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Remembering Palace's play-off penalty progress

17 May 2019

On this day in 2004, Crystal Palace stepped one game away from Premier League football as they defeated Sunderland in a tense match which saw Michael Hughes win a 5-4 penalty shoot-out and take the Eagles to Wembley.

Palace had defeated the Black Cats 3-2 at Selhurst Park before going 2-0 down in the semi final's second leg. It took a Darren Powell header crashing off the crossbar in injury time following the dismissal of Julian Gray to give Palace their glimmer of hope for progression. 

SEE ALSO: 40 years on: The story of Selhurst's record attendance

Kevin Kyle bagged the opener against the run of play before teammate Marcus Stewart doubled the Black Cats' tally. Powell levelled the match in the 90th minute by nodding home on the end of a Shaun Derry corner.

At 4-4 on aggregate, the game sailed through extra time and its fate was left to be decided by shots from 12 yards. The two sides missed a pair of penalties each, with John Oster and Jason McAteer squandering for the Mackems and Shaun Derry and Wayne Routledge the guilty couple for the south Londoners.

The crucial miss of the night came from Jeff Whitely, who, trying to out-smart Nico Vaesen, hesitated and struck into the 'keeper's diving path. Stepping up, Hughes then buried for Palace and launched his side to the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, where they would go on to defeat West Ham United 1-0 and earn a single season in the Premier League.

Sunderland: Poom, McCartney, Breen, Babb, Bjorklund (Williams 105), Oster, Whitley, McAteer, Thornton (Robinson 69), Kyle, Stewart (Tommy Smith 84).

Subs not used: Clark, Myhre.

Crystal Palace: Vaesen, Granville (Powell 72), Leigertwood, Popovic, Butterfield (Freedman 61), Gray, Hughes, Riihilahti (Derry 58), Routledge, Shipperley, Johnson. 

Subs not used: Berthelin, Black.

SEE ALSO: Gettin' Shirty: Zaha framed THAT Brighton play off jersey


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