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Played
February 2, 2013 12:30 PM EST
Craven Cottage — London
Referee:‬ K. Friend‎
Attendance:‬ 25670‎
 
 
Wayne Rooney 79′
Top of the Match
Mark Schwarzer
Mark Schwarzer
Fulham
Wayne Rooney
Wayne Rooney
Manchester United
Flop of the Match
Antonio Valencia
Antonio Valencia
Manchester United
Antonio Valencia
Antonio Valencia
Manchester United

Fulham 0-1 Manchester United: Rooney helps open up 10-point gap at the top

Mark Schwarzer and David de Gea pulled off fine stops in an outstanding first half which also included a power outage, but the England striker decided the tie

By Tom J Doyle

Wayne Rooney struck late on as Manchester United overcame a strong Fulham performance and a floodlight failure with a 1-0 win, which leaves Sir Alex Ferguson's side 10 points clear of Premier League champion Manchester City.

Both sides had great chances throughout but the England striker showed nerves of steel to calmly finish inside the box after a mistake from Philippe Senderos let him in on 79 minutes.

Hugo Rodallega broke the offside trap with ease after four minutes, but his cut-back from Ashkan Dejagah was well blocked in the center.

United will scarcely believe it didn't take the lead in the seventh minute. A corner came in which was bundled towards the net with only Schwarzer's desperate dive preventing a certain goal. Evra hit the bar seconds later with the goal gaping, then saw another shot expertly saved by the keeper.

It was David de Gea's turn to excel after 11 minutes, superbly tipping over a wonderful John Arne Riise volley from 30 yards.

Riise shaped to shoot again three minutes later but opted to turn and feed Bryan Ruiz, who saw his cute volley tupped onto the post

United then hit the post with the ball deflecting high from a corner on to Schwarzer's bar, with Antonio Valencia screwing the follow-up wide.

There were no chances until the 32nd minute, when United hit the woodwork for a third time with Rooney curling an effort onto Schwarzer's left-hand post from 20 yards.

The floodlights then went out with five minutes of the half to play to the delight of the 25,670 fans, and while the players came off, power was restored within five minutes. Play resumed with a corner, with Schwarzer collecting a Van Persie drive at the second attempt.

Both teams were a little more cautious from the restart after each manager presumably told their sides in no uncertain terms to tighten up at the back.

Chances were few and far between but Chris Baird heated things up with a stinging drive on the hour that De Gea did well to smother.

Van Persie broke the offside trap a minute later and teed up Nani on the byline, whose eight-yard shot was well blocked by Baird, while De Gea was perhaps fortunate his parried save was not turned in by Ruiz with 20 minutes remaining.

United had half-chances while Jonny Evans did well to head away from underneath his own crossbar as the pressure rose, while Rafael prevented a certain goal by heading away from a corner on his own goal-line, but United struck the decisive blow.

Senderos tried to block Van Persie's run but only succeeded in letting Rooney run onto a long ball, and the striker made no mistake by curling the ball around Hughes and into Schwarzer's net.

Van Persie cleared another header off the line and Chicharito missed a one-on-one in a brilliant ending, but United saw out the game.

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Fulham

23
Mark Schwarzer
Goalkeeper
3.50
3
John Arne Riise
Defender
3.50
14
3.00
5
Brede Hangeland
Defender
46′
3.50
6
Chris Baird
Defender
65′
3.00
27
Sascha Riether
Defender
3.50
14
Giorgos Karagounis
Midfielder
68′
3.00
16
Damien Duff
Midfielder
3.50
24
Ashkan Dejagah
Midfielder
82′
3.00
11
Bryan Ruiz
Striker
3.00
20
3.00

Manchester United

3.50
1
David de Gea
Goalkeeper
3.00
2
Rafael
Defender
3.50
3
3.00
5
 - 
4
Phil Jones
Defender
3.00
6
Jonny Evans
Defender
79′
2.50
25
3.00
16
2.50
17
Nani
Midfielder
84′
3.00
23
Tom Cleverley
Midfielder
75′
2.50
10
3.00
20

Substitutes

-
Neil Etheridge
Goalkeeper
 - 
18
3.00
35
2.50
28
2.50
29
Simon Davies
Midfielder
 - 
11
 - 
10
 - 

Substitutes

 - 
40
Ben Amos
Goalkeeper
 - 
12
 - 
8
Anderson
Midfielder
3.00
11
Ryan Giggs
Midfielder
75′
2.50
14
 - 
19
 - 
26
Shinji Kagawa
Midfielder

Coach/Manager

-
 - 

Coach/Manager

 - 
-
 
  • Goal
  • Own Goal
  • Penalty
  • Penalty Missed
  • Yellow Card
  • Assist
  • Penalty Save
  • Penalty Shootout Goal
  • Penalty Shootout Miss
  • Yellow Card / Red Card
  • Red Card
  • Substitution IN
  • Substitution OUT
  • Injury
  • Goal.com Rating
  • Goal.com Man of the Match
  • Goal.com Flop of the Match
  • Top & Flop Global Ranking
  • Fans' Man of the Match
  • Fans' Flop of the Match
Results
 
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Luis Suárez Luis Suárez
Striker
Liverpool
29 0
Daniel Sturridge Daniel Sturridge
Striker
Liverpool
20 0
Yaya Touré Yaya Touré
Midfielder
Man City
18 6
Wayne Rooney Wayne Rooney
Striker
Man United
15 2
Sergio Agüero Sergio Agüero
Striker
Man City
15 0