Baggies secure first home league win over United since 1984
- Rondon scores eighth goal of the season (66)
- Mata sees red for two bookings (26)
- Baggies move on to 39 points and up to 11th
- Albion Star Man: Salomon Rondon
- Attendance: 24,878
ALBION made it three wins out of four and 10 points from the last 12 with their first league victory over Manchester United at The Hawthorns in 32 years.
Salomon Rondon struck the game’s only goal mid-way through the second-half after United had been reduced to 10 men after 26 minutes following Juan Mata’s sending off.
The United playmaker went for two bookings in three minutes when he failed to retreat at an Albion free-kick and then was late on Darren Fletcher as he broke forward.
After that it was as case of Albion staying patient and taking their chance when it came – and that moment arrived in the 66th minute.
Sebastien Pocognoli, a substitute for the injured Craig Dawson, delivered a menacing cross which Rondon controlled with a terrific first touch before smashing a left foot drive wide of David de Gea’s full stretch dive.
It was the clinical moment of a victory well deserved by Albion whose keeper Ben Foster was never troubled.
In contrast, Albion were threatening a goal even before their opponents were reduced to 10 men with Dawson heading wide from a Rondon cross when he would have backed himself to score and Saido Berahino just missing a clean hit after a great link up between Darren Fletcher and Craig Gardner.
Dawson and Stephane Sessegnon were fractionally wide with long-range efforts but Albion kept their composure and found the moment that takes them to 39 points with nine games remaining.
The Baggies will now have the Club’s previous best total in the Barclays Premier League – 49 – in their sights and at a time when they are finding some real form.
Record-signing Rondon pipped the magnificent Claudio Yacob for Man of the Match but all Albion’s players left to a thoroughly deserved standing ovation.
ALBION: Foster; Dawson (Pocognoli, 55), McAuley, Olsson, Chester; Sessegnon (McClean 69), Fletcher, Yacob, Gardner, Berahino (Sandro 88), Rondon.
Subs: Myhill, Anichebe, Lambert, Pritchard.
Bookings: Olsson (foul 58);
MANCHESTER UNITED: De Gea; Darmian (Fosu-Mensah 83), Smalling, Blind, Rojo; Carrick, Lingard, Mata Martial, Herrera (Schneiderlin 62), Rashford (Memphis 75).
Subs: Romero; Fellaini, Varela, Weir.
Sent off: Mata (two cautions - failing to retreat, 23; foul on Fletcher 26).
Referee: Mike Dean (Wirral)