FA Cup

Crystal Palace 2-0 Hartlepool: Player ratings as Eagles ease into fifth round of the FA Cup

Max Parsons
Crystal Palace made light work of their League Two opposition
Crystal Palace made light work of their League Two opposition / Ryan Pierse/GettyImages
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Crystal Palace booked their place in the fifth round of the FA Cup on Saturday afternoon, with a comfortable 2-0 win over League Two Hartlepool United.

Following on from his impressive round three showing at Millwall, Michael Olise stole the show with a devastating performance at Selhurst Park, once again registering a goal and an assist to front a dominant display from the hosts.

Although Palace weren't able to add to their advantage in a much more subdued and pragmatic second half, it was their number seven's magic that sealed the deal in the opening period.

It took Olise no time at all to pick up where he left off in the FA Cup, as he played an instrumental role in his side's fourth-minute deadlock-breaker. The winger firstly won a free-kick from a frazzled David Ferguson on the right-wing, before delivering a wicked cross for Marc Guehi to calmly poke past Ben Killip.

Hartlepool reacted well to the early setback, but Palace's standout man went on to seal the visitors' fate in the 22nd minute. Olise doubled his side's lead with a clinical finish into Killip's near corner, after picking up Conor Gallagher's pass and turning Timi Odusina inside out in the Pool penalty area.

The visitors did well to ride numerous waves of Palace's dangerous attacking quality for the remainder of the first period, but were visibly holding on by the skin of their teeth as Jean Philipp-Mateta, Odsonne Edouard and Olise very nearly added a third after the resumption of play; impressive goalkeeping from Killip and a helping hand from the post kept Graeme Lee's men just about in the game.

Although avoiding the concession of another goal, Pool weren't able to really create any real chances throughout the second half, allowing Patrick Vieira's men to comfortably and professionally see out the 2-0 victory.

Now with a place in the FA Cup last 16 confirmed, the Eagles will turn their immediate attention to Premier League matters, as they aim to overturn some rocky form. Palace travel to Norwich on Wednesday, looking for a first league victory in four outings.

For now, though, let's see how the Palace players rated...


Crystal Palace player ratings

1. Goalkeeper & Defenders

Jack Butland (GK) - 6/10 - Forced into a few routine saves but wasn't really worked that intensely.

Joel Ward (RB) - 7/10 -
Made some brilliant underlapping runs to make Palace's right-wing unmanageable for Hartlepool and was characteristically composed on the back foot, making five ball recoveries.

Martin Kelly (CB) - 6/10 -
Partook in an intriguing battle with Omar Bogle, and unsurprisingly trumped the Pool striker with his Premier League experience.

Marc Guehi (CB) - 7/10 -
Tidy finish to get his side's early opener and looked totally comfortable thereafter - as you'd expect.

Tyrick Mitchell (LB) - 6/10 -
Solid defensive showing, although probably should have had more of a say in offensive areas.

2. Midfielders

Conor Gallagher, Tom Crawford
Conor Gallagher showed plenty of industry yet again / Ryan Pierse/GettyImages

Conor Gallagher (CM) - 7/10 - As busy as usual, buzzing around the pitch with energy and intent. A dominant presence in the face of admittedly inferior opposition, and left the field with a tidy assist for Olise's goal.

Luka Milivojevic (CM) - 6/10 - Largely fastidious at the heart of the side, reading play cleverly and distributing the ball efficiently to keep things calm.

Jeffrey Schlupp (CM) - 6/10 -
Brilliant tenacity and drive in midfield, often proving the one to carry play out from deep and set moves in motion.

3. Forwards

Michael Olise (RW) - 10/10 - Michael Olise and the FA Cup - football's new love affair. Tormented his opposition throughout and made them pay with an unforgiving and sensational performance. Put in a brilliant cross to assist the opener - one of six key passes he managed throughout - and then calmly finished to double Palace's lead in the first half. Untouchable.

Jean-Philippe Mateta (ST) - 4/10 - So lacklustre compared to his colleagues. Cut a distant figure for large parts of proceedings, with his main contribution being a miss from two yards out in the second period.

Eberechi Eze (LW) - 7/10 - Drifted around menacingly, looking so creative and threatening on the ball. Dizzied around his opposition with grace and elegance, although narrowly failed to have a penetrative impact.

4. Substitutes

Will Hughes (CM) - 6/10

Odsonne Edouard (LW) - 5/10

Nathaniel Clyne (RB) - 6/10

Christian Benteke (ST) - 5/10

Tayo Adaramola (LB) - 6/10

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