It was all going so well for Liverpool.
Five points clear atop the Premier League with three games to play, the Reds looked certain to secure the trophy that has eluded them for so long.
On a run of 11 straight victories, Brendan Rodgers‘ Liverpool were confident heading into their final three games against Chelsea, Crystal Palace and Newcastle that they would be able to continue their run and see the season out in style.
However, following that slip from Steven Gerrard to put Demba Ba through on goal to cost Liverpool their grip on first place, the Reds‘ needed victory at Selhurst Park to ensure they stayed on track for their first league title in nearly 25 years.
Leading the Eagles by three goals with fifteen minutes to play, confidence was restored on Merseyside, but three late strikes from Damien Delaney and Dwight Gayle (two) ensured Liverpool were on the wrong side of one of the greatest ‘bottle-job’ episodes in Premier League history — dubbed ‘Crystanbul’ in mockery of the Merseysiders’ very own three-goal comeback against AC Milan in Istanbul.
Here’s what happened to the players involved on that famous Monday night in ‘Crystanbul’.
Goalkeeper – Julian Speroni
Current Club: Retired
The veteran goalkeeper played another season as Palace’s number one before shuffling down the pecking order to accommodate Wayne Hennessey. He has since called time on his playing career, bringing the curtain down last summer to end 15 years in south London.
Right-back – Adrian Mariappa
Current Club: Watford
Mariappa played 27 times in the 2013/14 season, but became a peripheral figure before moving back to former club Watford in the summer of 2016.
Centre-back – Damien Delaney
Current Club: Retired
Delaney scored his first ever Premier League goal to spark Palace’s miraculous comeback that day and went on to become a stalwart for the Eagles, making 193 appearances in his Selhurst Park career.
At the end of the 2017/18 season, Delaney went back to where it all started and joined Cork City on a free transfer… much to the delight of the AS Roma English Twitter account.
OFFICIAL 📑 Damien Delaney is a Cork City player! 🏰🚢🏰
— AS Roma English (@ASRomaEN) June 8, 2018
In 2019 he joined fellow Irish club Waterford but announced his retirement shortly after.
Centre-back – Scott Dann
Current Club: Crystal Palace
Scott Dann has, like Delaney, enjoyed a long and eventful Crystal Palace career as the pair formed a consistent and reliable defensive partnership.
The centre-back has, however, been plagued by injury problems since December 2017 after rupturing his cruciate ligament.
Left-back – Joel Ward
Current Club: Crystal Palace
The former Portsmouth defender established himself as a regular player for Palace, providing solid cover across the defensive line and midfield.
After featuring 30+ times for four consecutive seasons, injury cut his 2017/18 campaign in half as Ward made 19 league appearances, and those problems carried over into 2018/19, but this season he has been a key figure for Roy Hodgson.
Right-midfield – Yannick Bolasie
Current Club: Sporting Lisbon (on loan from Everton)
The Congolese winger spent two more seasons terrorising defences for Palace before earning a £25m move to Everton. His electric form stopped there, however, as a damaged cruciate ligament kept him out of action until the end of 2017.
Following his return Bolasie was unable to supplant those ahead of him in the pecking order at Goodison Park and he has since enjoyed loan spells away from the club, including with Aston Villa, Anderlecht and more recently at Sporting Lisbon.
Centre-midfield – Kagisho Dikgacoi
Current Club: Witbank Spurs manager
Bar a substitute appearance in Palace’s final league game of the season, Dikgacoi’s efforts against Liverpool would prove to be his last outing in red and blue as he left for Cardiff in the summer.
After failing to impress in the Welsh capital, the South African returned to his home country to play for Lamontville Golden Arrows but stayed there only one season, and he has since hung up his boots to move into management and is currently at the helm of Witbank Spurs in his homeland.
Centre-midfield – Mile Jedinak
Current Club: Unattached (last played for Aston Villa)
The Australian captained Palace in their famous comeback, but his first-team opportunities dwindled and he left south London at the end of the 2015/16 season to join Aston Villa – with whom he helped reach the Premier League last season before leaving in the summer.
