London: Adnan Januzaj spared Manchester United a third consecutive Premier League defeat with two second-half goals in a 2-1 victory at bottom club Sunderland on Saturday.
Making his first league start for the troubled champions, the 18-year-old came to his side’s rescue, equalising with a clinical right-footer in the 55th minute before putting the visitors ahead with a sumptuous left-foot volley soon after.
Sunderland had deservedly led at halftime with a Craig Gardner shot following a mistake by Nemanja Vidic and only a great save by David De Gea stopped United falling further behind.
United, who have made their worst start to a league season since 1989, moved up to ninth position with 10 points from seven games, six behind leaders Liverpool. Sunderland have lost six of their matches.
In other matches, Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge tore Crystal Palace apart to help Liverpool register a 3-1 victory while Manchester City bounced back from their Bayern Munich mauling by beating Everton 3-1.
Suarez, making his first Anfield appearance of the season after completing a suspension for biting an opponent, set Liverpool on their way to their fifth league win with an early improvised finish. England forward Sturridge, who has now scored or assisted 16 goals in his last 11 league appearances, made it two with a fine solo goal and Steven Gerrard added a penalty — his 99th league goal — before halftime against struggling Palace.
In the early kickoff at the Etihad Stadium, Alvaro Negredo and Sergio Aguero scored to help City come from behind to beat Everton, easing the disappointment of their home defeat by Bayern in the Champions League on Wednesday.
French striker Loic Remy gave Newcastle United’s under-pressure manager Alan Pardew some relief by netting twice in a 2-1 victory at Cardiff City.
Fulham did the same for manager Martin Jol, edging past Stoke City 1-0 with Darren Bent’s 83rd-minute winner, while Hull City and Aston Villa played out a goalless draw at the KC Stadium.
Suarez, who went on the pitch ahead of kickoff at Anfield cradling his new-born son Benjamin, put Liverpool in front on 13 minutes, receiving Jose Enrique’s cutback and sliding home a finish despite lying on the turf after losing his balance. It was his second goal in as many games in the wake of his suspension for biting Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic last season.
Four minutes later Sturridge toyed with Palace defender Damien Delaney before firing a shot across goal and past ’keeper Julian Speroni.
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers said: “(Suarez and Sturridge) were exceptional today. Their combination play was outstanding and they are right up there with the best in this league.”
Gerrard converted from the spot in the 38th minute after Dean Moxey had held back Raheem Sterling. Palace fans might have been fearing a repeat of their 9-0 defeat at Anfield in 1989 but Victor Moses hit the post and the home side spurned several other chances to increase manager Ian Holloway’s troubles.
The travelling support even had something to cheer late on when Dwight Gayle nodded a 77th-minute consolation.
City manager Manuel Pelligrini showed faith in Joe Hart despite the England keeper’s costly mistakes in the Bayern defeat.
Yet Hart tested his manager’s patience again as City went one down after 16 minutes.
The ’keeper got a hand to Everton striker Romelu Lukaku’s low left-foot shot but it was not strong enough and the ball kicked up off the surface and high into the net.
It took just a minute for City to find an equaliser, Yaya Toure working an angle on the edge of the box to find Negredo’s run and the Spaniard slipping his shot beneath keeper Tim Howard. The goal lifted City. Aguero wasted a simple chance from six metres but he made amends just before the interval.
David Silva fed the Argentine on the right of the area and the striker worked a metre of space before shooting low past Howard into the far corner.
City got their third when Pablo Zabaleta was impeded by Seamus Coleman and Howard tipped Aguero’s penalty on to the post only for the ball to bounce back, hit the ’keeper on the head and roll into the net for an own goal. (Reuters)