Live Commentary: Manchester United 2-0 Crystal Palace - as it happened

Relive Sports Mole's minute-by-minute coverage of Manchester United's 2-0 win over Crystal Palace in the Premier League.

Manchester United picked up their first home win of the season on Saturday as they beat Crystal Palace 2-0.

Robin van Persie scored a penalty on the stroke of half time for the hosts after Kagisho Dikgacoi had been sent off for a foul on Ashley Young.

The points were then sealed late on thanks to a free kick from Wayne Rooney.

Read Sports Mole's minute-by-minute report below to find out how the action unfolded.

11.46amHello there and welcome to Sports Mole's live text coverage of today's Premier League meeting between champions Manchester United and Crystal Palace.

11.48amWe should have some team news coming in shortly. The big question is whether Marouane Fellaini will make his debut for United...

11.51amPALACE XI: Speroni; Mariappa, Campana, Digkacoi, Puncheon, Jedinak, Gayle, Gabbidon, Moxey, Delaney, Chamakh

11.52amPALACE SUBS: Alexander, O'Keefe, Phillips, Kebe, Jerome, Guediora, Bannan

11.54amPalace team news first then, and Ian Holloway has named an unchanged side following the team's win over Sunderland before the international break. Meanwhile, deadline-day signing Barry Bannan makes the bench for the Eagles.

11.55amMAN UTD XI: De Gea; Fabio, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra; Valencia, Carrick, Anderson, Young; Rooney, Van Persie

11.56amMAN UTD SUBS: Amos, Evans, Chicharito, Cleverley, Zaha, Fellaini, Januzaj

11.59amThe big team news for Man Utd is that Marouane Fellaini starts on the bench, while Wayne Rooney begins in attack with Robin van Persie. Elsewhere, Fabio, Antonio Valencia and Anderson all come into the starting XI.

12.01pmIf there are any United fans out there who are wondering where Shinji Kagawa is, he's apparently got flu.

12.05pmSo, to business. Man Utd have the chance to get back to winning ways today after losing to Liverpool before the international break. The players took a fair bit of flack for their performance at Anfield, but this is not a bad fixture to get them back on track.

12.07pmThat said, Palace come to Old Trafford in confident spirits following their 3-1 victory over Sunderland last time out. That was the Eagles first win of the season.

12.10pmUnited start the match in seventh place in the Premier League table, while Palace sit in 14th spot. You can see the full standings here.

12.14pmThere seems to be a fair bit of incredulity over Rooney's inclusion today. The striker has been out of action with a nasty gash on his forehead that he picked up in training. It seems that he was expected to be sidelined for a lot longer, but David Moyes has sprung something of a surprise by putting him in today.

12.18pmWhat about Palace today? Dwight Gayle, Mile Jedinak and Jason Puncheon will all be important for the visitors today, particularly Puncheon with his pace on the break. Meanwhile, this is a great stage for Marouane Chamakh to prove a lot of doubters wrong.


12.24pmAs you can see from that previous tweet, it looks like a fine, bright day at Old Trafford. One or two Fellaini wigs knocking around as well.

12.30pmThe head-to-head record between these two sides does not make good reading for Palace fans. They've won just seven out of 39 matches, while United have come out on top on 23 occasions.

12.33pmHowever, the last meeting saw Palace earn a shock 2-1 victory after extra time in the League Cup quarter-finals two years ago. That match will be remembered for Darren Ambrose's screamer to put the visitors ahead:

12.36pmIn terms of the Premier League, it was a 0-0 draw in their last match at Selhurst Park in March 2005. The reverse fixture at Old Trafford saw United ease to a 5-2 win.

12.39pmSome big news off the pitch for today's match as Sir Alex Ferguson will be in the stands for the first time since his retirement.

12.42pmHere come the players!

12.43pmThose who enjoy taking the mickey out of Wayne Rooney have been given some glorious ammunition today. The cut on his forehead isn't fully healed so he's wearing a fetching headband.

1 minIt will Man Utd to get this one underway. Here we go!

3 minThe hosts have started at a frenetic pace here, attacking Palace at every opportunity. They get an early corner which gets cleared before Carrick's fizzing effort from long range is pushed away by Speroni.

5 minRooney is seeing plenty of the ball in these early stages. He tries to find Van Persie with a floated ball over the top, only for the Palace defence to deal with the danger.

7 minIt's not all been United during the opening few minutes though. Palace have shown some flashes of menace on the break.

9 minPENALTY APPEAL! United want a penalty as Evra goes down under the challenge of Jedinak inside the area, but referee Jon Moss waves play on. On further inspection it looks like the Frenchman went down a bit too easily.

10 minAnother United corner sees the ball get taken off the head of Vidic thanks to some decent defending from Chamakh.

13 minPalace's problem at the moment is keeping the ball. The away side have seen a fair bit of it, but they lose it almost instantly when they find themselves in possession.

14 minWIDE! Fabio has a crack at goal from an improbable angle, and he fails to hit the target as the ball flies well wide of Speroni's post.

17 minPalace's early forays into the United half seem to have dried up for now. The hosts are getting more and more dominant as this match goes on. Ian Holloway's side need to be careful because it's a dangerous tactic trying to soak up pressure from the champions.

19 minYELLOW CARD! Young goes into the book for a dive after going over the leg of Dikgacoi in the area. It's a great decision from Jon Moss as the United winger was very much looking for that.

22 minUnited really are controlling everything now. They win two more corners that get cleared by the Palace defence before play is stopped for an offside.

24 minYoung, who is looking pretty dangerous at the moment, hooks in a cross with his left foot that Speroni does well to catch under pressure from Rooney and Van Persie.

27 minOne statistic that highlights United's dominance: Palace are yet to complete a pass in the final third.

29 minSHOT! Rooney takes aim from a very long way out, but Speroni gathers the ball easily. To be fair to the striker he hit that very sweetly indeed.

33 minPalace are likely to be pretty pleased with how this is going so far. For all of United's dominance, they've not really threatened seriously. It's just not clicking for the champions at the moment.

35 minCHANCE! United almost break the deadlock through Van Persie, who fires narrowly wide from Evra's cross. Now that was an opportunity.

39 minOFF THE BAR! Van Persie nearly scores with a spectacular volley, but it crashes off the bar! Rooney picked out his teammate in the box, who then chested the ball onto his right foot. However, the powerful strike failed to dip in time.

42 minCHANCE! Out of nowhere Palace nearly go in front! Ferdinand misjudges a long ball, allowing Gayle to get in behind. The youngster is at a tight angle, and his poke towards goal goes wide.

43 minPENALTY TO MAN UTD! This time the home side do get a penalty as Young goes down under a clumsy challenge from behind from Dikgacoi who gets a red card.


44 minRobin van Persie makes not mistake from the penalty spot as he sends Speroni the wrong way. Going back to the original challenge and sending off, it looked to be a good decision from the referee. Dikgacoi bundled into the back of Young, who went down without his usual theatrics.


1.35pmThe half-time whistle goes and Manchester United have a slender lead thanks to Robin van Persie's penalty. It's been far from convincing from the champions, but they deserve to be ahead due to their dominance in that opening 45 minutes. Palace are still in this though.

1.40pmIt's safe to say that David Moyes is likely to make changes soon. One player who can't expect to complete the full 90 minutes is Anderson. Simply put, the Brazilian was awful in the opening half, giving the ball away and looking totally lost at times. Could Fellaini's debut be imminent?

46 minCrystal Palace get the second half underway...

48 minCHANCE! Young has a great opportunity to doubled United's lead, but his shot from the edge of the area is batted away by Speroni.

50 minPalace get a couple of free kicks in quick succession which bring some sarcastic cheers from the away support. You get the impression that they feel a bit hard done by today.

52 minWIDE! Gayle tries his luck from about 25 yards, but the effort is a weak one that goes harmlessly wide of De Gea's post. He's been Palace's best player so far today.

54 minYELLOW CARD! Chamakh goes into the book for a late challenge on Vidic.

55 minWIDE! Nearly a goal again for Young, who cuts in from the left before curling the ball inches wide. That had Speroni worried.

57 minGroans of discontent from the United fans as Evra cuts the ball back to no one on the edge of the area. The Frenchman made one of his trademark surges down the left there, only to fail with the final ball.

59 minSUBSTITUTION: Palace make their first change of the afternoon as Jose Campana is replaced by deadline-day signing Adlene Guedioura.

61 minCHANCE! This time Evra does find a teammate on inside the box, but Van Persie blazes his shot well over the bar. That could easily have been 2-0.

62 minSUBSTITUTION: Here he comes! Marouane Fellaini is brought off the bench for his Manchester United debut, replacing Anderson.

63 minSUBSTITUTION: Another change for Palace now as Cameron Jerome comes on for Dwight Gayle.

66 minSUBSTITUTION: United introduce Adnan Januzaj for Ashley Young.

69 minCHANCE! Van Persie nearly gets his second of the match, but the Dutchman's rasping drive goes inches over the bar. The hosts are cranking up the pressure now.

73 minCHANCE! Carrick finds Rooney in the area, but the striker can't get the ball out of his feet. He eventually gets a second bit of the cherry, though his shot is blocked. Meanwhile Jimmy Kebe is on for Palace.

76 minSAVE! Speroni does well to keep the ball out after Van Persie worked himself some space in the box before firing low and hard on the angle. United are camped in the Palace half at the moment.

78 minSUBSTITUTION: United's final change of the match sees goalscorer Robin van Persie go off for Javier Hernandez.


80 minThat should be that for Manchester United as Wayne Rooney doubled their lead with a sumptuous free kick. He managed to get the ball up and over the wall from about 25 yards out, and Speroni just wasn't able to get to it as it nestled in the corner.

83 minFor those who like to analyse Rooney's body language, he looked pretty chuffed to get that goal. No wild celebrations, but there was a semblance of a smile on his lips.

86 minUnited are just going through the motions now, keeping the ball solidly and making sure that Palace don't get any ideas to attack.

88 minHernandez is played in by Rooney on the right side, but the Mexican can only plant his shot into the hands of Speroni.

90 minFour minutes of added time...

90+2 minPalace get a late corner following a break, only for Delaney to head off target while under pressure from the United defence.


2.39pmThe full-time whistle goes and David Moyes has his first home win as Manchester United manager thanks to a 2-0 victory over Crystal Palace. Robin van Persie's penalty gave the hosts the lead on the stroke of half time before a late Wayne Rooney free kick sealed the three points.

2.40pmAnyway, that's all from me for now. Don't forget that we have live text coverage of all today's Premier League matches here on Sports Mole, so stick around and fill your boots. Thank you and goodbye!

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Manchester United Manager David Moyes looks on during the Barclays Premier League match between Liverpool and Manchester United at Anfield on September 01, 2013
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