Socceroo Mile Jedinak scored his first EPL goal for Crystal Palace overnight as he continues his impressive form leading up to the World Cup in Brazil.
Socceroo Mile Jedinak scored his first English Premier League goal for Crystal Palace overnight as he continues his impressive form leading up to the World Cup in Brazil.
Jedinak converted a penalty in Palace's 1-0 win over West Ham at Upton Park to give Tony Pulis' side their fifth straight win and ensure their EPL status for next season.
But it was was an emotional goal for Jedinak on a day where the life of Australian youngster Dylan Tombides was celebrated.
The 20-year-old West Ham player tragically died on Friday after a three-year battle with testicular cancer, with fans and players from both side's involved in a moving tribute before kick-off.
Tombides was honoured with a minute's applause before the match as Tombides' father Jim and brother Taylor carried his jersey to the middle of the ground while the stadium applauded.
There was also a standing ovation in the 38th minute, which was the Australian youth international's number at the Hammers and West Ham announced they will retire Tombides' jersey number to ensure the young star's memory will never be forgotten.
While Jedinak's goal was huge for Palace's season, the Socceroos midfielder was muted in his celebration as a mark of respect to Tombides and his family.
Jedinak, who captained the Socceroos in March's friendly against Ecuador, admitted later it had been a difficult day for him and his team-mates as the spectre of Tombides' death hung over Upton Park.
"It was quite difficult before and during the game," said Jedinak speaking to Fox Sports after the match. "Seeing young Dylan's family come on to the pitch was pretty touching.
"It meant so much to them and being an Australian it meant a lot to me as well.
"It (the goal) takes a backward step when you're playing for something like this. Dylan will never be forgotten and I'm sure I'll remember him, especially for this day."
Jedinak is due to play for the Socceroos next month in the team's World Cup farewell friendly in Sydney against South Africa.
The final chance to see the Socceroos on home soil before they head to the World Cup will be when they take on South Africa in a farewell game on May 26 in Sydney. Tickets for the match, presented by NAB, are on sale now. Click here to secure yours today.
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