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Tuesday 23 April 2013

How Manchester United won the 2012/13 Barclays Premier League

A review of all the matches in United's victorious 2012/13 Barclays Premier League campaign

  • 20 Aug 2012: A goal by Everton's Marouane Fellaini's inflicted a shock opening-day defeat

  • 2 Sep 2012: Robin van Persie scored a hat-trick as United rallied to beat Southampton 3-2

  • 10 Nov 2012: Javier Hernandez scored twice as United beat Aston Villa 3-2

  • 9 Dec 2012: Van Persie's last-gasp free-kick sealed another thrilling 3-2 win over Man City

  • 26 Dec 2012: Hernandez's last-minute winner sealed a 4-3 triumph over Newcastle

Manchester United have become the Barclays Premier League champions for the 13th time after beating Aston Villa 3-0 at Old Trafford.

Sir Alex Ferguson's side now have an unassailable 16-point lead at the top of the division with four matches remaining after mustering 84 points from 27 victories, three draws and just four defeats.

Here is an review of how United clinched their record 20th title in the English top flight.

Everton (Fellaini 57) 1-0 Man Utd
20 Aug 2012:
A second-half goal from Marouane Fellaini handed Manchester United their first opening-day defeat since 2004 as new signings Robin van Persie, a second-half substitute, and Shinji Kagawa failed to have an impact. Full match report

Man Utd (Van Persie 10, Kagawa 35, Rafael 41) 3-2 Fulham (Duff 3, Vidic OG 64)
25 Aug 2012:
United recovered from a goal down after three minutes to earn their first victory of the Barclays Premier League season. Robin van Persie’s needed only 10 minutes of his home debut for the club to get off the mark with a well-taken volley.
Full match report

Southampton (Lambert 16, Schneiderlin 55) 2-3 Man Utd (Van Persie 23, 87 & 90+2)
2 Sep 2012:
A Van Persie hat-trick stunned newly promoted Southampton at St Mary’s as United came from behind again to win. The Dutchman scored twice in the last five minutes after missing a penalty. Full match report

Man Utd (Scholes 51, Hernandez 63, Buttner 66, Powell 82) 4-0 Wigan Athletic
15 Sep 2012:
United climbed to second with this comfortable victory. Paul Scholes opened the scoring and summer signings Alexander Buttner and Nick Powell scored their first goals for the club. Full match report

Liverpool (Gerrard 46) 1-2 Man Utd (Rafael 51, Van Persie 81)
23 Sep 2012:
A late Van Persie penalty gave United their fourth consecutive victory, again from a losing position. Liverpool, reduced to 10 men by Jonjo Shelvey’s first-half red card, had led through Steven Gerrard. Full match report

Man Utd (Nani 51, Kagawa 53) 2-3 Tottenham (Evans OG 2, Bale 32, Dempsey 52)
29 Sep 2012:
Tottenham Hotspur earned their first Barclays Premier League victory at Old Trafford. An own goal by Jonny Evans and strikes from Gareth Bale and Clint Dempsey proved to be the difference for the visitors, who resisted pressure late on from the hosts.
Full match report

Newcastle 0-3 Man Utd (Evans 8, Evra 15, Cleverley 71)
7 Oct 2012:
United reversed the 3-0 defeat at St James’ Park the previous season with ease. Goals from Jonny Evans, Patrice Evra and Tom Cleverley sealed the win. Full match report

Man Utd (Rooney 27 & 65, Van Persie 44, Welbeck 46) 4-2 Stoke (Rooney OG 11, Kightly 58)
20 Oct 2012:
Wayne Rooney recovered from an early own goal for Stoke to inspire his side to another comeback victory with two further strikes. Full match report

Chelsea (Mata 44, Ramires 53) 2-3 Man Utd (Luiz OG 4, Van Persie 12, Hernandez 75)
28 Oct 2012:
United moved within a point of early pacesetters Chelsea with victory at Stamford Bridge. Branislav Ivanovic and Fernando Torres were sent off for the hosts, who had recovered from an early two-goal deficit before losing to a Javier Hernandez winner.
Full match report

Man Utd (Van Persie 3, Patrice Evra 67) 2-1 Arsenal (Cazorla 90+5)
3 Nov 2012:
Van Persie took less than four minutes to score against his former club as United moved to the top of the table for the first time. Patrice Evra scored the second in a comfortable victory that the tight scoreline belied. Full match report

