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    Crystal Palace 2-1 Watford: Eagles soar into Wembley final with Manchester United

    By Alex Easley
    Connor Wickham's goal secured an FA Cup final showdown with Manchester United for Crystal Palace.
    Crystal Palace, sponsored by Mansion Group, that operates well-known casino sites such as Casino.com; will face Manchester United at Wembley in a repeat of the 1990 FA Cup final after beating Watford 2-1 in Sunday’s semi-final at the national stadium.


    Yannick Bolasie headed the Eagles in front early, but Troy Deeney levelled the game 10 minutes after the break.


    Just six minutes later Connor Wikcham popped up with the all-important winning goal to send his side to their first FA Cup final since that 1990 replay loss to United after a 3-3 draw.

    Alan Pardew scored the winner for Palace in the semi-finals that year and the opening goal here, brought back memories of that famous goal against Liverpool.

    Pardew was on hand that day to head home after a near post flick-on and pretty much the exact same corner routine was used to break the Watford defence with six minutes gone.

    Yohan Cabaye put the corner into the unmarked near post area to Damien Delaney, who the flicked a looping header towards the far-post which was nodded home by Bolasie quite bravely.
    Yannick Bolasie heads home the opener for Palace at Wembley.
    The Hornets struggled to deal with the pressure of the Wembley occasion in the early stages of the game, but were almost gifted a chance to get back into the contest on 19 minutes.

    Allan Nyom whipped in a quite superb cross from the right that caused panic in Palace’s backline as Scott Dann ducked out of the way and Joel Ward almost scored an own goal like Chris Smalling did yesterday, but it thankfully drifted wide of the net.

    Watford’s flow was disrupted even further on 32 minutes when French midfielder Etienne Capoue was nearly in tears as he was stretchered off with what looked like a serious knee injury.

    Palace looked the more threatening of the two teams again after the break with Bolasie going down the left side on 49 minutes but his shot from a tight angle was deflected over the bar by the foot of Costel Pantilimon.

    Watford did level the scores at 1-1 on 54 minutes with their first effort on target of the game as Deeney scored his 11th goal of the season.

    A corner from the left was swung into the edge of the six yard box and the Watford skipper used his strength to hold off Dann and flick the ball into the Palace net.
    Watford captain Troy Deeney celebrates scoring the equalizer.
    The Watford end of Wembley were now in full voice, but they were silenced back into their seats just six minutes later.

    Wickham has failed to set the world alight since joining from Sunderland for £7million but he repaid some of that price tag with this Wembley goal.

    Pape Souare found half a yard to swing a seemingly mediocre ball into the Watford box, Wickham had pulled onto the diminutive Nathan Ake and he towered above him to skilfully head home from 12 yards.
    Connor Wickham headed in the winner for Crystal Palace.
    Watford had only won one of their last nine Premier League matches and confidence looked low as they tried to mount a late rally.

    Their best chance to fell to Odion Ighalo with eight minutes left but he snatched at a presentable opportunity from a Deeney flick on.

    Wilfried Zaha should have made the last few minutes more comfortable than they were but he failed to finish off an epic 50 yard run into the Watford box and was similarly wasteful when firing into the side netting from a tight angle.

    One last opportunity fell to substitute Adlene Guedioura for Watford but much like Ighalo minutes earlier, his finish failed to test Wayne Hennessey.

    Palace held out and their fans celebrated wildly at the full-time whistle. They will be returning to Wembley on Saturday May 21 to take on the 11-time winners.

    TEAM LINE-UPS

    Crystal Palace: Hennessey, Ward, Dann, Delaney, Souaré, Jedinak, Cabaye, Zaha, Bolasie, Puncheon, Wickham

    Subs Used: McArthur, Sako, Adebayor

    Watford: Pantilimon, Nyom, Cathcart, Britos, Aké, Abdi, Capoue, Watson, Jurado, Ighalo, Deeney

    Subs Used: Suárez, Guédioura, Anya


    MAN OF THE MATCH: Yannick Bolasie
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    Item Reviewed: Crystal Palace 2-1 Watford: Eagles soar into Wembley final with Manchester United Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Alex Easley
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