Vicente Guaita's goalkeeping howler gifted Sheffield United all three points at Selhurst Park in a match that saw referee Andy Madley consult his pitchside monitor to overturn a red card shown to Crystal Palace’s Joel Ward.
The visitors did not muster a shot until the 47th minute and still had not tested Guaita by the time he dropped Oli Norwood’s corner over his own line on the hour.
Palace had dominated the game up to that point and were left frustrated by Madley, who chose not to show George Baldock a second yellow card on 34 minutes when the wing back lunged at Wilfried Zaha.
A Vicente Guaita howler let Sheffield United to leave Selhurst Park with a 1-0 win on Saturday
The Palace keeper caught Oliver Norwood's corner, before stumbling over his own goal line
Sheffield celebrated the goal after Palace had dominated possession for the whole game
And with 18 minutes remaining Madley produced a straight red for Ward, who went over the ball on Enda Stevens. But after a VAR check, the referee went over to the screen on the touchline and changed his decision to a yellow.
The result saw the visitors climb into the top five again, while Palace’s slide continued as they dropped to 13th after a seventh straight game without a win in all competitions.
CRYSTAL PALACE (4-3-3): Guaita 4; Ward 6, Tomkins 6, Cahill 6, Van Aanholt 6.5; McArthur 6 (Kouyate 85min), Milivojevic 6, McCarthy 6 (Meyer 80); Ayew 6, Benteke 5 (Townsend 77, 6), Zaha 7.
Subs not used: Hennessey, Kelly, Dann, Riedewald.
Booked: Tomkins, Milivojevic, Ward.
Manager: Roy Hodgson 6.
SHEFFIELD UNITED (3-5-2): Henderson 6; Basham 4, Egan 6, O’Connell 6; Baldock 6, Berge 5 (Lundstram 68min, 6), Norwood 5.5, Fleck 6, Stevens 6; Sharp 5 (Mousset 64, 6), McBurnie 5 (Osborn 90).
Subs not used: Verrips, Jagielka, Robinson, Freeman.
Scorer: Guaita (og) 58.
Booked: Baldock, Fleck.
Manager: Chris Wilder 7.
Man of the Match: Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace).
Referee: Andy Madley 5.
The Blades’ new club-record signing Sander Berge, a late £22million arrival from Genk, was thrown straight into the lineup by Chris Wilder at the expense of John Lundstram. And he made his 6ft 5in presence felt immediately, bundling Zaha over inside four minutes with an industrious challenge that drew a snarl from the Palace winger.