Still searching for their first league win of 2016, Palace began April by travelling to West Ham United and the sides shared out the points in an entertaining 2-2 draw which saw Dwight Gayle score the visitors' equaliser, and afterwards he said: "It was nice to be back out there playing and to get the goal is a bonus. When the ball rolled out I just thought I'd pick a corner and place it and luckily it went it."
"BOOM BOOM BOOM! Let me hear you say..." pic.twitter.com/Yb4XCsipTE— Crystal Palace F.C. (@CPFC) April 2, 2016
Up next for Palace was a crunch game against Norwich who were eyeing the chance to drag their free-falling opponents into the relegation mix. If Palace were nervous beforehand they didn't show it, and even took the time to meet up with some Junior Eagles before the meeting with Alex Neil's side which was settled thanks to Jason Puncheon's Goal of the Season winner to finally end the winless league run at 15 games.
ONE OF OUR OWN. 🔴🔵🔴🔵https://t.co/TJKthj28bw— Crystal Palace F.C. (@CPFC) April 9, 2016
Post-match, Puncheon was delighted to score his first of the campaign, saying: It’s been difficult for me, I normally chip in with a few goals but I haven’t done that this season and I’ve been disappointed in myself. But that’s come today and I’m happy for that - it meant a lot and it was a massive win for us.”
Due to the cup run there was a fixture backlog so just four days later the Eagles drew 0-0 with Everton before taking on Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium where they gained their first ever point at the venue thanks to Yannick Bolasie's long-range effort, and the game also saw Joel Ward become the first Palace player to hit 100 Premier League appearances for the club.
Meanwhile Sullay Kaikai's form had earned him the League One Player of the Month award, the development and academy sides finished their seasons with victories and Palace Ladies clinched promotion to the Womens' Premier League and Surrey County Cup.
After a 2-0 defeat at Old Trafford against Manchester United - which saw Julian Speroni back between the sticks for the first time this season - the big day finally arrived as Alan Pardew took his side to Wembley to face Watford in the FA Cup semi-final, and goals from Bolasie and Connor Wickham booked Palace's spot in just their second ever FA Cup final, with the former saying post-match: "For the fans especially, the way this season's been a bit of a rollercoaster, it's great to get into the final. A lovely thing for our manager as well, because he's stuck with us and all of our players."
The month ended with Pardew returning to Newcastle United for the first time as his side were beaten 1-0 by the Geordies and Yohan Cabaye missing a penalty, but all thoughts were now firmly on the FA Cup final.
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