Palace Grab Frustrating Draw from the Jaws Of Victory


A good performance that was heading towards securing all three points was soured with failure to close ranks in the final seconds of the game to allow a crucial late equaliser.


22nd September 2019


Selhurst Park Stadium, Holmesdale Road, Selhurst, London SE25 6PU




Stuart Attwell took charge of this fixture with Richard West and Neil Davies his assistants. The fourth official was James Linington with Andy Madley as the VAR, assisted by Andy Halliday.


Yellow cards – Coady (44), McArthur (45), Saiss (48), Ayew (62)

Red card – Saiss (73)


Dendonker (OG 46), Jota (90)


Vicente Guaita as voted for by our Twitter followers.


Let’s be honest, most home fans would have taken a point from this game but the manner in which the game progressed and how the Eagles were eventually pegged back left a lot of frustration in and around Selhurst Park at the final whistle. Even though it has been a decent start to season, sitting level on points with Spurs, United and Chelsea, it really could have been so much better if Palace had been more clinical in front of goal or had there been better game management to see out the closing minutes. It is easy to forget that Palace remain unbeaten at home even after a result which feels a lot like a loss, but it is a far cry from the home form of the last campaign.


It was not clear if VAR was used for anything other than a check on each of the goals.


Bob White was a coach at Palace under the tenure of Steve Coppell and Alan Smith and will be sharing his point of view each week in our review article.

“After a first half where Wolves created the better chances followed by a second half where Palace were the superior offensive team; was it a precious point gained or two points thrown away? Looking at the reactions of those supporters around me post match, it definitely felt like the latter. The main positives from the game were the central partnership between Gary Cahill and Mamadou Sakho plus confirmation again of the consistency of Vicente Guaita between the posts. However, defensively I was concerned at how easily we allowed Wolves to cross balls into our penalty box which ultimately cost us in the dying minutes of the game. Full backs and wide players tracking back should be responsible for stopping crosses. At the end of the day, we missed critical chances to put the result to bed at 1-0 and then finally, poor game management by two players to see the win out at 90+ minutes cost us dearly. A disappointing afternoon.”


31 VICENTE GUAITA (7) – Confidently claimed every cross that came near him and made THAT save to prevent the Eagles from going behind.

2 JOEL WARD (6) – Everyone looked and saw the ball fall invitingly to the full back and while most had hoped it was Luka, enough of a connection was made to give the hosts the lead. Linked up with with Zaha in front of him throughout the game, but what was he thinking for the equaliser??

24 GARY CAHILL (7) – Has turned out to be quite a signing and is forging a partnership with Sakho alongside him which could prove pivotal as the season goes on.

12 MAMADOU SAKHO (6) – Did not look as rusty as his did at Spurs last weekend and looked to work well with Cahill which could well be the first choice pairing at the centre of defence. Made one crunching challenge which proved to us all that ‘soldier’ is back.

3 PATRICK VAN AANHOLT (5) – Struggled to cope with the pace and strength of Traore up against him, so much so that Schlupp and Kouyate were trying to protect him all game. Showed the winger inside almost every time which is a big no-no for a full back at any level.

11 WILFRIED ZAHA (7) – Was in the mood with his pace and trickery, so much so that two fouls on him saw the hosts reduced to ten men. One of a few players guilty of failing with in game management.

18 JAMES MCCARTHUR (7 – BOOKED!) – Seeing his performance in this one just went to show that he was really missed at Spurs last weekend. Worked tirelessly, before having to be replaced by 22 JAMES MCCARTHY (6) on 83 minutes. The Irishman slotted in and saw plenty of the ball in the short time he was on.

4 LUKA MILIVOJEVIC (7) – Whether it was coincidence or not, the captain looked to play better with McArthur back in the side, as did the rest of the midfield.

8 CHEIKHOU KOUYATE (7) – One of his best games for the club since joining, like McArthur, covered every blade of grass. Took one in the face which looked like it could end his game but it takes more than that to stop the former Hammer.

15 JEFFREY SCHLUPP (7) – Lively throughout and supported the attack as much as possible. It was his energetic break forward that led to the goal. Great one-on-one chance to seal the three points but put his shot tamely at the keeper.

9 JORDAN AYEW (7 – BOOKED!) – Another good game from the former Villa man who played the lone striker role well by chasing down and harrassing the opposition back line at every opportunity. Did not have a real chance fall his way. Replaced by 17 CHRISTIAN BENTEKE (6) on 69 minutes – oh Christian, just when we thought he would seal the game with his first of the season and a growing number of games, he fires straight at the keeper when he looked to do everything right. Hodgson has a real job on here to get the striker firing again but it is not for want of trying.


13 Wayne Hennessey, 6 Scott Dann, 7 Max Meyer, 10 Andros Townsend, 34 Martin Kelly


11 Rui Patricio, 15 Boly, 15 Coady, 27 Saiss, 2 Doherty (replaced by 8 Neves on 57 minutes), 32 Dendoncker (replaced by 7 Neto on 5 minutes), 28 Joao Moutinho, 19 Castro Otto, 37 Traore, 9 Jiminez (replaced by 10 Coutrone on 76 minutes), 18 Jota.

Substitutes not used – 4 Vallejo, 17 Gibbs-White, 21 Ruddy, 29 Vinagre


ROY HODGSON – “I am bitterly disappointed, it feels like a defeat. I didn’t expect them to get such a clear goal chance. You want game management and players to use experience to see games through but the feeling is one of disappointment and anguish that we weren’t able to see the game through. We have surrendered two points.”

NUNO ESPIRITO SANTOS – “This is football. We have the spirit, the heart and the character to believe until the end. The boys were running up and down and tired. The growing of the team relies on these kind of aspects. We are in the situation where we play Thursday and Sunday. This is a starting point. What we did in the first half, let’s try to do over and over again.”


The Who Scored man of the match was Wilfried Zaha (8.1) while the most shots were from Diogo Jota (4). The most tackles were made by Jonny (11) while Wilfried Zaha (9) had the most dribbles.

  • Team rating: 6.77 – 6.67
  • Total shots: 13 – 13
  • Shots on target: 4 – 4
  • Possession: 50.1% – 49.9%
  • Pass success: 79% – 77%
  • Dribbles: 20 – 6
  • Aerials won: 20 – 17
  • Tackles: 22 – 32
  • Corners: 6 – 7
  • Dispossessed: 21 – 13


Palace are 12th in the Premier League tables with 8 points from 6 games, level with Chelsea in 11th and a point ahead of Southampton in 13th.


28/09/2019 Norwich City (h)

05/10/2019 West Ham United (a)

19/10/2019 Manchester City (h)

1 comment
  1. We all knew a striker and right-back was the absolute minimum to get out of the last transfer window. The Palace hierarchy failed to sign the bare minimum. We threw away the game by bringing on Benteke who missed an easy goal scoring opportunity and then failed to hold up the play in injury time and keep the ball from Wolves. When a knee-high cross comes in during injury time, how do you manage to get your whole body underneath the ball? Only Joel Ward can answer. Stay on your feet and clear the ball out. When will we fix these problem areas?

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