By Dan King - Newcastle United Club Reporter
Manchester United 4 (Evans 24, Evra 58, Van Persie 71, Hernandez 90)
Newcastle United 3 (Perch 4, Evans og 29, Cisse 69)
SECOND HALF UPDATES
90+4mins: As Simpson sends a long range shot wide, referee Dean's whistle sounds and Newcastle have been handed a knockout blow on Boxing Day. They performed superbly and led at half-time against the league leaders but every time they went in front, the Reds pegged them back before eventually stealing all three points in the final minute.
90+3mins: Valencia slides in late on Anita, and is probably lucky to escape without a second yellow card. Anita is not so lucky - he is stretchered off and Newcastle have no subs left to replace him with. To their credit, the home fans join the Newcastle supporters in applauding him off.
90+1mins: Darren Fletcher is on for Hernandez, who looks set to be the matchwinner at Old Trafford.
90mins - MANCHESTER UNITED GOAL (4-3): This amazing game has served up a late twist - Manchester United lead for the first time today but that might be enough for them. Carrick picked the Mexican out with a superb pass and the striker escaped his marker to poke the ball past Krul. The hosts' pressure, as it so often does here, has paid off. There will be four minutes of added time.
88mins: Marveuax races onto Obertan's pass and dinks the ball in for Ameobi, whose looping header is well gathered by De Gea. At the other end Van Persie heads over as the game remains on a complete knife edge.
85mins: Sammy Ameobi hits a post with a trickling shot which had De Gea beaten. He had jinked and tricked his way towards goal and then hit his effort which so nearly went in but just dropped into the arms of the grateful goalkeeper who thought it was past him.
80mins: Hernandez stoops to head a perfect right-wing cross from Valencia and it clips the outside of the far post - that was such a let-off for Alan Pardew's men, who are really under pressure now.
78mins: Hernandez has a shot which appears to strike the arm of Coloccini just outside the box and there are screams for a free-kick, but it's not given and rightly so because there was no way the Newcastle skipper could get them out of the way from that distance.
75mins: Marveaux gets in a snap-shot after the ball bobbles around just outside the hosts' penalty area - Newcastle still look dangerous on the break even if the Reds are having most of the play now.
73mins: Amazing scenes as Van Persie plays in Hernandez, who rounds Krul but is forced wide and the Magpies somehow crowd him out as he tries to tap home. Then Santon makes another vital block to deny Valencia from 12 yards. It's all hands to the pump now.
71mins: MANCHESTER UNITED GOAL (3-3): From Valencia's cutback, Van Persie sees his shot superbly saved by Krul and Giggs fails to force home the rebound, but Newcastle can't get it away and the Dutchman is able to fire home from 18 yards with a typically impressive finish. Pardew brings Shola Ameobi on for Ba.
69mins: NEWCASTLE GOAL (2-3): Papiss Cisse has given Newcastle the lead for a third time in this amazing game and it owes much to the work of substitute Obertan, against his old club. He raced to the byline and intelligently cut the ball back for the striker who didn't need to break his stride as he tucked the ball past De Gea from 12 yards. It's his fifth of the season, his second at Old Trafford, and it could be huge. Sir Alex Ferguson responds by introducing Tom Cleverley for Scholes.
65mins: Gabriel Obertan is on in place of Gael Bigirimana - a brave move at Old Trafford with the scores level, although they almost weren't when Chris Smalling got in a shot but Santon made a good block.
64mins: Cisse is the latest player booked for what could charitably be called a 'striker's tackle' on Valencia by the touchline - he was late but there was no malice and no complaints over the yellow.
62mins: Williamson heads a free-kick down perfectly for Ba but it just takes the top scorer by surprise and bounces off him, into the arms of De Gea. Had he controlled that it was surely another goal for the Magpies.
60mins: Danny Simpson is booked as he and his friend Jonny Evans go in for a 50-50 but the Manchester United man gets to the ball first and Simpson catches him as he slides though.
58mins - MANCHESTER UNITED GOAL (2-2): The hosts equalise for a second time and like Evans who got their first, Patrice Evra also scored against Newcastle at St. James' Park earlier in the season. He drove home from the edge of the box after Van Persie's corner was half-cleared on two or three occasions but never properly dealt with and so it's all square again.
53mins: Simpson gets to a loose ball a split-second ahead of Valencia, who was sliding in and is booked. Santon's free-kick is poor, though, gifting possession to Manchester United and there are appeals for a penalty after Coloccini challenges Hernandez but Dean waves them away.
52mins: Cisse's right-wing cross is met by the head of Ba and deflected over the bar as the two Senegalese strikers link up well, as they have on several occasions today.
49mins: Carrick's ball out to Giggs on the left is half-volleyed into the box by the veteran and met by Van Persie at the near post, but the Reds' leading scorer stabs wide.
46mins: Newcastle get the second half started after making the home side wait out on the pitch for some time. Sir Alex Ferguson took the opportunity to berate the officials on the touchline and even entered the pitch to have his say to Mike Dean about that controversial Magpies second.
