United win title number 20

Manchester United won their 20th league title in style as Robin van Persie scored a sensational first-half hat-trick in a 3-0 victory over troubled Aston Villa.

Last Updated: 23/04/13 at 00:43 Post Comment

Robin van Persie: Opened the scoring with just 90 seconds on the clock

Robin van Persie: Opened the scoring with just 90 seconds on the clock

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Pre-match talk was of potential complacency ruining Monday night's coronation party at Old Trafford, given Sir Alex Ferguson's men knew they only needed three points against their relegation-threatened opponents.

But PFA Player of the Year nominee Van Persie inspired a blistering opening, scoring the first after just 90 seconds before adding a contender for goal of the season and netting his third shortly after the half-hour.

Paul Lambert's 17th-placed Villa could have relegated Queens Park Rangers and Reading with a win but they had no answer to United and remain just three points above Wigan Athletic, now with a worse goal difference having played a game more.

But the story was all about United and Van Persie, whose £24million arrival last summer from Arsenal is widely considered to be the main factor in Ferguson's new champions having regained the Premier League crown as early as April from rivals Manchester City after last season's painful, last-gasp defeat.

Van Persie was accused of fatigue after a two-month goalless spell for his club between February and April but the Dutchman has now scored five times in his last three matches and his first against Villa came with just one-and-a-half minutes on the clock.

From Rafael's deep cross, Welsh veteran Ryan Giggs pulled the ball back across goal to record his first Premier League assist of the season as Van Persie made no mistake when finishing past Brad Guzan.

Just over 10 minutes later, Van Persie made it 2-0 with a breath-taking, first-time volley, which Ferguson would later describe as the 'goal of the Century', courtesy of a stunning, long pass from Wayne Rooney, who amid a supposedly out-of-form season has scored or created 22 goals in 25 Premier League appearances.

Villa were looked punch-drunk and, in the 33rd minute, Van Persie completed his hat-trick with a goal which saw him overtake Liverpool's controversy-engulfed striker, Luis Suarez, as the Premier League's top scorer on 24 goals when finishing from close range.

Lambert sent on Karim El Ahmadi at half-time in place of Charles N'Zogbia in an attempt to improve Villa and it had some impact as Andreas Weimann headed at goal only to be denied on the line by that man, Van Persie.

But the second half was, in truth, a procession for United as they claimed the title with ease while Van Persie can look ahead to competing with Tottenham Hotspur's Gareth Bale for the Player of the Year award.

Ferguson's men are now just four wins away from breaking Chelsea's record of 95 points and, with their legendary manager's focused mentality, they could well go on to underline the Scot's unrivalled iconic status.

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

More Match Results

Sunday, 22 March 2015
16:00
Hull City 2-3 Chelsea Report
QPR 1-2 Everton Report
13:30
Liverpool 1-2 Man Utd  
Saturday, 21 March 2015
17:30
West Ham 1-0 S'land Report
15:00
A Villa 0-1 Swansea Report
Newcastle 1-2 Arsenal Report
So'ton 2-0 Burnley Report
Stoke 1-2 C Palace  
Tottenham 4-3 Leicester  
12:45
Man City 3-0 W Brom Report

Footer 365

Liverpool's Jordon Ibe back running after untimely knee setback

Jordon Ibe remains hopeful of a return to the Liverpool first team this season after returning to light training at Melwood this week.

'Fine' Akinfeev grateful for support

Russia goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev has thanked well-wishers for their support after being struck by a lit flare thrown from the crowd against Montenegro on Friday night.

Harry Kane says debut England goal is a 'dream come true'

Harry Kane said his first goal for England was "a dream come true" after he scored 79 seconds into his debut appearance.

Mail Box

Where's The Love For Walcott?

Theo Walcott is wanted by neither Arsenal or Liverpool fans in the afternoon Mailbox. Also, some good points on the FA skewed priorities, and glorious geekery...

Ripe Robin Still Has A Role To Play...

There is some support for the aging Robin van Perise in a frankly threadbare Mailbox. Also, more debate over homegrown players, with a suggestion of an import tax...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company