Middlesbrough 1-2 Crystal Palace: Zaha, Benteke nab road win for Eagles

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  • Benteke opens scoring
  • Ayala answers for Boro
  • Zaha strikes for winner

Wilfried Zaha had a goal and an assist, and Christian Benteke scored his first Crystal Palace goal as the Eagles took three points from Middlesbrough on Saturday.

Daniel Ayala scored the lone goal for the Riverside Stadium set in a very even match.

Palace now has four points, one behind the Boro.

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Ayala was at the center of the both first half goals.

First, the Middlesbrough defender was hampered in his attempt to defend a long cross by Benteke, as the Palace man had his arms on Ayala’s shoulders as he leapt to head home the opener.

But Ayala looped a header of his own from 12 yards out off a Boro corner to level things in the 38th minute.

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It looked as if an Alvaro Negredo would put the game back on its ear on a breakaway just before halftime, but Steve Mandanda parried his attempt to send the match into the break at 1-1.

Zaha turned goal scorer to start the second half, powering past George Friend to push a shot past Victor Valdes and give the match its final score.