Aston Villa (Weimann 45+1 & 50) 2-3 Man Utd (Hernandez 58 & 87, Vlaar OG 63)
10 Nov 2012:
Hernandez inspired United to a magnificent second-half comeback at Villa Park. The Mexican scored twice and saw his shot go in off Ron Vlaar for the other goal after Andreas Weimann had given the home side a two-goal lead. Full match report

Norwich (Pilkington 60) 1-0 Man Utd
17 Nov 2012:
Anthony Pilkington’s second-half goal helped Norwich City to only a second Barclays Premier League win over United. The defeat sent United to second in the table.
Full match report

Man Utd (Evans 64, Fletcher 68, Hernandez 72) 3-1 Queens Park Rangers (Mackie 52)
24 Nov 2012:
United moved to the back to the top of the table, a position they would not relinquish, as they overcame a QPR side watched by new manager Harry Redknapp. The hosts had to come from behind with Darren Fletcher on target in his first League start for over a year. Full match report

Man Utd (Van Persie 1) 1-0 West Ham United
28 Nov 2012:
Van Persie was the decisive factor yet again as his goal, after only 32 seconds, sealed a hard-fought victory at Old Trafford. Goalkeeper Anders Lindegaard prevented a late equaliser when he denied Carlton Cole from close range. Full match report

Reading (Robson-Kanu 8, Le Fondre 19, Morrison 23) 3-4 Man Utd (Anderson 13, Rooney 16 & 30, Van Persie 34)
1 Dec 2012:
United had to come from behind again as they grabbed the points in a seven-goal thriller at the Madejski Stadium. Afterwards, manager Sir Alex Ferguson said it was his side's "worst defending of the season" as he vowed to correct his team’s defensive lapses. Full match report

Man City (Toure 60, Zabaleta 86) 2-3 Man Utd (Rooney 16 & 29, van Persie 90+2)
9 Dec 2012:
Van Persie's deflected free-kick earned a dramatic win at the Etihad Stadium as United took control of the title race. City had found themselves 2-0 down but had fought back to 2-2 with four minutes to go, only for the visitors to show great resilience to seal victory in injury-time. Full match report

Man Utd (Van Persie 16, Cleverley 19, Rooney 59) 3-1 Sunderland (Campbell 72)
15 Dec 2012:
Ferguson's men ensured they would be top of the pile at Christmas with a comprehensive victory at Old Trafford. Quickfire goals from Van Persie and Tom Cleverley put the hosts in charge, with Rooney scoring his fifth goal in four matches after the break.
Full match report

Swansea City (Michu 29) 1-1 Man Utd (Evra 16)
23 Dec 2012:
United's lead was cut to four points after they were held at the Liberty Stadium by a spirited Swansea. Patrice Evra headed home from Van Persie’s cross only for Michu to respond before the break and although the visitors hit the woodwork twice in the second half, they had to settle for a point. Full match report

Man Utd (Evans 25, Evra 58, van Persie 71, Hernandez 90) 4-3 Newcastle United (Perch 4, Evans og 28, Cisse 68)
26 Dec 2012:
Another seven-goal thriller, another narrow victory for United as the Magpies lost out despite taking the lead on three separate occasions. Hernandez was the hero, sliding in to convert Michael Carrick's cross with only two seconds left on the clock. Full match report

Man Utd (McAuley og 9, van Persie 90) 2-0 West Bromwich Albion
29 Dec 2012:
Centre-half Nemanja Vidic continued his return from injury with a commanding performance as West Brom were dispatched at Old Trafford. Van Persie’s curling shot in the final minute sealed victory and United claimed only their fourth clean sheet of the campaign. Full match report

Wigan Athletic 0-4 Man Utd (Hernandez 35 & 63, van Persie 43 & 88)
Jan 1 2013:
United started the year with a bang as they swept aside Roberto Martinez’s side with a dominant display to maintain a seven-point cushion over Manchester City. Van Persie scored his 18th and 19th goals of the season, while Hernandez also claimed a brace. Full match report

Man Utd (van Persie 19, Vidic 54) 2-1 Liverpool (Sturridge 57)
13 Jan 2013:
Van Persie’s worth to the side was highlighted as he provided a goal and an assist to steer United to victory over their rivals. The home side went two goals in front and although Liverpool piled on the pressure after Daniel Sturridge pulled a goal back, United were able to hold on for victory. Full match report

