SYDNEY, New South Wales (AFP) – Danny Welbeck and Jesse Lingard scored doubles as Manchester United hit form on their Asian pre-season tour with a 5-1 win over Australia's A-League All Stars in Sydney on Saturday.
English champions United shrugged off speculation over Wayne Rooney's playing future at Old Trafford in a commanding display -- Dutch ace Robin van Persie added the icing with United's fifth goal minutes from full-time after coming on as a second-half substitute.
It was David Moyes' first win in charge since taking over from Alex Ferguson at the end of last season.
Moyes' reign at Manchester United began with an embarrassing upset when the Premier League champions slumped to a 1-0 defeat against Thailand's Singha All Star XI in Bangkok last Saturday, but there was no repeat at Sydney's Olympic stadium.
"It was a good performance and maybe we could have got a few more goals," Moyes said. "We hit the post as well and there were one or two other incidents.
"It was a good game for us and we stepped up. I thought we looked a bit fitter tonight, a bit more ready and the temperature tonight suited us a wee bit more than it had done in Thailand.
"To get Robin (van Persie) back on and get him started was good, but I think it was impressive that Danny got a couple of goals. I said to him that on another night he might have scored four or five goals."
United dominated possession, with Michael Carrick and Tom Cleverley controlling the midfield and the team's pace and concise passing had the All Stars under constant pressure.
United had a couple of early chances before they went ahead in the 11th minute when Welbeck played in Lingard, who finished clinically past the exposed Covic.
Such was the pressure on the home defence that United soon doubled their lead when Lingard combined with veteran Ryan Giggs, who deftly set up Welbeck to finish sweetly for a 2-0 lead in the 34th minute.
All Stars defender Michael Beauchamp made a last-ditch tackle to deny Wilfried Zaha and nearing half-time Welbeck got in behind the defence, but Covic blocked his shot with his feet.
Michael Keane, who came on for Rio Ferdinand at half-time, gave Albanian striker Besart Berisha enough room to fire past the diving Anders Lindegaard for the All Stars' only goal in the 52nd minute.
But United's response was swift three minutes later when Giggs played in the impressive Lingard, who scored his second goal of the night with a thumping drive into the top right corner for 3-1.
"Jesse played well tonight and I was hoping he might have got a hat-trick because for a youngster to get that at Manchester United is a big thing," Moyes said.
"His performance was very good and he set Robin up for his goal as well with a nicely weighted pass. Not only did he play well but he worked really hard and showed a lot of maturity."
Van Persie was greeted with a huge roar when he came into the match just after the hour for Giggs.
He did not disappoint the capacity crowd when he scored in the 87th minute after having his initial shot blocked.
The Dutch international striker was a huge hit at Old Trafford last season after switching from Arsenal and was the Golden Boot winner in England's top flight, scoring a total of 30 goals in 48 appearances.
Van Persie only joined the team's pre-season tour this week in Sydney after missing last weekend's loss in Bangkok.
United had an injury scare when skipper Patrice Evra went down in pain after lunging for a high ball with Josh Risdon and needed treatment to his left knee before continuing.
Welbeck, a constant attacking threat, raced through and had his shot cleared off the line before he scored his second goal and United's fourth with a 70th-minute header from a corner.
Manchester United continue their pre-season tour against Yokohama F. Marinos in Japan on Tuesday.