The Eagles finished the season in high spirits with a good performance that held Spurs at Selhurst, but more importantly, it finally ended the run of consecutive losses.
26th July 2020
Crystal Palace 1-1 Tottenham Hotspur
Selhurst Park Stadium, Holmesdale Road, Selhurst, London SE25 6PU
Behind closed doors
REFEREE – Andre Marriner
ASSISTANTS – Neil Davies, Graham Kane, Tim Robinson (fourth official)
VAR – Andy Madley, Simon Beck
REPLACEMENT OFFICIAL – Michael Webb
Bookings – James McCarthy (16), Tyrick Mitchell (48), Toby Alderweireld (60), Cheikhou Kouyate (74), Eric Dier (90)
Harry Kane (13), Jeffrey Schlupp (53)
TEB MAN OF THE MATCH
After a slow start to the game and going behind to a Spurs side chasing Europe, it was looking ominous that a record equalling defeat was on the cards to end the season. However, from there on in Palace put in a performance that frustrated the visitors and deservedly got themselves back level. On the balance of play, a draw was perhaps the fair result but there were chances for the Eagles to snatch all three points as the game went on. A 14th place finish it is then after achieving safety with plenty of games to spare which very unlike Palace. After the transfer window last summer, most fans would have taken that position if offered to them before a ball was kicked. That seems such a long time ago now, but it is time to look ahead to what will be a hugely important transfer window.
VIDEO ASSISTANT REFEREE
There was one referral that came to nothing when a push on Zaha by Sissoko was adjudged to be just outside the penalty area.
BOB’S POINT OF VIEW
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.
“When Kane scored early on to open Spurs account we could be forgiven for thinking how many more with our team focusing on damage limitation. However, from then on in we proceeded to control most of the game and comfortably thwart any offensive questions asked by Spurs. The first half saw us working hard to maintain possession and work the ball into the final third but then rather frustratingly regularly cross the ball into an imaginary central target man in the box! Where was Benteke when we needed him!?
The second half was much improved going forwards as we worked the ball better into the danger areas creating more goal scoring opportunities. Most of our fans could have been knocked down by a feather when we actually scored from a corner kick with Schlupp finishing well following a knock down and a miss hit shot assist by Ayew. We remained on the front foot for the rest of the half and with more composure in front of goal could have gained all three points. Overall we reverted to a more typical solid performance with something to show for our endeavours by the final whistle. My man of the match is the often forgotten man Scott Dann. He held together another changed back four with his experience and leadership.
Our disappointing restart has been well documented by many others. Decent performances today and against Bournemouth, United and Chelsea need to be offset against very poor shows in the other games. Although the Premier League and all clubs have done remarkably well to complete the season safely, the beautiful game just isn’t football without the fans at the grounds. Without it being an excuse for our poor end to the season, I believe our team have been one of the clubs who have suffered most without our renowned ‘loud and proud’ 12th man.
As an end of term report, I would give us 5/10. Premier League status achieved early with pragmatic organised tactics guaranteeing us an 8th consecutive season at the top level a real plus. On the flip side, poor transfer business last summer then in January left us with a squad so imbalanced and lacking in depth plus a manager whose cautious tactics has meant many fans feeling underwhelmed regarding entertaining football and lack of opportunities for certain players. Only 31 league goals scored confirms the frustrations felt by our fans.
On reflection, my two players of the season are Guaita and Ayew. Both have contributed massively in gaining those 11 invaluable wins to secure safety. A quick six week turnaround before the start of the new season. We will need to move very quickly if we are planning any radical changes in personnel otherwise it could be us facing the relegation trap door next May. So stick or twist is the question? Up the Palace always!”
31 VICENTE GUAITA (6) – Very little to do all game other than pick the ball out of the back of the net.
2 JOEL WARD (7) – Another consistent performance from the full back who many thought would struggle this season. Hit the post after one of his crosses deflected off a Spurs player.
6 SCOTT DANN (7) – Experience tells at this level even if pace is not there and that is exactly how the defender plays his game. Marshalled the back line well. Should really have scored with a far post header.
