Van der Sar's error costs United

Sports Network

, Last Updated: 3:18 PM ET

Manchester United squandered a two-goal halftime lead against West Bromwich at Old Trafford on Saturday as a goalkeeping error from Edwin van der Sar helped the Baggies earn a 2-2 draw.

Javier Hernandez claimed his first league goal for United after five minutes, while Nani added a second goal midway through the opening half.

However, Patrice Evra's own goal in the 50th minute cut United's lead in half, and Van der Sar handed the visitors the equalizer five minutes later when he fumbled a cross that left Somen Tchoyi with a simple tap in.

The result leaves United five points back of leaders Chelsea, who were held to a 0-0 draw at Aston Villa on Saturday, while West Brom sits in sixth place in its first season back in the Premiership.

A Nani free kick in the fifth minute set up the opening goal as his dipping effort forced goalkeeper Scott Carson to parry the ball into the path of Hernandez, who easily finished off the rebound.

United took a 2-0 lead in the 25th minute when West Brom's Nicky Shorey slipped inside his own half, allowing Dimitar Berbatov to roll an inviting pass into the path of Nani for a first-time finish from inside the penalty area.

The hosts were in firm control as the second half began and they nearly went three goals up when a header from Nemanja Vidic came back off the post.

But West Brom used a bit of good fortune to get back into the game minutes later when Chris Brunt's free kick took multiple deflections on its way into the net, with the last coming off the leg of Evra.

The second goal arrived five minutes later when an innocent cross from Brunt was dropped by Van der Sar, leaving an unsuspecting Tchoyi with a gift of a goal.

It marked the third time this season that United has allowed a team to come back from two goals down, while Wayne Rooney entered the match as a substitute and tried to win the game from a free kick, but his effort was cleared from the front of goal by James Morrison.

Arsenal pulled level with United on 14 points as the Gunners topped Birmingham, 2-1, while Fulham suffered its first defeat of the season in 2-1 fashion against Tottenham.

West Ham and Wolverhampton finished 1-1 at Molineux Stadium in a battle of the bottom two teams in England, Newcastle came back from two goals down to earn a 2-2 draw with Wigan and Bolton got a goal from Ivan Klasnic in stoppage time to help Wanderers to a 2-1 win over Stoke City.


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