Crystal Palace got their first Premier League win of 2022 in a 4-1 away win to Roy Hodgson’s struggling Watford side. It was a mature performance from Palace who led at halftime and then managed to see the game out with two late goals from Zaha.
Marc Guehi led the Eagles out with the captain’s armband for the first time as McArthur and Milivojevic were both on the bench and Ward was still out. Vieira made four changes to the team that lost to Chelsea at the weekend, Gallagher was recalled after missing the match with his parent club Chelsea, Mateta started in the front three instead of Ayew too.
Will Hughes started against his former club and Butland was called up after playing the second half at the weekend due to Guaita’s injury.
- Within the opening 10 minutes, Palace had a penalty appeal when Gallagher looked like he was fouled in the area. The ref gave a corner and VAR deemed this to be the correct decision.
- Palace had started strong from the off and in the 15th minute, they got the first goal when Mateta’s shot from inside the box deflected past Ben Foster.
- Just a few minutes later though and Watford had equalised. Sissoko headed home from a corner, getting his first goal in two years. Defending corners has been one of Palace’s main weaknesses this season and this is clear without the number of goals conceded from them.
- This goal gave Watford the confidence to keep attacking especially down the right-wing. This forced Zaha to have to track back and help Mitchell during this spell.
- Palace regained control of the match in the second part of the first half and some good link-up play between Zaha and Mitchell led to the ball reaching Olise who had a first-time effort saved easily by Foster.
- Mitchell had been delivering some good crosses into the box and this time he found Gallagher who took the sweetest touch to set himself up and smash it in the back of the net. This 42nd-minute goal meant Palace went into halftime leading.
- Shortly after the restart, Zaha found Mateta behind the back four but his cross couldn’t find Olise who was arriving in the box.
- As the Eagles led they managed to control the pace of the game which frustrated Watford who were attempting long balls.
- Dennis who scored against Villa at the weekend had half a chance but he couldn’t find the target.
- Ayew replaced Olise on the right in the 73rd minute which signalled that Vieira wanted to hold on to the win as Ayew works extremely hard defensively and going forward. Watford also made a change at the same time bringing Tom Cleverley off for Edo Kayembe.
- With 10 minutes of normal time remaining, James McArthur came on for Will Hughes to work hard defending.
- Though, five minutes later Ayew chipped in a cross which found Zaha who brought it down and then onto his left and fired it low into the net.
- This wasn’t the end though as Zaha popped up again on the left side but this time cut back onto his favoured right foot and found the bottom right corner of the goal.
After having chances against Chelsea but not being able to score, managing to get four against Watford made up for it. This away win will have given the players a confidence boost in front of goal, but they face another tough test against Burnley who beat Tottenham 1-0 yesterday.
Crystal Palace Player Ratings
- Gallagher – 9
- Zaha – 9
- Guehi – 8
- Andersen – 8
- Kouyate – 8
- Mateta – 8
- Mitchell – 8
- Olise – 7.5
- Hughes – 7.5
- Butland – 7
Crystal Palace vs Manchester United Match Report & Highlights
Crystal Palace played hosts to a Manchester United on the final day of the season. After a disappointing loss to Everton a few days earlier, Vieira and the Palace players wanted to end the season on a high and did so with a 1-0 win over United. This was the first home win against Man United in the Premier League and since May 1991.
Jesurun Rak-Sakyi made his first senior start for The Eagles after he’d appeared as a sub earlier in the season against Chelsea. Joel Ward replaced an injured Marc Guehi at the centre of defence and took up the captain’s armband for the game.
Keep reading for the match key points and to see the highlights.
- A deflected shot from Bruno Fernandes fell to Cavani who scuffed the shot but managed to get it on goal. Guaita was still wrong-footed from Fernandes’ shot but managed to stretch to save the ball from going in.
- Schlupp got the ball to Zaha who was 1v1 with the defender on the left, he made enough space to get a shot off with his left foot, but De Gea saved it well.
- Guaita had to save another effort from Cavani which he tipped onto the bar, but the ref blew as he claimed there was a foul by the United striker.
- Edouard played a lovely flick through to Schlupp who hit the ball first time with his left but De Gea saved well again, this time with his knees.
