*photo source: http://www.footballquizzes.co.uk
April 24th, 2016.
Crystal Palace defeats Watford (2-1) at Wembley and qualifies for the 2015/2016 FA Cup final. A few weeks after, Manchester United won the final after the two late goals of Puncheon (78′) and Mata (81′) were followed up by Lingard’s winner in extra-time (110′). Remember this celebration?
He surely regrets it now as his team was quickly equalized, eventually losing. But the question that’s killing Palace fans now is – Can their team ignore the FA Cup curse and remain in the Premier League?
What’s the FA Cup curse?
It all started in 2013. Wigan defeated Manchester City in one of the biggest surprises in English football. Watson’s header stunned Wembley in the 91st minute and the Citizens lost a trophy which looked as an easy catch. What is more interesting is that Wigan was relegated in Championship at the end of that season. This meant that they participated in the Group Stages of the 2013/2014 edition of Europa League even though the club played in the second English division.
The next year, Arsenal defeated Hull City (3-2) after a late goal by Ramsey (109′) in extra-time. The Tigers won against Brighton, Sunderland and Sheffield United in order to play the biggest match in the history of the club. A year after, Hull City finished in the 18th position, with only 35 points. This meant relegation to Championship and the “confirmation” of the FA Cup curse.
Arsenal defended their title next year, thrashing Aston Villa in the 2014/2015 FA Cup final. A 4-0 victory and guess what was next for the 1982 European Cup winners? Relegation to Championship after a disappointing season with only 17 points.
Today, the bottom part of the Premier League table looks like this
14. Bournemouth – 27 pts
15. Leicester – 27pts
16. Swansea – 27 pts
17. Crystal Palace – 25 pts
18. Middlesbrough – 22 pts
19. Hull – 21 pts
20. Sunderland – 19 pts
It’s an intense battle but what is intriguing is Palace’s schedule – all the teams from Top 6 will play against Palace. That’s six matches out of 11 so the FA Cup curse might go on.