Crystal Palace 2-1 Wigan

By Arindam RejBBC Sport

Darren Ambrose and Jonathan Williams scored to help Crystal Palace to a shock Carling Cup win over Premier League side Wigan.

The Championship team led in the 23rd minute when Ambrose volleyed in from Wilfried Zaha's cross.

The home side added their second seven minutes later when Williams' deflected 20-yard strike evaded Ali Al-Habsi.

Wigan midfielder Ben Watson scored a late 30-yard strike against his former club but Palace held on.

Zaha impressed, delivering assists for Palace's two first-half goals while Glenn Murray also shone, co-ordinating many of the home team's most impressive attacks and 17-year-old Williams looks a brilliant find by the club.

Both teams had started with a 4-2-3-1 formation and it was the visitors who made the better start. Wigan, despite making seven changes, were fluent going foward and Dave Jones came close for them early on.

Ambrose had a 25-yard free-kick well-saved by Al-Habsi but Wigan reasserted themselves when Jones fired his own set-piece just wide.

Palace's Murray rattled Roberto Martinez's men by striking the crossbar from a tight angle and, soon afterwards, the home team were ahead as Ambrose finished from seven yards following Zaha's cross.

Ambrose forced another save from Al-Habsi as the Palace pressure continued and they went further in front when Williams struck from another Zaha delivery.

The impressive Ambrose then sent in a corner that was met by Paddy McCarthy's header, which was cleared off the line. Murray then came agonisingly close with a looping header as Palace finished the half strongly.

After the break, Jones blazed over for Wigan but they struggled to get back into the game during a low-key start to the second half. Some threat was finally injected into the visitors' play though after the hour-mark as James McCarthy came close with a hit from distance.

Wigan upped the tempo and were frustrated again on 83 minutes when Patrick Van Aanholt's shot from the edge of the box rattled the crossbar. They then pulled back a consolation when Watson - who received a warm reception from Palace's fans earlier - scored with a powerful drive.

Palace held on in the closing stages despite the late pressure and Dougie Freedman's men now face Middlesbrough in the third round.

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