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West Ham United
22 February 2014
• Selhurst Park, London
Referee: M. Oliver
• Attendance: 24571
R. van Persie 62'
W. Rooney 68'
That's it from me, Greg Taylor, thanks for being with us, have a great Saturday night.
Palace don't get a fourth home win but remain 15th and two points above the relegation zone. Utd meanwhile move up to sixth and overtake Everton in the race for fourth spot. A happy day for David Moyes. Not been too many of those this season.
FULL TIME: Utd get the win, they just had too much for Palace in the second half. Chamakh chopped Evra down in the box and Van Persie buried the penalty before Rooney killed them off with a brilliant half volley just inside the area.
90' + 3'
Utd just passing the ball around, ticking down the clock toc claim a big win in their hunt for fourth place.
90' + 1'
Yellow Card Ryan Giggs
90' + 1'
CHANCE! Dann arrives at the back post and has a free header but somehow heads it over from four yards out. That would have set up a close finish. Just a few minutes left now.
It's an identical scoreline to the one in September when these too met, 2-0 and both Van Persie and Rooney on the scoresheet. It's what Utd have missed all season. Palace have a throw on the nearside.
The game is just drawing to a close, Utd look happy with their work todaya nd Palace look a beaten side. Fletcher comes on for Fellaini, he's played well today the Belgian.
FACT: Before today Wayne Rooney had gone five successive league appearances without scoring or assisting a goal - his longest run since a seven-game spell in December 2011
Record signing Dwight Gayle comes on for Palace, can he nab a goal for the Eagles and force a tense finish?
Rooney tries to take on four players, he goes by three of them but Ward just nicks it and breaks up the attack. Puncheon brings the ball forward and switches it to Ince but his control lest him down and Utd regain possession.
Robin van Persie
Utd will go sixth if they win today, finally some good news for them. Palace look like they're beaten here, they don't have much creativity in the middle and Utd look set for a comfortable final 10 minutes.
Lovely pass by Rooney to Smalling on the right hand side, the young English defender puts in a first time cross but no one is there to attack it. Giggs and Valencia are warming up and about to come on.
Another change for Palace as Marouane Chamakh makes way for Yannick Bolasie. Just under 15 minutes left to play.
Utd now are able to sit deep and let Palace come. This is a rare position for Utd this season, they look comfortable and quite creative. Ferdinand has looked brillant tonight, he may not be what he was but he's such a calming influence in the team and reads the game so well.
Palace have another corner and Ince will take it after Vidic beats Jerome to the ball. Not a great delivery, Rooney heads it clear to Mata who collects the ball and brings it away for Utd.
OFF THE BAR! Van Persie is released down the left, he weaves in and out and then hits a bullet of a shot but it canons off the underside of the bar. So close to 3-0.
Goal Wayne Rooney
GOAL! What a goal by Rooney! Mata is brilliant donwn the left, he slips in between two players and passes it to Evra who brilliantly cuts it back to Rooney just inside the area and lashes home briliantly on the half volley. Speroni had no chance.
GREAT SAVE! Jerome has just come on to replace Murray and is immeidtaley involved. Jedinak wins the ball back in the middle and tries to feed Cameron, it falls nicely for him and he curls a low effort round Vidic but De Gea flies down to his left and tips it round the post. Great stop.
CHANCE! Lovely give and go by Rooney and Mata, the Spaniard back heels a pass to Fellaini on the edge of the area who hits it well but Speroni is equal to it.
Mata has been fairly quiet so far, not quite what Utd were hoping for after sending £37 million pounds. But he plays a beautiul pass cross field to Evra and Utd look to exploit the space down the left.
Penalty Goal Robin van Persie
GOAL! Van Persie makes no mistake, he sends Speroni the wrong way and buries it into the top right hand corner. Now Palace can't just sit back, which means Utd will have more space on the counter attack.
PENALTY! Utd have a penalty, Januzaj slips the ball into Evra just inside the penalty area and Chamakh recklessly brings him down. Van Persie to take it.
Yellow Card Nemanja Vidic
Utd look a litle frustrated now, they can't seem to break this Palace side down. Murray does well to hold the ball up and draws a foul by Vidic. Palace have a free kick.
