Villa 3 Palace 1: Warnock is wronged a second time as Agbonlahor pounces

25 February 2010 02:02
Neil Warnock was on the wrong end of a refereeing decision for thesecond time in this tie as Aston Villa moved within sight of a secondWembley appearance this season.

The Palace manager was incensed at the award of a corner that led to a late equaliser during the first meeting of the two sides.

He has been asked by the Football Association to explain commentsabout assistant referee Trevor Massey, and Premier League officialMartin Atkinson was in his badbooks in this Villa Park replay.

Head boy: Agbonlahor (far left) scores for Aston Villa against Crystal Palace.

The Yorkshireman awarded Villa a corner three minutes before theinterval, despite the ball appearing to come off James Milner, andAshley Young swung over a crossthat Gabriel Agbonlahor headed home.

Sort it: Palace manager Neil Warnock laments his side's concession

It would be hard on Warnock if he was to leave Palace on such a sour note ahead of a proposed switch to Queens Park Rangers.

But his mood was improved after 73 minutes when Darren Ambrose sentVilla keeper Brad Guzan the wrong way from the spot after StephenWarnock brought down Alan Lee.

However, Villa progressed to the last eight for the first time in a decade afterJohn Carew fired home a penalty for the hosts with nine minutes left followinga foul on the Norwegian by Matt Lawrence.

Carew added a second penalty for Villa's third goal after 89minutes. With a quarter-final to come against Championship opposition,Villa will be favourites tobook themselves a second trip to north London, following their dateagainst Manchester United in the Carling Cup final this coming Sunday.

MATCH FACTSAston Villa (4-4-2): Guzan 6; L Young 6, Cuellar 7, Dunne 6, Warnock7; Downing 7, Delph 6 (Sidwell 76), Milner 9, A Young 9; Carew 6,Agbonlahor 7.

Crystal Palace (4-1-4-1): Speroni 6; Butterfield 6, Lawrence 6, Davis5, Cline 6; Derry 6; Ambrose 7, Carle 6 (Comley 83), Ertl 6, Danns 6;Lee 6.

Booked: Butterfield, Cline.

Man of the match: James Milner.

Referee: Martin Atkinson

Warnock emerged from the tunnel to a rapturous reception from thetravelling support. His name was chanted by the 5,000 fans packed intothe top tier of the North Stand in a demonstration of the esteem inwhich he is held in south London.

It is 53 years since Villa last lifted the most recognisable pot inEnglish football, and It was clear how Warnock hoped to spring an upsetLee played as a lone striker.

It took Villa some time to fashion a worthwhile chance. CarlosCuellar's tackle allowed Agbonlahor to turn Danny Butterfield, and theEngland forward's left-foot shot was well blocked by Palace keeper Julian Speroni.

Villa built momentum, and Carew's shot was well blocked and Palace'sdefence was stretched. It seemed as though the breakthrough had arrivedon the half-hour. Warnock raced on to Milner's pass and squared the ball, butCarew, probably expecting a shot, had failed to continue his run.

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Source: Daily_Mail