- Venue:Old Trafford
- Referee:Probert, L
Full Time: Manchester United 3 - 0 Burnley. The Champions had to work for the three points against Brian Laws' Burnley side who may feel the scoreline is unjust to their efforts.
Neville blocks an Elliott shot on the line and the Burnley players scream for handball but the referee waves play on.
Mears forces a fine save out of van der Sar with a 20-yard free-kick.
MANCHESTER UNITED 3 - 0 BURNLEY: DIOUF springs the offside trap and opens his Manchester United account, steering home a Valencia cross with his head.
Diouf receives a chance to make a name for himself but directs his header wide of Jensen's post.
Gudjonsson misses the target with an ambitious attempt from way out.
The game is fizzling out now and neither side look like getting another goal.
Thompson comes agonisingly close for Burnley as his close range header clips the post.
Chris Eagles receives applause from all around the ground as he makes way for Robbie Blake.
Jensen makes a comfortable save from Anderson's curling left-footed strike.
Burnley have no chance of getting back in this game as they cannot hit the target. This time it is Nugent who blasts an effort over the bar.
The hosts seem to have taken their foot off the gas since the second goal and are happy enough to try and see this game through.
Elliott tries his luck this time but his shot comes off Brown and falls into the arms of van der Sar,.
Eagles lets fly from way out but fails to trouble van der Sar.
Joey Gudjonsson enters the fray in place of Kevin McDonald.
Wayne Rooney reluctantly goes off with his strike partner and is replaced by Senegalese forward Mame Biram Diouf.
Dimitar Berbatov leaves the field to be replaced by Michael Owen.
Burnley were caught out there as they committed men forward and it is arguably game over now at Old Trafford.
MANCHESTER UNITED 2 - 0 BURNLEY: Jensen pushes a Berbatov strike into the path of ROONEY who tucks a shot into the corner of the goal.
Carrick makes way for Anderson.
The visitors are not going to sit back and move forward with real purpose through Eagles whose effort is well saved by van der Sar.
MANCHESTER UNITED 1 - 0 BURNLEY: BERBATOV opens the scoring as his placed shot takes a deflection and spins past a helpless Jensen.
Rooney does not have his shooting boots on today and mishits another shot wide of the mark.
Nugent bursts forward for Burnley and is one-on-one with van der Sar. He composes himself inside the box but flicks his effort wide with the outside of his boot.
A great chance for an opener as Berbatov tees himself up inside the box and clips the outside of the post with a left-footed strike.
The ball drops to Nani who makes a complete mess of the opportunity, hitting a shot wide with his forwards in dangerous positions.
Rooney fires a shot over the bar from inside the box after good work from Evra.
Jensen makes another save from Nani as the hosts step up a gear.
Scholes gets an early shot away but sends it straight down the throat of Jensen.
The second-half is underway and Brian Laws will be asking for more of the same from his side.
Half Time: Manchester United 0 - 0 Burnley. Lee Probert brings a surprisingly even first-half to a close and the visitors will be much the happier side.
Valencia's cross finds Nani who sets himself up for an overhead-kick. It is creeping in at the far post before Jensen gets a finger to the ball and turns it behind for a corner.
Rooney fires a 25-yard strike wide following a fine piece of play from the hosts.
Burnley are giving this a real go and have three against three with Thompson on the ball but his cross is intercepted by Brown.
Valencia is given far too much space yet again and has time to pick out Scholes whose header is directed wide of the mark.
Patrice Evra moves forward down the left flank and Michael Duff does very well to put his dangerous cross behind for a corner.
Brian Laws is forced into an early change and it is Fletcher who has to be replaced by Steven Thompson.
Worrying signs for Burnley as Fletcher does not seem to have fully recovered from the clash with Valencia.
The Champions are being put under pressure to pick up a result here with news that Chelsea have taken a 4-0 lead against Sunderland.
Valencia can count himself very lucky as he gets away with a poor two-footed challenge on Fletcher.
Valencia hooks a cross into the bath of Berbatov who side-foots a shot wide from 6-yards - a very promising move from the hosts.
Burnley are on the back foot again now and Michael Carrick almost puts Berbatov through on goal with a neat flick.
Eagles looks like he has something to prove on the return to his former club and is seeing a lot of the ball in the centre of the park.
Burnley enjoy possession in the final third before Wade Elliott's attempted pass to Eagles is intercepted by van der Sar.
Nani manages to gets a shot on target from the edge of the area but it is a comfortable save for Brian Jensen.
Chris Eagles' effort from distance is blocked in a crowd of bodies.
Berbatov tries to bend a shot towards the far corner but gets his angles wrong and the ball sails wide of the target.
Valencia picks out Nani on the edge of the box and he lines up a shot but completely misses the ball - very poor from the Portuguese winger.
Fletcher looks to latch onto a long ball but it runs away from him and into the arms of Edwin van der Sar.
