• Premier League

Rooney: United back in title race

ESPN staff
November 11, 2013
Wayne Rooney turned in a man-of-the-match display against Arsenal © PA Photos

Wayne Rooney believes Manchester United's 1-0 win over Premier League leaders Arsenal has put the reigning champions back in the title race.

Robin van Persie headed home Rooney's corner in the first half at Old Trafford to send United fifth, five points behind Arsene Wenger's side.

"It gives us a massive lift," Rooney said. "It's a great weekend for us going into the international games. We've got a big push then until the New Year, and it's our aim to still be up there."

Having weathered a shaky start under new manager David Moyes, United are now unbeaten in their last five league matches and Rooney believes the side have now proven their title credentials.

"We knew we'd have to win today at all costs," man of the match Rooney said.

"I think we defended really well, and thankfully Robin got the three points and we got the three points. I think it was a great effort from everyone."

United's victory, twinned with shock defeats for Tottenham and Manchester City on Sunday and Chelsea's home draw on Saturday, has put the them within touching distance of the Champions League places - but Rooney admits the club has set its sights on another title.

"We knew we couldn't afford to lose today and we couldn't let Arsenal get 11 points ahead of us," he added. "We knew a victory would put us right back in there, and we're in a good position.

"We worked on free-kicks and corners as Arsenal have a lot of smaller players in the team and that could give us the opportunity to get a goal, and thankfully it's paid off."

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