Stephen Browett looks ahead to our cup match at White Hart Lane and recalls a win there in 1990.
After a run of bad luck and poor results in recent league games, it’s great to be able to turn our attention to the FA Cup this weekend. We’ve had to play, and beat, two very good Premier League teams to reach this stage. If we manage to progress to the sixth round nobody will be able to say that we have had an easy run through the competition.
Spurs, of course, have a great team, but we ran them very close in the league match a few weeks ago and, but for the crossbar, I think that we could well have won that game until their two late goals decided it. What’s for sure is that the FA Cup is a great leveller and anything can happen on Sunday. An Adebayor winner in the last minute would be my fantasy outcome for this game!
Palace have enjoyed some entertaining games against Spurs over the years but the one that stands out for me was in March 1990 when Ian Wright returned from injury to appear as a substitute. In a League Division One match against Gary Lineker and co. he came off the bench to replace John Salako. John, course, will be back on the Palace bench at White Hart Lane again tomorrow - 26 years later. Unlike the rest of us, John doesn’t seem to look any older today than he did then and still has a wonderful youthful enthusiasm for the game! That match in 1990 marked Palace’s first win away at Spurs since 1907. The Eagles’ goal-scorer, in our one-nil win, wasn’t Wright or Bright but it was our number 11 – a certain Alan Pardew. Is than an omen? I certainly hope so! Pards will be pacing the technical area tomorrow afternoon and, in his head, still kicking every ball.
When people moan to me about how long it takes to get to Selhurst Park, I always remind them of that never-ending walk from Seven Sisters tube station to White Hart Lane. Today, I’m delighted to say, that a magnificent turn-out of over 5000 Palace fans are making the trip north of the river. There should be a great atmosphere in the stadium that could even surpass the sensational support that the Red and Blue Army gave to the team in the third round match at Southampton. Everyone will be up for this game, management, players and fans. We’d love a long cup run this season and, with your passionate support guaranteed, it’s going to be an exciting afternoon of cup football.