Tottenham Hotspur (Dempsey 90+3) 1-1 Man Utd (van Persie 25)
20 Jan 2013:
United were denied victory by Clint Dempsey's injury-time equaliser to reduce their gap at the top to five points. Van Persie's header put his side ahead in the first half but Spurs responded after the break and after a spell of late pressure, Dempsey scored from Aaron Lennon's cross. Full match report

Man Utd (Rooney 8, 27) 2-1 Southampton (Rodriguez 3)
30 Jan 2013:
United survived a second-half Southampton onsalught before edging seven points clear at the top of the Barclays Premier League. Jay Rodriguez pounced on a defensive error to give Saints an early lead, but Wayne Rooney’s 100th and 101st goal at Old Trafford earned the hosts three points. Full match report

Fulham 0-1 Man Utd (Rooney 79)
2 Feb 2013:
Rooney’s winner turned the spotlight on United’s Barclays Premier League title rivals after they beat Fulham in a match interrupted by floodlight failure at Craven Cottage. Rooney’s 10th goal in as many games 11 minutes from time sent United 10 points clear of Manchester City. Full match report

Man Utd (Giggs 13, Van Persie 45+1) 2-0 Everton
10 Feb 2013:
First-half goals by Ryan Giggs and Van Persie enabled United to avenge their opening-day defeat and lift United 12 points clear of Manchester City at the top of the Barclays Premier League. Full match report

QPR 0-2 Man Utd (Rafael 23, Giggs 80)
23 Feb 2013:
Rafael Da Silva's superb strike helped United stay on course for the Barclays Premier League title as QPR’s survival hopes took another blow. The Brazi right-back's first-half effort set Sir Alex Ferguson's side on course for a victory which was wrapped up 10 minutes from time by veteran Ryan Giggs. Full match report

Man Utd (Kagawa 45+1, 76, 87, Rooney 90) 4-0 Norwich City
2 Mar 2013:
Shinji Kagawa scored his first United hat-trick as Sir Alex Ferguson’s side swept aside the Canaries to open up a 15-point lead at the top of the table. Norwich capitulated in the last 15 minutes when they conceded three goals including a spectacular strike by Rooney. Full match report

Man Utd (Rooney 21) 1-0 Reading
16 Mar 2013:
Rooney's 11th Barclays Premier League goal of the season restored United’s 15-point lead with just nine matches remaining. Rooney's deflected first-half effort saw off a dogged Reading outfit, who worked hard but could not fashion an equaliser. Full match report

Sunderland 0-1 Man Utd (Bramble OG 27)
30 Mar 2013:
Titus Bramble's own goal allowed United to tighten their stranglehold on the division with a narrow victory. The defender turned Van Persie's 27th-minute shot past goalkeeper Simon Mignolet after it had also clipped Phil Bardsley on its way to goal.
Full match report

Man Utd (Kompany OG 59) 1-2 Man City (Milner 51, Aguero 78)
8 Apr 2013:
Sergio Aguero returned to haunt United by coming off the bench to net City’s winner and earn the visitors a second successive win at Old Trafford. Vincent Kompany’s own goal had earlier cancelled out James Milner’s firm strike. Full match report

Stoke 0-2 Man Utd (Carrick 4, Van Persie 59)
14 Apr 2013:
Robin van Persie ended a 10-match goal drought with a second-half penalty as United sealed a routine win at relegation-threatened Stoke. The visitors were rarely troubled after Michael Carrick had given them an early lead. Full match report

West Ham (Vaz Te 16, Diame 55) 2-2 Man Utd (Valencia 31, Van Persie 77)
17 Apr 2013:
United twice had to battle from behind as they struggled to contend with the physicality of Sam Allardyce’s charges. Antonio Valencia and Van Persie, 13 minutes from time, cancelled out strikes by Ricardo Vaz Te and Mohamed Diame to salvage a hard-earned point. Full match report

Man Utd (Van Persie 2, 13, 33) 3-0 Aston Villa
22 Apr 2013:
A first-half hat-trick from Van Persie sealed the 13th title.

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Key Points

  • Manchester United win Barclays Premier League title for the 13th time
  • The Red Devils have won 27 matches on their way to securing their 20th top-flight crown
  • We look back through the 33 Premier League matches from this season so far