sport

Utd clear after Royals classic

Manchester United moved three points clear at the top of the Premier League after winning a pulsating contest at Reading 4-3.

United twice had to come from behind in an amazing contest at the Madjeski Stadium as all seven goals came in the opening 34 minutes.

Hal Robson-Kanu opened the scoring with Reading's first meaningful attack after just eight minutes as he coolly volleyed home.

But United were level five-minutes later as Anderson beat Adam Federici at his near post after a lovely one-two with Ashley Young.

Just moments later the visitors were ahead as Jay Tabb inexplicably barged Jonny Evans in the back in the box, and Wayne Rooney slotted home the resulting penalty.

The goals, though, continued to flow and United's shaky looking defence was breached again - this time Adam Le Fondre heading home unmarked from a Shorey corner.

Shorey was again the provider on 23-minutes for Sean Morrison as he curled in another corner, and the young defender rose above Evans to head home.

United, though, were not finished and on the half-hour they levelled as Evra broke on the left and cut the ball back into the area where Reading had left Rooney unmarked and from ten-yards he slotted home.

Despite levelling - Sir Alex Ferguson was far from happy and he brought off Rafael to be replaced by Chris Smalling. The Brazilian was far from happy but did take his place on the bench.

Rooney then created what proved to be the winner just moments later. A slick passing move led by Michael Carrick saw him slide a ball into Rooney, he flicked the ball into the path of Robin van Persie - who beat the offside trap before slotting past Federici.

The scoring might have been finished, but United should have had another just before the break. Young crossed for Smalling at the back post, his header was blocked by Federici but van Persie fired in the rebound - Shaun Cummings cleared but with the ball some way over the line, but nothing was given and Reading got away with it.

The second half proved a real anti-climax as there was barely a chance to talk of although van Persie should have scored when he robbed the ball off a dallying Federici but could not hit the empty net from a relatively tight angle.

Reading pushed on in stoppage time and a Morrison header was tipped over by Lindegaard with the same player heading wide from the resulting corner as United just held on to take the win and go clear at the summit of the Premier League.