Premier League: Manchester United v Aston Villa - Live coverage - The Independent

Premier League: Manchester United v Aston Villa


Robin van Persie celebrates his first goal of the night...
by Simon Rice (Online Sports... on Apr 22, 2013 at 8:17 PM

Van Persie thumps in his second after 13 mins. Sublime.
by Simon Rice (Online Sports... on Apr 22, 2013 at 8:26 PM

Van Persie completes his first-half hat-trick...
by Simon Rice (Online Sports... on Apr 22, 2013 at 8:47 PM

The United players celebrate at the final whistle...
by Simon Rice (Online Sports... on Apr 22, 2013 at 9:58 PM

United celebrate after the final whistle...
by Simon Rice (Online Sports... on Apr 22, 2013 at 10:10 PM

  • 4/22/2013 1:56:38 PM
  • 4/22/2013 2:01:21 PM
  • As well as winning the title, Manchester United can achieve a record points haul if they win all their remaining games this season. But which title winning side will they surpass? Click here for the full story.
    4/22/2013 2:05:53 PM

    There have been 19 different goal scorers for United in the Premier League season.

    For more stats and all the information you need for tonight's game - check out our match preview by clicking here.
    4/22/2013 2:38:31 PM
  • When the sides met earlier this season - they produced a thriller. Watch (some rather grainy) highlights from the match here.

    4/22/2013 2:42:52 PM
  • Paul Lambert thinks Aston Villa can spoil the party tonight...

    We're playing well enough, we're on a good bit of form at the moment and we're going into a game on Monday where it's going to be tough and no-one expects anything from us but we'll certainly go there to try to win it.
    To read the full article, click here.
    4/22/2013 2:53:21 PM
  • Sir Alex Ferguson has been talking up his team ahead of tonight's match...

    You have to admire the focus we have shown this season. We are resilient and the consistency has been good.

    Like all the previous teams, they never give in. That is a fact.

    For the full story, click here.

    4/22/2013 3:46:42 PM
  • For all today's stories on Manchester United - CLICK HERE.

    For all the news on Aston Villa - CLICK HERE.
    4/22/2013 3:52:08 PM
  • Team news expected shortly for the match...
    4/22/2013 5:56:00 PM
  • This isn't the prize on offer tonight - but if it was, surely it wouldn't do any harm in inspiring the United players to the club's 20th league title.

    4/22/2013 5:59:58 PM
  • The teams for tonight...

    Manchester United: De Gea, Rafael, Jones, Evans, Evra; Valencia, Giggs, Carrick, Kagawa; Rooney, Van Persie.

    Aston Villa: Guzan; Lowton, Vlaar, Baker, Bennett; Westwood, Delph; Weimann, N’Zogbia, Agbonlahor; Benteke.
    4/22/2013 6:23:23 PM
  • Aston Villa not getting much lip service as Sky Sports build-up to tonight's match.  This game certainly has the feel of a procession - but somehow I can't imagine Paul Lambert's side lying down.

    That said - we asked you earlier who would win. Just 13 per cent think Villa - 7 per cent think it'll be a draw, leaving 80 per cent of you backing a United win.
    4/22/2013 6:41:33 PM
  • Here's the teams - with subs included...

    Man Utd: De Gea, Da Silva, Jones, Evans, Evra, Carrick, Giggs, Valencia, Rooney, Kagawa, van Persie.

    Subs: Lindegaard, Ferdinand, Hernandez, Nani, Welbeck, Cleverley, Buttner.

    Aston Villa: Guzan, Lowton, Vlaar, Baker, Bennett, Westwood, Delph, Weimann, N'Zogbia, Agbonlahor, Benteke.

    Subs: Given, Clark, El Ahmadi, Bent, Holman, Sylla, Bowery.

    4/22/2013 6:42:39 PM
  • Gary Neville is in the Monday Night Football studio tonight. Might we be witnessing scenes like this later? Probably not - but you never know.

    4/22/2013 6:50:31 PM
  • Like nans having a brew.

    How Gary Neville explains what it's like for the majority of United players winning a league title. For RVP, De Gea and Jones, they've yet to have a cuppa - will they tonight? Minutes away from kick-off.
    4/22/2013 6:57:34 PM
  • The Independent's Sam Wallace is at Old Trafford for us tonight. Here's what he makes of it...
    A tough season for AVFC but their XI tonight includes 3 academy grads (inc Weimann, at 16) & 3 signed from the FL. Old-school, but admirable Sam Wallace via Twitter at 7:52 PM

    Various Glazer family members in the Old Trafford directors' box tonight, with the usual discreet security Sam Wallace via Twitter at 7:57 PM