Centre-midfield – Joe Ledley
Current Club: Newcastle Jets
Another member of the Crystal Palace spine that masterminded the three-goal comeback and remained at Selhurst Park, Ledley enjoyed consistent game time there until leaving for Championship outfit Derby in 2017 upon being released by the Eagles.
He worked with Chelsea legend Frank Lampard last season with the Rams, but like the former England international, he has since left Pride Park and spent time with Charlton and now Newcastle Jets in Australia this term.
Left-midfield – Jason Puncheon
Current Club: Pafos
The local south London born winger continued to flourish as his side established themselves in the Premier League. Puncheon was key to Sam Allardyce’s Palace revolution, creating 56 chances in that 2016/17 season – more than any of his teammates.
He was made captain at the start of 2017/18, by former boss Frank de Boer, but suffered a serious injury in December which ended his season and he has since joined Cypriot First Division club Pafos.
Striker – Marouane Chamakh
Current Club: Retired
A serial underachiever, the Moroccan scored just 13 goals in his 74 Premier League appearances spread over four years prior to Crystanbul. Chamakh continued his disappointing form in his two following seasons in south London, notching just twice more in 28 games before dropping down a division to join Cardiff in the Championship.
Even this proved too much for the miss-firing forward, however, who was released in December 2016 after scoring just a couple of goals and in May 2019 the ex-Arsenal marksman announced his retirement.
Substitute – Tom Ince (85′)
Current Club: Stoke
What ever happened to Tom Ince? Well, since the loan spell at Crystal Palace, the young winger has played for Nottingham Forest and Derby, where he moved permanently in 2015.
He was later signed by Huddersfield after they gained promotion in 2017, scoring once in the Premier League before returning to the Championship with Stoke.
Substitute – Glenn Murray (71′)
Current Club: Brighton & Hove Albion
Murray has led somewhat of a nomadic existence since chesting a ball into Gayle’s path at Selhurst Park. Following disappointing spells at Reading and Bournemouth, he helped Brighton to earn promotion to the Premier League.
Murray has been the club’s top Premier League scorer the last two season having netted 12 goals in 2017/18 and 13 in 2018/19.
Substitute – Dwight Gayle (65′)
Current Club: Newcastle United
The image of Gayle wheeling away performing his familiar aeroplane celebration will stick in the minds of Palace fans – and Liverpool supporters – for some time.
Despite his two goals to complete his side’s comeback against Liverpool, the poacher was frozen out in south London and moved to Newcastle, where he scored 22 goals to lead the Toon’s charge for an immediate return to the top flight in 2017.
Like most of Newcastle’s front line, however, Gayle struggled for form and was swapped for Salomon Rondon in a season-long loan agreement with West Brom ahead of the 2018/19 campaign. He scored 24 goals for the Baggies last campaign but has since returned to Tyneside where he continues to play a peripheral role.
Goalkeeper – Simon Mignolet
Current Club: Club Brugge
After starting the 2017/18 campaign as Liverpool’s first-choice goalkeeper, Mignolet lost his place in the Reds’ team to Loris Karius.
The German didn’t last long though, and he has since been succeeded by Alisson Becker, while Mignolet returned to Belgium, signing for Club Brugge last summer.
Right-back – Glen Johnson
Current Club: Retired
The England defender spent six years on Merseyside, but joined Stoke in 2015, where he criminally decided to wear the number eight shirt at right-back.
He was released by the Potters after making just 10 appearances across all competitions in 2017/18 and he officially announced his retirement last summer.
Centre-back – Martin Skrtel
Current Club: Istanbul Basaksehir
The Slovak made more than 300 appearances in all competitions for the Reds but three seasons after Crystanbul he left for Fenerbahce in Turkey in search of first-team football. After regular playing time in Istanbul he joined Champions League debutants Atalanta last summer but left after making zero appearances and soon returned to Turkey to sign for Istanbul Basaksehir.
Centre-back – Mamadou Sakho
Current Club: Crystal Palace
The Frenchman was in and out of the side in the 2013/14 season and every campaign right up until his final one at the club, when he was eventually loaned out to the team that caused his blushes in that comeback, Crystal Palace.
Sakho found a new lease of life under Sam Allardyce and signed for the Eagles permanently in 2017. Unfortunately injury problems have curtailed his progress in the capital.
