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Sunday, Oct 5, 2014

Sports

Football: Falcao fires United to victory over Everton

AFP | Sunday, Oct 5, 2014

Manchester United's Columbian forward Radamel Falcao (R) scores his team's second goal past Everton's US goalkeeper Tim Howard the English Premier League football match between Manchester United and Everton at Old Trafford in Manchester, Northwest England, on October 5, 2014.

LONDON - Radamel Falcao's first goal for Manchester United saw them to a 2-1 victory over Everton in the Premier League at Old Trafford on Sunday.

But the final result also owed much to several fine saves by United goalkeeper David de Gea.

With the match all square at 1-1, Colombian striker Falcao - signed on loan for a reported 10 million euros (£7.8 million, S$16.04 million) on transfer deadline day - marked his fourth United appearance by scoring from six yards out after getting on the end of Angel di Maria's long-range shot in the 62nd minute.

Argentina midfielder di Maria had given Louis van Gaal's side a 27th-minute lead when he curled in a shot from just inside the penalty area after an excellent pass from Juan Mata.

Everton could have equalised on the stroke of half-time after they were awarded a penalty when Luke Shaw brought down Tony Hibbert.

But Leighton Baines's spot-kick was too close to de Gea, who dived to his right to make a fine one-handed save.

It was the first time England full-back Baines had failed to score with any of his 15 Premier League penalties.

However, Baines recovered his composure to whip in a superb cross from which Gary Naismith headed Everton level 10 minutes after the break.

Stoppage-time saw de Gea preserve United's lead with two impressive saves to deny both Leon Osman and substitute Bryan Oviedo.

The result meant United had won for just the third time in seven Premier League matches this season and represented their first back-to-back successes under Dutch manager van Gaal following last week's 2-1 victory at home to West Ham.

Everton, who were held to a 1-1 draw away to Russian side Krasnodar in the Europa League in midweek, have now won just once in the Premier League so far this term.

Sunday's other Premier League matches see Cesc Fabregas up against his old side when leaders Chelsea face London rivals Arsenal at Stamford Bridge.

Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino will also face his former club, when second-placed Southampton come to White Hart Lane, while QPR goalkeeper Rob Green returns to West Ham in an all-London clash.

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