How Crystal Palace got to the FA Cup Final and Prediction vs...

How Crystal Palace got to the FA Cup Final and Prediction vs Manchester United

Wikimedia: Wonker

Crystal Palace will face Manchester United in the FA Cup Final in a decisive match that could lay the foundation for a successful next season. Alan Pardew remained positive about the Final and claimed to take inspiration from what Leicester has done this season.

Crystal Palace faced a tough and bumpy road to the Final, as they overcame some resilient Premier League sides. Despite finishing the season in the bottom half of the Premier League Table, Crystal Palace has performed well in the FA Cup.

The victories didn’t come off big margins, but were good enough to allow the squad to make their way into the Final, which should delight Crystal Palace sponsors due to the increased exposure, such as the Mansion Group, owner of and other online gambling portals.

Crystal Palace’s Road to the Final

On the way to the FA Cup Final, Crystal Palace faced 4 sides from the Premier League and one from the lower divisions. Alan Pardew’s men showed great composure throughout the FA Cup. They were defensively very solid, conceding only 2 goals in 5 games.

Crystal Palace was drawn against Southampton in the 3rd round of FA Cup. The Eagles managed to overcome the fellow Premier League side at St. Mary’s Stadium with a convincing 2-1 win. Both Joel Ward and Wilfred Zaha sealing it for Alan Pardew.

In the 4th round, The Eagles were drawn against another Premier League side, Stoke City. Stoke have had a decent run of form this season and thus made it tough for Palace. The only goal of the match came from Wilfred Zaha at Selhurst Park.

The 5th round proved to be the toughest fixture for Palace, as they faced Premier League rivals Tottenham Hotspur. Spurs have had a glorious season, as they genuinely contended for the Premier League Title before losing it to Leicester. By no means were Pardew’s men expected to secure a win at White Hart Lane, but Martin Kelly’s first half goal proved to be vital and the only goal of the game.

Compared to previous fixtures, Palace faced an easy test in the quarter-final, Reading, a lower division team. Goals from Yohan Cabaye and Frazier Campbell secured a comfortable 2-0 win to book a place in semi-final for the first time in 21 years.

The semi-final clash saw Crystal Palace head-to-head with Watford. Watford showed no signs of fading and kept the Eagles at bay after having equalized Yannick Bolasie’s goal through Troy Denney, before a winning goal from Connor Wickham sealed the deal for Pardew’s men.

FA Cup Final Prediction

Crystal Palace now stand one step away from the FA Cup Trophy and the last opponent they will face is a not-so-consistent Manchester United. The Red Devils faced the recent disappointment of failing to qualify for the Champions League which, could have hurt the team’s morale.

Furthermore, Crystal Palace have been handed a huge boost as Yohan Cabaye and Connor Wickham are cleared to play, with Wilfred Zaha also declared fit after a slight doubt. In addition to their return, Mile Jedinak has been tipped to start ahead of James McArthur as his physicality and ability to win headers will give them an edge over United. Look for Crystal Palace to play a defensive, counter-attacking style of football, and earning a close 1-goal victory.