Hull relegated as Crystal Palace hit four in relegation decider at Selhurst Park
Premier League, Selhurst Park – Crystal Palace 4 (Zaha 3, Benteke 34, Milivojevic 85 (p), Van Aanholt 90) Hull City 0
Crystal Palace ran riot in the relegation decider at Selhurst Park, beating Hull City 4-0 to send the Tigers down into the Championship.
Needing victory to keep their slim hopes alive, the Tigers suffered the worst possible start as a horrible missed clearance from Andrea Ranocchia let Wilfried Zaha in to score in the third minute.
LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 14: A dejected looking Michael Dawson of Hull City during the Premier League match between Crystal Palace and Hull City at Selhurst Park on May 14, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Catherine Ivill - AMA/Getty Images)Getty Images
Christian Benteke doubled Palace’s advantage, heading home unmarked in the box from Jason Puncheon’s corner before Hull were unfortunate not to be offered a lifeline back into the match - both Martin Atkinson and his linesman missed Puncheon handling Kamil Grosicki’s free kick in the box.
Hull, who have struggled to pick up points on the road all season, briefly threatened a comeback, but it wasn’t to be, and Luka Milivojevic made the game safe for Palace with a late penalty after Jeff after Schlupp was upended by Michael Dawson.
There was still time for Hull’s misery to be compounded, with Patrick van Aanholt hitting a 90th-minute fourth to send the home crowd into raptures.
In truth, it was Hull’s woeful away form this season that ultimately sent them down. They have the worst away record in the top flight this season, claiming just one win and six points from 19 games.
Should Hull have had a penalty. The answer is probably yes. Would it have affected the result? Probably not.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace) Capitalised on a horror mistake from Ranocchia to set the ball rolling and terrified Hull with his pace on the break all afternoon.
Hull City: Jakupovic 5, Maguire 6, Ranocchia 4, Dawson 5, Elmohamady 6, N’Diaye 6, Clucas 6, Robertson 7, Goebel 6, Niasse 6, Grosicki 7. SUBS: Davies 5, Maloney 6, Bowen 6.
3’ - GOAL! Crystal Palace 1-0 Hull City: It’s a dream start for Palace. A dreadful missed clearance from Ranocchia gifts Zaha a free run on goal and he slots home!
34’ - GOAL! Crystal Palace 2-0 Hull City: Ward puts the ball into a really good area and Dawson is forced to head behind under little pressure. In comes the corner from Puncheon and Benteke heads home.
37’ – PENALTY SHOUT: Kamil Grosicki’s free kick looks like it caught an oustretched hand from Puncheon before deflecting behind for a corner. Not spotted by linesman or Martin Atkinson.
85’ - GOAL! Crystal Palace 3-0 Hull City: Milivojevic sends Jakupovic the wrong way in the box after Schlupp is upended by Dawson
90’ - GOAL! Crystal Palace 4-0 Hull City: That rubs salt into the wound as Patrick van Aanholt gets in on the act, picked out by Milivojevic.
Hull City are relegated. After just one season in the top flight they return to the second tier and join Sunderland and Middlesbrough on the way down. Hull are the side that has conceded most PL goals this season (73) and only two teams have scored fewer than their 36, Sunderland (28) and Boro (27).
Luka Milivojevic's only other PL goal this season came from a penalty that made the score 3-0 in a home match (v Arsenal).
Wilfried Zaha scores his seventh PL goal of the season, his best goals return for a single league campaign. He scored six goals for Palace in 2012/13 and 2011/12, both in the Championship.