Wilfried Zaha’s penalty was enough to secure three points for Crystal Palace as Watford suffer relegation to the Championship.

Wilfried Zaha’s penalty at the half-hour mark secured all three points for Crystal Palace, who moved clear of any dangers of being dragged into a relegation dogfight. Instead, the solitary goal sent Watford back to the second tier of English football.

The game began with intense pressure from Palace attackers, as they mustered plenty of chances to create danger. Michael Olise was the orchestrator of the early attacks and was responsible for winning the penalty around the half-hour mark.

Eberechi Eze’s cross was met by Olise at the back post and his subsequent header was blocked by Hassane Kamara’s arm. The resulting spot-kick was tucked away by Zaha to give Palace the lead. The home side continued their pressure after the goal, and Palace could have ended the half with two had Ben Foster not saved Marc Guehi’s powerful header.

While opportunities came far and few between for Watford, when they did get one, Joshua King wasted it. Kamara’s day then went from bad to worse as he received a second yellow for a foul. Despite playing with ten men, Watford did not concede any more goals, but the defeat meant that they were relegated from the Premier League.

Watford become the second team to be relegated this season after Norwich City went down last weekend. As for Palace, they are well clear of the danger zone and can now look to finish in the top half of the table. Here’s how the Crystal Palace players rated in their win over Watford.

Jack Butland – 6/10

Butland had a comfortable afternoon, with Watford’s attackers barely finding anything to hit at his goal. Barring one moment of miscommunication, there were no problems for the keeper.

Nathaniel Clyne – 6.5/10

An energetic display from the now established first-choice right-back as Clyne bombed down the flank. He also covered his ground well, denying King a goal.

Joachim Andersen – 7/10

There was no way any Watford attacker could get past Andersen. The centre-back was a commanding presence and improved the overall game with his incisive passing. A comfortable day in the bag for the Dane, who should finish the season with ease now.

Marc Guehi – 7/10

Guehi had another top-notch game under his belt. He could have doubled Palace’s lead towards the end of the first half. Defensively, Watford could never get past him. He hobbled off in the end, but it looked more precautionary than anything.

Joel Ward – 6/10

Ward kept his position on the left side of the Palace defence did not venture forward too much. The defender was alert to any danger and allowed Clyne to bomb down the right-hand side. He slotted in at centre-back to finish the game after Guehi’s withdrawal.

Conor Gallagher – 6/10

It was a bit of an off-colour display, however, Gallagher did have some eye-catching moments in midfield. He could have made chances out of those, but couldn’t. The Chelsea loanee was taken off midway through the second half.

Will Hughes – 7/10

Hughes did a fantastic job in holding the fort in midfield, which allowed Eze and Gallagher to operate in more advanced areas. He dealt with the Watford press with ease but might have been a tad upset over seeing his former team get relegated.

Eberechi Eze – 7/10

Like Olise, Eze was operating more fluidly in the left channel, with Hughes holding play behind. His cross was met with Olise in the first half resulting in the penalty, and he had yet another good game, as his form keeps improving.

Michael Olise – 8/10

Olise’s development seems ahead of schedule as the attacker put in another top-notch display. The early Palace pressure was due to his movements as he got into good positions and created dangerous chances. He won the penalty around the half-hour mark and will be pleased with his performance.

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Odsonne Edouard – 6.5/10

Edouard started a game after a considerable gap and proved good in a leading role upfront. He held the ball up well, and there were a few moments where he could have tucked one in. Vieira may rotate his strikers between now and the end of the campaign.

Wilfried Zaha – 8/10

Two games, two matchwinners, as Zaha remains in top-form for Palace. The attacker was an active presence on the left-hand side, combining well with Eze. He tucked away from the penalty spot with great composure, and it was enough for the home side to collect three points.


Jeffrey Schlupp – 7/10

Schlupp added some much-needed energy to snuff out even the smallest of dangers in midfield. With him on the pitch, Palace defended their slender lead without any issues.

Tyrick Mitchell – 5/10

Mitchell replaced Guehi and slotted in at left-back to see the game out.

Jean-Philippe Mateta – N/A

Not much time to have an impact on the game.

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