Manchester United fights back to beat Hull 3-2

Manchester United was gifted a winner by former defender James

Chester as the English Premier League champion came from two goals

down to beat Hull 3-2 on Thursday.

Ashley Young’s cross was inadvertently headed by Chester into

his own net in the 66th minute, allowing United to claim a third

straight league win.

”We had to dig deep with our fighting spirit and we’ve done

that,” United striker Wayne Rooney said. ”It was poor defending

for the two goals.”

Chester, a product of the United academy who made only one first

team appearance, scored the opening goal with a fourth-minute

volley. United conceded again in the 13th when David Meyler’s shot

deflected in off United defender Jonny Evans.

But Rooney’s free kick was headed in by Chris Smalling in the

19th, and the striker volleyed in the equalizer seven minutes

later.

After Chester’s own-goal, United was reduced to 10 men in

stoppage time. Antonio Valencia received a second booking for time

wasting after kicking the ball away.

”We’ve had some poor results at the start of the season and we

have shown some real quality in the last few weeks,” Rooney said.

”We are having a go.”

United, which was eight points behind league leader Arsenal,

arrived late at KC Stadium due to traffic problems.

United had to phone in the team sheet, which included Darren

Fletcher in the starting lineup for the first time since last

December following treatment for a bowel disorder.

It was Hull which made the brighter start, and scored with the

first chance of the game.

Tom Huddlestone delivered a corner into the box where Alex Bruce

got above Patrice Evra to head toward the far post.

United striker Danny Welbeck was slow to come off the line but

Chester was one step ahead, advancing to volley into the roof of

the net.

Meyler then drove Hull into the penalty area and stayed up to

collect Yannick Sagbo’s cutback across the box. Meyler’s first

connection was wayward but Evans allowed him a second chance with a

sloppy clearance that came back to the Irishman.

The resulting shot would not have troubled goalkeeper David de

Gea, but Evans again intervened, wrong-footing the Spaniard and

turning the ball into his own net.

An apparent groin injury to defender Rafael da Silva gave Moyes

a chance to change things, and the manager made a determined move

in sending on winger Adnan Januzaj.

He had an almost immediate impact, winning a 19th-minute free

kick from which United scored.

Rooney provided the hanging cross from the right and Smalling

produced a clinical header that went inside the far post.

As United regained confidence, Rooney netted the goal of the

game. He controlled Evans’ long ball effortlessly with his back to

goal before flicking an overhead pass to Welbeck.

When it came back to Rooney, via a combination of Welbeck and

Curtis Davies, the England striker took another deft touch before

sending in a fierce 30-yard volley.

Bruce had to reshuffle at the interval, Steve Harper on for

McGregor and Robert Koren replacing Meyler. But the hosts once more

came out brightly, with Davies glancing a header and Huddlestone

denied by a ricochet off Evra.