Light out­fit at The Theatre of Dreams. Man­chester Uni­ted came in­to the ho­me clash ag­ainst Sun­der­land on the back of a dis­ap­point­ing and nar­row 2-1 Pre­miership de­feat ag­ainst Garry Monk´s Swansea City si­de at Liberty Sta­dium, tho­ugh, and they need­ed three points ag­ainst The Black Cats to har­bour any real­ist­ic hopes of land­ing the title for a re­cord 21st time. The Wearsiders, mean­while, had be­en held to a goal­less by West Brom­wich Al­bion at The Sta­dium of Light in their pre­vi­ous Pre­mier Lea­gue out­ing and were strug­gling to avoid re­leg­a­tion to the Foot­ball Lea­gue Cham­pi­on­ship. As for in­jured play­ers, Man­chester Uni­ted were mis­sing Dutch in­ter­na­tion­al Robin van Per­sie who had suf­fered an in­jury to his ankle in the 1–0 Pre­miership de­feat to South­ampton at Old Traf­ford sev­en weeks earli­er, whi­le Sun­der­land had to make do with­out the phys­ic­al pres­ence of Itali­an mid­field play­maker Emanuele Gi­ac­cher­ini who was out for vir­tu­ally the re­mainder of the 2014-15 cam­paign af­ter hav­ing un­der­gone ankle surgery.

Fol­low­ing an ac­tion packed, but nev­er­the­less goal­less fir­st ha­lf, the in­form Way­ne Roo­ney opened the scor­ing ac­count for Man­chester Uni­ted wi­th a su­perbly ex­ecuted pen­alty-kick six min­utes pa­st the hour ma­rk be­fore the twenty-nine-year-old stri­ker head­ed in a sec­ond goal eight­een min­utes la­ter to hand the hosts a de­served 2-0 vic­tory dur­ing a mat­ch where they more or less dom­in­ated pro­ceed­ings through­out. Louis van Gaal´s troops push­ed hard for open­ing goal from the very be­gin­ning and Roo­ney al­most sco­red wi­th a head­er from an An­gel Di Mar­ia cor­ner af­ter just five min­utes of ac­tion. Sun­der­land came clo­se to net­ting ag­ainst the flow of play in the sev­enth min­ute of the tussle, tho­ugh, as ac­ro­bat­ic Man­chester Uni­ted cus­todi­an Da­vid de Gea bril­liantly saved an ef­fort from Con­nor Wick­ham. The Old Traf­ford club con­tin­ued to press for a goal, but the ho­me si­de failed to find the net be­fore the fir­st ha­lf ended. Fol­low­ing the in­ter­val, Man­chester Uni­ted fi­nally ma­naged to break the de­fens­ive dead­lock on 66 min­utes when Roo­ney con­ver­ted from the spot af­ter a pen­alty box foul on Monaco loanee Ra­damel Fal­cao, for which un­lucky Sun­der­land de­fender Wes Bro­wn was wrong­fully dis­missed in­stead of de­fens­ive part­ner John O’Shea who was the re­al cul­prit. Uni­ted then doubled their lead as Roo­ney head­ed ho­me af­ter Ro­mani­an goal­keeper Costel Pantili­mon had failed to hold a dan­ger­ous ef­fort from Di Mar­ia re­place­ment Ad­nan Janu­zaj wi­th as little as six min­utes left on the referee´s clock.

Wi­th the work­man­like 2-0 tri­umph ag­ainst Sun­der­land at Old Traf­ford, Man­chester Uni­ted mo­ved up to third po­s­i­tion in the Pre­mier Lea­gue ta­ble wi­th fifty points col­lec­ted from twenty-sev­en mat­ches played, leav­ing man­ager Louis van Gaal well pleased wi­th the ef­fort of Way­ne Roo­ney fol­low­ing his double dur­ing the sec­ond ha­lf of the tie. Next up for Man­chester Uni­ted was a mid­week fix­ture ag­ainst New­castle Uni­ted, whom they had de­feated 3-1 in the re­verse meet­ing at Old Traf­ford on Box­ing Day. Man­chester Uni­ted Te­am: Da­vid de Gea, An­tonio Va­lencia, Chris Small­ing, Jon­athan Evans, Mar­cos Rojo, An­gel Di Mar­ia, An­der Her­rera, Da­ley Bli­nd, Way­ne Roo­ney, Ash­ley Young, Ra­damel Fal­cao. Sub­stitutes: Mar­ou­ane Fel­laini, Ja­mes Ant­ony Wil­son, Ad­nan Janu­zaj, Mi­chael Car­rick, Ju­an Ma­ta, Pad­dy McNair, An­ders Linde­gaard. Sun­der­land Te­am: Costel Pantili­mon, Wes­ley Bro­wn, John O’Shea, An­thony Re­veillere, Patrick van Aan­holt, Se­basti­an Larsson, Ad­am John­son, Lee Cat­ter­mole, Jer­main De­foe, Con­nor Wick­ham, Jordi Go­mez. Sub­stitutes: Se­basti­an Coat­es, San­ti­ago Ver­gini, Liam Brid­cutt, Ste­ven Fletch­er, Dan­ny Gra­ham, Duncan Wat­more, Vito Mannone.


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