MAMADOU SAKHO scored a last minute winner to gift Crystal Palace a crucial win against Stoke.
The former Liverpool defender tapped home from close-range as The Eagles ended a run of two successive draws at Selhurst Park.
Xherdan Shaqiri had put the visitors ahead in the 52nd minute, before Ruben Loftus-Cheek levelled three minutes later.
Mark Hughes’ Potters are now without a win in their last three games home and away, and just three points off the drop.
In a game of few chances and bitter conditions, it was defensive errors that gave each side glimpses of goal.
Andros Townsend was almost put through by Erik Pieters after fumbling the ball in his own area early on, but the Dutch defender recovered well.
Shaqiri was then left one on one with Wayne Hennessey after a mistake by Mamadou Sakho high up the pitch – the Swiss’ effort was well blocked by the Eagles keeper.
Yohan Cabaye was lucky not to be sent off by Mike Dean after a nasty studs challenge on Ramadan Sobhi, leaving Mark Hughes fuming with the officials.
Wilfried Zaha remained a constant threat throughout the first half, but it was Stoke’s talisman Shaqiri who put his side ahead after the break against the run of play.
The playmaker dribbled past four players and calmly slotted the ball into Hennessey’s left-hand corner after 52 minutes.
Three minutes later, Palace deservedly drew level after Townsend’s cross from deep managed to find its way through the Stoke defence, allowing Loftus-Cheek to tap in unmarked.
The introduction of Christian Benteke and Peter Crouch from either bench led to a frantic final period, while Spaniard Jese also almost made an impact with a long range attempt.
Ryan Shawcross should have taken all three points back up north for Hughes, but somehow diverted a cross away from an empty net.
But after a Zaha cross and an effort off the post from Cabaye, Sakho netted the easiest of chances to give Roy’s boys the best of weekend results.
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FACTS, STATS, GOALS & LOLS
- Palace have never lost to the Potters in a Premier League game at home, winning four and drawing one.
- Darren Fletcher made his 104th successive Premier League match appearance drawing level with Jonathan Walters as joint-fourth in the all-time outfield records within the competition.
- Reuben Loftus-Cheek’s goal was his first for the Eagles and second ever in the Premier League.
- Mamadou Sakho’s goal was also a first for him for Crystal Palace.
- Stoke have now conceded 26 goals to match West Ham with the most in the Premier League.