United brush aside Hull for third straight win

Manchester, England (SportsNetwork.com) - Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie found the back of the net on Saturday as Manchester United claimed its third consecutive victory in league play with a 3-0 result over Hull City at Old Trafford.

Louis van Gaal's tenure as Manchester United manager got off to a rocky start as the club failed to win any of its league matches during the first month of the season, but van Gaal has since righted the ship as the Red Devils earned an impressive 2-1 win against Arsenal away from home last week.

The Red Devils opened the scoring after 16 minutes through defender Chris Smalling and Rooney doubled the advantage three minutes before the intermission when he ripped one into the bottom left corner just inside the post. It was Rooney's fifth goal of the season and seventh against Hull City in his last five games.

Van Persie then put an exclamation point on proceedings with a third goal in the 66th minute when he fired home from distance into the top left corner to put United comfortably in the driver's seat.

Hull City did little to trouble David de Gea's goal as the Tigers managed three shots on goal and kept just 23 percent of possession over the duration of the 90 minutes.

The result keeps the Red Devils in fourth place in the Premier League with 22 points, while Hull City stays in 17th place with 11 points, out of the bottom three on goal difference.

Elsewhere in the Premier League on Saturday, Liverpool put an end to a five- match winless run across all competitions thanks to a 1-0 win over Stoke City at Anfield.

Liverpool has struggled mightily over the past month and has not won since a 2-1 triumph over Swansea City in the League Cup on Oct. 28.

Saturday's affair was physical from the outset and the breakthrough came when a cross from Glen Johnson on the right flank was nodded off the crossbar. The ball bounced in front of Stoke goalkeeper Asmir Begovic. Johnson raced in from his spot on the right flank, beat his mark to the ball and bravely went in for a diving header past Begovic to give the Reds a much-needed three points.

Sunderland claimed an impressive point against Chelsea, holding the unbeaten league leaders to a scoreless draw at the Stadium of Light.

Chelsea had the better of the possession, keeping 66 percent of the ball, and the club remained patient looking for an opportunity to break down the Sunderland defense.

But the Black Cats back line held firm to take a point off of Jose Mourinho's club. The only other two teams to hold Chelsea to a point are Manchester City and Manchester United.

Arsenal bounced back from its defeat to Manchester United with a 1-0 win over West Bromwich Albion thanks to a 60th-minute goal form Danny Welbeck.

The win keeps the Gunners in the top-six with 20 points from 13 matches, two behind United for the final Champions League place, while West Brom remains in 14th place.

Joe Cole and Danny Ings swapped goals as Burnley and Aston Villa played to a 1-1 draw at Turf Moor. Cole opened the scoring for Villa in the 38th minute, but the visitors failed to hold the lead as Ings converted a penalty with three minutes to play to claim a point for the Clarets.

Charlie Austin's 73rd-minute goal held up as the winner as Queens Park Rangers claimed a nervy 3-2 victory over Leicester City at Loftus Road.

QPR has struggled all season near the bottom of the table and things started poorly Saturday as Esteban Cambiasso gave Leicester the lead after four minutes.

A Wes Morgan own goal in the 38th minute and a goal from Leroy Fer gave QPR the lead at halftime, but Jeffrey Schlupp put the sides on level terms at 2-2 in the 68th minute.

Austin then fired home the winner five minutes later to give the Hoops a vital three points in their bid to stave off relegation.

Crystal Palace claimed a point away from home as the Eagles battled Swansea City to a 1-1 draw at the Liberty Stadium.

Wilfried Bony opened the scoring after 15 minutes for the hosts, but Mile Jedinak converted a penalty kick 10 minutes later as the clubs were forced to share the spoils.

Finally in the Premier League on Saturday, Newcastle United's six-match winning streak across all competitions came to and end in east London as the 10-man Magpies fell to West Ham United, 1-0, at Upton Park.