Premier League Review: Crystal Palace 1-3 Tottenham Hotspur
- Date – 23rd January 2016
- Venue – Selhurst Park
- Attendance – 28,467
- Referee – Martin Atkinson
- Bookings – McArthur, Jedinak, Kane, Trippier
- Goals – Vertonghen (og, 30), Kane (60), Alli (84), Chadli (90)
- Star Eagle – Wilfried Zaha (7.3)
Tottenham staged a late comeback as they took all three points from Selhurst Park thanks to goals from Harry Kane, a screamer from Dele Alli and Nacer Chadli.
The side from North London are flying at the moment, and their late comeback showed just why they could be considered dark horses for the Premier League title.
For Palace, the slump continues. Even though the scoreline showed we scored, it was in fact Jan Vertonghen putting through his own net. On another day we could have come away with all three points if Mile Jedinak and Scott Dann had both found the back of the net instead of the crossbar.
Eagles boss Alan Pardew started with the same team that lost big to Manchester City last weekend. Connor Wickham started but he could face a few games out through suspension after seemingly landing an elbow on Vertongthen late in the match.
It was Spurs which threatened first, Toby Alderweireld’s header flew just wide of Wayne Hennessey’s post who was still between the sticks despite his errors in recent weeks.
After a slow start it was Palace that took the lead on the half hour mark when Wilfried Zaha outfoxed Danny Rose on the wing, and produced a low cross. Vertonghen could only stretch out his leg and diverted the ball beyond Hugo Lloris to give Pardew’s side a much needed lift.
Spurs were always going to come out fighting in the second-half, they have a good away record, and their victory in the FA Cup last week showed they can score goals away from home. Harry Kane scored his twelfth goal in fourteen league games when he flashed a header past Hennessey on the hour to put the visitors back into the contest.
The game sprung back into life in final fifteen minutes with Palace hitting the woodwork twice in quick succession. A Scott Dann header looped over Lloris and hit the bar, and then the rebound was crashed against the bar from substitute Mile Jedinak. If one of them had gone in Palace might have walked away with all three points.
Then it was over to Alli, who scored quite possibly the goal of the season. Palace fans have seen some goal of the season contenders in recent years at Selhurst. The Pajtim Kasami outrageous volley for Fulham, Matt Phillips scored a long range belter for Queens Park Rangers, and now Alli might have eclipse both of those efforts.
The England starlet took a touch and flicked the ball over the head of Jedinak, and in one sweeping motion fired a volley past Hennessey and into the bottom corner. It was some strike.
Just to put the gloss on Tottenham’s performance, substitute Chadli added a third late on with a curling effort.
With a week to go of the transfer window, it looks like someone will need to come in and with Palace are crying out for a goalscorer, the pressure is on Pardew to recruit. It is not easy as such players come at a premium, and there is no guarantee that such attacking players will prove a success. We wait with baited breath for news over the course of the next seven days but in the meantime, we can look forward to a break from league duty for a fourth round FA Cup tie against Stoke.
Player Ratings (courtesy of Who Scored)
- Wayne Hennessey (6.9) – The big Welshman responded to a couple of poor performances which a much improved showing.
- Joel Ward (6.5) – Struggled against a strong opposition midfield.
- Scott Dann (7.1) – Stood firm throughout and could have had a goal or two.
- Damien Delaney (6.5) – Impressed with the way he captains his team but not at his best performance wise in this one. Well placed following up a shot from Souare but his effort was blocked.
- Pape Souare (6.9) – Solid on the left both defensively and offensively. Has a terrible habit of drifting into the centre which he needs to address but had a great shot on goal from distance.
- James McArthur (6.3) – Pressed and harassed throughout as normal. Got forward to support Wickham as much as possible. Replaced by Mile Jedinak (6.4) on 79 minutes who provided some more strength in the middle. Unlucky with a chance off the crossbar.
- Yohan Cabaye (6.9) – Looked a little out of sorts but still showed his quality in places. Distracted by a late challenge which he needed treatment for but returned to the pitch to fight on. Replaced by Frazier Campbell (5.9) on 85 minutes who had little time to make an impression but a late chance fell to him which was saved.
- Jason Puncheon (6.6) – More glimpses but more often than not was frustrating to watch.
- Joe Ledley (6.1) – Did a job in the middle which allowed McArthur to push on more but more stretched as the game went on.
- Wilfried Zaha(7.3) – So much pressure on the winger in the absence of Bolasie but gave the Spurs defence a torrid time whenever he had the ball.
- Connor Wickham (7.1) – A great shift up front from the big man who often became isolated but could well face time on the sidelines after a flailing elbow that connected.
Unused substitutes – Julian Speroni, Martin Kelly, Lee Chung-yong, Jordon Mutch, Marouane Chamakh
The Who Scored man of the match was Dele Alli (8.80) who also had the most shots (7). Two players managed the most tackles (7) – Mousa Dembele and Yohan Cabaye while Dembele also made the most dribbles (4).
- Team rating: 6.69 – 7.20
- Total shots: 11-24
- Shots on target: 3-11
- Possession: 36% – 64%
- Pass success: 68% – 82%
- Dribbles: 6 – 14
- Tackles: 22-17
- Corners: 3-10
- Dispossessed: 10 -18
Premier League Table (courtesy of Premier League)
|13||West Bromwich Albion||23||28|