Left-back – Jon Flanagan
Current Club: Rangers
The academy graduate enjoyed a breakthrough campaign towards the end of the 2013/14 season, but struggled with injuries in the following years.
Having regained fitness he was sent on loan to Bolton for the second half of the 2017/18 season but failed to make an impact, making just nine league appearances.
After months in the wilderness at Liverpool, Flanagan was eventually signed by Rangers in June 2018, a club now managed by the next man in this article.
Centre-midfield – Steven Gerrard
Current Club: Rangers manager
It was all supposed to be so different for Steven Gerrard. The literal embodiment of Liverpool’s great slip-up, Gerrard’s Premier League dream died and after another season of fading influence, he joined MLS side LA Galaxy.
Gerrard would return to Merseyside, however, coaching the Reds’ Under-18 side. The Liverpool legend was then appointed Rangers manager at the start of the 2018/19 season, remaining unbeaten in his opening nine games in charge, but he has thus far been unable to thwart Celtic’s domestic stranglehold.
Centre-midfield – Lucas Leiva
Current Club: Lazio
The Brazilian was Liverpool’s longest-serving player, having been at the club since 2007, until leaving for Lazio in 2017.
Being held in such high esteem by the Reds faithful, Liverpool fans ensured he was named Lazio’s Player of the Season for the 2017/18 campaign after hijacking a poll run by the club’s Twitter account.
'Player of the Season' 🏆
4⃣ nomi tra cui scegliere: chi è stato il miglior calciatore biancoceleste della stagione?
Vota qui! 🗳️
— S.S.Lazio (@OfficialSSLazio) June 1, 2018
He earned that accolade again the following season and has been inspirational this term as the capital club currently sit second in Serie A.
Centre-midfield – Joe Allen
Current Club: Stoke City
The ‘Welsh Pirlo’ has been freed from his undervalued role at Liverpool. At Stoke he was the fulcrum of Mark Hughes’ side and enjoyed wonderful form in the 2016/17 season.
He remains with the Potters, though struggled in 2017/18, along with the entire team, which led to eventual relegation to the Championship, where they still sit.
Attacking-midfield – Raheem Sterling
Current Club: Manchester City
The England international spent another season with Liverpool before earning a big-money move to City, where he has excelled under Pep Guardiola as part of a front three.
His performances and goalscoring exploits have helped the Manchester club reach stratospheric heights, including an unprecedented domestic treble last season, and he continues to play a talismanic role for his revered Catalonian coach.
Striker – Luis Suarez
Current Club: Barcelona
Suarez didn’t last much longer at Liverpool after this title failure. After scoring 69 goals in 110 appearances, giants Barcelona came calling and the Uruguayan established himself as one of Europe’s most reliable goalscorers, joining Neymar and Lionel Messi in what was one of the most deadly front threes in football history.
And despite Neymar’s departure, Suarez and Messi continued to blow defences away in a new formation, with the former Liverpool man scoring 31 goals as Barcelona secured a domestic double in Ernesto Valverde’s first season.
Striker – Daniel Sturridge
Current Club: Unattached
Sturridge was never quiet able to replicate his 2013/14 form following the departure of clinical strike-partner Suarez. Of course, injury complications haven’t helped, but following the establishment of Jurgen Klopp’s formidable attacking trident, including Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane, he left for Trabzonspor last summer – where his contract was recently terminated.
Substitute – Philippe Coutinho (78′)
Current Club: Bayern Munich (on loan from Barcelona)
A substitute no more, Coutinho did not have to wait much longer to establish himself as one of Liverpool’s most dangerous players and earned a £145m move to Barcelona in January 2018.
The Brazilian magician was unable to reproduce his Anfield form in Spain and left for Bayern on a temporary basis last summer.
Substitute – Victor Moses (86′)
Current Club: Inter Milan (on loan from Chelsea)
Moses was on loan at Liverpool for the 2013/14 season and after further spells with Stoke and West Ham he returned to his parent club Chelsea where he flourished as a right wing-back, winning the league in 2016/17.
Following Antonio Conte’s departure from Stamford Bridge, Moses fell out of favour and was sent packing on loan to Fenerbahce, though he has since reunited with the animated Italian and joined the Inter Milan revolution in January of this year.