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United lose yet again as RVP's missed penalty costs them against West Brom

It was Manchester United’s third league defeat in-a-row.

United couldn't break down the West Brom defence.
United couldn't break down the West Brom defence.
Image: Lynne Cameron

ROBIN VAN PERSIE missed a penalty on his return from injury as Manchester United lost their third successive Premier League game in a frustrating 1-0 defeat to West Brom.

A combination of Chris Brunt and Jonas Olsson struck the decisive blow shortly after the hour at Old Trafford on Saturday, with the Albion skipper’s 20-yard free-kick taking a wicked deflection off his team-mate to leave David de Gea helpless.

Van Persie had the chance to level in the 72nd minute when Saido Berahino was adjudged to have handled Antonio Valencia’s cross inside the box, but the Dutchman – making his first start since mid-February – saw his spot-kick saved by Boaz Myhill.

As was the case in their defeats at Chelsea and Everton over the last fortnight, Louis van Gaal’s team could not make their domination of the ball count.

United were camped in West Brom’s defensive third for much of the contest, but were simply unable to break Tony Pulis’ stubborn visitors down and Brunt’s fortunate effort condemned the hosts to a third loss in a row for the first time since 2001.

Van Gaal’s side remain in the box seat to secure fourth spot and a place in the UEFA Champions League, but their poor form has left the door ajar for Liverpool, who now sit four points behind United after beating QPR earlier in the day.

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