Manchester United established an eight-point lead at the top table and took another step towards a 20th league title with a 2-0 win over QPR at Old Trafford on Sunday.

The hosts started with Danny Welbeck in for Javier Hernandez, while Young also started.

United were the dominant force from very early on but the breakthrough was thanks to referee Lee Mason, who not only gave the hosts a penalty in the 15th minute but also sent Shaun Derry off for the visitors, after he was adjudged to have fouled Ashley Young, who was actually offside.

Rooney's ball found Young in the area but the winger was clearly offside and then proceeded to slump to the ground after Derry's hand hit him on his back. Another case of Red Devil referees?

The QPR players were incensed and did complain but the decision stood and English star striker Wayne Rooney made no mistake with the spot kick, sending it to QPR keeper Paddy Kenny's bottom-right corner.

The hosts did go close to scoring again, in the second half, just before the hour mark. Scholes played a ball through beautifully, to find Rafael in the box. The Brazilian's shot, however, was blocked by Kenny. The ball was deflected onto the crossbar and went out for a corner.

The second goal, however, was inevitable and it duly arrived in the 68th minute. Veteran midfielder Scholes, whose return from retirement has coincided with United's resurgence, let fly from 20 yards out, with a shot that just about dipped under Kenny's bar.

Sir Alex Ferguson's men almost added a third, when Michael Carrick's venomous shot, from more than 30 yards out, hit the post.

At the final whistle, however, Old Trafford celebrated not only a 2-0 win but also a whole lot of pressure on cross-town rivals Manchester City, who will start their game against third-placed Arsenal knowing that only a win will keep United from all but celebrating their 20th league title. Roberto Mancini's men will have their work cut out though, with the Gunners on a hugely impressive run of seven wins in eight games.

Final Score:

Manchester United 2 (Rooney pen 15' and Scholes 68') beat QPR 0

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