Crystal Palace with the win

Crystal Palace recorded their first win at White Hart Lane since 1997 on Sunday afternoon as they sent in-form Tottenham Hotspur crashing out of the FA Cup at the Fifth Round stage courtesy of a 1-0 victory. Much of the pre-match talk had surrounded the return of Emmanuel Adebayor to the home of his former employers and he may well have gotten himself on the scoresheet were it not for the clear lack of match sharpness that he still carries. Instead, the headlines will belong to the unlikeliest of heroes in Martin Kelly, 25, the former Liverpool player who scored only the third professional goal of his career on the stroke of halftime to leave Spurs fans reeling.

Advertisement
Advertisement

The game exploded into life from the very first whistle as two teams, both heralded for their decisive speed and attacking flair, set about plotting a route into the quarter-finals of the world's most famous domestic football trophy.

England international, Dele Alli, has been a revelation for the Spurs this season since signing from League One and the youngster came agonizingly close to breaking the deadlock with just 3 minutes on the clock, launching himself at a Son corner only to see his effort cleared off the line by Yohan Cabaye. Just two minutes later and Palace found themselves with an equally cut-throat opportunity, however, it was Emmanuel Adebayor this time who failed to divert Scott Dann's header toward goal with the net at his mercy.

Advertisement

The home side were given another let off moments after following a calamitous piece of defending from Kyle Walker whose misdirected header back to Michel Vorm was palmed away on the line to spare the full back's blushes.

Shaky start for Tottenham

Following a shaky start, Tottenham began to feel their way into the game with Alli, Son, and Danny Rose carrying the main attacking threat. Alli was incredibly unlucky not to open the scoring a second time when he saw his side foot shot from inside the area cannon off both posts before Joel Ward hacked the ball clear off the line.

Don’t miss the latest news!
Click on the topic you interest most. We'll keep you updated with all the news you shouldn't miss.
Donald Trump

Tottenham continued to press with a high line, and, after a couple of warning shots from Palace, were made to pay just before halftime. A mazy run from Wilfried Zaha opened up the space for him to find an unmarked Martin Kelly at the back post who slammed the ball into the roof of the net to send the away end into a frenzy.

The halftime break saw the introduction of Christian Eriksen for Moussa Dembele in the only change and the game restarted in very much the same vein as it had begun, although Tottenham's quest for a much needed equalizer saw them increasingly more exposed at the back.

Palace defended their lead by example through some 'body on the line' style blocks from Alli, Rose, and Kane. Wayne Hennessy, who had been spared much of the action thanks to his stalwart defense, was outstanding when called upon and his save to deny Harry Kane with twenty minutes remaining was as important as Kelly's goal.

Yannick Bolasie returned from injury to replace a tiring Adebayor and the pacy winger proved to be a golden outlet as Palace looked to get the ball further up the pitch with the game approaching full-time.

Advertisement

Conor Wickham had the ball in the Tottenham net in the dying minutes but was flagged offside, and Spurs were unable to break down a stubborn Palace side which had done more than enough to warrant a deserved clean sheet.

While the Spurs will be disappointed with the final outcome, their cup exit will allow their focus to switch firmly onto maintaining their challenges in both the Premier League and Europa League, whilst Palace will continue to try and make history with their first FA Cup win in their long history.

Advertisement

Don't miss our page on Facebook!
Click to read more