FIRST HALF UPDATES
45+2mins: It's half-time and Newcastle United lead at Old Trafford - and deservedly so. Tim Krul has barely had a save to make while the Magpies have regularly tested David De Gea and hit the woodwork. Sir Alex Ferguson's side are famous for never giving up but if the Magpies keep this up a Christmas miracle could be on the cards. Click here for the first half report.
45mins: There will be a minimum of two minutes of stoppage time at the end of this first half.
42mins: A sloppy pass from Santon is capitalised upon by the old master Ryan Giggs, with Williamson having to bring the Welshman down to earn a booking - and a suspension for five yellow cards. Van Persie's free-kick, however, is some way wide.
39mins: Marveaux's free-kick crashes back off the bar with De Gea virtually motionless - the keeper flinched but knew he was getting nowhere near had that been on target. So nearly a third for the magnificent Magpies.
38mins: Another booking for the hosts - this time for Hernandez after a foul on Sylvain Marveaux as he dribbled towards the box and was halted unfairly by the Mexican's slide tackle.
36mins: Evans' mixed afternoon continues as he is booked for handball after Cisse had knocked the ball past him and was trying to run onto it.
34mins: We've already seen Perch score his first goal for the club and now Davide Santon tries to get in on the act. After a trademark run and touch inside, he lets fly and De Gea gets his body behind the ball but it bounces off him, with the Spanish stopper grabbing it at the second attempt as Cisse closes in.
32mins: Simpson is enjoying a great game, bombing on at every opportunity, and after more great play in the Red half he jinks into the box but skies his shot over.
29mins - NEWCASTLE GOAL (1-2): More controversy as Newcastle have a goal first ruled off for offside - then given! Simpson, against his old club, shot from the right-hand angle of the box and although it may have been going wide, Evans stuck out a leg to deflect it into his own goal. At first, a flag went up with the assistant clearly thinking Ba had got the touch but after consulation, referee Mike Dean pointed to the centre-spot. You don't get decisions like that at Old Trafford too often but Newcastle are ahead again!
25mins: The visitors respond almost immediately as Ba breaks and gets in a low shot which flashes across goal with De Gea at full stretch.
24mins - MAN UNITED GOAL (1-1): The hosts equalise through Jonny Evans although there will be a little bit of debate about whether the goal should have stood. First, the home side won a soft free-kick for a supposed foul by Davide Santon, but only after the Old Trafford supporters appealed long and loud. Then as the ball was clipped into the box and broke, Hernandez looked to be offside as he got in a shot which spun off a Newcastle player before Evans slid in to force home from close range despite the best efforts of Danny Simpson.
17mins: From a Magpies free-kick, Mike Williamson gets up high to head the ball across for Ba whose shot is blocked by Rio Ferdinand before the ball is played back in again for Fabricio Coloccini to send a looping header almost dropping over De Gea, who manages to hold the ball right on the line. Then as the away side win the ball back from the keeper's clearance, Ba gets in a shot after good work in the left-hand channel but Ferdinand again gets his body in the way.
16mins: The Newcastle fans are doing the Poznan, pogoing and plenty more besides - they're all that can be heard around this huge stadium at the moment with their side very much on top.
8mins: Antonio Valencia plays in Javier Hernandez on the right and allows the Mexican to get into the box but he goes for an ambitious shot from a narrow angle which floats across goal and out of play.
4mins - NEWCASTLE GOAL (0-1): James Perch has scored his first goal for Newcastle at Old Trafford with just four minutes on the clock. Demba Ba seized upon an awful touch from Michael Carrick, the boyhood Magpies fan, and advances towards goal before cracking in a low shot from 22 yards which David De Gea saves but can only parry straight to the Mansfield-born utility man who sidefoots into the empty net. It's the stuff that dreams are made of for Perch, who made his United debut here in August 2009, and it's a dream start for Newcastle - but Manchester United have came from behind to win on many occasions this term.
1min: It's a typically rainy day in Manchester as the game kicks off at Old Trafford, with Newcastle in their fluo-lime change kitorn and the home side taking kick-off and attacking towards the Stretford end in the first period. Inside the first 50 seconds, Vurnon Anita pumps the ball into the box from a free-kick and it falls to Papiss Cisse, who swings and takes an air shot from ten yards.
Manchester United (4-4-2): David De Gea; Chris Smalling, Rio Ferdinand, Jonny Evans, Patrice Evra (c); Antonio Valencia, Michael Carrick, Paul Scholes (Tom Cleverley 69), Ryan Giggs; Javier Hernandez (Darren Fletcher 90), Robin van Persie
Subs not used: Anders Lindegaard, Alexander Buttner, Scott Wootton, Nemanja Vidic, Ryan Tunnicliffe
Newcastle United (4-3-3): Tim Krul; Danny Simpson, Mike Williamson, Fabricio Coloccini (c), Davide Santon; James Perch, Gael Bigirimana (Gabriel Obertan 65), Vurnon Anita; Papiss Cisse (Sammy Ameobi 78), Demba Ba (Shola Ameobi 71), Sylvain Marveaux
Referee: Mike Dean