Crystal Palace beat London rivals West Ham United 3-1 at Upton Park on Saturday to pull further away from the relegation zone.
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The away side raced into a 2-0 lead with headers from Glenn Murray and Scott Dann either side of half time. Murray then added his second and Palace’s third with another header, but the Eagles striker was sent off for two yellows and Enner Valencia pulled one back for West Ham to set up a nervy finish.
Palace held on for a huge win, as they set a new club record by winning five games in a row away from home in all competitions and moved up to 12th spot on 30 points. West Ham remain in eighth on 39 points.
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Aaron Cresswell went close to giving West Ham the lead after 12 minutes as the left back picked up the ball 25-yards out and although he looked to have mishit a cross the ball flew just over the crossbar at Julian Speroni’s near post.
Mark Noble then came even close to putting the home side ahead, as the Hammers skipper curled a delightful free kick up and over the wall by the ball rattled the crossbar.
West Ham continued to push forward, however in the 25th minute Jason Puncheon slotted in Murray but Winston Reid pushed him off the ball and the Palace man fired wide. Five minutes later the same duo combined as Murray was in again but this time Adrian blocked his shot as the Eagles looked more dangerous. Murray was in the thick of things and was shown a yellow card for a late tackle on Cheikhou Kouyate and then could have been sent off after taking down Kouyate again moments later.
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Murray stayed on the pitch and in the 41st minute he headed a corner towards goal and Cresswell completely missed his kick and the ball bounced past Adrian, after taking a slight deflection, and into the net. 1-0 to Palace.
In the 51st minute Palace doubled their lead as Puncheon’s in-swinging corner from the right was headed home at the back post by Dann, as the Eagles center back towered over Reid and nodded home. 2-0.
Murray headed home another on 63 minutes as Puncheon whipped in a great free kick from the left and Murray sent a diving header past Adrian. 3-0, and three points were heading across the capital to south London. West Ham kept plugging away and debutant Nene curled a superb effort towards the top corner but it rattled off the post and went wide.
Palace’s two-goal hero Murray was then shown a second yellow card for a late challenge on Reid, as the Eagles were reduced to 10-men. Valencia then pulled a goal back as he fired into the bottom corner despite Speroni getting a touch on his effort. 3-1. Diafra Sakho then sent a header over the bar as the Hammers threw everything at Palace in the closing stages, with Carl Jenkinson, Stewart Downing and Valencia also going close. Palace dug deep and are now unbeaten in their last seven away games in all competitions.
West Ham United: Adrian, Jenkinson, Reid, Tomkins, Cresswell, Song (Nene, 61′), Noble, Kouyate, Downing, Sakho, Valencia
Goal: Valencia (76′)
Crystal Palace: Speroni, Ward, Delaney, Dann, Kelly, Jedinak, Mutch (McArthur, 33′), Bolasie (Ledley, 83′), Puncheon, Zaha (Ameobi, 72′), Murray
Goals: Murray (41′, 63′), Dann (51′)
Red card: Murray (69′)