You are here: Home > News > Burnley 1979
April 8 2020 12.17am

Burnley 1979

March 31 2003

Selhurst Park

Selhurst Park

The 1978/9 season was one of the most memorable in Palace's history and most fans will remember it by just one game.

At the time Palace were in the old Second division, boasting players such as Kenny Sansom, Vince Hilaire and Dave Swindlehurst.

The season started well with early results going Palace's way - a win against fancied promotion hopefuls Luton and a 3-0 win at Milwall put Palace top of the table.

In October 1978, the Eagles used the proceeds of a cup tie with Aston Villa to buy back Steve Kember from Leicester City. Palace profited from his experience and in December were two points clear of Stoke at the top of league table.

In the last third of the season, a vital run of victories over teams such as Sunderland and Notts County left Palace very close to clinching promotion.

Due to a fixture postponement in the winter months, Palace's match against Burnley at home was rearranged after the last Saturday of the season. On that Saturday all four promotion contenders (Brighton, Stoke, Sunderland and Palace) won away.

Brighton's result left them top of the table and it meant only Palace could stop them becoming champions.

The Burnley game was crucial - Palace needed a single point to gain promotion. Three points would mean Palace would overtake Brighton and finish champions. No points and Palace would remain in the second division.

So on May 11, 1979, Palace took to the field at Selhurst Park knowing exactly what was expected of them. It was a record attendance as 51,482 crammed themselves onto the terraces, with thousands of fans locked outside.

Burnley resisted a great deal of Palace pressure throughout the match, but with just 14 minutes left on the clock, the breakthrough for Palace came.

View Video
Ian Walsh's Goal
<a href='page.php?id=111&player=652'>Ian Walsh</a> Goal - Video
Right click (Save Target As...)
Goal Clip (512k)
Vince Hillaire scampered down the right wing and floated in a great cross for young Ian Walsh to head home. Selhurst Park exploded into jubilant scenes.

A few minutes before the end, Swindlehurst made the game and championship safe with a right-footed drive.

Palace had made it and had clinched the championship in front of the noses of their arch rivals Brighton.

Palace: Burridge, Hinshelwood, Sansom, Kember, Cannon, Gilbert, Nicholas, Murphy, Swindlehurst, Walsh, Hilaire.

Burnley: Stevenson, Scott, Brennan, Noble, Thomson, Rodway, Hall, Inram, Morley, Kindon, James.

Attendance: 51,482.

On the next few pages, HOL members recall their own memories of the game against Burnley.

Pages 1 2 3 4

Latest Headlines

Palace Talk Forum Latest

Best Palace Team to Have Played for England
at 11.02pm by Palace Passion

Best Palace Team to Have Played for England
at 10.04pm by Tom-the-eagle

Best Palace Team to Have Played for England
at 7.31pm by EasingEagle69

Best Palace Team to Have Played for England
at 7.02pm by chris123

Players' wages
at 6.16pm by Rudi Hedman

Players' wages
at 5.54pm by est1905

You are here: Home > News > Burnley 1979