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Highlights: The grace and inanity of Manchester United’s Wednesday win

Dec 26, 2012, 9:00 PM EDT

Manchester United's Hernandez celebrates with Cleverley aftrer scoring during their English Premier League soccer match against Newcastle United in Manchester Reuters

Two minutes worth of highlights can barely touch upon Wednesday’s drama at Old Trafford. The gaps (or lack of them) between scores often accentuated the feeling Newcastle, despite taking three leads, were just being set up as Manchester United’s latest victim. It’s hard to cram that kind of foreboding into 136 seconds.

But the highlights do bring life to the inanity of some of the goals that made up Manchester United’s 4-3 victory:

  • A terrible block by David de Gea;
  • No urgency to clear before Jonny Evan’s goal;
  • and Evans’ quality finish into the wrong net.

Some of the goals, however, were pure quality. The grace with which Papiss Demba Cisse strode onto Newcastle’s third goal left little doubt the Magpies would go back in front. Robin van Persie’s composure to take his touch before beating Tim Krul showed patience where others might rush.

And then there’s Chicharito. Javier Hernández’s burst on the English soccer scene two years ago overstated his value, a stature that was re-set last season when the Mexican international saw more competition for playing time. This season, things haven’t improved much for Hernández, but as today’s winning goal showed, there are still few players in the world as potent with one touch.

His finish on United’s fourth goal is sublime, his shot perfectly timed and placed during the most stressful of circumstances. Beating Krul into the right of net, Hernández delivered full points to the fate-tempting Devils.

Here are the highlights:

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