Crystal Palace - Manchester United FA Cup Final Preview: History beckons for Eagles players

The players of the South London side head to Wembley aiming to become Palace heros

Crystal Palace - Manchester United FA Cup Final Preview: History beckons for Eagles players
Photo: VAVEL UK

After a disappointing 2016 in the Premier League, Crystal Palace’s big day is nearly here, as they bid to win the FA Cup for the first time in their history. 

Second time lucky?

They have however reached the final before back in 1990. Despite losing that game 4-3, they have a chance of revenge this weekend as they come face to face with the same opponents from that day, Manchester United.

Manager Alan Pardew doesn’t have too many good memories of the FA during his career in English football, having played in the 1990 final defeat for Palace and losing the 2006 final as manager of West Ham. 

Pardew scored the goal that took Palace to Wembely in 1990, making it 4-3 against Liverpool in the semi-final. Photo: The Mirror
Pardew scored the goal that took Palace to Wembely in 1990, making it 4-3 against Liverpool in the semi-final. Photo: The Mirror

Ahead of this years final, the Eagles boss thinks that Palace are going to be the team the “needs to fight a bit harder to win” as Manchester United “keep the ball really well”.

Going into the game as underdogs, the Englishman has also said “we have got areas of the pitch where I think we're slightly superior and we've got to make those areas count".

Team news

Winger Wilfred Zaha is expected back for the big game after missing Palace’s previous three games through injury. 

Along with Zaha, Bakery Sako is also available for selection again.

The eagles will still be without Welsh midfielder Joe Ledley however, who sustained a fractured fibula in the 2-1 win over Stoke City two weeks ago.

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has stated on numerous occasions how important a victory on Saturday would be for the club, saying “a club like United needs silverware”

He has also said that that he thinks playing a Wembley is special in its own right, calling it the “most prestigious temple of English football”.

Its no wonder the Dutchman is has spoken so passionately about the game against Crystal Palace, with questions over his job being asked by the clubs fans and the media.

A long time coming 

If the Red devils are able to lift the trophy on Saturday evening, it would be United’s first triumph in the competition since 2004, and would also equal Arsenal’s record of 12 FA cup final victories. 

It would also be the first time experienced players like Wayne Rooney and Michael Carrick get the chance to lift the trophy in their long careers.

Team news

Marouane Fellaini will return for United after completing his ban for elbowing Leicester City’s Robert Huth. 

The trio of Matteio Darmian, Morgan Schneiderlin and Marcos Rojo will also return to the squad after missing the mid-week victory over AFC Bournemouth. 

However, winger Adnan Januzaj and Timothy Fonsu-Mensah are unlikely to feature due to injury.