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Saturday, 16 March, 2002, 17:21 GMT
Man Utd win Upton Park thriller
David Beckham was on the scoresheet for Manchester United at Upton Park
Beckham celebrates scoring United's first goal
West Ham 3-5 Manchester United
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Manchester United twice came from behind to beat West Ham in a pulsating contest at a sodden Upton Park.

United's victory means Sir Alex Ferguson's team deservedly regain top spot in the Premier League after Liverpool's win at Middlesbrough earlier in the day had briefly put them above their great rivals.

Goals from Steve Lomas and Frederic Kanoute twice gave West Ham the lead but United bounced back through David Beckham and Nicky Butt in a mesmerising opening half hour.

  Key moments
8 mins: Lomas scores for West Ham
17 mins: Beckham scores for United
20 mins: Kanoute scores for West Ham
23 mins: Butt equalises for United
55 mins: Scholes scores
64 mins: Solskjaer scores for United
78 mins: Defoe scores for West Ham
88 mins: Beckham scores a penalty for United
The match was level at half-time but goals from the superlative Paul Scholes and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer put United in the ascendancy after the break.

West Ham substitute Jermain Defoe briefly gave the Hammers hope before a Beckham penalty restored United's two goal advantage.

The home side opened the scoring through former Manchester City midfielder Lomas after just eight minutes.

The Northern Ireland international met Vladimir Labant's superb cross and headed home via the underside of the crossbar from 18 yards.


This is the David Beckham that we all want to see - his goal was marvellous, delicate, just beautiful
Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson
United struggled to find their rhythm but a Joe Cole mistake allowed them to restore parity after 17 minutes.

An errant Cole pass found Paul Scholes, who picked out Beckham's run.

The England skipper exquisitely picked his spot and drilled the ball across David James from 18 yards.

Three minutes later Kanoute caressed Sebastian Schemmel's cross past Fabian Barthez from the edge of the area to restore the Hammers' lead.

But a scintillating opening 22 minutes of football concluded with the visitors equalising for a second time.

Butt reacted first to Beckham's free-kick and slotted the ball home with a right-foot shot from 18 yards.

Steve Lomas scored the opening goal of the game at Upton Park
Lomas celebrates his opening goal for West Ham
The remainder of the half continued at a high tempo, with both teams desperate to take the lead.

The second half continued in an open, attacking manner, but it was Manchester United who created the first clear-cut chance - and took the lead for the first time in the match.

Two West Ham defenders surrounded Solskjaer, but the Norwegian managed to squeeze a low cross towards the penalty spot.

And Scholes - completely unmarked ghosting into the penalty area - smashed the ball home from six yards.


It may have been a terrific match for the spectators but it was very disappointing to score three at home to Manchester United and not take at least a point
West Ham United manager Glenn Roeder
United then increased their advantage through Solskjaer after the Hammers failed to clear their lines.

James saved from Ruud van Nistelrooy and Solskjaer had his first shot blocked by Schemmel, but the Norwegian smashed the rebound home.

West Ham substitute Defoe latched onto a Kanoute pull-back to make the score 4-3.

But shortly afterwards Repka was adjudged to have fouled Scholes inside the penalty area and - with Van Nistelrooy already substituted - Beckham duly converted from the spot to wrap-up the points.


West Ham: James, Schemmel, Repka, Dailly, Winterburn (Defoe 74), Labant, Lomas, Carrick, Cole, Di Canio, Kanoute.
Subs Not Used: Hislop, Moncur, Pearce, Garcia.

Booked: Schemmel, Repka.

Man Utd: Barthez, Gary Neville, Blanc, Johnsen, Silvestre, Beckham, Scholes, Keane, Butt, van Nistelrooy (Fortune 87), Solskjaer (Forlan 84).
Subs Not Used: Carroll, Irwin, Phil Neville.

Booked: Gary Neville, Solskjaer.

Att: 35,281

Referee: M Halsey (Welwyn Garden City).

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 ON THIS STORY
BBC Sport's Mike Ingham
"A marvellous game"
Man Utd captain Roy Keane
"Try and tell our players to sit back!"
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