Warnock hits out after Palace are denied a famous giant-killing scalp


OUTSPOKEN Crystal Palace boss Neil Warnock accused referee Kevin Friend of costing his side a place in the FA Cup quarter-final as Aston Villa got out of jail at Selhurst Park.

Warnock was incensed after Friend incorrectly awarded Villa a corner three minutes from time which led to Stiliyan Petrov heading home an dramatic equaliser.

“I am absolutely devastated,” Warnock said. “Their second goal was a disgrace. We have a Premier League referee and we got Mr Massey laughing his head off all afternoon with the flag. If you look at it the goalie saves it and it comes off [Nathan] Delfouneso and neither of them wanted to make a decision. They wait and wait and wait to see which what they should give it. It’s a disgrace, he should be banned for weeks should Mr Massey. All he can do is smile.”

Johnny Ertl put the Eagles in front with his first goal for the club on 24 minutes before James Collins headed Villa level 11 minutes later.

Darren Ambrose then struck a superb 35-yard free-kick to put the Eagles 2-1 up before the late drama.