Dimitar Berbatov completed a hat-trick of hat-tricks as Manchester United thrashed Birmingham 5-0 and tightened their grip on top of the table as Berbatov moved to 17 goals in the league.
It was all Manchester United right from the kick off and Red Devils took the lead in the second minute. Giggs whipped in a corner that was flicked on by John O’ Shea, who was playing in place of the suspended Rafael, and Berbatov scored the easiest of goals from 2 yards. He almost made it two immediately but the former United keeper Ben Foster pulled out a smart save.
Michael Carrick’s forgettable season continued as he was forced to limp off after 25 minutes but that did not stop United’s flurry of attacks. Finally in the 31st minute, United had their second. Rooney fed Berbatov, who fired a shot past Foster into the back of the net. A minute later he almost completed his hat-trick but his shot curled into the wrong side of the post. Gibson shot from 20 yards away whereas Giggs’s effort was deflected wide. However the latter would score a few minutes later. After Berbatov won possession and exchanged passes with Rooney, who’s cross from the left was slammed into the top corner by Giggs.
If Birmingham thought that the break would provide them some respite, they were wrong. Rooney headed Nani’s cross just wide of the post as United looked to put the game beyond any doubt. In the 53rd minute, Giggs squared up a pass to Berbatov who coolly slotted home as the ball bounced off the post into the net for his third hat-trick of the season.
United did not stop attacking and Nani’s continuous efforts finally paid off when he beat Foster from 20 yards out. United weren’t satisfied and kept pushing for one more goal. The sixth goal wouldn’t come but there would be no complaints from Sir Alex Ferguson as United stretched their unbeaten run in the league to 22 games with a two point advantage at the top despite having a game in hand.