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Report: Early goals book Palace's place in FA Cup fifth round

Crystal Palace
2
Guéhi 4'
Olise 22'
0
Hartlepool United

Crystal Palace booked their place in the FA Cup fifth round with a 2-0 win over Hartlepool United on Saturday afternoon, with early goals from Marc Guéhi and Michael Olise sealing the victory with confidence.

Summary

  • Patrick Vieira names a strong side to face Hartlepool, with Tayo Adaramola included in a senior squad for the first time
  • Palace take the lead after four minutes when Marc Guéhi turns home from Michael Olise’s free-kick
  • Olise and Eberechi Eze cause the visitors trouble, testing the backline routinely
  • Olise adds Palace’s second before long, cutting in from the right and slotting past Ben Killip in the 22nd-minute
  • Half-time: Crystal Palace 2-0 Hartlepool United
  • Palace continue to keep Hartlepool under pressure, with Ben Killip making three impressive saves
  • The hosts make a triple change after 71 minutes, bringing Nathaniel Clyne, Odsonne Edouard and Will Hughes into the fray
  • Jack Butland denies Luke Molyneux and Bryn Morris confidently
  • Jamie Sterry fires low and inches wide of goal close to full-time
  • Adaramola, an 18-year-old Academy wing-back, makes his debut
  • Full-time: Crystal Palace 2-0 Hartlepool United

The FA Cup had keenly reminded its participants of the threat it poses as, while Palace and Hartlepool prepared, Kidderminster Harriers and Plymouth Argyle gave West Ham and Chelsea a close-run scare.

Palace were the next side facing something of a banana skin, so approached this tie with intent and urgency. They took the lead almost immediately, with Marc Guéhi nipping in front of the defence and turning home from Michael Olise’s free-kick.

Olise had adopted his usual mode by threatening along the right from kick-off, but his stretch of turf wasn’t the only one being worn out. Jamie Sterry, the Hartlepool defender, also managed to get forward on occasion, and most notably whipped in a smart ball which David Ferguson headed at Jack Butland from close range.

Reminiscent of Yannick Bolasie and Wilfried Zaha’s interchangeable style, Olise then switched wings with Eberechi Eze, before reverting to their original setup and back again. This attacking fluidity gave Hartlepool’s back five a constant task, buttressed by Ben Killip in goal, who claimed Joel Ward’s cross, regularly maintained possession and made several routine but vital saves.

Eze and Olise continued to provide the afternoon’s talking points when between them they deflected wide, stood over a free-kick and curled past the post.

Much to the travelling fans’ entertainment Hartlepool sought to match fire with fire for a spell, stringing together a lengthy chain of passes to keep the ball moving swiftly in their half.

When Palace regained possession – much to the home fans’ entertainment – the approach ended, with Patrick Vieira’s men putting further daylight between themselves and their guests.

Ward won an aerial battle to find Conor Gallagher, who looked forwards and to the right where – naturally – Michael Olise stood.

The winger collected the ball, cut towards the centre of the box and unleashed a fine shot past Killip into the net, taking his tally from the last 62 minutes of cup football to two goals and two assists.

The rest of the second-half continued in much the same fashion, although Palace’s sense of urgency abated. This saw Hartlepool roam forward more towards the half-time whistle than they had throughout the half, but Palace were able to comfortably handle their attacks and see out the first 45 untroubled.

The second-half began in unsurprising fashion; Michael Olise turning in from the right-wing and placing a perfect cross into Jean-Philippe Mateta’s path. The forward had made a bright run and struck the ball onto the post, but when it rebounded to Tyrick Mitchell yards from goal the defender could only turn high given little time to react.

A more unique moment arose shortly after when Jeffrey Schlupp collected the ball in space and unleashed a sweetly-struck effort just wide from 20 yards.

Killip was then forced into his most impressive action so far when he saved an Olise shot from close range, got back to his feet and effectively repeated the block for the winger’s second effort.

He continued with the heroics and arguably produced an even finer save when Mateta pinged goalbound at the near post only for Killip to stretch out and deflect to safety.

At this point the game was paused to allow medical treatment for someone in the Hartlepool end. Crystal Palace’s Head of Sports Medicine Dr Zaf Iqbal joined Hartlepool’s staff to provide assistance, and everyone at the club wishes the supporter affected a swift and full recovery.

With play resuming, Gallagher and Olise began to repeat some impressive link-up play along the right which saw two Olise crosses dealt with.

Palace then made a triple substitution in the 71st-minute as Hartlepool stepped up their search for a goal. The visiting Pools forced Butland into action when Luke Molyneux and later recent signing Bryn Morris struck his way, but the Palace No.1 was otherwise inactive.

The status quo returned when Killip again showed his skill by blocking a fizzing Mateta shot to his right – ending the Frenchman’s time on the pitch as Christian Benteke replaced him.

As time ticked away and Palace’s cup progression grew closer, Sterry shot very narrowly wide and then very far too high to keep the hosts alert.

There were more positives remaining despite the limited time left as Tayo Adaramola replaced Ward to make his senior Palace debut aged 18, and Killip blocked yet another effort to keep the gap modest.

And so the scoreline at full-time was the same as it had been an hour or so earlier, confirming Palace's place in the FA Cup fifth round and ending a well-fought tie for both teams.

Find out all details of the FA Cup fifth round, including the draw date, here.

Palace: Butland, Mitchell (Clyne 71), Kelly, Guéhi, Ward (Adaramola 85), Schlupp (Hughes 71), Milivojević, Gallagher, Olise, Eze (Edouard 71), Mateta (Benteke 79).

Subs not used: Guaita, Andersen, Ayew, Rak-Sakyi.

Hartlepool: Killip, Sterry, Ferguson (Fletcher 90+5), Liddle (Grey 60), Odusina, Shelton (White 60), Bogle (Cullen 90+5), Molyneux, Byrne, Crawford (Holohan 82), Morris.

Subs not used: Boyes, Smith, Ogle, Olomola.