Jonathan Walters did not need to wait long to put last weekend’s calamitous match against Chelsea behind him, making up for his two headed own goals and a missed penalty by scoring twice in extra time as Stoke City knocked their Championship opponents Crystal Palace out of the FA Cup to win a fourth-round home tie against Manchester City in a repeat of the 2011 final.
A penalty converted by the Palace substitute Glenn Murray with three minutes of normal time took last night’s replay beyond the 90 minutes. Palace’s Jermaine Easter had missed from the spot in the first half and it seemed he would suffer for it when goalkeeper Lewis Price let a Kenwyne Jones header squeeze past him after 69 minutes, only for Murray to punish Stoke’s Ryan Shawcross, who had given away both penalties.
But Walters put Stoke ahead again in the fifth minute of extra time, getting on the end of a Matthew Etherington cross to head home, this time at the right end. He scored his second in the fifth minute of the second period, decisively drilling the ball past Price after a Jones pass had sent him clear, before Cameron Jerome rounded Price to add a fourth for the Premier League side in the last minute.
It left the Palace manager, Ian Holloway, in a foul mood, although it was largely because of the yellow card shown to Wilfried Zaha for diving moments before he won what the referee Anthony Taylor deemed to be a legitimate penalty against Shawcross.
“What ruined it for me was that my player has been accused of cheating,” said Holloway. “I won’t tolerate diving and I fine anyone who does it. Wilf was caught and I’ve had to take him off at half-time with a sore ankle. Has he made that up as well?”
Zaha started this match despite reports suggesting that a move to Manchester United for the 20-year-old winger will go through today, a subject which also vexed the Palace manager. “I’m fed up with reading about Zaha and with television telling me how ever many days and hours are left in this stupid, pathetic window,” said Holloway.
Until Jerome and Jones were introduced in the second half of normal time, Stoke had looked largely ineffectual. Jones headed them in front in the 69th minute, from another Etherington cross, and the goal looked like being the decisive one until Shawcross again offended, bringing down Jonathan Williams. But Murray stepped up and, unlike Easter, gave Thomas Sorensen no chance.
Stoke City (4-4-2): Sorensen; Cameron, Shawcross, Huth, Wilkinson (Whelan, 37); Kightly (Jerome, 55), Whitehead, Nzonzi, Etherington; Walters, Crouch (Jones, 63). Substitutes not used Nash (gk), Upson, Owen, Adam.
Crystal Palace (4-5-1): Price; Ramage, Gabbidon (Murray, 79), Delaney, Parsons; Zaha (Bolasie, h-t), Jedinak, Williams, Boateng (Moritz, 65), Easter; Wilbraham. Substitutes not used Speroni (gk), Moxey, Wynter, Taylor.
Referee A Taylor (Greater Manchester).