Villa beaten as Champions League return moves closer
By Chris O'Brien
April 5 2015
Ander Herrera's brace helped Manchester United move up to third in the Premier League table on Easter Saturday.
Wayne Rooney was also on target as Louis van Gaal's men continued their impressive run of form with a 3-1 victory. This was a fifth win on the bounce.
The Red Devils controlled possession, created more chances and were rewarded for a patient, yet dominant display against the Villains.
The deadlock was broken shortly before the break, Herrera turning home Daley Blind's clever pull back pass.
United continued to look more dangerous after the interval, with Marouane Fellaini and Ashley Young going close, and van Gaal introduced Angel di Maria and Radamel Falcao - both men needingn a confidence injection - as he looked to seal the points.
It was talisman Rooney, nevertheless, who doubled United's lead. An excellent half-volley looked to have sealed the points, but a nervy finish was in store as Christian Benteke soon reduced the arrears.
Benteke squeezed a low shot underneath David de Gea. The Spaniard should have done better - and, yes, you did read that correctly! And that set-up a possible late comeback for Tim Sherwood's underperformers.
However, a well-taken late finish from Herrera put the game to bed. Three big points against a Villa side who should be doing better, and some fine individual performances, with Herrera and Blind among the most impressive. Next up is City and Chelsea; two games which may define whether van Gaal will either meet or exceed expectations in his first season at the club.
Happy Easter all!
Full Time - Manchester United 3-1 Aston Villa (Attendance - 75,397)pqs: qs: