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Robin van Persie?s deflected injury time free-kick secured a significant 3-2 victory for Manchester United against Manchester City on Sunday in a hugely entertaining derby at the Etihad Stadium.
City, the reigning Premier League champions, thought they had secured a dramatic draw thanks to Pablo Zabaleta?s 86th-minute strike ? but Van Persie stepped up in added time to swing in a 25-yard free-kick that clipped Samir Nasri?s outstretched leg and nestled in the far corner to clinch all three points.
The home side were woefully out-of-sorts in the opening 45 minutes and deserved to go two goals behind thanks to Wayne Rooney?s twin strikes, but Yaya Toure?s cool finish on the hour mark ? just seconds after Ashley Young had a third United goal incorrectly ruled out for offside ? raised hopes of an impressive turnaround.
Zabaleta?s late intervention then restored parity, before Van Persie swung the balance of the contest decisively with his dead ball finish, a mixture of great technique and ? thanks to Nasri ? unpredictable good fortune.
Everton moved into fourth place as they scored two late goals to snatch a 2-1 victory over Tottenham Hotspur.
Spurs looked to be leaving Goodison Park with all three points after Clint Dempsey?s second-half strike, but goals from Steven Pienaar and Nikica Jelavic ? both in added time ? turned the game on its head.
Three former West Ham players scored to sink their old club as Liverpool came from behind to win 3-2 at Upton Park.
Glen Johnson, Joe Cole and Jonjo Shelvey ? all products of the Hammers? youth academy ? were on target as the Reds secured back-to-back wins to climb into the top half of the table for the first time this season.
Brendan Rodgers? side went ahead in style as they took the lead after just 11 minutes, with Johnson firing a superb effort home from 25 yards, but the home side rallied and were rewarded for their determination with a penalty after Guy Demel?s powerful volley from the edge of the box struck Joe Allen?s raised arm. Mark Noble stepped up, and although Pepe Reina dived low to his right, he was unable to make contact.
The Hammers went into the break with their noses in front. With the impressive Matt Jarvis delivering a dangerous ball from the left, Steven Gerrard nodded the ball into his own net after colliding with team-mate Daniel Agger.
Liverpool got themselves back on level terms after a lovely sweeping move ? Raheem Sterling slotting the ball through to Cole, who finished with a neat left-footed strike ? a Shelvey sealed the points, beating James Collins to Jordan Henderson?s cross from the right.

ESPN UK

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