Crystal Palace 1-3 Southampton: Saints up to fourth after easy win

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Southampton beat Crystal Palace 3-1 on Boxing Day at Selhurst Park to more into the top four of the Premier League.

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Saints went ahead through Sadio Mane and in the second half goals from Ryan Bertrand and Toby Alderweireld wrapped up a comfortable win. Palace were second-best throughout, as Scott Dann headed home at the back post late on to make it 3-1.

After their win Saints sit in fourth place on 32 points, while Palace drop into the relegation zone as they have 15 points.

[ RELATED: Latest Premier League standings ]

Saints started brightly as Toby Alderweireld hooked an effort towards goal which Julian Speroni tipped onto the crossbar. Puncheon was then denied a goal against his old club as Fraser Forster tipped his effort away, as an even game unfolded in the rain at Selhurst Park.

After 17 minutes Mane gave Saints the lead as he played a fabulous one-two with James Ward-Prowse and the Senegalese winger took it around Speroni and tapped home to make it 1-0.

Palace recovered well after going behind as Jedinak had a shot saved by Fraser Forster after a free kick routine, but Saints should have doubled their lead before the break when Ward-Prowse went clean through but a bobble saw the youngster fire over the bar.

In the second half Saints pulled away from Palace as Bertrand scored a stunning finish with his right foot inside the box to make it 2-0 just two minutes after the break. Soon after it was 3-0 to Saints as Alderweireld scored his first goal for the club, as Palace’s defense crumbled.

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Southampton had chances to increase their lead late on as Mane went close but Palace pulled one back to make it 3-1 with Dann heading home at the back post. The Saints had to settle for three goals, three points and place in the top four. All in all, not a bad Boxing Day for the Saints.

LINEUPS

Crystal Palace: Speroni, Mariappa, Dann, Delaney, Ward, Jedinak, Puncheon, McArthur, Ledley (Zaha, 67′), Bolasie (Kelly, 72′), Campbell (Gayle, 49′)

Southampton: Forster, Yoshida, Alderweireld, Gardos, Clyne (McCarthy, 87′), Schneiderlin, Ward-Prowse, S. Davis (Wanyama, 56′), Bertrand, Mane, Pelle (Long, 72′)

Goals: Mane (17′), Bertrand (48′), Alderweireld (53′)