Joel Ward, Adnan Januzaj

Crystal Palace 0-2 Manchester United: Rooney celebrates new deal with volley blast (video)

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Manchester United saw goals from its two stars as Robin van Persie’s penalty kick and Wayne Rooney’s pretty volley were more than enough for the Red Devils to get all three points with a 2-0 win over Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park.

The Red Devils pull ahead of Everton on goal differential for the sixth-place slot, while Crystal Palace stay in 15th.

United had a good chance in the first 10 minutes but Marouane Fellaini couldn’t connect with a deflected cross by van Persie, and the ball went out for a corner that Palace cleared.

Premier League Roundup: Chelsea, Man City, Arsenal and Man United grab wins

The Eagles earned a free kick in a dangerous spot in the 14th minute, and Tom Ince sent an arrow cross into the middle that was cleared by United.

Manchester United appeared to take the lead in the 17th minute but Adnan Januzaj was deemed to have collected another deflected van Persie pass with his arm, nullifying the potential opening goal.

Wayne Rooney’s 27th minute cross met danger but was popped into the air far post before Nemanja Vidic headed the ball over the bar. Five minutes later, van Persie raced onto the end of a cross into the box but couldn’t beat Speroni with his left foot.

Fellaini butchered a second prime chance in the 43rd minute, failing to convert on a wide-open look inside the 18. Rooney had a free kick before half that he curled a few yards right of the Palace goal.

Palace started the second half strong, as Ince and Jason Puncheon each made their impacts felt.

Yet it was a mistake from Chamakh that changed the course of the game with a silly challenge near the edge of the box that felled Patrick Evra. Van Persie stepped up and finished from the spot to make it 1-0 in the 62nd.

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New (more) money man Rooney slammed a left-footed volley home from just beyond the spot, a beautiful goal to double United’s advantage in the 68th minute.

CP sub Yannick Bolasie made a cutting dribble through the United midfield in the 77th minute, but his low screened shot was collected by David De Gea.

LINEUPS

Crystal Palace: Speroni, Ward, Dann, Delaney, Parr, Puncheon, Jedinak, Ledley, Ince (Gayle, 85), Chamakh (Bolasie, 74), Murray (Jerome, 66).

Manchester United: De Gea, Smalling, Vidic, Ferdinand, Evra, Fellaini (Fletcher, 88), Carrick, Januzaj (Giggs, 80), Mata, Rooney, van Persie (Valencia, 8o)

Goals: van Persie (62), Rooney (68)

Pep Guardiola: “Maybe I’m not good enough”

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Pep Guardiola has admitted he “may not be good enough” for his players at Manchester City.

Ahead of City’s clash against Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday (Watch live, 12:30 p.m. ET on NBC and online via NBCSports.com) Guardiola has been defended his squad after severe criticism from the media.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights

City were hammered 4-0 at Everton last weekend, their worst league defeat since 2008 and Guardiola’s worst-ever league defeat as a manager.

With plenty pointing the finger of blame at goalkeeper Claudio Bravo and City’s defense, their manager put himself in the firing line.

“They are good players. I have respect for the guys, so why would I say the guys are not good? So I don’t understand the lack of respect for the professionals when they have been amazing players, and [people saying] they are not good enough for me. Maybe I am not good enough for them,” Guardiola said. “They are Manchester City players, top players. They have a lot of quality. They have shown that many times in the past and this season.”

Mind games.

Guardiola, 46, is no doubt facing the biggest challenge of his season as City look to at least seal a top four spot in this his debut season in England. The former Barcelona and Bayern Munich manager has already “said goodbye to the title” and if they lose against red-hot Tottenham at the Etihad Stadium then more questions will be asked of his tactics and if they can work in the Premier League.

So far the possession-based slow build up style has been hot and cold for City, with plenty of counter-attacking teams in the PL (Chelsea, Spurs, Everton, Leicester etc.) having a field day against a shaky defense.

Despite being 10 points off the pace, Guardiola is sticking by his philosophy. One thing really sticks out to me from his first few press conferences in England: “We will see if my style of play can work in the Premier League.”

So far, it’s not.

Watch Live: Liverpool vs. Swansea City (Lineups, Stream)

SWANSEA, WALES - MARCH 16:  Kyle Naughton of Swansea City is closed down by Philippe Coutinho of Liverpool during the Barclays Premier League match between Swansea City and Liverpool at Liberty Stadium on March 16, 2015 in Swansea, Wales.  (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)
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Liverpool host Swansea City to Anfield on Saturday (Watch live, 7:30 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com) with the Reds aiming to stretch their unbeaten run at home in the Premier League to 18 games.

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Jurgen Klopp is a little concerned with the number of games his team have had to play over the past few weeks, but a victory against the struggling Swans would momentarily move his side just four points behind leaders Chelsea who play on Sunday.

As for Swansea, new manager Paul Clement knows a win would take his team out of the relegation zone and with new signings arriving that would be a massive boost. It would also be a massive ask for the Welsh side to get anything at Anfield but this may be a good time to play Liveprool after their midweek trip to Plymouth in the FA Cup and the EFL Cup semifinal second leg against Southampton coming up on Wednesday.

In team news Liverpool start with Philippe Coutinho once again, while Joel Matip is on the bench after the Reds finally settled the dispute with Cameroon. Swansea hand debuts to new signings Martin Olsson and Tom Carroll.

LINEUPS

Liverpool: Mignolet; Clyne, Lovren, Klavan, Milner; Can, Henderson, Wijnaldum; Lallana, Coutinho, Firmino. Subs: Karius, Sturridge, Moreno, Lucas, Origi, Matip, Woodburn

Swansea City: Fabianski; Olsson, Mawson, Fernandez, Naughton; Cork, Carroll, Fer; Sigurdsson, Llorente, Routledge. Subs: Nordfeldt, Rangel, Amat, Fulton, Dyer, Borja, McBurnie

Viktoria Plzen set to sign midfielder Andreas Ivanschitz

Obafemi Martins, Oniel Fisher, Andreas Ivanschitz
Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP)
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PRAGUE (AP) Czech champion Viktoria Plzen is close to signing Austrian midfielder Andreas Ivanschitz.

Plzen says Ivanschitz agreed terms for a contract lasting 1 + seasons and will sign it when the team returns from a training camp in Spain. Ivanschitz has already joined the squad at the Oliva Nova resort, the club says.

Ivanschitz helped the Seattle Sounders win their first MLS Cup in December.

[ NEW HOMES: Fonte | Berahino ]

No financial details were given.

The 33-year-old Ivanschitz also played for Rapid Vienna and Red Bull Salzburg in Austria, Mainz in the Bundesliga, Levante in Spain and Panathinaikos in Athens.

Ivanschitz played 69 games for Austria in 2003-14, scoring 12 goals.

FIFA allows Matip to represent Liverpool during AFCON

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 29: Joel Matip of Liverpool heads to score his team's third goal during the Premier League match between Crystal Palace and Liverpool at Selhurst Park on October 29, 2016 in London, England.  (Photo by Christopher Lee/Getty Images)
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Joel Matip is going to get to play for Liverpool during AFCON after all.

The center back had turned down the chance to represent Cameroon at the Africa Cup of Nations, and Liverpool was forced to apply to FIFA for a waiver.

[ PL PREVIEW: Swansea vs. Liverpool ]

Matip suffered an ankle injury in December, adding to his desire to stay at Anfield. He declared himself internationally retired and was one of six Cameroon players who refused call-ups for AFCON.

He last played for the Reds on Dec. 11, and can be selected by Jurgen Klopp against Swansea City on Saturday.