Manchester United shrugged off injuries to Phil Jones and Ashley Young to thrash a lifeless Fulham side.

Danny Welbeck's close-range finish was added to by a header from Nani and a deflected Ryan Giggs effort in a first half United completely dominated.

Wayne Rooney smashed in from 30 yards before Dimitar Berbatov's audacious backheeled finish late on.

The win sees United stay in second place in the Premier League, two points behind leaders Manchester City.

Jones required extensive treatment after catching a stray Clint Dempsey elbow to the face in the opening minutes.

Did you know?

  • Dimitar Berbatov became the 50th player to score 50 goals for Manchester United

Referee Mark Halsey did not give a foul for the challenge but Dempsey was lucky to escape a card after striking Jones with his left elbow.

After a lengthy stoppage Jones continued as United took an early lead.

Nani collected the ball on the halfway line, drifted past Bryan Ruiz, and carried the ball unchallenged 50 yards down the left before picking out Welbeck for a crisp finish from seven yards.

Jones was called into action to deny Ruiz with a fine tackle before succumbing to his injury.

Young came on for United, with Antonio Valencia switching to right-back, before more slack defending from the home side allowed Nani to head the second.

Fulham switched off as Giggs took a quick corner to Valencia. He played it back to Giggs, whose cross was headed in by Nani with the lurking Rooney unable to add a touch.

Ferguson lauds 'superb' first-half display

United killed the game off just before half-time through veteran Giggs.

Again the visitors were afforded far too much time and space as Nani ambled into penalty area before teeing up the 38-year-old Welshman. Giggs's shot took a huge deflection off Philippe Senderos and looped over the head of goalkeeper David Stockdale.

Substitute Young was then forced off after the break with what looked like a knee injury after a challenge from Dickson Etuhu, as Fulham made some belated improvement.

Dempsey saw a header saved by Anders Lindegaard, Moussa Dembele shot wide and John Arne Riise smashed a free-kick past the post.

Andrew Johnson then twice should have done better for Fulham before United hit two late goals.

Rooney - making his 300th Premier League appearance - advanced from midfield and drilled a fine shot in off the far post, before substitute Berbatov provided a touch of class in stoppage time with his 50th goal for the club.

Fulham made it too easy for Man Utd - Jol

Valencia exchanged passes with Nani before breaking into the penalty area and squaring for Berbatov.

The ball was behind the Bulgarian but he was able to backheel the ball past Stockdale into the corner.

Fulham manager Martin Jol: "I am angry and disappointed. They had eight attempts on goal and scored five goals. They played around us on the flanks and we did not defend well. Nani scored a header which tells you all.

"We let ourselves down. We improved and could have scored a few but it is easy when you are 3-0 down.

"They have a lot of quality but we were not aggressive enough. Conceding early is not good for your confidence. It was too easy for them.

"We have to pick ourselves up because there are a lot of teams on the same amount of points."

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson: "The performance in the first half was as good as we have played all season in fairness. You think the third goal would kill Fulham but they came out very aggressive in the second half.

"They changed the pattern of the game but on the counter we always looked a threat."

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