Scottish international midfielder James McArthur could not hide his emotions after his second appearance in an FA Cup Final ended in defeat as the Eagles were downed 2-1 by Manchester United at Wembley after extra time.
“It’s devastating to lose,” said the 28-year-old who won the 2013 FA Cup with former club Wigan Athletic. “It’s devastating especially after taking the lead and then five minutes later letting one in, but we’ve missed that opportunity and then with the sending off we’ve missed that opportunity to take an advantage, but that’s what happens in cup finals.
“It’s a thin line between success and failure and it’s hard to look at, or take, the positives from today.”
After going 1-0 up thanks to a Jason Puncheon strike in the 78th minute, Palace could only hold on for a few minutes as a Juan Mata strike took the game into the additional 30 minutes with Jesse Lindgard finishing a come-from-behind win Louis van Gaal’s side 10 minutes from the end of the match and McArthur was especially distraught with how close the Eagles came to glory for the fans of the boys from SE25.
“After Puncheon scored we knew we had to keep it tight,” he said, “but we didn’t and that’s the most disappointing thing.
“We went through scenarios of what it would be like to try and create those emotions at that time and we’ve obviously not dealt with it the way we should have.
“It has been a good cup campaign but at this moment in time you’re a loser. You’ve not won the cup and you’ll be remembered but not for the reasons of creating history of winning a major competition and that’s disappointing.
“We wanted to do it for the fans and they were sensational again today, from the first minute to the last minute but even after the game finished they were still unbelievable and a lot of credit goes to them.
“We’re very gutted and disappointed we didn’t do it for them.”
to watch the post-match video interviews.