Crystal Palace 3-2 Brighton: Eagles win thriller
- 5 goals in first 34 minutes
- Zaha’s first-ever PL double
- Palace move 6 points above drop
Crystal Palace beat Brighton 3-2 at Selhurst Park on Saturday in an enthralling M23 derby with massive implications on the relegation battle.
Palace went 2-0 up early as Wilfried Zaha and James Tomkins scored, but Glenn Murray made it 2-1 then Zaha made it 3-1 in a wild opening. Jose Izquierdo then made it 3-2 before half time as the goals flew in amid flares being let off in an incredible atmosphere in south London.
With the win Palace move six points above the bottom three with four games to go, while Brighton slip back into the relegation scrap with plenty of tough games coming up and are just a point above Palace.
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That man Zaha put Palace ahead early on as the Eagles came flying out of the traps.
Zaha finished at the back post from Luka Milivojevic’s clever short corner, as Palace had the perfect start against their bitter rivals.
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Soon it got even better for the Eagles as Tomkins made it 2-0 inside the opening 15 minutes. A mad scramble in the box fell to the center back and he finished.
But then Brighton scored with their first chance of the game.
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A corner was nodded down by Lewis Dunk and former Palace striker Murray was on hand to make it 2-1. Game on.
2 - In completing his first-ever Premier League brace, Wilfried Zaha netted his first-ever headed goal in the competition. Nod.— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) April 14, 2018
The goals kept flying in before half time as Zaha then grabbed his second and Palace’s third of the game with a fabulous header to restore their two goal advantage with just 24 minutes on the clock.
Before half time it was 3-2 as Jurgen Locadia played in Izquierdo who finished calmly for the fifth goal of the game. What an opening half.
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The second half was, well, a huge contrast to the first as Palace looked more likely to extend their lead and Brighton sat back initially.
Murray then had an effort as he stretched volley went just wide as the Seagulls grew into the game.
Late on Murray had another chance but it went missing, as Palace held on for a crucial win.