Crystal Palace 1 West Ham 0
By Alex Livie
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Iain Dowie's Palace are looking to mount a late charge for a place in the play-offs and Dougie Freedman's second half goal did their hopes a power of good.
West Ham were on the back foot from the minute David Connolly was dismissed for a second bookable offence on 36.
West Ham were without midfield stars Steve Lomas and Michael Carrick and it showed as Palace dominated play.
Connolly's dismissal on 36 caused fireworks, with West Ham players incensed at the decision of referee Tony Bates as they felt he had been conned by Danny Butterfield.
The Republic of Ireland striker's dismissal fired up The Hammers, who missed glorious chances through Christian Dailly and then Marlon Harewood.
The Hammers were made to pay for their wastefulness when Freedman bundled home after Andy Johnson had flicked a Shaun Derry corner into his path.
Pavel Srnicek kept West Ham in the game with a save from Johnson, while Julian Gray had a goal disallowed for offside.
Tempers flared late on when Bobby Zamora clashed with Mark Hudson, but the incident failed to detract from Palace's fine victory.