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Man United win closes gap on league leaders, Vardy scores in 9th straight game for Leicester

LONDON — Manchester United ended its Premier League scoring drought with a 2-0 win over West Bromwich Albion on Saturday, while Leicester striker Jamie Vardy scored for the ninth straight league match in a 2-1 victory against Watford.

Newcastle, meanwhile, moved out of the relegation zone following a 1-0 away win against Bournemouth.

Both United and West Brom laboured in a first half lacking any real purpose and it wasn't until the second that United went ahead. Youngster Jesse Lingard broke the deadlock with his first goal in United colours, curling an effort beyond goalkeeper Boaz Myhill within minutes of the restart.

Substitute Saido Berahino should have equalized for West Brom shortly after his introduction, but he headed over the bar in the 76th following Stephane Sessegnon's right-wing cross.

United doubled its lead in second-half stoppage time from the penalty spot after Anthony Martial was felled by Gareth McAuley. The West Brom defender was shown a straight red card and Juan Mata converted the resulting spot kick.

That win was the first time United had scored more than once in a game since its 3-0 away win over Everton and ended a run of goalless draws after failing to score against Crystal Palace and city rivals Man City in its last two domestic outings.

Foxes forward Vardy showed his predatory instincts after netting his 12th goal of the campaign from the spot to double his side's lead after Ngolo Kante had earlier given Leicester the advantage. Troy Deeney's penalty reduced the deficit but the home side held on to move up to third in the table.

Newcastle goalkeeper Rob Elliot proved to be Bournemouth's nemesis with a series of saves throughout. Forward Ayoze Perez gave the Toon the lead against the run of play with the half-hour mark fast approaching. He collected Georginio Wiljnaldum's pass before striking a shot that bobbled under Adam Federici.

West Ham was punished by a familiar face with Everton striker Romelu Lukaku scoring the leveler for the Toffees to cancel out Manuel Lanzini's fine opener.

Lukaku's goal, his seventh in his last seven appearances against the Hammers, provisionally moves his side up to eighth place on 17 points, four points adrift of fifth-place West Ham.

Elsewhere, there were narrow 1-0 victories for Norwich and Southampton.

Midfielder Jonny Howson scored his first goal of the season as the Canaries beat Swansea to end a miserable run at home that had seen it win just once and lose six of its last eight home games.

Meanwhile, Dusan Tadic's second-half penalty lifted Southampton into seventh while keeping Sunderland in the bottom three.

David Gerges, The Associated Press

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