Crystal Palace 1 West Bromwich Albion 1

Last updated : 26 April 2010 By Footymad Previewer
Crystal Palace's battle for survival will go down to the final day of the season and a crunch clash with Sheffield Wednesday after they could only manage a 1-1 draw with West Brom in a pulsating encounter at Selhurst Park.

The south London club needed a win to relegate the Owls and avoid a nerve-jangling final day of the season at Hillsborough at the weekend.

But an early own goal by Steven Reid was swiftly cancelled out by Gabriel Tamas and the Eagles were forced to play the final stages with 10 men when Neil Danns was dismissed for headbutting Graham Dorrans.

West Brom, already promoted, played their part in a thrilling clash and it needed a number of excellent saves from Palace keeper Julian Speroni to deny them all three points.

Palace went in front after 17 minutes when Darren Ambrose's wicked low free-kick was turned past Scott Carson by Reid from just four yards out.

But the Baggies did not take long to respond. Ambrose gave away a needless foul on Graham Dorrans on the right wing and Chris Brunt's near-post free-kick was glanced past Speroni by Tamas.

Carson showed quick reactions to get a hand to Danns' shot in the 31st minute and when the ball ricocheted to the back post, the lurking Calvin Andrew could only steer his header off target.

West Brom finished the first half on top and Roman Bednar's deft 36th-minute header clipped down off the crossbar and Robert Koren appeared to get the final touch as the ball went out for a goal kick.

Minutes later and Bednar's cute reverse pass put Brunt into a great position but his shot came back off Speroni's shins and the Argentine then produced another key stop to fist over an audacious dipping 30-yard strike by Dorrans.

Bednar fired across the face of goal just before the end of half-time as Roberto Di Matteo's men finished the opening 45 minutes totally on top.

Palace competed better in the second half but Speroni continued to thwart the visitors as he raced out to save at the feet of Bednar, produced an instinctive stop to push away a Marek Cech strike and also foiled Youssouf Mulumbu as he made a jinking late run into the box.

The Eagles wasted a great chance from another Ambrose free-kick in the 63rd minute when his pinpoint delivery to the back post was headed wide by Paddy McCarthy and Carson also showed he was not going to be outdone by his opposite number as he produced a great stop to deny substitute Alan Lee.

Palace's top-scorer Ambrose could have snatched a dramatic late winner with seconds remaining - and ensured their Championship safety - but his shot was cleared off the line by Cech.