Old Trafford is by far not the easiest place to come for a first game in charge, but Brian Laws will be relieved of some pressure after a decent start to the game.
The hosts commit men forward and are caught out by Burnley. They have three men against one and Fletcher is picked out inside the box but he drags his shot wide of the target from a great position.
Rooney tries his luck again with an overhead kick from inside the box but he misses the target.
Antonio Valencia reaches the byline and cuts the ball back across the face of goal for Wayne Rooney but his shot is blocked.
Burnley put together a decent move and Steven Fletcher bursts into the box but he fails to get the ball under control.
Nani swings the set-piece into the box and it comes of the shoulder of a white shirt, looping over the crossbar.
The hosts win an early free-kick as Tyrone Mears brings down Nani on the edge of his own box.
Referee Lee Probert gets the game underway.
Andre Bikey is on international duty so David Edgar comes in at the heart of the defence. This is Brian Laws' only change to Owen Coyle's Burnley side that was beat 2-0 by Everton last time out.
Edwin van Der Sar returns between the posts for Man Utd today while Gary Neville is given the nod ahead of Rafael Da Silva. Nani and Dimitar Berbatov also make starts but Darren Fletcher is suspended following a red card at Birmingham.
Manchester United have the perfect opportunity to return to winning ways this weekend when Burnley, now managed by Brian Laws, visit Old Trafford.
After crashing out of the FA Cup at home to Leeds United, Sir Alex Ferguson's side stuttered to a 1-1 draw at Birmingham City last weekend and needed a Scott Dann own goal to take a point from the game.
United have won only three of their last six league matches and missed the chance to return to the summit of the table last weekend when three points at a freezing St Andrew's would have lifted them above Chelsea, whose game at Hull City had been postponed.
There are signs that United's injury crisis is finally easing though with only Rio Ferdinand (calf), John O'Shea (thigh) and Owen Hargeaves (knee) definitely out of Saturday's match, while Dimitar Berbatov is once again a doubt.
Ben Foster (back), Nemanja Vidic (calf) and Nani (ankle) could all come into contention but the best news for Ferguson could be the imminent return of veteran goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar.
The 39-year-old Dutchman has been caring for his wife who has been recovering from a brain haemorrhage, but she has now made a good recovery and van der Sar could feature in his first game since the Everton match in November.
Darren Fletcher is suspended following his late dismissal for two bookable offences at St Andrew's.
Burnley are still recovering from Owen Coyle's shock decision to leave Turf Moor to take up the managerial reins at Bolton Wanderers, although they did appoint Laws as his successor on Wednesday.
They also have a terrible record away from home, securing only one point from ten matches so far this season and start the game only two points clear of the drop-zone, having failed to win any of their last nine league matches since beating Hull City 2-0 in October.
The scoreline flattered Manchester United, but the 3-0 victory at home to Burnley kept them hard on the heels of Premier League leaders Chelsea.
At times, United were mediocre, at times they were awful, but at no time were they brilliant.
Although the Red Devilss scored three second-half goals, Burnley missed three gilt-edged chances and also hit the United woodwork twice in front of new manager Brian Laws.
The United fans' chants of 'we want the Glazers out' seemed to sum up the difficult financial situation the champions are facing.
It took United until first-half injury time to get a shot on target - Luis Nani's speculative overhead kick being palmed behind by Burnley goalkeeper Brian Jensen.
United's next real chance was to bring their opening goal in the 64th minute.
Nani found Dimitar Berbatov on the left side of the Clarets area and the Bulgarian's left-foot shot from ten yards found the far corner of the net courtesy of Michael Duff's leg.
The home side were 2-0 ahead five minutes later from the best move of the match.
Paul Scholes found Anderson on the right edge of the penalty area and his back flick was collected by Berbatov, who turned the ball on to Wayne Rooney.
Rooney feinted to shoot, let the ball run on and then fired his right-foot shot into the bottom right corner of the net from 12 yards.
United's third goal came from new boy Mame Biram Diouf, who ghosted in on the blind side of the Burnley defence to head Antonio Valencia's long ball from the right over Jensen and into the net from the edge of the box a minute into injury time.
But it could have been so much different if Burnley had put away a golden opportunity in the seventh minute.
Former United winger Chris Eagles sent David Nugent clear down the right. His pass found Steven Fletcher free on the left side of the box, but he fired wide from 12 yards.
Nugent missed an even easier chance on the hour when he outstripped Gary Neville for pace, but flicked his shot narrowly wide of a post from eight yards.
In the 84th minute, Stephen Jordan crossed from the left and Burnley substitute Steven Thompson headed the ball against post from six yards.
A minute later, Tyrone Mears was denied by a superb point-blank save from United goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar, after being put clear in the United box by Graham Alexander's pass.
Then, in the dying seconds, van der Sar palmed a Mears free-kick from the right corner of the box on to a post and Neville cleared the rebound.
Shots off target