Match Analysis: Manchester United 2-0 Everton

Robin Van Persie scores his team's second during the match against Everton on February 10, 2013
© PA Photos
Sports Mole dissects Manchester United's 2-0 victory over Everton at Old Trafford this evening.

Manchester United moved 12 points clear at the top of the Premier League table thanks to a 2-0 victory over Everton at Old Trafford this afternoon.

First-half goals from Ryan Giggs and Robin van Persie proved to be enough for the Red Devils, who missed a few chances after the restart to extend their lead further.

Here, Sports Mole has looked back over the clash to determine if the result flattered the home side at all.

Match statistics:

Man United:
Shots 10
On target 6
Possession 53%
Corners 7
Fouls 12

Everton:
Shots 9
On target 8
Possession 47%
Corners 6
Fouls 9

Was the result fair?

Everton simply did not pose enough of an attacking threat to argue that they deserved a share of the spoils here. They were neat and tidy up until a point, but rarely threatened United, who were efficient in their play and got the goals that mattered.

Man United's performance

It was by no means the slickest of displays, but the result is all that counts. They scored at important times and when they were called upon to defend after the restart, they did so with minimal fuss. Having conceded a large number of goals this season, manager Sir Alex Ferguson will no doubt be pleased that his side kept their fifth clean sheet in the Premier League.

Everton's performance

The Toffees struggled to put anything together during the whole 90 minutes. That's not to say that they were under pressure for large parts, because they weren't. However, it's hard to recall too many saves that United goalkeeper David de Gea was forced to make. It looked like an Everton side that had conceded defeat as soon as Giggs opened the scoring.

Sports Mole's man of the match

Nemanja Vidic: The United skipper lead by example this afternoon. Against the likes of Everton you know that it is going to be a physical battle and Vidic showed that he was up for the fight today. He won numerous challenges in the air and blocked a lot of shots that were heading goalwards. An all-round brave performance from the Serbian.

Biggest gaffe

He may have been lethal in front of goal this season, but Van Persie showed that he was only human with one of the misses of the season in the opening exchanges. Having rounded Tim Howard with ease, he struck the outside of the post with his right foot despite the fact that the goal was at his mercy.

Referee performance

In truth there was very little for Mark Halsey to do this afternoon. Even so, a good referee makes sure that he does not get involved unless it's necessary and Halsey stayed out of the limelight whenever possible.

What next?

Man United: It's the big one as far as United are concerned on Wednesday night when they travel to Spanish capital for a Champions League tie against Real Madrid.

Everton: Next Saturday night Everton make the short trip to League One outfit Oldham Athletic for an FA Cup encounter.

Ryan Giggs celebrates his opening goal with Robin Van Persie against Everton on February 10, 2013
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