Van Persie celebrates his goal

Reading   3

Robson-Kanu (8), Le Fondre (19), Morrison (23)

Man United   4

Anderson (13), Rooney (16, 30), van Persie (34)

Saturday 1 December Madejski Stadium | Attendance: 24,095

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Reading
1Federici
24Cummings
3Shorey
6Mariappa
15Morrisongoal
8Leigertwood
16Tabbyellow card
11McAnuffsub12
19Robson-Kanugoalsub10
9Le Fondregoal
33Robertssub7
Subs:
41Taylor
5Pearce
23Harte
20Guthrie
12McClearysub11
7Pogrebnyaksub33
10Huntsub19
Man United
13Lindegaard
2Rafaelyellow cardsub12
6Evans
5Ferdinand
3Evra
8Andersongoalsub4
24Fletcher
16Carrick
18Young
20van Persiegoalsub19
10Rooneygoalgoal
Subs:
1De Gea
4Jonessub8
12Smallingsub2
11Giggs
14Hernandez
19Welbecksub20
23Cleverley

Report

01/12/2012 19:33, Report by Steve Bartram
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Reading 3 United 4

Manchester United established a three-point lead at the head of the Barclays Premier League table after edging a seven-goal thriller against Reading at Madejski Stadium.

All the game’s talking points were confined to a faintly ludicrous first period as United trailed, levelled, led, trailed, levelled and then led decisively going into the interval.

Hal Robson-Kanu lashed home the opener, then Anderson cracked in an equaliser and Wayne Rooney slid home a penalty before Adam Le Fondre and Sean Morrison quickly headed in from corners to have the hosts 3-2 up by 23 minutes.

For all the nightmarish defending on show from the visitors, however, their attacking play was just as irresistible, and Rooney clinically turned in Patrice Evra’s cross to level again, before turning provider for Robin van Persie to spring the hosts’ offside trap and beat Adam Federici.

Van Persie missed two presentable chances to tie up the victory after the break, and instead United had to survive a tense second period which frayed nerves in an altogether more subtle manner than the first.

United were dealt an unexpected boost ahead of kick-off as Manchester City were held to a home draw by Everton, giving the Reds a chance to build a points cushion ahead of next weekend’s Manchester derby at the Etihad Stadium.

Perhaps with one eye on the looming cross-city trip and following midweek toil against Sam Allardyce’s West Ham United, Sir Alex Ferguson made

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