Mata shoves Norwich nearer drop as United eye top four

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Manchester United manager, Van Gaal

Juan Mata’s second-half goal was good enough to give Manchester United a 1-0 win away to Norwich City on Saturday, a result that edged the Canaries closer towards relegation from the Premier League.

Defeat left Norwich second-bottom in the table, with only already-relegated Aston Villa below them and two points shy of safety with two league games left this season.

Mata struck in the 72nd minute after a missed header by Norwich defender Sebastien Bassong cleared the way for a run into the box by United’s Wayne Rooney.

United’s victory saw Louis van Gaal’s fifth-placed side close to within a point of local rivals Manchester City, who currently occupy fourth place and the last qualifying position on offer to English clubs for next season’s Champions League.

City play third-placed Arsenal at Eastlands on Sunday. After that match, United will have a game in hand on City.

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