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
1Manchester CityMan City44001001012
2Crystal Palace43018539
3Leicester CityLeicester42208538
4Swansea CitySwansea42207438
5Manchester UnitedMan Utd42113217
6Arsenal42113307
7Liverpool421123-17
8West Ham UnitedWest Ham42029636
9Everton41215415
10Southampton41215505
11Bournemouth411256-14
12Aston Villa411245-14
13Chelsea411269-34
14Norwich CityNorwich411258-34
15West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom411236-34
16Tottenham HotspurSpurs403134-13
17Watford403124-23
18Stoke CityStoke402235-22
19Newcastle UnitedNewcastle402225-32
20Sunderland4022610-42