    4/22/2013 7:00:05 PM
  • 1 min: We're under way...
    4/22/2013 7:00:34 PM
  • 2 min - GOAL!: Perfect start for United - RVP!!!
    4/22/2013 7:02:24 PM
  • What a start by United. Great ball from Rooney out to the right kicks the move off. Valencia cuts it back to Rafael who crosses deep. He finds Giggs who puts it across goal and it's a tap-in for van Persie.
    4/22/2013 7:03:35 PM
  • 5 min: RVP nearly had another there and this really is an electric start by United. Villa might have been hoping the nerves would get to the home side. That goal will have settled them.
    4/22/2013 7:04:57 PM
  • I just want to kiss every inch of Robin van Persie Charlie Williams via Twitter at 8:04 PM
    Easy there Charlie...
    4/22/2013 7:05:25 PM
  • 1 - Ryan Giggs has provided his first Premier League assist of the season (Opta definition); he managed eight in 2011-12. Timely.
  • 56 - Brad Guzan has conceded more goals than any other Premier League goalkeeper this season. Backache.
  • 7 min: Rafael does well done the right hand side and that's where all the action is right now. United win a free-kick over on that side which Giggs swings in but Guzan is there.
    4/22/2013 7:07:45 PM
  • 10 min: Close. Giggs does brilliantly down the left before chipping the ball to the back post. RVP nods it down and Villa get it away. Just.
    4/22/2013 7:09:55 PM
  • 11 min: Off the post! Rafael hits it from range with the outside of his right boot. It's going in surely? But no - back off the post with a solid thump on the woodwork. Villa holding on.
    4/22/2013 7:10:56 PM
  • 12 min: Benteke nearly makes the scores level, taking it early as he runs into the box. He shapes to curl it but hits it just over the bar.
    4/22/2013 7:12:32 PM
  • 13 min - GOAL!: RVP again - and what a goal it was. Rooney hits it over the top from inside his own half and the Dutchman hits it on the volley from the edge of the box and into the back of the net. What. A. Goal.
    4/22/2013 7:14:02 PM
  • Lots of plaudits for RVP on Twitter...
    Van Persie 20 = Titlle 20 Henti Eka S via Twitter at 8:14 PM
    Van persie is unreal! Mac Osborne via Twitter at 8:14 PM
    Beautiful goal from Van Persie rivan maulana via Twitter at 8:14 PMDelete
    4/22/2013 7:15:37 PM
  • Robin van Persie celebrates his first goal of the night...

    4/22/2013 7:17:02 PM
  • 20 min: So what do you do now if you're Villa? They've hardly seen the ball but that said, Benteke went close and they've just strung a few passes together. This is what not the scenario they would have had in mind though.
    4/22/2013 7:19:55 PM
  • 24 min: Rooney playing very deep this evening - and he's getting involved as United stroke it around in midfield.
    4/22/2013 7:24:35 PM
  • Van Persie thumps in his second after 13 mins. Sublime.

    4/22/2013 7:26:58 PM
  • 29 min: It's not all good for United - Evra's been booked for bringing down N'Zogbia. There's also talk that Evans could be coming off imminently.
    4/22/2013 7:28:56 PM
  • Sam Wallace at Old Trafford, still musing over that RVP goal...
    One of the many remarkable aspects of that goal was distance Van Persie covered as the ball dropped out the air. Quite difficult to do ... Sam Wallace via Twitter at 8:16 PM

    4/22/2013 7:31:14 PM
  • 32 min: Good spell for Villa. They win a corner and see a couple of shots blocked. It all comes to nothing though.
    4/22/2013 7:32:23 PM
  • 33 min - GOAL!: That's 3 in 33 minutes for RVP and Manchester United.
    4/22/2013 7:33:26 PM
  • 35 min: Giggs is sent through behind the defence and is able to put it across to RVP. He pulls it back, fools the defence and puts it into the corner from a few yards out. Amazing stuff by the Dutchman - he really has been the difference this season.
    4/22/2013 7:34:57 PM
  • 36 min: A little stat for you. Having not provided an assist all season - Ryan Giggs has made two tonight.
    4/22/2013 7:36:03 PM

  • Ryan Giggs. We all need to pray tonight, and thank the Football Gods for Ryan Giggs. Pearl Pillay via Twitter at 8:36 PM

    Ryan Giggs, Ryan Giggs, running down the wing - Feared by the blues, Love by the reds... Ryan Giggs, Ryan Giggs, Ryan Giggs.. Marco Van Jammal via Twitter at 8:36 PM

    4/22/2013 7:37:29 PM
  • 40 min: Hmmm. Villa have a free-kick in a decent position but Westwood hits it far too long and De Gea comes to collect. That's not how comebacks are started...
    4/22/2013 7:40:28 PM
  • 42 min: Lovely move by United with some pin-point passing. It comes out to Giggs on the left who drills it across but the keeper is able to collect. Chants of 'that's why we're champions' can be heard around Old Trafford.
    4/22/2013 7:42:43 PM
  • 45 + 1 min: Villa probing just before half-time but then Vlaar whacks it from a mile out. 'Oh dear' is how the commentator describes it. That's being nice.
    4/22/2013 7:46:21 PM
  • Van Persie completes his first-half hat-trick...

    4/22/2013 7:47:06 PM
  • HT: There goes the half-time whistle to the tune of 'Glory, glory Man United'. Seems rather fitting.
    4/22/2013 7:48:44 PM
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