Result: Tottenham 1-3 Manchester United

Ashley Young
© PA Photos
Ashley Young scores a brace as Manchester United close the gap on Manchester City with a 3-1 win at Tottenham Hotspur.

Ashley Young scored twice as Manchester United closed the gap on leaders Manchester City to two points with a 3-1 victory away at Tottenham Hotspur this afternoon.

Visiting United were second best for large parts of the opening 45 minutes as Spurs enjoyed large spells in possession.

The home side fought they had broken the deadlock in the 34th minute when Emmanuel Adebayor flicked the ball into an unguarded net from close range. However, the Togo striker was penalised by referee Martin Atkinson for controlling the ball with his hand prior to converting his chance.

Just as the two teams looked to be heading into the break level, United opened the scoring with virtually their first effort on target. Wayne Rooney evaded his marker Kyle Walker to nod a corner from Ashley Young past Brad Friedel in the home goal.

Spurs continued to dominate the early exchanges after the restart as Jake Livermore's deflected effort forced David de Gea into a low save in the 50th minute.

Benoit Assou-Ekotto then grazed the crossbar with a curling effort from 25 yards out, but it was United who grabbed the second goal of the encounter.

Walker failed to clear Nani's cross from the byline and Young was on hand to send a half-volley past a wrong footed Friedel on the hour mark.

The England international added his second and United's third nine minutes later, curling an effort into the top corner of the net from 20 yards out.

Substitute Jermain Defoe pulled one back for Spurs three minutes from time when he collected a poor pass from Ryan Giggs and shot past an unsighted De Gea from the edge of the area.

However, Defoe's late intervention failed to produce a late comeback as United held out for all three points.

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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Arsenal15104136152134
2Chelsea14111232112134
3Liverpool1493235181730
4Manchester CityMan City1593332191330
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs1476124101427
6Manchester UnitedMan Utd145631916321
7Watford156362126-521
8West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom145542017320
9Everton155551919020
10Stoke CityStoke155461722-519
11Bournemouth155372125-418
12Southampton144551315-217
13Burnley155281525-1017
14Leicester CityLeicester154472126-516
15Crystal Palace154382729-215
16Middlesbrough143651315-215
17Swansea CitySwansea153391931-1212
18West Ham UnitedWest Ham143381529-1412
19Hull City153391432-1812
20Sunderland1532101427-1311