The defender turned Joel Ward's 52nd-minute cross into his own net to hand the Eagles a 1-0 home win which lifts Tony Pulis' side one place to 16th, five points clear of the drop zone.
It proved to be a good day too for Manchester United manager David Moyes as a Wayne Rooney double helped to lift some of the pressure from his shoulders in a 4-1 win over Aston Villa. Rooney cancelled out Ashley Westwood's fine 11th-minute free-kick with a deft header and then fired United into the lead from the penalty spot after Juan Mata had been felled. Mata's first goal for the club gave the home side breathing space and Javier Hernandez wrapped up the win at the death.
United remain seventh in the table, but Southampton continued their pursuit with a 4-0 home victory over Newcastle which saw them leapfrog the Magpies into eighth. The Saints had to wait until stoppage time at the end of the first half to take the lead after being repeatedly thwarted by keeper Rob Elliot. However, once Jay Rodriguez had opened the scoring there was no way back for Alan Pardew's men as Rickie Lambert and Adam Lallana helped themselves to a goal apiece before Rodriguez sealed victory at the death with his second.
West Brom and Cardiff fought out a six-goal thriller at the Hawthorns. The Baggies went 2-0 up within nine minutes of the kick-off after Morgan Amalfitano floated an outrageous second-minute opener over Scotland goalkeeper David Marshall before fellow Scot Graham Dorrans extended West Brom's advantage.
The Bluebirds dragged themselves back into the game on the half-hour through Jordon Mutch's strike, and levelled 17 minutes from time when defender Steven Caulker powered home a header from Gary Medel's free-kick. Thievy Bifouma looked to have snatched victory for the home side three minutes into added time, only for Mats Daehli to deny them with virtually the last kick of the game.
Swansea eased to a 3-0 victory over Norwich. Jonathan de Guzman's first-half double laid the foundation with Wayne Routledge's second-half strike completing the job.
Peter Odemwingie's goal for Stoke was enough to see off Hull 1-0 as the Potters reached the 40-point mark.