Crystal Palace exited the IFA U19 Shield at the semi-final stage as they were beaten on penalties by AIFF Academy.
India’s national under-19 side took a 2-0 lead into half-time but were pegged back by a determined Palace side who tied things up to send the game into extra-time and eventually a penalty shoot-out that also went the distance, however Ryan King-Elliott saw his penalty saved in sudden death as Ken Gillard’s side suffered a heart-breaking exit.
In a difficult first half for Palace Levi Lumeka had an early chance but his effort was saved at close range by Prabhsukhan Singh before Nijwm Muchahary volleyed over at the other end and Bedashwar Singh saw a chance go begging.
Prosenjit Chakraborty then forced Colm McAdden to push the ball over with a blast from long-range and from the resulting corner the same player smacked the crossbar with a header.
The first 45 minutes saw wave after wave of attack from the Indian side and Amal Das somehow missed an open goal but on 28 minutes they had a great chance to take the lead when they were awarded by a penalty for handball five minutes later and Bodo Baoringdao converted from 12 yards.
McAdden had to be at his best just before the break when he made a magnificent stop to claw away Bodo’s diving header before the striker hit the woodwork again, but just as it looked like Palace would escape into the break just one goal behind Chakraborty volleyed home in injury-time to double the lead.
However seven minutes into the second half Palace pulled one back. A brilliant solo run by Joseph Hungbo allowed Francis Baptiste to score his sixth of the competition and top of the golden boot standing.
And after battling their way through the second half, on 82 minutes the Eagles were level when Kian Flanagan dispatched a free-kick past Singh to pull his side level again.
In the final minute Lumeka had a great chance to send Palace into the final but squandered a one-on-one opportunity, and so the game went into extra-time which passed off without much incident and penalties were need to separate the sides.
Both sides scored all of their spot-kicks before Baptiste missed Palace’s fourth, however McAdden then saved from Edumund Lalrindika and Lumeka held his nerve to send it into sudden death.
After Bryce Hosannah netted for Palace, King-Elliott missed the decisive kick as Singh saved his effort as Palace crashed out at the semi-final stage.