Wayne Rooney scored two goals, including an exquisite lobbed finish, as Manchester United overcame Robin van Persie's absence to win at West Ham.

Rooney, now third in United's all-time goalscorers list on 212, put his side ahead with a stunning lob from just inside the Hammers' half.

The England striker doubled the lead after Mark Noble's attempted clearance fell straight to Rooney to steer home.

West Ham were poor, Andy Carroll's tame header the closest they came to a goal.

David Moyes lauds 'fantastic' Rooney goal

United manager David Moyes, without Netherlands striker van Persie for up to six weeks due to a sprained knee, has had little to smile about this season.

But Rooney's spectacular eighth minute finish had the Scot out of his seat in the dug-out applauding a truly wonderful goal.

There were shades of David Beckham's memorable finish from the halfway line for United against Wimbledon in 1996 as Rooney, spotting Adrian well off his line, outmuscled James Tomkins before unleashing a brilliant lob which sailed over the goalkeeper and into the net.

This was United's ninth Premier League win away from Old Trafford, where the Red Devils return on Tuesday for the Manchester derby.

While United's domestic home form - five defeats in 14 games - continues to frustrate Moyes, he is at least finding some solace on the road.

Former Manchester United and England player David Beckham

Former Manchester United player David Beckham was at Upton Park with his sons Brooklyn and Romeo to watch his old club win. Beckham was seen applauding Rooney's spectacular goal which had shades of his famous finish from the halfway line against Wimbledon in 1996.

With Beckham and England manager Roy Hodgson in the Upton Park main stand, United carried on where they left off after reviving their Champions League campaign at Olympiakos' expense on Wednesday.

Rooney's spectacular finish set the tone for a comfortable victory to move back to within three points of fifth spot in the table.

The Hammers should have equalised in the 15th minute.

Man Utd's all-time goalscorers

249 - Sir Bobby Charlton

237 - Denis Law

212 - Wayne Rooney

211 - Jack Rowley

179 - Dennis Viollet, George Best

But Carroll, who was unmarked, spurned a glorious chance to give Hodgson a reminder of his goalscoring prowess ahead of the World Cup when he headed straight at David De Gea from close range.

United, who had Michael Carrick as a makeshift centre-back in the absence of the injured Rio Ferdinand and suspended Nemanja Vidic, carried a threat each time they went forward.

Shinji Kagawa, on only his eighth league start of the campaign, forced a fine save from Adrian before the Spaniard beat away a goal-bound shot from countryman Juan Mata.

But United, who also recalled Alexander Buttner, Marouane Fellaini, Darren Fletcher and Ashley Young, established a two-goal cushion in the 33rd minute.

Moments after the Hammers had claims for a penalty waved away when Noble went to ground under a Fletcher challenge, Young powered deep into West Ham's half.

His cross fell to Noble who could only kick the ball into Rooney's path and the United man made no mistake from close range.

Modest Rooney on 'nice' goal

West Ham still have to secure their Premier League survival and face Liverpool (home), Arsenal (away) and Manchester City (away) before the end of the season.

Sam Allardyce can only hope his team can raise their game after a limp performance.

The damage had already been done when Fellaini crashed to the ground inside the West Ham penalty area after Antonio Nocerino's challenge in the closing stages.

But there were few complaints from the visitors when referee Lee Mason waved away their appeals. United had the points safely in the bag.

West Ham United manager Sam Allardyce:

Sam Allardyce on 'deserved' defeat

"The first goal knocked the stuffing out of us.

"It's such a wonderful goal, you've got to admire the finish, but to get off to a start like that when we were looking forward to this game, having won the last three at home and trying to get more points on the board.

"Straight away you're 1-0 down against a side that have got an abundance of talent.

"I definitely thought there was a foul [leading up to the first goal].

"When the ball comes forwards, James Tomkins is going to try and win it. Wayne, not making an attempt for the ball, pushes him with his left arm."

To see a photo gallery from all of Saturday's Premier League matches, go to BBC Sport's Facebook page. 

Lineup, Bookings (3) & Substitutions (5)

West Ham United

  • 13 Adrián
  • 20 Demel
  • 03 McCartney
  • 16 Noble
  • 19 Collins Booked
  • 05 Tomkins
  • 21 Diamé (Jarvis - 58' )
  • 14 Taylor Booked (Nocerino - 83' )
  • 09 Carroll
  • 04 Nolan (Cole - 72' )
  • 23 Downing

Substitutes

  • 02 Reid
  • 07 Jarvis
  • 08 Armero
  • 22 Jääskeläinen
  • 24 Cole
  • 26 Cole
  • 47 Nocerino

Manchester United

  • 01 de Gea
  • 02 Rafael Booked
  • 28 Büttner
  • 31 Fellaini
  • 16 Carrick
  • 04 Jones
  • 18 Young
  • 24 Fletcher
  • 10 Rooney (Hernández - 77' )
  • 08 Mata (Welbeck - 78' )
  • 26 Kagawa

Substitutes

  • 03 Evra
  • 13 Lindegaard
  • 14 Hernández
  • 17 Nani
  • 19 Welbeck
  • 23 Cleverley
  • 44 Januzaj
Ref: Lee Mason
Att: 34,237

Match Stats

Shots

10 16

On target

1 7

Corners

12 7

Fouls

8 8

Live Text Commentary

Full time

Full Time Match ends, West Ham United 0, Manchester United 2.

90:00 +3:58 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, West Ham United 0, Manchester United 2.

86:57

Darren Fletcher (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

86:57

Foul by Antonio Nocerino (West Ham United).

85:00

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

83:25

Delay in match James Tomkins (West Ham United) because of an injury.

82:04 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, West Ham United. Antonio Nocerino replaces Matthew Taylor.

