- DATE – 14th March 2019
- VENUE – Vicarage Road
- CROWD – 18,104
- OFFICIAL – Kevin Friend
- CARDS – Milivojevic
- GOALS – Capoue (27), Batshuayi (62), Gray (79)
- STAR EAGLE – Aaron Wan-Bissaka (7.4)
The frustration and disappointment is palpable. Raw opinion often happens in the heat of the moment but much of that was understandable yesterday. It probably would not have been so bad had we turned up in either of the last two games but the fact is, we did not turn up in either of them and while a season is about far more than just two games, they were both massive and now we sit here feeling sorry for ourselves.
It is hard to put a finger on anything at the moment with any rational at all so it is probably best not to. Players do not go out to not perform, it just does not happen. We were beaten by the better team on both occasions but it is hard to not be disappointed. Having said that, Palace will bounce back, we always do but our sides have been renowned to battle and fight. Not much of a suggestion of any of that this last couple of weeks which probably hurts more than the results.
It is not all negative. The club are in a decent position on and off the pitch but there must be planning for the future as Roy Hodgson will not be here long term. We must do better in that area, scouting for players rather than just throwing money around as well as planning for the next manager. That is easier said that done, it is not like a game of FIFA or Football Manager.
We are always loud, proud and Palace but this international break comes at the right time. As fans, we are exhausted by it all but we will continue to do what we do. We all need the break, to take stock and have some time out.
PLAYER RATINGS (courtesy of Who Scored)
31 VICENTE GUAITA (7.0) – A very Jekyll and Hyde performance from the Spaniard, made a couple of excellent saves but flapped on a few occassions which is out of character from what we have seen from him so far. Should have done better for the first goal.
29 AARON WAN-BISSAKA (7.4) – Solid performance once again following the disappointment of not being called up to the full Engand squad. Has to make do with the under 21 side again but has a decision to make with the DR Congo making an approach for his services.
5 JAMES TOMKINS (6.6) – Took control of the backline throughout and looked more solid than he did against Brighton last weekend.
34 MARTIN KELLY (6.5) – Replaced Scott Dann in the starting eleven who fell ill overnight. Played well alongside Tomkins at the heart of the defence.
15 JEFFREY SCHLUPP (6.6) – Moved to left back for this game in the absence of van Aanholt and struggled to acclimatise to the role having played in central midfield for most of the season.
18 JAMES MCARTHUR (6.3) – Worked hard but struggled to create an impact. Replaced by 17 CHRISTIAN BENTEKE (6.2) on 84 minutes who did no more than win a couple of headers and did note pose a threat.
4 LUKA MILIVOJEVIC (7.1) – Heartbeat of the team, tried desparately to get things moving and create an opening in the face of plenty of tough tackling.
7 MAX MEYER (6.1) – Handed another start and while he started well he faded as the hosts took control of the game. Failed to provide that creative spark Palace so desparately needed from him.
10 ANDROS TOWNSEND (6.7) – Worked up and down the line and supported Batshuayi at every opportunity but another player that found it difficult to get anything going.
8 CHEIKHOU KOUYATE (5.9) – Another who could not exert themselves on the game, was unable to carry the ball as much as he would have liked.
23 MICHY BATSHUAYI (7.1) – Played the lone striker role well and got his goal to get the Eagles back into the tie. Always caused the hosts problems.
Unused substitutes – 13 Wayne Hennessey, 2 Joel Ward, 35 Sam Woods, 44 Jairo Riedewald, 21 Connor Wickham, 14 Jordan Ayew, 17 Christian Benteke
WHAT THE MANAGERS SAID
ROY HODGSON: “It was a close game, once again a game at this stage of the season effected by conditions – the wind was difficult, and you can’t get the ball down on the ground as much. At half-time there wasn’t much to say – they had a lot of corners and used the wind to their advantage. In the second half we played a lot better, got a deserved equaliser and we were looking like it could be us to get the second goal. But, it was the opposite.”
JAVI GRACIA: “It is amazing for all of us, for the players, staff and supporters. It is an important day to have the chance to enjoy a semi-final, we are keeping the same level, competing well and that it is our target in this moment. We put Andre Gray on the pitch, he always has a good chance to score and scores important goals for the team, he deserves it and I am happy for him.”
The Who Scored man of the match was Etienne Capoue (8.2) who also made the most tackles (6). Gerard Deulofeu and Luka Milivojevic (4) had the most shots while Deulofeu and Aaron Wan-Bissaka (4) had the most dribbles.
- Team rating: 6.94 – 6.63
- Total shots: 11 – 13
- Shots on target: 8 – 5
- Possession: 43.1% – 56.9%
- Pass success: 65% – 72%
- Dribbles: 6 – 8
- Aerials won: 24 – 13
- Tackles: 22 – 25
- Corners: 8 – 4
- Dispossessed: 17 – 16
NEXT THREE FIXTURES
- 30/03/2019 Huddersfield Town (h)
- 06/04/2019 Newcastle United (a)
- 14/04/2019 Manchester City (h)