Football / FA Cup: Turner well served by Palace

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The Independent Online
Wolverhampton Wanderers. . . . . . . . . . . .1

Crystal Palace . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .0

GRAHAM Turner must like playing Crystal Palace. Three months ago, when the pressure for success was building on the Wolves manager, he introduced a five-man defence and came away from Selhurst Park witha creditable draw.

Wolves have since lost only once in the League, attendances at Molineux have soared (Saturday's gate of 25,047 was bettered only at Newcastle and Sheffield Wednesday) and now there is the promise of an extended FA Cup run. About time, too. Since reaching the semi-finals in 1981, Wolves had only twice reached the fourth round before Saturday and had failed at that hurdle on each occasion.

Turner, however, will be only too aware that the demand for success will not go away. You sense that the Wolverhampton public now expects a team worthy of their magnificent stadium and when David Kelly scored Saturday's winning goal, after Nigel Martyn had flapped at Paul Cook's corner, the feeling around the ground seemed to be one of relief as much as elation.

Wolves had the better of the first and last 20 minutes, but in between Palace looked the more likely to score. Chris Armstrong, however, rarely received enough support and John Salako's move from the left wing to a central attacking role did not pay off.

For Wolves, Steve Bull threatened regularly, although his departure with injury after 58 minutes may just have been the turning point, particularly as Martyn made his error under pressure from Bull's replacement, Cyrille Regis.

Bull was injured in a legitimate challenge from Dean Gordon, and thereafter the home crowd gave Palace's young left-back a fearful time whenever he had the ball. It certainly appeared to unnerve Gordon and after the game Alan Smith, the Palace manager, pointed out his young team's lack of experience.

Palace, without an FA Cup win since their epic semi-final victory over Liverpool four years ago, now turn their attention to the League. The First Division leaders travel again next Saturday - to Molineux.

Goal: Kelly (74) 1-0.

Wolverhampton Wanderers (5-3-2): Stowell; Thompson, Rankine, Blades, Shirtliff, Venus; Dennison, Cook, Keen; Bull (Regis, 58), Kelly. Substitutes not used: Birch, Jones (gk).

Crystal Palace (4-4-2): Martyn; Shaw, Young, Coleman, Gordon; Osborn (Whyte 77), Newman, Southgate, Rodger; Armstrong, Salako. Substitutes not used: Williams, Woodman (gk).

Referee: B Hill (Kettering).

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