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Ian backs his shot-shy Eagle

Ian Holloway is backing shot-shy striker Aaron Wilbraham to fill the void left by injured top scorer Glenn Murray in the Championship play-off final.

Wilbraham, 33, has scored just one goal – in a 4-1 League Cup One defeat by Preston in August – since joining from Norwich last summer.

But he is set to lead Palace's attack against Watford at Wembley on Monday after Murray, the Championship's 30-goal leading marksman, suffered a cruciate injury in the semi-final first leg against Brighton.

"His enthusiasm is bubbling over, he's waited as an understudy all season and now he has a new lease of life," Eagles boss Holloway said of Wilbraham.

"His performance in the second leg at Brighton was fantastic. Unfortunately he didn't get a goal, but he'll be looking forward to it.

"I'm very proud of the way this season has gone for him, the way he keeps working."

Monday's showdown will mark a third play-off final in four seasons for Holloway, who guided Blackpool to the top flight in 2010 and was narrowly beaten with the Seasiders by West Ham last season.


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