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Game played on 13 Sep 1997

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Manchester United 2-1 West Ham

Premier League    1997-98
Old Trafford   55,068
1Ludek Miklosko    
2Tim Breacker    
24Michael Hughes   
4Steve Potts    
15Rio Ferdinand    
6David Unsworth    
16John Moncur    
29Eyal Berkovic    
9Paul Kitson    
10John Hartson 1 
11Steve Lomas    
18Frank Jnr LampardSubed #16   
 PosTable as at 13 Sep 1997PlWHDHLHFHAHWADALAFAAAPts
1Manchester United6300612104016
2Blackburn Rovers5210932006113
5Leicester City6220731012211
6West Ham United6200521125610
8Coventry City622075002058
9Tottenham Hotspur620144012157
10Derby County420041002026
11Newcastle United320144000006
12Aston Villa610114103556
13Crystal Palace600316201426
16Bolton Wanderers501000112585
17Leeds United501215101324
19Sheffield Wednesday6101230135124
match review copied from

Man Utd 2 West Ham 1 By Rob King, PA Sport Football Correspondent

Roy Keane drove champions Manchester United back to the Premiership summit with another inspirational display at home to West Ham.

The tireless Irishman cancelled out John Hartson's 13th minute goal, thefirst Peter Schmeichel had conceded in 693 minutes, before England youngster Paul Scholes capped his wonderful week with the 75th minute winner.

It takes Alex Ferguson's men three points clear of Blackburn, who play Leeds tomorrow.

And Keane will surely now find himself a marked man in Slovakia in Wednesday when Joszef Moeder reports back to Kosice, their opening Champions' League opponents.

Keane is a godsend for a team still struggling to produce its best, refusing to let them take their foot off the pedal for a moment, driving them forward constantly.

His self-disregard and ferocious tackling alongside the gutsy Nicky Butt ensures any team must be brave and determined to get a midfield foothold.

John Hartson, whose comments about driving under the influence sparked understandable controversy this week, was booked when he squared up to Keane just before the end after another biting challenge.

The Londoners arrived full of confidence after their surprise start to the season had lifted them into third place, and they began well enough.

But for most of the second half they were pinned in their own penalty area and simply ran out of strength to resist their eighth consecutive Old Trafford defeat.

Harry Redknapp was encouraged by the sight of Henning Berg in the home defence, suspecting he might be jaded after two tough World Cup ties for Norway, and Gary Pallister, who was hit by a new back problem on England duty.

So he set Eyal Berkovic to run at them and feed Hartson and Paul Kitson on a surface slicked by frequent heavy downpours inbetween the sunbursts.

Fortunes turned in the space of seconds in the 13th minute. Keane swept onto Beckham's pass and from fully 30 yards cracked a magnificent shot against Miklosko's crossbar.

West Ham turned the scrambled clearance into a hopeful counter attack andspeculation turned into dramatic profit when Pallister, trying to steer the ball back to Schmeichel from the right-hand corner, miscued his header.

Hartson intercepted and rounded the great Dane as he raced off his line to notch the Hammers' 50th Old Trafford goal.

Then Berkovic sent Kitson racing clear of Pallister. Schmeichel managed to take the pace off his shot with a save on the border of his area and spun round to pounce on the loose ball.

Andy Cole missed a simple equaliser after Keane had tenaciously battled past Unsworth and Michael Hughes to deliver the ball low across the face of goal.

But in the 21st minute United levelled with a large stroke of luck, Keane again trying his luck from distance and delighted when his shot looped up off the back of John Moncur and flew past the wrong-footed goalkeeper, his second goal in successive matches.

Miklosko proved a stubborn final obstacle as United asserted their authority, though he knew little about his stop from Beckham on the half hour, the skidding shot flying to safety off his upper chest.

But his 37th minute save from Cole was quite exceptional, the big Czech blocking at point blank range as the United striker flew in front of his marker to get his head on Beckham's teasing cross.

West Ham retreated in the second half, soaking up pressure with a convincing imitation of a punchdrunk boxer.

Beckham was a splinter away from putting United ahead on the hour, curling Gary Neville's short corner from the left onto the crossbar at the far post with Miklosko beaten. Pallister chipped the ball back in for Scholes to head wide.

The pressure on West Ham was intense with Giggs a bootlace away from turning in Beckham's cross soon after.

Karel Poborsky gave fresh impetus to the siege in the 68th minute, replacing the tiring Giggs who immediately went to the dressing room.

Scholes should have struck the second soon after, sidefooting wide from Phil Neville's inviting low cross after the youngster was put in by Keane.

United finally claimed the lead they deserved through Scholes in the 75th minute.

Gary Neville's cross from the right was half-cleared to Beckham who returned it into the middle for Scholes to run on and head past Miklosko's right hand from 10 yards.

It completed a great week for the 22-year-old who scored on his World Cupdebut for England against Moldova on Wednesday.

United looked home and dry but the visitors roused themselves for a final effort and Schmeichel almost handed them a sensational point when he fumbled Unsworth's long range shot.

He only just clawed the ball back before it dribbled over his line, a reminder that United cannot afford such lapses of concentration in Slovakia this week.


Man Utd: Schmeichel, G. Neville, Pallister, Beckham, Butt, Cole (McClair 89), Giggs (Poborsky 67), P. Neville, Keane, Scholes, Berg.

Subs Not Used: Irwin, Van Der Gouw, Clegg.

Booked: Berg.

Goals: Keane 21, Scholes 76.

West Ham: Miklosko, Breacker, Potts, Ferdinand, Unsworth, Moncur (Lampard 80), Berkovic, Lomas, Hughes, Hartson, Kitson.

Subs Not Used: Sealey, Dowie, Terrier, Rowland.

Booked: Hughes, Hartson.

Goals: Hartson 14.

Att: 55,068

Ref: D R Elleray (Harrow-on-the-Hill).

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much respect to John Northcutt, Roy Shoesmith, Jack Helliar, John Helliar, Tony Hogg, Tony Brown, Fred Loveday, Andrew Loveday, Steve Bacon, Steve Marsh and all past/current West Ham players and supporters