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Scholes strikes as United thump Wigan

sports Updated: Sep 16, 2012 01:20 IST

AFP
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Manchester-United-s-Nick-Powell-celebrates-after-scoring-against-Wigan-Athletic-on-Saturday-AFP-Photo

Manchester United veteran Paul Scholes marked his 700th appearance for the club with a goal in a 4-0 Premier League win over Wigan on Saturday as champions Manchester City were held to a 1-1 draw by Stoke.

Elsewhere, Arsenal thrashed bottom of the table Southampton 6-1 to leave the newly promoted Saints still searching for their first points of the season.

At Old Trafford, Scholes got the ball rolling for United before two debutants in Alex Buttner and Nick Powell completed the scoring.

United missed the chance to take an early lead when Wigan's Ali Al Habsi saved Javier Hernandez's weak penalty.

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It was a controversial spot-kick, won after Danny Welbeck dived in the box. But after half-time Al Habsi could only weakly palm away Nani's cross, allowing Scholes to score his 163rd goal for United.

Hernandez then atoned for his spot-kick error by making it 2-0 after good work by veteran midfielder Ryan Giggs, playing his 600th Premier League game.

Dutch left-back Buttner, a recent signing from Vitesse Arnhem, then scored a superb solo goal, beating three men down the left before a shot from a tight angle went in off Al Habsi.

And eight minutes from time, midfielder Powell made it 4-0. Arsenal struck in the 11th minute at the Emirates when Keiran Gibbs's cross was turned in to his own net by Southampton defender Jos Hooiveld.

Lukas Podolski then made it 2-0, just after the half hour mark, when he swung in a 25-yard free-kick over the wall. Gervinho added Arsenal's third 10 minutes before half-time before another Gibbs-inspired own-goal, this time by Nathaniel Clyne, made it 4-0.

No handshake
At Loftus Road, there was no pre-match handshake from Anton Ferdinand for Chelsea captain John Terry. The match was the first between the clubs since since Chelsea and England defender Terry was found not guilty of using a racial slur against the Hoops' Ferdinand in the corresponding fixture last October.

Terry is still the subject of a an investigation over charges he has always denied.