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Five-star United extend lead over title rivals City

Manchester United responded to their Europa League exit with a 5-0 thrashing of 10-man Wolves on Sunday to move four points clear at the top of the Premier League.

sports Updated: Mar 19, 2012 01:18 IST
Wolverhampton,Manchester United,Europa League

Manchester United ruthlessly ripped apart 10-man Wolverhampton Wanderers to stroll to a 5-0 victory on Sunday and move four points clear at the top of the Premier League.

The champions scored early through defender Jonny Evans and the floodgates opened following the sending-off of Wolves defender Ronald Zubar before halftime.

Right winger Antonio Valencia netted the second and made the third for Danny Welbeck before the interval and Mexican Javier Hernandez struck twice to complete an emphatic victory.

United, knocked out of the Europa League on Thursday, went four points clear of Manchester City who play their game in hand on their local rivals against Chelsea on Wednesday. Wolves slipped to the bottom of the table on goal difference.

"We've lost two of our last three games here and we looked at it as a tough match," United manager Alex Ferguson told Sky Sports. "The performance wasn't great, it was adequate, and the scoreline makes it looks like it was comprehensive but our finishing was good."

Torres ends 5-month goal drought

LONDON: Fernando Torres finally ended his five-month goal drought as Chelsea cruised into the FA Cup semi-finals with a 5-2 victory over Leicester at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

Torres has endured a miserable time since his British record £50 million transfer from Liverpool in January 2011 but the Spain striker took advantage of Leicester's sloppy defending to score twice and secure a much-needed boost to his fragile confidence.

Gary Cahill put Chelsea ahead early in the first half of the quarter-final and Salomon Kalou added the second soon after.

But it was Torres's increasingly rare appearance on the scoresheet that took the spotlight. Torres had gone more than 24 hours of playing time without scoring — dating back to a double against Genk in October — and there was a huge sense of relief around the Bridge when he tucked away a simple chance midway through the second-half.

When Torres scored again in the closing moments, the roar was loud enough to suggest Chelsea had actually won the Cup and the much-maligned star followed that by setting up Raul Meireles for Chelsea's fifth.

First Published: Mar 18, 2012 21:43 IST