Manchester United won its record 20th English-league soccer title, beating Aston Villa 3-0 on Robin van Persie's first-half hat trick to clinch the championship with four matches to spare.

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Manchester United earns

its record 20th league title

Manchester United won its record 20th English league title, beating visiting Aston Villa 3-0 Monday on Robin van Persie’s first-half hat trick to clinch the championship with four matches to spare.

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Van Persie, signed from Arsenal last summer, put Man U ahead 83 seconds in when he scored from close range. He connected on a volley in the 12th minute and completed his hat trick in the 33rd minute.

This is the earliest a team has clinched the English Premier League title since Manchester United on April 14, 2001, according to STATS.

Manchester United (27-4-3) has a 16-point lead over second-place Manchester City (20-5-8), which has five matches left. City won the league title last season.

Suarez faces penalties

Forward Luis Suarez was charged by England’s Football Association and fined by Liverpool for biting Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic’s arm in a Premier League match Sunday.

Although he escaped punishment during the match, Suarez faces a lengthy ban.

“It is alleged that the conduct of Suarez constitutes violent conduct, and it is the FA’s contention that the standard punishment of three matches that would otherwise apply is clearly insufficient in these circumstances,” FA officials said in a statement.

The sum of the fine was undisclosed.

MLS doubles suspension

Major League Soccer’s disciplinary committee has doubled the suspension of Juninho to two games and fined the New York Red Bulls midfielder who kicked a ball at Sporting Kansas City goalkeeper Jimmy Nielsen during a dead-ball situation Wednesday.

Kenyan referee files suit

Kenyan referee Martin Wekesa has filed a lawsuit, contending a coach ran onto the field to protest a call and grabbed his testicles — an attack he says left him impotent.

Wekesa is suing the national soccer federation, seeking $240,000 in compensation. He says after he ejected a player last year, he was attacked by Sparki Youth team players and then by Daudi Kajembe, a member of the coaching staff.

Kajembe is to appear in court Thursday on a charge of assault.

College basketball

Jordan’s contract is likely

to be approved by Rutgers

Rutgers is set to introduce Los Angeles Lakers assistant Eddie Jordan as coach of the Scarlet Knights’ scandal-marred men’s program at a news conference Tuesday.

The university’s board of governors will meet earlier in the day to sign off on the five-year contract Jordan agreed to last week. The official hiring will come 20 days after Mike Rice was fired after a video showed him grabbing and throwing balls at players, and uttering anti-gay slurs during practices across his three seasons.

Jordan, 58, played for Rutgers from 1973 to 1977. He has been a player and a head coach in the NBA.


• Kansas State point guard Angel Rodriguez, a Wildcat for two seasons, has decided to transfer so he can be closer to his mother and two younger brothers in Puerto Rico.

• Presidents of Atlantic Coast Conference schools have agreed for the ACC to retain media rights for a university that leaves the conference.

The grant of rights would appear to make the ACC more stable by essentially locking all 15 schools, including eventual new arrivals, into the conference for the length of a TV deal with ESPN that goes through the 2026-27 academic year.

The ACC is the fourth major conference to approve a grant of TV rights, joining the Pac-12, Big 12 and Big Ten.

• A North Carolina man rolled the first 900 series in Professional Bowlers Association history — three straight perfect games in the same round.

Joe Scarborough, a 50-year-old electrical contractor from Charlotte, opened the first round of qualifying in the PBA50 Sun Bowl in The Villages, Fla., on Sunday with three games of 300, throwing 36 consecutive strikes.

Scarborough was competing in his second event in the renamed PBA Senior Tour. He said his previous high three-game series was an 838.

• Host Italy beat the defending champion Czech Republic 3-1 in a rain-delayed semifinal to advance to the Fed Cup women’s tennis final against Russia on Nov. 2 and 3.

• The San Jose SaberCats of the Arena Football League have been assigned ex-Chicago Rush quarterback Russ Michna, 32, on a two-year contract.

To make room on the 24-player roster, quarterback Aaron Garcia was placed on recallable reassignment, team officials said. Garcia, 42, played for Washington State in 1989 and 1990.

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