79:54

Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Marouane Fellaini.

77:08 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Manchester United. Danny Welbeck replaces Juan Mata.

76:47 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Manchester United. Javier Hernández replaces Wayne Rooney.

76:08

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Guy Demel.

73:56

Ashley Young (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

73:56

Foul by George McCartney (West Ham United).

72:00 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, West Ham United. Carlton Cole replaces Kevin Nolan.

70:38

Offside, Manchester United. Shinji Kagawa tries a through ball, but Wayne Rooney is caught offside.

70:14

Michael Carrick (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

70:14

Foul by Kevin Nolan (West Ham United).

69:37

Hand ball by Marouane Fellaini (Manchester United).

67:42

Attempt missed. Alexander Büttner (Manchester United) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Shinji Kagawa.

67:08

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by George McCartney.

59:38

Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Michael Carrick.

58:45

Foul by Marouane Fellaini (Manchester United).

58:45

Matthew Taylor (West Ham United) wins a free kick on the right wing.

57:55 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, West Ham United. Matthew Jarvis replaces Mohamed Diamé.

57:06

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by James Collins.

57:03

Attempt missed. Ashley Young (Manchester United) left footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Shinji Kagawa with a cross.

56:19

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Matthew Taylor.

56:17

Attempt blocked. Juan Mata (Manchester United) left footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Rafael.

53:05

Attempt missed. Wayne Rooney (Manchester United) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Juan Mata with a cross following a corner.

52:42

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by George McCartney.

49:39

Attempt blocked. Guy Demel (West Ham United) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

49:16

Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Marouane Fellaini.

48:53

Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Phil Jones.

47:44

Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Rafael.

47:41

Attempt blocked. Stewart Downing (West Ham United) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Mark Noble.

47:15

Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Ashley Young.

46:21

Attempt saved. Ashley Young (Manchester United) right footed shot from a difficult angle and long range on the left is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Juan Mata.

45:46

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by James Tomkins.

45:00

Second Half begins West Ham United 0, Manchester United 2.

45:00 +2:11 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, West Ham United 0, Manchester United 2.

45:00 +1:39

Attempt missed. Wayne Rooney (Manchester United) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Juan Mata following a fast break.

44:34

Attempt missed. Wayne Rooney (Manchester United) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Shinji Kagawa.

41:28

Foul by Ashley Young (Manchester United).

41:28

George McCartney (West Ham United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

39:46

Foul by Kevin Nolan (West Ham United).

39:46

Michael Carrick (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

39:07

Attempt missed. Wayne Rooney (Manchester United) right footed shot from outside the box is too high from a direct free kick.

38:23 Booking

Booking Matthew Taylor (West Ham United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

38:19

Foul by Matthew Taylor (West Ham United).

38:19

Juan Mata (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

37:32

Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Alexander Büttner.

37:26

Attempt blocked. Andy Carroll (West Ham United) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Stewart Downing.

36:09

Andy Carroll (West Ham United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

36:09

Foul by Marouane Fellaini (Manchester United).

35:43

Matthew Taylor (West Ham United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

35:43

Foul by Marouane Fellaini (Manchester United).

34:50

Attempt missed. Andy Carroll (West Ham United) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by George McCartney with a cross.

32:45 Booking

Booking James Collins (West Ham United) is shown the yellow card.

32:34 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! West Ham United 0, Manchester United 2. Wayne Rooney (Manchester United) left footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner following a fast break.

32:00

Attempt blocked. James Collins (West Ham United) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Stewart Downing with a cross.

31:37

Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Rafael.

29:50

Foul by Kevin Nolan (West Ham United).

29:50

Phil Jones (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

29:17

Kevin Nolan (West Ham United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

29:17

Foul by Marouane Fellaini (Manchester United).

29:10

Attempt saved. Juan Mata (Manchester United) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

26:42

Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Alexander Büttner.

24:23

Attempt saved. Shinji Kagawa (Manchester United) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Juan Mata with a through ball.

22:09

Attempt missed. Ashley Young (Manchester United) right footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Juan Mata.

20:02

Alexander Büttner (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

20:02

Foul by Mohamed Diamé (West Ham United).

14:53

Attempt saved. Andy Carroll (West Ham United) header from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Stewart Downing with a cross.

14:08

Attempt missed. Andy Carroll (West Ham United) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Mark Noble following a set piece situation.

13:38

Foul by Rafael (Manchester United).

13:38

Andy Carroll (West Ham United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

11:13

Ashley Young (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

11:13

Foul by Kevin Nolan (West Ham United).

10:23 Booking

Booking Rafael (Manchester United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

10:15

Foul by Rafael (Manchester United).

10:15

Stewart Downing (West Ham United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

9:32

Attempt blocked. Mohamed Diamé (West Ham United) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

9:09

Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Rafael.

8:31

Attempt missed. Mohamed Diamé (West Ham United) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Andy Carroll with a headed pass.

7:51

Attempt missed. Kevin Nolan (West Ham United) left footed shot from outside the box is too high.

7:01 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! West Ham United 0, Manchester United 1. Wayne Rooney (Manchester United) right footed shot from more than 40 yards on the right wing to the top right corner. Assisted by Ashley Young.

6:10

Offside, Manchester United. Ashley Young tries a through ball, but Shinji Kagawa is caught offside.

5:44

Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Wayne Rooney.

5:27

Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Ashley Young.

4:33

Attempt saved. Juan Mata (Manchester United) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Shinji Kagawa with a through ball.

2:30

Attempt blocked. Michael Carrick (Manchester United) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

2:28

Attempt blocked. Marouane Fellaini (Manchester United) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Ashley Young with a cross.

2:03

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by George McCartney.

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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