Wimbledon 1 - 3 Crystal Palace

Last updated : 23 August 2003 By Palace Dan

Crystal Palace went to the top of Division One after producing a great second half comeback to defeat Wimbledon 2-1 and maintain their 100 per cent start to the season.

Both sides hit the woodwork early on as they tried to break the deadlock. Kit Symons crashed the bar with a headed effort while Nigel Reo-Coker's shot hit the bar at the other end soon after.

Wimbledon took the lead through captain Reo-Coker's superb first half finish. The 19-year-old took Dean Holdsworth's through ball in his stride and stroked it home past keeper Matt Clarke.

It was an end to end game and both sides could easily have had five goals each. But it was Palace who made the most of their second half chances to win the game.

Danny Butterfield scored the equaliser on 59 minutes, firing an angled drive past Wimbledon keeper Paul Heald.

Soon after they doubled their lead from the penalty spot. Jermaine Darlington brought down Tommy Black and Dougie Freedman stepped up to fire home the spot kick.

Palace completely dominated and secured the win thanks to former Don Michael Hughes. The midfielder hit an unstoppable 12-yard strike into the net with just one minute of the game to go.

Palace boss Steve Kember was pleased with the win but is not getting carried away.

He said: "We upped the tempo in the second half and I was really pleased. We created lots of chances and I was especially pleased for Butterfield to score.

"But we have to take one game at a time. Obviously we want to win every game but we will have to take the games in batches and see how it goes." Opposite manager Stuart Murdoch knows his young side need to learn fast.

He said: "They upped the tempo and their experienced players did very well. We are a young team and maybe we need to learn faster.

""It was an end-to-end game and very exciting but we need to learn how to hold onto the lead."