West Ham vs. Manchester United: Final score 2-2, Robin van Persie rescues Red Devils and forces replay

David Rogers

Robin van Persie's 90th minute strike stole a win from West Ham and sent the third round FA Cup tie to Manchester for a replay.

James Collins and Joe Cole almost combined for a memorable night at Upton Park, but a late Robin van Persie goal earned Manchester United a 2-2 draw in the FA Cup third round. The two sides will now square off in Manchester for a replay.

Manchester United had all of the ball in the early going, but their chances went begging. Chris Smalling took a long ball and hit a great first time cross for Javier Hernandez, who was alone in front of goal, but the pass was just inches out of his reach. Not long after, Nemanja Vidic very nearly scored, but Daniel Potts cleared the ball off the line to keep West Ham even.

The Hammers, despite not having the ball at all, still did manage to create some chances and it appeared as if Carlton Cole had put them ahead, but his header was also cleared off of the line to keep the match level.

United did finally get the goal they looked bound to get and quieted the boisterous crowd at Upton Park Tom Cleverley smartly finished a good Javier Hernandez pass, but the Hammers had an answer, and then another answer.

The West Ham goals were nearly identical, with Cole picking up assists on both in his return to the Hammers. Twice he hit great crosses in for Collins, who flicked the ball into the side netting each time. They were both lovely bits of play, and both times the Hammers were helped by some dreadful United marking, as the Red Devils looked set to go crashing out of the FA Cup.

With West Ham on the front foot and United struggling for ideas, Sir Alex Ferguson brought Robin van Persie off of the bench, which proved to be a masterstroke (as if bringing on his best striker when down a goal took some deep and extraordinary thinking). Minutes before the final whistle, van Persie made a run in behind the West Ham defense, which paid off when Ryan Giggs delivered an inch-perfect 50-yard ball to him. van Persie took a perfect first touch to settle then blasted home, stunning the Upton Park faithful earning Manchester United a lifeline in the FA Cup.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.