8 CHEIKHOU KOUYATE (6 – BOOKED!) – Replaced the injured Mamadou Sakho in the starting line up alongside Dann. Solid showing even if it did look like he forgot he was playing in defence rather than midfield on a few occassions.
39 TYRICK MITCHELL (6 – BOOKED!) – Unlucky with a booking which is always difficult for a defender to continue playing his normal game but the youngster acclimatised perfectly.
22 JAMES MCCARTHY (7 – BOOKED!) – Good game from the Irishman and the yellow card failed to deter him.
18 JAMES MCARTHUR (6) – Looked to be carrying a whole season of efforts in his boots throughout this game but still put in the effort to play his part in the midfield. Replaced by 44 JAIRO RIEDEWALD (6) on 70 minutes for some much needed fresh legs who had some nice touches and passes.
15 JEFFREY SCHLUPP (7 – GOAL! TEB MAN OF THE MATCH!) – His energy has been missed while he sat out some of the season due to injury and he made a big difference in this game. Took his opportnity well to score the equaliser. Replaced by 4 LUKA MILIVOJEVIC (6) on 84 minutes to shore up the midfield in the closing stages.
11 WILFRIED ZAHA (6) – Lively throughout but took the brunt of some tough challenges once again. Always a danger for the opposition.
10 ANDROS TOWNSEND (7) – One of his better games of late by pinging dangerous balls into the box and supporting the defence at every opportunity.
9 JORDAN AYEW (7 – ASSIST!) – Full of running once again and was an ultimate pest to the opposition which is how he has played all season.
13 Wayne Hennessey, 7 Max Meyer, 34 Martin Kelly, 35 Sam Woods, 37 Nya Kirby, 40 Brandon Pierrick, 41 John-Kymani Gordon
1 Lloris, 24 Aurier, 4 Alderweireld, 15 Dier, 33 Davies, 17 Sissoko, 8 WInks, 27 Lucas Moura, 18 Lo Celso, 7 Son Heung-Min, 10 Kane
Substitutes – 22 Gazzaniga, 5 Vertonghen, 6 Sanchez (replaced Lucas Moura on 90 minutes), 11 Lamela, 19 Sessingnon, 20 Alli (replaced Son on 80 minutes), 23 Bergwijn (replaced Lo Celso on 59 minutes), 29 Skipp (replaced Sissoko on 80 minutes), 39 Tanganga
POST GAME QUOTES
ROY HODGSON – “We could not move up a place in the table but I am really pleased with them to go out and get a hard-earned point. Our squad is small, it is ageing, we have been playing some of the top teams in the country and it has been hard. I see this period as a necessary evil that we have had to go through. Even if the intention and desire from the board is to spend some money and rejuvenate the team, whether it’s a possibility in the market is another matter. Unless we get help soon, the job gets harder and harder. We need some players who can do what Harry Kane did for Tottenham today.”
JOSE MOURINHO – “The season was crazy; since they played the Champions League final it has been up and down and really hard. We, in this group of matches, managed to get results and to perform. Not today, it was not the best. But in this period we played well, got results and were solid to put ourselves in the position to get in the Europa League. From a personal point of view, I’m happy because [with the results we’ve had] since I arrived, we would be fourth which is good with all the problems we had.”
The Who Scored man of the match was Giovani Lo Celso (7.8) while the the most shots were from Scott Dann (3). The most tackles were by James McCarthy (7) while Lucas Moura (3) had the most dribbles.
- Team rating: 6.63 – 6.71
- Total shots: 12 – 7
- Shots on target: 2 – 2
- Possession: 47.4% – 52.6%
- Pass success: 81% – 84%
- Dribbles: 7 – 7
- Aerials won: 15 – 12
- Tackles: 24 – 25
- Corners: 7 – 2
- Dispossessed: 17 – 14
POSITION IN THE TABLE
Palace end the season 14th in the Premier League with 43 points from 38 games, a point behind Newcastle United in 13th and two ahead of Brighton & Hove Albion in 15th.