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The FA Cup

Stadium of Light (ATT 17,536) 8th January 2005 - Kick off 15:00 Ref: R Styles

S'land Sunderland vs Crystal Palace C Palace

S'land 2


Black Cats in Eagles revenge

By Mark Kendall.   Last Updated: 08/01/05 2:07pm

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Sunderland gained some measure of revenge for their dramatic play-off semi-final defeat last season by dumping Crystal Palace out of the FA Cup at The Stadium of Light.

The Black Cats shook off the disappointment of going behind to a Danny Collins own goal to emerge victorious courtesy of Andy Welsh's first for the club and a cheekily-taken Marcus Stewart penalty.

The hosts could have hit the front as early as the fifth minute when Welsh latched on to a poor clearance from Fitz Hall and crashed a volley against the bar from six yards.

On the quarter hour mark Carl Robinson fired over from the edge of the box, and ten minutes later the Wales international midfielder headed wastefully wide when well-placed in the area.

Palace's first effort of note came on 27 minutes, Vassilis Lakis was released in yards of space down the left and advanced into the box before dragging his left-foot effort wide of the target.

The game took an unsavoury turn on the half hour mark when Johnson went into the book for a poor late challenge on Collins. However, the defender exacted revenge shortly afterwards with a scything tackle on Palace's top-scorer for which he was lucky to remain on the pitch, but escaped with a booking of his own.

It was Johnson who was smiling though on 41 minutes, the striker claimed Palace's opener by converting Routledge's inviting cross from the right, although replays suggested that it was Collins who got the final touch as he slid in to try and deny the striker.

The visitors' advantage was short-lived, however, three minutes later Welsh swung in a free-kick from right that eluded everybody and curled past Gabor Kiraly into the far corner.

The goal clearly lifted Sunderland who started the second period much the better of the two sides, camped inside the Palace half for long spells.

They made their pressure count on the hour mark although Palace were left infuriated by the manner of the goal.

Stewart outpaced Hall to get on the end of a long ball but seemed to go down rather easily in the box, but referee Rob Styles was convinced and Stewart cheekily dinked home the resulting penalty.

It took going behind to rouse Palace from their slumbers, and Johnson nearly won Palace a penalty of their own but Thomas Myhre timed his slide at the striker's feet perfectly to clear a moment of danger.

It was Sunderland who finished stronger, though, Sean Thornton saw a free-kick graze the bar, was unlucky not to be awarded a penalty after strong run into the box and then saw another shot from distance hit the woodwork.

Team NameSunderlandCrystal Palace
Shots On Target61
Shots Off Target75
Blocked Shots20
Fouls Conceded1217
Yellow Cards22
Red Cards00



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