United too strong for Sunderland
Premier League round-up: Manchester Unitedmaintained their six-point lead at the top of the Premier League with a 3-1 win over Sunderlandat Old Trafford.United had seen their advantage at the summit cut after champions Manchester City won by the same scoreline at Newcastle in the lunchtime kick-off.
But Alex Ferguson’s side produced a convincing response with Robin van Persie and Tom Cleverley netting inside the opening 20 minutes.
Van Persie then brilliantly set up Wayne Rooney on the hour to seal a fifth consecutive league win. Substitute Fraizer Campbell grabbed a consolation for the Black Cats on 72 minutes.
Aston Villaproduced the shock of the day as they thumped Liverpool3-1 at Anfield.
Christian Benteke struck twice, either side of an Andreas Weimann goal, to inflict a first home loss on the Reds in six.
Steven Gerrard curled in a late goal but by then a majority of the home fans had left.
Wes Hoolahan marked his new Norwichcontract with the match-winner in a 2-1 success over Wigan.
The Canaries announced just before kick-off that Hoolahan had penned a new deal until 2015 and the Republic of Ireland midfielder took centre stage.
He robbed a defender to set up Anthony Pilkington’s opener and, after Shaun Maloney equalised, Hoolahan secured a third successive league win in the 64th minute.
QPRhauled themselves off the foot of the table with a belated first win of the season as they beat Fulham2-1.
Adel Taarabt’s quickfire double in the second half finally secured victory after 17 games and lifted Harry Redknapp’s side above Reading, who host Arsenal on Monday night.
Mladen Petric pulled a goal back two minutes from time but it served only to make QPR sweat for a win that the home fans celebrated at the final whistle.
Kenwyne Jones scored his first league goal in more than a year as Stokebattled back to draw 1-1 at home to Everton.
Ryan Shawcross gifted the Toffees a first-half lead when he headed over his own goalkeeper but Jones levelled when he outjumped Phil Jagielka to head in on 52 minutes.
In-form Everton midfielder Marouane Fellaini could find himself in hot water after he appeared to headbutt Shawcross during the second half, with referee Mark Halsey missing the incident.