- Zaha received the ball just outside the area and was running at Dalot who couldn’t get tight enough. He got it onto his right foot and rolled it through Lindelof’s legs into the net. 1-0 to The Eagles.
- A penalty appeal on Fernandes was waved away, but United still had the ball and Hanibal Mejbri had an effort from the edge of the box which Guaita had to tip over the bar.
- Kouyate came on to strengthen the midfield in the 66th minute for Rak-Sakyi as United appeared to be more of a thread in the second half.
- A cross into the area led to Andersen having to clear the ball, but he almost looped it into his own goal.
- Palace had to deal with a corner, but McTominay was left unmarked at the far post and allowed to get a header on goal. But, it was comfortable for Guaita who saved easily.
- Eze had looked bright against Everton in the first half, but he got just over 10 minutes after coming on for Edouard.
- McArthur was on the bench after coming back from a slight injury and he managed to get a run out when replacing Hughes in the 82nd minute.
- To be fair to United, they kept attacking and McTominay had another half chance in stoppage time as he volleyed over from outside of the area.
Crystal Palace vs Manchester United Report Summary & Highlights
Here are the highlights of the game below.
The clean sheet for Palace meant that no team had scored at Selhurst Park since February. It’s also Palace’s best defensive record in the Premier League and they scored more goals and got more points than last season.
The players, staff, and the Crystal Palace owners will look back at this as a successful transition season. 48 points in 12th place and getting to an FA Cup semi-final are all great achievements that can be built on next season.
It will be another busy transfer window for The Eagles as there are seven Palace players out of contract and not all of them will get extensions. There’s also the question of what will Conor Gallagher decide to do now that he goes back to Chelsea.
Everton vs Crystal Palace Match Report & Highlights
Everton went into the game needing three points to stay up, but Palace didn’t roll over and were 2-0 up in the first half. The home side managed to pull a goal back though in the first 10 minutes of the second half through Michael Keane.
This goal gave the Everton fans some hope and something to cheer about which pushed the players to get a second in the 75th minute. The third goal to keep Everton in the Premier League came in the 85th minute from Calvert-Lewin.
Fans stormed the pitch after that final goal which meant there were seven minutes added on at the end. But, Palace couldn’t find an equaliser and the match finished 3-2.
- Mitchell whipped in a great cross and Ayew went for a diving header but it was well off the target.
- Richarlison stepped up for a free kick from just over 20 yards out and it smashed against the bar. After seeing the replay it was a great save from Butland who tipped it onto the woodwork.
- In the 21st minute, Palace took the lead from an Eze free kick. It was a delicious delivery and Mateta was there unmarked to get on the end of it and head home.
- Will Hughes was booked for tripping and then a minute later Jordan Ayew joined him in the book.
- For the second goal, Mateta stole the ball from Coleman on the halfway line and ran down the left flank before delivering a ball in. It was a poor parry away from Pickford who only got it as far as Zaha on the edge of the area. He had a shot on goal which Pickford saved, but it fell to Ayew who touched it in with the lightest of headers. 2-0 to the Eagles in the 36th minute.
- Everton got a goal back in the 54th minute from a set piece. The ball was floated in from a free kick on the halfway line, Holgate nodded it down to Keane who took one touch and then hit it in with his left foot.
- Will Hughes didn’t look 100% comfortable so he was replaced in the 57th minute for captain Luca Milivojevic.
- Some great football from Palace, which started with Mitchell, and then switched to the right side before finding Mateta in Everton’s area, and Pickford was forced to make a good save.
- Schlupp who had performed well in the first half made way for Conor Gallagher in the 74th minute.
- Everton got level through a Richarlison goal. Coleman found Alli on the left who went for a cross and Andersen couldn’t clear only for the Brazilian to follow up and loop it into the goal, 2-2.
- Goalscorer Mateta came off in the 81st minute for Christian Benteke.
- This comeback gave The Toffees the confidence to get another and they did 10 minutes later in the 85th minute. It was from another free kick, this time from Gray and Calvert-Lewin was there to get on the end of it.
- Everton fans stormed the pitch after the goal to celebrate and it took a long time for them to get them off. Even the Everton players were telling them to get off as the game still had time to run.
Match Report & Highlights
Amazing scenes for all Evertonians, but a disappointing result for Palace who were 2-0 to the good. After the second Everton goal, it didn’t look like the Eagles were going to be able to go for the win which is how Everton got a third.
