Louis van Gaal's position in the Old Trafford hot seat looked even more precarious as Stoke City swept Manchester United aside in a comfortable 2-0 victory to kickstart a busy day of Premier League holiday action.

Goals from Stoke forwards Bojan Krkic and Marko Arnautovic punished United for a dreadful start at a blustery Britannia Stadium and although the visitors improved in the second half they could not repair the damage on Saturday.

Top-scorers
15 J Vardy (Leicester City)           
13 R Lukaku (Everton)                
     R Mahrez (Leicester City)          
     O Ighalo (Watford)                 
11 H Kane (Tottenham)         
10 O Giroud (Arsenal)               
7   S Aguero (Manchester City)        
     G Wijnaldum (Newcastle)

Dutchman Van Gaal has overseen a seven-match winless run in which United have been eliminated from the Champions League and fallen out of the Premier League's top four.

Having stormed angrily out of his pre-match news conference on Wednesday, Van Gaal will now face further questions about his future in charge of England's record 20-time league champions.

United, who slipped down to sixth in the table, face Chelsea at home on Monday.

Elsewhere, Diego Costa scored twice as Chelsea were held to a 2-2 draw by Watford at Stamford Bridge in Guus Hiddink's first game in charge as temporary manager.

Leicester City were given a Premier League reality check when the unlikely leaders lost 1-0 at Liverpool.

Christian Benteke's second-half goal sealed the points at Anfield as Leicester suffered their first league defeat since September when they lost to Arsenal who could replace them at the top if they beat Southampton later.

Results:

Bournemouth 0-0 Crystal Palace

Aston Villa 1-1 West Ham United

Chelsea 2-2 Watford

Liverpool 1-0 Leicester City

Manchester City 4-1 Sunderland

Stoke City 2-0 Manchester United

Swansea City 1-0 West Bromwich Albion

Tottenham Hotspur 3-0 Norwich City

Source: Reuters