3 Apr 2011

Rooney hat-trick inspires Man United comeback

7:12 am on 3 April 2011

Manchester United appear on track for English football's Premier League title after coming from two goals down to beat West Ham United 4-2, thanks to a quickfire Wayne Rooney hat-trick in London.

Rooney notched his treble in 14 minutes in the second half to push United seven points clear of second-placed Arsenal, who lost ground after a scoreless draw with with All Whites skipper Ryan Nelsen's Blackburn Rovers, also in London.

Arsenal's third consecutive draw means the title race is no longer in the hands of the Gunners, whose last league win was in February.

Chelsea's title defence is sputtering out after the champions could only draw 1-1 at Stoke City.

Relegation-threatened West Bromwich Albion scored a crucial 2-1 win over visitors Liverpool thanks to two Chris Brunt penalties including the winner with two minutes of regular time remaining.

Newcastle United romped home over Wolverhampton Wanderers 4-1, Birmingham City beat Bolton Wanderers 2-1, Everton drew 2-all with Aston Villa and Wigan Athletic drew nil-all with Tottenham Hotspur.