Everton fans invaded the pitch again after the final whistle to celebrate. But one fan goaded Vieira as he waked to the away team changing rooms on the other side of the pitch from the dugout. There are videos online that show the fan swearing at Vieira in his face and then the Palace manager having enough, grabbing him and giving him a kick to the ground.
As has been reported by TalkSport, players and managers need more protection as it only takes one idiot to cause serious harm, like what happened with Billy Sharp in the Forest vs Sheffield United match.
The match highlights can be seen below.
Aston Villa vs Crystal Palace Match Report & Highlights
Crystal Palace travelled to Villa Park on Sunday afternoon with both teams trying to creep into the top 10. Going into the game, Palace were undefeated in their last three, and Villa had won two of their previous three only missing out to league title challengers, Liverpool.
Palace were unsure if Guehi would be available for the match after coming off against Watford. He did start and in a back three instead of the usual back four, with Clyne and Mitchell playing as the two wing backs and Kouyate as the right centre-back.
Both sides looked like they could’ve taken the lead at any point, but it was Villa who struck first when Ollie Watkins put them in front in the 69th minute.
Jeffrey Schlupp came on for Eze in the 78th minute and within minutes had scored the equaliser. As we predicted in our match preview, the final score was 1-1.
- The first real chance fell to Danny Ings who couldn’t get enough on it to head it on goal to force a save from Jack Butland.
- Palace’s defence struggled early in the first half, maybe due to the different system. McGinn played a good ball in the area which Palace couldn’t clear and fell to Ings to have a half chance on the volley.
- Coutinho, who had just confirmed his permanent switch to Aston Villa, had an audacious attempt from 25 yards but it went wide.
- Palace’s first real chance came from a corner when Gallagher tried to head it on goal only for it to be headed out by a Villa defender for another corner.
- Eze played a great ball to Zaha in the middle of the park who took a touch and let fly at Martinez who could only parry it away.
- At the other end, Watkins set up Ings for a great chance, but he couldn’t get enough curl on it to find the back of the net.
- Eze looked lively running at the Villa defence, however, a good tackle took the ball away as far as Mitchell on the left wing. He played it to Zaha who found Mateta on the edge of the box and then he played in Clyne who drilled a low shot on target to force a good save from Martinez. Palace looked much better after the opening 25 minutes.
- Clyne had another effort at goal when a ball from Eze that Zaha couldn’t control found him. He just got under it too much making it go over the bar.
- Digne whipped in a great cross from the left aimed at Ollie Watkins who somehow managed to find the back of the net even with Guehi battling with him. The Palace defender was saying he was fouled and Watkins was clearly pulling his shirt, but the ref and VAR didn’t overturn it as there was shirt pulling from both.
- Jeffrey Schlupp replaced Eze in the 78th minute and Beneke also came on for Milivojevic.
- Within minutes Schlupp had got the equaliser. Gallagher’s free kick was cleared away and was heading out for a corner but Andersen crossed the ball back in and found Guehi who headed it towards the goal for Schlupp to then tap it home. Great impact substitute and he’s one of the Palace players that
- A late onslaught came from Villa and Butland had to make a couple of great saves. Digne had a strong shot on goal from 30 yards out forcing a save from the Palace keeper who parried it away. The Eagles’ defence couldn’t get the ball clear though and Villa managed to keep attacking with McGinn then firing a volley from the edge of the area.
- A through ball cut the Palace defence and allowed Watkins in on goal, but he dragged the shot wide. The Villa striker looked offside but Guehi and Clyne were both playing him on, poor defending from Palace.
Match Summary & Highlights
A point each seemed like a fair result although either side may argue that they should have won all three. With two games to go Palace are still in with the chance to break into the top 10.
Schlupp was a great impact substitute and he’s one of the Crystal Palace players that is out of contract at the end of the season. Vieira and the Palace board will be wanting to keep him, surely.
With two games to go Palace are still in with the chance to break into the top 10. They face Everton in midweek who are fighting for survival and a win for them would see them stay up and then The Eagles host Manchester United on the final day of the season.
Unfortunately, Vieira confirmed that Michael Olise was out due to injury and that he won’t be back for these final two matches.
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