STAT ATTACK: Palace have not beaten United in the league since a 3-0 Division One win in May 1991, when Ian Wright and two goals from John Salako secured victory.
Good play by Utd's front four but Januzaj's shot is blocked and Van Persie can't quite get a touch on the rebound. Jedinak gives the ball away again and Rooney passes to Mata. But Palace have eight men behind the ball and Utd are struggling to break them down.
Rooney brings the ball out of midfield but Park reads his pass to Smalling and comes away with it. Van Persie doesn't give up on it though and wins it back. Good defending from the front by the Dutchman.
Fellaini is pushing forward at every opportunity, whenever Carrick is on the ball he looks to push on. So far it's not had much effect and Palace look very comfortable.
Palace win another corner, it's whipped in toward De Gea who has to punch it over for another corner kick. Puncheon turns brilliantly past Vidic and crosses to the back post but Ince volleys over.
Free kick to Palace, it's floated into the back post and comes off Fellaini. Palace have a corner, Ward to take it. It's cleared away by Rooney at the near post and eventually out for a throw for Palace.
We're back underway, the Eagles get us going.
A few half time stats, Utd made 349 passes in that first half and had 72 per cent posession to Palace's 127 passes and 28 per cent. Butboth sides only had one attempt on target, Utd will have to create more if they're gonna win this.
You feel as the game goes on and players get tired, Utd will create something and win this.But so far, Tony Pulis can be very happy with his side. Neither team has had a golden opportunity, but Fellaini should have scored before half time but blazed over.
HALF TIME: There's the whistle for the break, Palace have looked very solid so far, Utd have been on the front foot but have been unable to create a clear cut chance.
Great opportunity for Utd, Carrick is fouled by Jedinak on the edge of the area. Can Rooney score? No, up and over the wall but drags it just wide. Another chance gone begging for the away side.
CHANCE! Good play by Utd, Fellaini feeds van Persie in the box, he holds it up and cuts it back to Fellaini but the big Belgian hits it just over from 12 yards out. Big chance that for Utd. Moyes not happy.
Rooney finds some spaceafter a neat pass from Mata, he hits it well from 25 yards out but Speroni is equal to it and he kicks it up field.
Chamakh is down injured after a small collision with Fellaini. He looks ok and is back on his feet and we're back underway.
Palace look like they've weathered the storm and it's they who are trying to end the half on offensive. Pulis looks relatively happy in his tracksuit and baseball cap, he won't want to conede before the break.
The Eagle supporters are in great voice tonight. Really trying to get their side up for this. Rooney plays a diagonal ball toward Smalling but Chamakh uses his strength to usher the ball out of play for a Palace throw.
Good cross from the left to Chamakh, his header is into the ground and De Gea easily collects. Palace look strong at the back and are trying to counter with speed, so far not much between the two sides.
Rooney uses his strength to knock Chamakh off the ball and slips van Persie in, he's one n one but Speroni makes a good save. He was offside the Dutchman but Utd are looking dangerous.
Palace fans aren't happy about a challenge from Mata on Chamakh in Utd's box. The little Spaniard's foot is high and into the Moroccan but the referee waves play on. Lucky escape for the Red Devils.
WHAT A MISS! Rooney eventually takes the corner after more harassment from the Palace supporters, it's falls to Vidic who can simply head in from a yard out but some how, the Serbian heads it over. Shocker.
Man Utd aren't getting too frustrated at the moment, but they'll want to make this early pressure tell. Utd have another corner.
Januzaj has looked the most lively so far, but Ward is defending really well and staying very close to the young Utd starlet. Utd have another corner after good work by Smalling. Chamakh closes Evra down well and Palace have a free kick.
Utd look comfortable at the moment, playing it wide at every opportunity. They crossed Fulham to death but were unable to score, sometimes a more direct approach may help them. Palace have a goal kick.
STAT ATTACK: Palace are enjoying a four-match unbeaten home run in the league, winning the last three. They have never won four straight home games in the Premier League.
