Southampton 1-1 Crystal Palace: Wilfried Zaha scores before being red-carded
Full report as Southampton strike late to draw with Crystal Palace after Wilfried Zaha is dismissed
By Nick Howson
Last Updated: 31/01/19 12:03am
Wilfried Zaha went from hero to zero as Southampton grabbed a late equaliser to draw 1-1 with 10-man Crystal Palace at St Mary's.
The Ivorian's first goal for over four months looked set to send the Eagles six points clear of the Premier League drop zone at the expense of their relegation rivals.
But James Ward-Prowse arrived on cue to level with 13 minutes left, netting his third goal in as many games, before Zaha was sent off for dissent in the closing stages.
The result lifts both sides one place higher in the table, leaving Palace 15th and Saints 16th, four points above the relegation zone.
Despite bidding to avoid a third straight league defeat, the Eagles carried decent momentum into the game after dumping Tottenham out of the FA Cup.
Southampton were looking to win three on the trot for the first time in over three years after picking up more points in eight games under Ralph Hasenhuttl than from the 15 prior to his arrival.
No changes for Southampton. They kept the same 11 that started the 2-1 win over Everton.There were seven alterations for Palace from the win over Spurs. Van Aanholt, Kouyate, Townsend and Zaha were the only players retained from the 2-0 fourth round win.
But it was the visitors who started the better, although wayward efforts from Luka Milivojevic and James McArthur failed to cement their dominance.
The hosts looked nervy from the outset and should have been reduced to 10 men when Jack Stephens left a high boot in on Andros Townsend after miscontrolling the ball inside his own half.
Four minutes from the break Palace finally hit the front as referee Andre Marriner played advantage following a clear foul on Townsend, allowing Zaha to cut onto his right foot and batter the ball past Alex McCarthy from 12 yards.
Palace came within inches of doubling their lead after the interval when McCarthy flapped at a corner and Bakary Sako's stab towards goal was cleared off the line by Jan Bednarek.
They were made to pay with 13 minutes remaining as Saints cut them open down the left and Matt Targett found England international Ward-Prowse, who kept his cool to beat Vicente Guaita.
Southampton: McCarthy 4; Valery 6, Vestergaard 6, Stephens 4, Bednarek 6, Targett 7; Hojbjerg 6, Romeu 5, Ward-Prowse 7; Redmond 5; Ings 6
Subs: Elyounoussi 6, Armstrong 7, Slattery 6
Crystal Palace: Guaita 6; Wan-Bissaka 6, Tomkins 7, Sako 6, Van Aanholt 5; Milivojevic 6, Kouyate 6, McArthur 5; Townsend 6, Ayew 4, Zaha 5
Subs: Dann N/A, Schlupp 6
Man of the match: Matt Targett
Sako could have won it but somehow missed the target from point-blank range, heading off from six yards when it looked easier to score.
In the closing minutes came the game's major flashpoint, as Zaha was booked twice in a matter of seconds, having been aggrieved at Marriner for not being awarded a foul after a tackle by Ward-Prowse.
It compounded an evening of disappointment for Roy Hodgson who, after watching his side dominate for long periods, will now be without his star man against Burnley.
What would VAR have changed?
Jack Stephens should have seen red in the first half for a high lunge on Andros Townsend - an incident that went unpunished by referee Andre Marriner.
Marriner showed a yellow card for the incident but Zaha sarcastically clapped the decision leading to his dismissal - and continued to show his disapproval as he trudged towards the touchline.
Man of the match - Matt Targett
That most of Palace's attacks came from the right rather than Targett's left tells you all you need to know about his display.
The 23-year-old was dependable at the back and laid on the defence-splitting pass for Ward-Prowse to equalise when all hope appeared to be lost.
What the managers said
"It was an important point for us. In the first half it was very difficult. That is what I was told before the game, against this team you don't get many chances.
"After 10 days without a game you could feel that we were not in the rhythm of what we normally are but against this team it is difficult, that was clear for me."
"We had the chances to win the game. We controlled the game for large periods and I am disappointed that we conceded a late equaliser.
"It is a bad day for us because we lose one of our most important players to a sending off. We dropped two points which I think we should really have had."
- No Premier League side has drawn more games this season than Southampton (8).
- Crystal Palace have dropped 13 points from winning positions in the Premier League this season - only Fulham and Southampton (15 each) have lost more.
- Wilfried Zaha became only the second Crystal Palace player to score and be sent off in the same Premier League match, after Glenn Murray vs West Ham in February 2015.
- Southampton's James Ward-Prowse has scored three goals in 12 Premier League appearances this season, as many as he netted in 30 in the competition last term.
Saints travel to Burnley this Saturday, while Palace have a London derby at home to Fulham.