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Match Reports

Match Report : 25/10/2014

25 October 2014

Palace saw a two-goal half-time lead controversially slip away at The Hawthorns as West Bromwich Albion came back to clinch a share of the spoils.

Brede Hangeland had given Palace an early lead before Mile Jedinak doubled it from the penalty spot on the stroke of half-time, but after the hosts pulled a goal back through Victor Anichebe the Eagles held on until injury-time when the Baggies were awarded a spot-kick themselves which Saido Berahino netted to complete a late comeback.

Neil Warnock started the game with a front four of Wilfried Zaha, Yannick Bolasie, Marouane Chamakh and Fraizer Campbell and the attacking philosophy seemed to benefit his side as after Palace had enjoyed the better of the early exchanges, they made their pressure tell by finding the game's opening goal after a quiet 15 minutes. 

Bolasie's perfect corner dropped around the edge of the six yard box and Hangeland rose higher than a cluster of five players but saw his header hit Craig Dawson, however fortunately for Palace the big Norwegian produced some great reactions to prod the rebound home and notch his second of the campaign.

Five minutes later though and Julian Speroni was flying through the air to prevent Palace conceding a quick-fire response when Berahino laid the ball off to Craig Gardner who thumped a trademark blast towards the top corner of the Argentinian's goal but the Eagles shot-stopper pushed it over.

From the resulting set-piece Graham Dorrans took aim for the opposite top corner and was fractions away from finding it, but Palace came closer when Chamakh slid in to win the ball from Andre Wisdom and released Bolasie, and the winger flashed the ball across the face of goal which missed the advancing Campbell by a stud's length.

However the hosts began to put more pressure on Palace as the half continued which reduced Warnock's men to attacking on the counter, and they could easily have been awarded a penalty when Zaha slipped past Dawson inside the area and was tripped in the process, but Mark Clattenberg waved away the appeals.

But Albion weren't so lucky a minute before the break when a brilliant pass by Chamakh in front of Bolasie allowed the winger to burst into the box and Sebastien Pocognoli went straight through the back of him right in front of the linesman who flagged for a penalty, and the skipper was spot on once again from 12 yards as Jedinak sent Foster the wrong way to put his men in total control at the half. 

Alan Irvine threw on Anichebe at the break to try and rescue things for his men and he quickly set up Berahino who forced Speroni into another diving stop as he went for the bottom corner, but from the corner the substitution paid off as a wicked delivery from Chris Brunt was nodded in by the replacement.

However Speroni was left needing treatment for a head injury after being impeded by Dawson in the process and had to be reluctantly replaced by Wayne Hennessey, and the Weshman saw Anichebe fizz an effort just wide before Gardner clipped the bar with a dipping strike from 25 yards. 

In contrast the first-half, the second was the Baggies as Palace defended one-way traffic and Berahino should have equalised when Pocognoli puled a cross back to James Morrison whose shot was inadvertently blocked by Anichebe, and it fell for the England under-21 international who blazed his effort high over the bar.

He repeated the trick a couple of minutes later, albeit with a more difficult chance, but on a rare foray forward Adlene Guedioura failed to test Foster with two minutes remaining as he shot straight at the goalkeeper with fellow sub Jason Puncheon better placed.

But in injury-time Puncheon came off worse in a 50/50 challenge with Morrison as he attempted to dribble forward and seconds later a tired tackle by Jedinak brought down Berahino inside the box, and he dusted himself off to bury the penalty past Hennessey as Palace saw the victory slip away.

West Brom: Foster, Wisdom, Dawson, Lescott, Pocognoli, Brunt, Gardner, Dorrans (Blanco 83), Morrison, Sessegnon (Anichebe 46), Berahino. Subs: Myhill, Gamboa, McAuley, Mulumbu, Ideye.

Palace: Speroni (Hennessey 55), Ward, Mariappa, Hangeland, Kelly, Jedinak, Ledley, Zaha (Puncheon 64), Bolasie, Chamakh (Guedioura 73), Campbell. Subs: Fryers, Bannan, Doyle, Gayle.

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