Carrick eyes festive boost for in-form Man United

Michael Carrick has urged Manchester United to keep up their good form over the Christmas period.

After a difficult start to the season, Louis van Gaal's side have won five of their last eight games and sit fourth in the table.

A big part of their upturn in fortunes has been the return of Carrick, who was again a shining light in Saturday's 3-0 win over Hull.

And the midfielder is hoping United can continue to gather momentum, starting with Tuesday's home match against Stoke City.

"It was a good performance and a good win," Carrick told MUTV. "We controlled the game from the start and played some really good football. Hopefully there will be more of the same on Tuesday."

The one blot versus Hull was another injury blow, with British-record signing Angel di Maria forced off in the first half due to a hamstring complaint.

But Carrick is hoping that such problems will soon dissipate, adding: "Our downfall this season is that we've had to change the team too much and we haven't had a consistent run with this squad.

"Hopefully that will change now and it's nice to have a game so quick so we can keep that momentum going."

Carrick also hailed Robin van Persie, who silenced his critics with a wonder strike to add to goals from Chris Smalling and Wayne Rooney against Steve Bruce's men.

He enthused: "It was some strike! It was only really half a chance, but he's controlled it and smashed it into the top corner.

"It's great when the boys up front are creating chances and scoring goals. If we can do what we did on Saturday on a more regular basis we'll be a real threat."