DISALLOWED GOAL! Van Persie looks for Januzaj, the youngster controls it and hits a half volley on the edge of the area into the top hand corner but he's penalised for hand ball. They're getting closer.
Mata is everywhere. Definitely not staying on the left, he's drifting all over the place. Palace are playing very deep and need to get out of their own half.
Fellaini isn't afraid to get forward tonight. He's popped up in advanced positions and is trying to cause Palace some aerial threat. Palace have a free kick after Puncheon is fouled near the half way line.
Rooney tries to take a corner but a firework goes off and a few things are thrown on the pitch. He eventually takes it short and they switch it to Mata, who plays a brilliant 5 yard cross field ball to Januzaj. His cross is blocked and Utd have a throw.
Utd look better on the ball with Mata, Januzaj and Rooney in the side. All wanting it and moving about, trying to crate something. Palace just chaisng the ball at the moment and trying to soak up the pressure.
CHANCE! He's looked bright in the opening exchanges, and Januzaj has the first real sighter of gola for Utd. He plays a one two with van Persie but drags his shot just wide. Better from Utd.
Ward runs at Evra and is about to shoot but Fellaini gets an important block to stop the attack. Utd now switching it wide to Mata who slips it into Rooney, the Englishman tries to find van Persie but it's intercepted.
Man Utd fans will be confident of a victory tonight, especially when you look at past meetings between the two sides. Manchester United are unbeaten in their last 11 league meetings with Crystal Palace (W9, D2). But in a season where a host of impressive Utd records against sides have fallen, will today be another to go down the pan?
Fast start by both sides, Palace looks bright and Puncheon immediately tries to run at Vidic and Ferdinand. Carrick nicks it back and Utd clear. Another cross from the right, Murray meets it and his header is deflected out for a Palace corner.
The referee blows his whistle and we're away, Man Utd with kick off.
The players are in the tunnel, so we'll be underway very shortly.
All eyes this evening will be on Wayne Rooney. Yesterday the England striker signed a new contract committing himself to the Red Devils until 2019, and on around £300,000 per week. I'm sure he can treat himself to a nice new shiny pair of boots for the occasion.
STAT ATTACK: The Eagles have won 19 points since Tony Pulis took charge on 30 November, just two points less than Manchester United (21) despite playing a game less. So who would have thought that at the beginning of the season?
Palace boss Tony Pulis makes two changes, Jonathan Parr and last season's top scorer Glenn Murray are both recalled, while Kagisho Dikgacoi and Yannick Bolasie are the men to make way.
Man Utd boss David Moyes has made three changes from the side that drew 0-0 with Arsenal last time out. Adnan Januzaj and Rio Ferdinand both return to the starting lineup, while smmer signing Marouane Fellaini is recalled after two months out through injury.
MAN UTD SUBS: Lindegaard, Valencia, Fletcher, Giggs, Kagawa, Young, Hernandez
MAN UTD: De Gea; Smalling, Vidic, Ferdinand, Evra; Carrick, Fellaini; Mata, Rooney, Januzaj; Van Persie
PALACE SUBS: Hennessey, Gabbidon, Dikgacoi, Bannan, Bolasie, Gayle, Jerome
PALACE: Speroni; Ward, Dann, Delaney, Parr; Puncheon, Jedinak, Ledley, Ince; Chamakh, Murray
Before we go any further, let's have a look at how both sides are lining up, starting with the home side.
If David Moyes' men are going to challenge for the top four they need to win today, and probably all their remaining matches. Palace are also desperate for a win too as they look to continue their resurgence under Pulis in recent months. Last year I would have said, Man Utd would win this with ease, these days, as we saw with their away trip to Stoke three weeks ago, nothing is a certainty anymore.
No excuses for either side today. Palace haven't played since their win over West Brom two weeks ago and Man Utd have been sunning themselves in Dubai for the past 10 days while their rivals (perhaps not anymore) Chelsea, Arsenal, Liverpool and Man City have been doing battle in the FA Cup and Champions League.
Hello and welcome to this afternoon's LIVE play-by-play commentary of the Premier League meeting between Crystal Palace and Man Utd here at Selhurst Park. My name is Greg Taylor and I'll be guiding you through all the action.
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