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Manchester United ends skid at Villa, Liverpool crushes Spurs

December 15, 2013 -- Updated 1844 GMT (0244 HKT)
Tom Cleverley scored Manchester United's third goal in a 3-0 win at Aston Villa on Sunday.
Tom Cleverley scored Manchester United's third goal in a 3-0 win at Aston Villa on Sunday.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Manchester United beats Aston Villa 3-0 to end a two-game league losing streak
  • Danny Welbeck scored two goals for United as it extended its dominance at Villa Park
  • Aston Villa last beat United at home in the league way back in 1995
  • Liverpool crushes Tottenham 5-0 to end five-match league losing streak at White Hart Lane

(CNN) -- Villa Park proved to be just the tonic for Manchester United.

United hadn't lost an English Premier League game at the home of Aston Villa since 1995 and the Red Devils maintained that impressive run by topping the Villains 3-0 on Sunday.

White Hart Lane, meanwhile, hasn't been kind to Liverpool recently but the Reds thumped Tottenham 5-0 in the late kickoff thanks to another sterling performance from Luis Suarez. Liverpool climbed to second, two points behind Arsenal.

Danny Welbeck's two early goals put United at ease and ensured the club wouldn't lose a third consecutive league match for the first time since 2001.

With Arsenal losing 6-3 to Manchester City on Saturday, United made up ground, too, and now trails the Gunners by 10 points with the busy Christmas fixture list approaching.

"It was a good job from us," United manager David Moyes told Sky Sports. "The players did well and the only thing I would criticize is that we didn't score more goals.

"We were a bit sloppy in the first five minutes but after that played really well."

But he added: "I think we'll play much better than that. I've told the players that's the least we can do and we've got to keep going and keep winning more games."

With Robin van Persie injured, Welbeck earned the start and took advantage of his opportunity.

United had joy down the right side and Welbeck was quick to pounce in the 15th minute after Adnan Januzaj hit the post with a header.

It went from bad to worse for Paul Lambert's young side when Welbeck finished off the good work of winger Antonio Valencia.

Villa has registered points from losing positions this season but Tom Cleverley's effort in the 52nd minute erased any hopes of a comeback. The assist came from Wayne Rooney, who was making his 500th appearance in club football.

There was more good news for United as veteran midfielder Darren Fletcher made his first appearance of the season after battling back from colitis.

"Welcome back Mr Fletcher!" tweeted United defender Rio Ferdinand. "Well deserved after working so hard after being out."

Liverpool had lost five straight in the league at White Hart Lane and was without injured captain Steven Gerrard and striker Daniel Sturridge.

Yet even before Tottenham midfielder Paulinho was dismissed for a boot in the chest of Suarez early in the second half, the visitor controlled proceedings.

Suarez -- filling in as captain -- scored twice to boost his league leading tally to 16 and had two assists.

"It's no different being captain but Liverpool has only one captain and that is Stevie Gerrard," Suarez told Sky. "We played very well and this is more important than who the captain is.

"We played very well. For confidence it is very good."

Tottenham didn't register a single shot on target.

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"We could have had 11 man of the matches," Gerrard, working for Sky as an analyst, said.

Suarez and Jordan Henderson handed Liverpool a 2-0 lead at the interval before Paulinho's red card in the 63rd minute.

John Flanagan's first Premier League goal -- a half-volley stunner -- a Suarez chip and Raheem Sterling's low finish completed the rout. Boos rained down at the Lane at the final whistle.

Only a few weeks ago Tottenham suffered another embarrassing defeat, 6-0 at Manchester City.

"I assume the responsibility of the failure," said Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas. "We have to bounce back again like we did after City.

"In the Premier League things aren't going as we expected so it's normal the frustration is there from everyone."

Tottenham sits seventh, one spot ahead of United.

In Sunday's other Premier League game, Norwich and Swansea drew 1-1.

Nathan Dyer scored the opener for Swansea but was later stretchered off with a suspected fractured ankle.

"We have to wait a couple of days for an X-ray and a scan, and we all cross our fingers to hope it is not that bad," said Swansea manager Michael Laudrup. "That will overshadow everything else."

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