december 15, 2012 • 12:21 PM • updated in December 15, 2012 to 08:49 PM

United takes out Sunderland to remain atop EPL

Manchester United's English forward Wayne Rooney (2-L) celebrates after scoring the third goal with Manchester United's Dutch forward Robin van Persie (R) during the English Premier League football match between Manchester United and Sunderland at Old Trafford in Manchester, north-west England on December 15, 2012.
Foto: Getty Images

Manchester United brushed aside an overmatched Sunderland in a routine 3-1 victory at Old Trafford on Saturday to ensure Alex Ferguson's side will be top of the Premier League at Christmas.

Robin van Persie opened the scoring when he fired into the top left corner in the 16th minute after being set up by Ashley Young, and Tom Cleverley doubled the advantage by turning in a pass from Michael Carrick three minutes later.

Despite several Sunderland chances at the start of the second half, United stretched its lead through Wayne Rooney in the 59th when the striker converted a pass from Van Persie. The visitors scored a consolation goal in the 72nd through Fraizer Campbell.

The league title has been won by the team that was top of the standings at Christmas in each of the past three seasons.

To watch Ines Sainz's Goal Show, click here.

To read Cuauhtemoc Blanco's take on the amazing Lionel Messi and his experience with Miguel Calero, click here.