MANCHESTER - Dimitar Berbatov scored a hat trick as Manchester United dominated Birmingham, 5-0, in English Premier League action on Saturday.
With the win, United stays at the top of the table, all alone after Manchester City's loss later in the day. Arsenal actually jumped into second, two points back of the leaders.
Berbatov got things started early, with a second-minute goal giving United the 1-0 advantage. He struck again just after the half hour mark to make it 2-0 before Ryan Giggs put the home side up three seconds before the break. Berbatov completed the hat trick with his league-leading 17th goal of the season in the 53rd minute before Nani closed out the scoring in the 76th.
The embarrassing loss drops Birmingham to 16th in the league table.
Aston Villa 1, Manchester City 0
Birmingham, England - Aston Villa got a goal from high-priced transfer Darren Bent to earn a 1-0 victory over Manchester City in EPL action on Saturday.
City, which was trying to keep pace with EPL leaders Manchester United, dropped to third with the loss thanks to Arsenal's 3-0 win earlier on Saturday.
Bent, who came over from Sunderland, scored just 18 minutes into his debut in Birmingham when he knocked in a rebound from close range for his ninth EPL goal of the season.
Arsenal 3, Wigan 0
London, England - Not to be outdone by United's Berbatov, Arsenal's Robin Van Persie scored a hat trick to lead his team to a 3-0 victory over Wigan at the Emirates Stadium in EPL action on Saturday.
With the win, Arsenal moves within two points of the table lead, although United has a game in hand.
Van Persie, who entered the game with just one goal this season, got things going with a goal in the 21st to give Arsenal the advantage.
he doubled the home side's advantage in the 58th before missing a chance at the hat trick in the 71st by missing a penalty kick. He was redeemed 14 minutes later, however, when he scored his third of the game to make it 3-0.
Liverpool 3, Wolverhampton 0
Wolverhampton, England - Disappointing Liverpool jumped into the top 10 in the EPL with a decisive 3-0 victory over Wolverhampton on Saturday.
Fernando Torres ensured his team would go into the break up 1-0 with a 36th minute goal before Raul Meireles made it 2-0 in the 50th. Torres closed out the scoring with a 90th minute goal.
Sunderland 2, Blackpool 1
Blackpool, England - Kieran Richardson scored two goals as Sunderland earned a 2-1 victory at Blackpool in EPL action on Saturday.
Richardson put his side up two in the first half before Charlie Adam pulled one back on an 86th minute penalty for Blackpool.
Everton 2, West Ham 2
Liverpool, England - Everton and West ham battled to a 2-2 draw in an EPL cracker on Saturday.
Jonathan Spector opened the scoring for West Ham in the 26th minute before the two teams combined for three goals in the final furious 13 minutes.
Diniyar Bilyaletdinov equalized for Everton in the 77th before Frederic Piquionne put West Ham back up by one in the 84th. But Marouane Fellaini's 90th minute equalizer ensured the teams would share the points.
Fulham 2, Stoke City 0
London, England - Fulham used a double from Clint Dempsey to earn a 2-0 home victory vs. Stoke City in EPL action on Saturday.
Dempsey put his side up one in the 36th minute before a 56th minute penalty kick was converted by the American attacker.
Newcastle 1, Tottenham 1
Newcastle, England - Tottenham got a 90th minute equalizer to earn a 1-1 draw at Newcastle in EPL action on Saturday.
With the home side up 1-0 thanks to a Fabricio Coloccini goal just before the hour mark, Aaron Lennon provided the equalizer to ensure his team would share the points.