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Saturday, 4 January, 2003, 17:53 GMT
Palace hold off Seasiders
Blackpool 1-2 Crystal Palace

Two goals from Tommy Black rescued Crystal Palace from an FA Cup upset against Blackpool at Bloomfield Road.

Blackpool led through Tony Popovic's early own goal at half-time, but in-form midfielder Black scored twice in eight minutes to see Palace through.

The First Division side controlled much of the early possession but the first chance fell to Blackpool's Richard Walker in the seventh minute.

It was a good tie and we made them fight every inch for victory

Steve McMahon,
Blackpool boss
His brilliant 25-yard shot was tipped past the post by Alex Kolinko.

And an upset began to look possible when Palace defender Popovic flicked the ball into his own net under pressure.

Palace tried to hit straight back with Danny Butterfield firing narrowly wide at the other end.

But despite continued pressure, the visitors rarely threatened to cut through the Blackpool defence.

In the second half, substitute Ade Akinbiyi made a quick impression.

Blackpool played some excellent football and we were lucky at times

Trevor Francis, Palace manager
First he shot just wide after finding space outside the box and then his ball down the right wing found Butterfield, whose deep cross into the box was headed home by the unmarked Black.

Blackpool boss Steve McMahon made two quick changes, with Lee Collins replacing Thornley and John O'Kane taking the field in place of the injured Chris Clarke.

But the hosts were in disarray as Black struck again to complete an emphatic turnaround with 64 minutes gone.

O'Kane brought down Black inside the box and though the midfielder's penalty was brilliantly saved by Barnes, the Palace man followed up to claim his ninth goal in nine games.

Richie Wellens almost snatched an equaliser with the final whistle approaching but his volley flew the wrong side of the post.


Blackpool: Barnes, Richardson, Grayson, Chris Clarke (O'Kane 58), Coid (Bullock 74), Thornley (Collins 58), Wellens, Southern, Hills, Murphy, Walker.
Subs Not Used: Taylor, Dalglish.

Booked: Murphy.

Crystal Palace: Kolinko (Berthelin 76), Symons, Mullins, Popovic, Butterfield, Granville (Akinbiyi 45), Derry, Riihilahti, Gray, Adebola (Borrowdale 78), Black.
Subs Not Used: Routledge, Antwi.

Booked: Derry, Black.

Att: 9,062

Referee: C Webster (Tyne & Wear).


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