Belfast Telegraph

Alan Pardew drawing on his own heroics to inspire Crystal Palace

By Darren Witcoop

Alan Pardew will use a video of his greatest moment as a player to act as a motivational tool for his Crystal Palace stars to follow in his FA Cup footsteps.

Pardew, by his own admission, was a modest professional during his career.

He is best remembered for scoring an extra-time winner in the famous 4-3 win over Liverpool at Villa Park in 1990.

That scrambled strike ensured the Palace manager wrote himself into folklore by firing the south Londoners into their first and only ever showpiece final.

Now Pardew hopes to carve out new memories as a manager against Watford tomorrow.

"It's nice to share a few memories with them," he said. "We might use one or two clips from back then as a psychological tool.

"We will certainly use something motivational. We have ideas on a couple of little funnies we might break in there, and a couple of things that might embarrass one or two staff members.

"You want to get your team in the right place. If it's a light hearted moment or something serious, it's about getting the guys in the right place.

"Scoring the winner impacted my profile and personality massively, particularly with the Palace fans. It gave me that bond with them and the club and I'm proud to take them back.

"It's not my day. But it's a chance for my players to do what I did briefly and that's becoming a hero. Hopefully we can deliver like we did in 1990."

Palace have never won a major trophy in their long history after Manchester United, thanks to a replay, killed off their cup dream, but Pardew knows what impact ending that drought would have at Selhurst Park.

"That semi-final grew the club on the back of the crowds doubling in 1990 and we managed to keep those fans," he said.

"We must grab those fans now by grabbing a win and taking them to the final - then we have them for life.

"To get to a cup final would be extra special. It's been one of our aims all along and we have a real chance of achieving it. I think the players understand the importance of where we are now."

Watford sit two points and four palaces ahead of Palace in the Premier League table. Both have suffered a dip in form in 2016 but it's Pardew's side who head to Wembley as favourites.

"It'll be a game of tight margins," added Pardew. "In full flow we have the edge on them."


C Palace

FA Cup semi-final:

Wembley, Sunday, 4.00pm

Belfast Telegraph


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