Back in the Day: April 11th - Yannick Bolasie Hat-trick Versus Sunderland
Saturday 11th April 1987
Crystal Palace 0-0 Plymouth Argyle
League Division Two – Att: 10,689
Manager: Steve Coppell
Saturday 11th April 2015
Sunderland 1-4 Crystal Palace
Premier League – Att: 42,073
Manager: Alan Pardew
Crystal Palace moved past the magical forty point mark with a resounding victory at the Stadium of Light – with six games remaining in the season. The Eagles looked dead and buried when Alan Pardew took charge just four months earlier, but the form of his team, especially away from home, saw them speed away from relegation.
Having won four of five away games since Pardew was installed as manager, Palace travelled north with the confidence to put the struggling Mackems to the sword. The hosts dominated the opening ten minutes, but a tactical switch from Pardew completely changed the game and resulted in the thrashing that was dished out. The switch from 4-5-1 to 4-4-2, moving Puncheon out wide and Bolasie up top, put Palace on top for the remainder of the goalless first half, but after the break, the visitors ran away with the game.
Glenn Murray (48) opened the scoring with a header just after the restart, brilliant peeling away to the back stick to get on the end of a deflected Bolasie cross.
Bolasie then took over.
Scott Dann lifted the ball in towards Murray and his flick on found Bolasie (51) whose blistering turn of pace saw him away from the ponderous Sunderland back line. Costel Pantilimon came rushing out, but Bolasie slotted the ball under the giant with ease.
Two minutes later it was 3-0, and Bolasie (53) had his second. Joe Ledley lifted the ball in behind the Sunderland defence, and Bolasie was on his bike again. He held off his man, controlled the ball on his thigh and lifted the ball over Pantilimon for an outrageous finish. Being in the heavens at the Stadium of Light, there were Palace fans that had missed all three goals due to the time taken to get down to the bar, have a drink and return to their seats.
Nine minutes later and Bolasie completed one of the fastest hat-tricks in Premier League history. Murray chased down a lost cause and bullied John O’Shea off the ball. Bolasie (62) came flying up the middle and Murray unselfishly found him with a square ball. He rounded the keeper, fell over and looked to have lost the chance, but sheer persistence and desire saw him scramble to get to the ball ahead of the defender and fire home his third of the afternoon.
Connor Wickham would score a late consolation for the hosts, but it could not put a dampener on the day for the rampant Eagles.
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