Liverpool seal FA Cup comeback win at Crystal Palace

Saturday 14 Feb 2015
Adam Lallana celebrates putting Liverpol ahead

Daniel Sturridge and match-winner Adam Lallana broke Crystal Palace hearts with two goals in nine second half minutes to cement Liverpool's 2-1 Fifth Found FA Cup triumph at Selhurst Park.

Twenty five years ago Palace boss Alan Pardew lashed home the winner against Liverpool that took Palace to their only Cup Final.

This time he had to take a back seat - just like in 2006 when the Reds last won The FA Cup against Pardew's West Ham.

Crystal Palace 1-2 Liverpool

FA Cup Fifth Round
Selhurst Park
Saturday 14 February 2015
Winners receive £180,000
Click here for Match Stats

In a passionate game, Liverpool's efficiency won the day after Fraizer Campbell had seized on a defensive lapse involving Martin Skrtel and keeper Simon Mignolet to give the Eagles a 15th-minute lead.

But Sturridge levelled things up in the 49th minute with a lovely volley, having just drifted level with the Eagles back line to receive Jordan Henderson's tasty chipped cross.

It was a delicate moment from a classy player obviously well on the road to recovery with goals and fitness following his six-month injury lay-off.

Less delicate was sub Mario Balotelli's belting 58th-minute free-kick, earned by the Italian.

Julian Speroni could but parry out to the impressive Adam Lallana, who buried the rebound with menace.

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It was another happy moment in a tortuous season for Balotelli following his Premier League winner against Tottenham and gave further evidence that maybe, perhaps maybe, he can stamp his mark on English football.

Campbell's goal had meant Palace just shaded the first half - although Liverpool made fierce 31st-minute claims for a penalty when debutant Pape Souare just nicked the ball off the England striker's foot with the goal beckoning.

Sixteen minutes earlier Campbell, who scored in the Eagles 3-1 league win over the Reds, had capitalised on some dithering defending when Skrtel failed desperately to deal with a high Joe Ledley through ball.

His weak upwards header was met by the impish Dwight Gayle whose own header was weakly palmed by Mignolet straight out to Campbell, and the striker gleefully drilled home.

Fraizer Campbell puts Crystal Palace ahead agains Liverpool

Fraizer Campbell puts Crystal Palace ahead agains Liverpool

That was Palace's first dangerous attack, although they repeatedly tested Mignolet with high balls, which he dealt with well.

Gayle was unlucky in the 42nd minute when another Skrtel error let him in on the left. This time Mignolet saved the day with a decent save.

Liverpool, minus the injured Steven Gerrard and Raheem Sterling, had Adam Lallana to thank for some spirited attacks, but all too often Palace back-tracked to pack their defence and make life extremely tricky for the visitors.

Speroni made good 21st- and 39th-minute stops from two Lallana 25-yard crackers, while Sturridge’s mazy 33rd-minute run past four defenders from Lallana's pass was finally snuffed out by weight of numbers.

Daniel Sturridge fires home against Crystal Palace

Daniel Sturridge fires home against Crystal Palace

In the second half Palace huffed and puffed, and brought on Wilfried Zaha in a bid to cause more damage to Skrtel and co.

But, apart from an opportunist 62nd-minute drive from Joel Ward that was deflected wide they struggled to make a real impression.  

In fact, they came closer to gifting the Reds another goal than scoring themselves when Ledley inexplicably gave the ball to Henderson with six minutes left only for the England man to miss his chance.

But by that time the goals from his England team-mates Sturridge and Lallana had put the Reds in front and earned their place in the hat for the quarter-final draw. 

Crystal Palace (4-2-3-1): 1 Julian Speroni; 34 Martin Kelly, 6 Scott Dann, 4 Brede Hangeland, 40 Pape Souare; 2 Joel Ward, 28 Joe Ledley; 7 Yannick Bolasie, 29 Marouane Chamakh, 16 Dwight Gayle; 10 Fraizer Campbell.

Substitutes: 42 Jason Puncheon for Chamakh 45; 8 Adlene Guedioura for Kelly 63, 11 Wilfried Zaha for Bolasie 72.

Subs not used: 13 Wayne Hennessey, 3 Adrian Mariappa, 17 Glen Murray, 27 Damien Delaney.

Goal: Campbell 15

Cautions: Chamakh.

Liverpool (3-4-3): 22 Simon Mignolet; 23 Emre Can, 37 Martin Skrtel, 17 Mahmadou Sakho; 50 Lazar Markovic, 14 Jordan Henderson, 24 Joe Allen, 18 Alberto Moreno; 20 Adam Lallana, 15 Daniel Sturridge, 20 Phillipe Coutinho.

Substitutes: 45 Mario Balotelli for Markovic ht.

Subs not used: 52 Gavin Ward, 2 Glen Johnson, 6 Dejan Lovren, 9 Rickie Lambert, 19 Javier Manquillo, 29 Faio Borini.

Goals: Sturridge 49, Lallana 58.

Cautions: Henderson, Can.

Referee: Robert Madley

By Geoff Sweet Reporter At Selhurst Park