Sheffield United 0 Crystal Palace 3

Last updated : 07 February 2004 By Footymad Previewer

First Division Manager of the Month Iain Dowie saw his side record their fifth win in six games, with this 3-0 victory at promotion hopefuls Sheffield United.

Goals either side of half time by Andy Johnson and Tony Popovic and, as time ran out, from Neil Shipperley saw Palace continue their climb towards the play-offs.

For Untied, the defeat was their third consecutive in which they failed to score a goal.

Buoyed by their recent form, Palace started brightly. Popovic going close, before Danny Butterfield tested the frame of a goal with a 25-yard volley.

Michael Tonge and Paul Peschisolido went close for United before Blades defender Rob Kozluk nearly gifted Palace the lead on 34 minutes, when Johnson intercepted his header back to the goalkeeper. But the striker's first touch let him down and Paddy Kenny recovered.

Kenny had to be alert on 42 minutes to tip over Butterfield's audacious 30-yard lob, but from the resulting corner Johnson coolly converted Danny Granville's deflected cross for his 21st goal of the season.

Popovic doubled the Palace lead after 56 minutes when he capitalised on Kenny's failure to judge a deep Wayne Routledge cross to prod the ball home.

Peter Ndlovu who had only just arrived home from the African Cup of Nations, replaced Paul Shaw and was immediately involved, firing over from distance.

Palace goalkeeper Cedric Berthelin was then called upon to deny three United players, who all failed to bundle the ball home from inside the six yard box.

Palace's fifth consecutive away win was sealed by Shipperley, who hammered home a cross from ex-Blade Shaun Derry three minutes from time.