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Suarez snubs Evra handshake as Utd go top

updated 2:34 PM EST, Sat February 11, 2012
Liverpool's Luis Suarez and Man United's Patrice Evra clash on during a controversial encounter at Old Trafford on Saturday.
Liverpool's Luis Suarez and Man United's Patrice Evra clash on during a controversial encounter at Old Trafford on Saturday.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Luis Suarez and Patrice Evra feud ignited as Man Utd and Liverpool clash at Old Trafford
  • Wayne Rooney scores a brace as United go a point clear at top of English Premier League

(CNN) -- Manchester United went top of the English Premier League on Saturday with a 2-1 win over Liverpool at Old Trafford, but it was Luis Suarez who grabbed the headlines again.

Suarez, who was starting his first match since returning from an eight-match ban for racially abusing United defender Patrice Evra last October, refused to shake the French international's hand as the team's lined up before the match.

Suarez fined, suspended over racist remarks

It was the precursor to a fractious encounter with both sets of players reportedly clashing in the tunnel at halftime and having to be restrained after the final whistle.

On the pitch, the game was ignited by Wayne Rooney who struck twice in three minutes at the start of the second half after a goalless first period.

The England striker volleyed home in the 47th minute before latching on to a Antonio Valencia pass moments later to slot the ball past Pepe Reina.

Liverpool's attempts to half the deficit were rewarded with a Suarez goal in the 80th minute but a spirited search for an equalizer ended in vain.

The arguments over the handshake incident went on after the match.

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Alex Ferguson called Suarez "a disgrace" saying he should never be allowed to represent the Merseyside club again.

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Reds' boss Dalglish refused to be drawn on the issue saying he hadn't see it.

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The loss keeps Liverpool in seventh place on 39 points while United now have 58 points, one point more than Manchester City who travel to Aston Villa on Sunday.

Harry Redknapp capped a highly satisfying week as he watched his Tottenham Hotspur side thrash Newcastle United 5-0 at White Hart Lane.

Benoit Assou-Ekotto opened the scoring in the fourth minute, with recent signing Louis Saha doubling the lead two minutes later.

Saha was on target again in the 20th minute with Niko Kranjcar adding a fourth ten minutes before halftime.

Emmanuel Adebayor made it five in the 64th minute to complete the rout.

The win consolidates Spurs' grip on third place while leaving them five points behind leaders Manchester United.

Chelsea slipped out of the top four as they lost to Everton 2-0 at Goodison Park.

Steven Peinaar put the Toffees ahead in the fifth minute with Denis Stracqualursi adding a second midway through the second half.

The result moves Everton up to 10th with 33 points while Chelsea drop to fifth behind Arsenal who beat Sunderland 2-1 at the Stadium of Light.

Thierry Henry's strike in stoppage time saw Arsene Wenger's team take all three points after going behind to a goal from James Mclean in the 70th minute.

Aaron Ramsey put the Gunners back on level terms before a volley by on-loan Henry sealed a dramatic victory and Martin O'Neill's first home defeat since taking over as Sunderland boss in December last year.

Blackburn Rovers bounced back from their 7-1 thrashing at the hands of Arsenal last week with a 3-2 win over Queens Park Rangers at Ewood Park.

First-half goals from French midfielder Steven Nzonzi, Yakubu and an own goal from Nedum Onuoha proved enough to defeat Mark Hughes side despite two second half goals from his Scottish striker Jamie Mackie.

The win lifts Blackburn to 18th level on 21 points with QPR who are two places higher thanks to a superior goal difference.

Bottom-of-the-table Wigan also enjoyed a rare victory defeating Bolton Wanderers at the Reebok Stadium.

Scottish defender Gary Caldwell put Wigan in front two minutes before the break.

Mark Davies equalised in the 67th minute for Bolton but James McArthur's 76th minute tap-in sealed Wigan's fourth league win of the season.

Roberto Martinez's team remain in last place but are now only one point adrift of Bolton who switch places with Blackburn.

Norwich City are up to eighth in the table after beating Swansea City 3-2 at the Liberty Stadium.

Danny Graham put the hosts ahead in the 23rd minute before the Canaries hit back with three second-half goals -- two from striker Grant Holt, the other from Anthony Pilkington.

Graham got his second of the match for Swansea three minutes from the end but it couldn't deny Norwich their ninth league win of the season.

Fulham moved level on 30 points with Stoke City after they beat Tony Pulis' side at Craven Cottage.

Pavel Pogrebnyak gave the Cottagers the lead in the 16th minute. Twelve minutes later Clint Dempsey's strike was tipped onto the bar by Danish keeper Thomas Sorensen who then saw the ball rebound back onto him and into the net.

Ryan Shawcross pulled one back for Stoke in the 78th minute but Fulham held on for all three points.

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