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December 08, 2014

SOUTHAMPTON, England (AP) — Robin van Persie scored twice to give Manchester United a 2-1 victory against Southampton in the Premier League, despite the visitors being pegged back for much of the game on Monday.

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Van Persie took advantage of a defensive blunder to put United ahead after 12 minutes. Southampton captain Jose Fonte hit a poor backpass to goalkeeper Fraser Forster and Van Persie ran through, waited for Forster to dive and stroked the ball through his legs and into the far corner.

Graziano Pelle hauled Southampton level in the 31st when Dusan Tadic's shot was blocked by Paddy McNair, only for the ball to fall at the feet of the Italian forward to convert.

Southampton missed an array of chances after that, and Van Persie made Ronald Koeman's side pay in the 71st when he escaped the attention of its defense to poke in Wayne Rooney's free kick at the far post.