Premier League - Rooney double earns United draw at Spurs

Premier League, White Hart Lane - Spurs 2 (Walker 18, Sandro 54) Manchester United 2 (Rooney 32, 57 pen)

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Manchester United's Wayne Rooney (R) celebrates with team mate Danny Welbeck after scoring a goal against Tottenham Hotspur during their English Premier League soccer match at White Hart Lane in London December 1, 2013 (Reuters)

Wayne Rooney struck either side of half-time as Manchester United twice came from behind to earn a 2-2 draw with Spurs at White Hart Lane.

The home side made the perfect start to the afternoon in their bid to ease the strain on coach Andre Villas-Boas after last week's 6-0 mauling by Manchester City when Kyle Walker drove a free-kick at goal from 22 yards. He could not believe his luck as the wall jumped before seeing the ball evade David De Gea in the visiting goal.

United drew level when Rooney pounced on an error by Walker on 32 minutes as he slammed a loose ball into the net from seven yards after the defender's heavy first touch from a Phil Jones cross had broken into his England team-mate's path.

Sandro restored the home side's lead with a quite stunning effort from 30 yards on 54 minutes that was beyond De Gea before he even noticed it. The lead lasted only three minutes when Rooney drove a penalty down the centre of the goal after Hugo Lloris brought down Danny Welbeck before the French goalkeeper was booked.

Both teams huffed and puffed in their bid to grasp maximum points from the afternoon, but the draw was probably the right outcome from a typically frantic meeting between these two old combatants.

United are nine points adrift of leaders Arsenal with Spurs a point worse off after 13 league outings.

KEY MOMENTS

18' - WALKER OPENER: Walker drives the ball through the wall and Spurs have the lead. Ball deceived De Gea. Not sure what the wall was doing. It jumped and the ball went right under them.

26' - SOLDADO MISS: Game flowing from end to end. Glorious chance for Soldado from the Paulinho pass, but he drives the ball well over the bar from 12 yards.

29' - DE GEA STOP: Chance for Lennon from Soldado's pass, but the shot is saved by De Gea. Another chance for Spurs to move two goals ahead.

32' - ROONEY REPLY: United draw level. Brilliant play by Jones to win the ball from Dembele. Cross comes in and an awful error by Walker as the ball breaks off him for Rooney to convert from seven yards.

54' - SANDRO STUNNER: Sandro sends a shot crashing high into the net from 30 yards out. Brilliant stike from Sandro. Amazing stuff. Spurs lead 2-1.

57' - ROONEY TO THE RESCUE: Lloris deemed to have brought down Welbeck. And a booking for the keeper too. Rooney drives the ball down the middle as Lloris flew to his left. United are level again at 2-2. Game well and truly on.

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KEY STATS

United are now unbeaten in 13 Premier League matches at White Hart Lane (W8-D5) stretching back to May 2001.

Spurs are now unbeaten in three PL matches against United, their longest unbeaten top flight run against them since November 1985 to May 1987 (four matches).

United (22 points) have their worst PL record after 13 matches since 2004/05 (21 points). They went on to finish that season third.

Wayne Rooney scores his 15th PL penalty for United, moving him outright second in the club's PL penalties scored list. He was previously joint-second with Eric Cantona (14). Only Ruud van Nistelrooy has scored more penalties in the PL for the club (18).

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TALKING POINT

How did Andre Villas-Boas stand up to his big day? Was under pressure before this match, but will be quietly content with his side's performance. Spurs fans booed his decision to hook Aaron Lennon in the second period while Roberto Soldado again came up short, but Spurs were impressive overall. And certainly did not deserve to lose it.

MATCHCAST: FULL COMMENTARY AND PLAYER RATINGS

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MAN OF THE MATCH

Wayne Rooney (Manchester United) - His energy and appetite are something to be admired. Also helped out his defence with some timely clearances. Leading by example as he matures into a senior figure at the club.

PLAYER RATINGS

Tottenham Hotspur: Lloris 6, Walker 6, Chiriches 7, Dawson 6, Vertonghen 6, Paulinho 7, Sandro 8, Lennon 6, Dembele 6, Chadli 5, Soldado 5. Subs: Sigurdsson 6, Townsend 6, Defoe 6.

Manchester United: De Gea 7, Smalling 6, Vidic 6, Evans 6, Evra 6, Valencia 7, Cleverley 6, Jones 7, Kagawa 7, Welbeck 6, Rooney 8. Subs: Nani 6, Young 6, Hernandez 6.

THE MATCH IN A TWEET

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