Sloppy Performance Ends In Defeat To Leeds For Palace

The Eagles never recovered from conceding early and it was an uphill battle from that point onwards as they struggled to exert themselves on the hosts who were never under any real pressure.


8th February 2021


Leeds United 2-0 Crystal Palace


Elland Road, Beeston, Leeds LS11 0ES


Behind closed doors


Referee – Andre Marriner

Assistants – Scott Ledger, Adrian Holmes, Robert Jones (fourth official)

VAR – Kevin Friend, Simon Beck (assistant)


BOOKINGS – Gary Cahill (37), Luka Milivojevic (76)

RED CARD – none


Jack Harrison (3), Patrick Bamford (52)


Vicente Guaita


Not an awful lot can be said about this performance other than the fact that Palace never really put any pressure on the hosts backline until the second half and even then, it was not good enough. Just too many poor individual performances out on a newly laid playing surface just added insult to injury. One to forget but Palace really must be doing better in games like these.


A couple of referrals but nothing of note


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.

“From our rigid tactical set up of 4-4-2 to sloppiness in possession combined with a general lethargy, ultimately we never coped with the movement and shape of Leeds going forwards. Tonight was a below par performance from the first whistle and the final scoreline as against West Ham probably flattered us, so the least said the better. There is some work to be done before the physical challenge against Burnley on Saturday. Roy needs to revert to a 4-2-3-1 system, and fitness permitting, ensure we are not playing square pegs in round holes! No individual mentions in dispatches. It was a collective contribution to the manner of the defeat. As a statistical aside, our poor Monday night result sequence combined with the Wilf missing record was once again confirmed.”


31 VICENTE GUAITA (7 – TEB MAN OF THE MATCH) – Should have arguably done better with his save which led to the second goal but made saves to ensure the defeat was not any worse.

17 NATHANIEL CLYNE (6) – One of a number of disappointing individual performances on a night to forget.

6 SCOTT DANN (6) – Shaded his centre back partner with some string challenges and aerial ability but caught out for pace on the ground.

24 GARY CAHILL (6 – BOOKED!) – Should have closed down quicker for the first goal but ended up unlucky with the deflection that helped the ball past Guaita. Looked a little flustered in front of the constant barrage of attacks.

27 TYRICK MITCHELL (7) – Difficult first half but strong showing in the second for the young defender who got himself up and down the pitch with Palace chasing the game.

44 JAIRO RIEDEWALD (6) – Marginally better than his captain but it looks like he is the main man in the middle that needs a new partner.

4 LUKA MILIVOJEVIC (6 – CAPTAIN! BOOKED!) – Should not be losing the midfield so easily and unfortunately the skipper is a big reason for that. Looked slow and laboured.

9 JORDAN AYEW (6) – One of two players that was always working to create something but rarely came off for him. Worked one effort for himself from distance but the chance was saved. Replaced by 20 CHRISTIAN BENTEKE (6) on 76 minutes who had one header on goal which failed to test the keeper.

25 EBERECHI EZE (7) – Along with Ayew, the one player that threatened to work an opening. Had one glorious chance in front of goal which he blazed over.

3 PATRICK VAN AANHOLT (6) – Looked a little lost in a surprise start out wide. Never really provided support to the full back behind him and over-hit passes was the story on his night. Replaced by 10 ANDROS TOWNSEND (7) who provided some much needed impetus during the second half. Found space for one good effort on goal which ended up straight at the keeper.

14 JEAN-PHILLIPE MATETA (6) – Much anticipated debut but was feeding off scraps for his stint on the pitch, but did have some nice touches. Need to see more. Replaced by 23 MICHY BATSHUAYI (6) on 65 minutes who was lively for five minutes and that was pretty much it.  


1 Jack Butland, 8 Cheikhou Kouyate, 34 Martin Kelly


1 Meslier 2 Ayling, 21 Stuijk, Cooper, Alioski, 23 Phillips, 18 Raphinha, 43 Klich, 15 Dallas, 22 Harrison, 9 Bamford

SUBSTITUTES – 11 Roberts, 13 Casilla, 17 Helder Costa, 24 Davis, 30 Gelhardt, 35 Cresswell, 46 Shackleton (replaced Phillips on 88 mins), 47 Jenkins, 52 Huggins


ROY HODGSON – “We started both halves badly in terms of the goals we conceded. Both were pretty poor technical errors. You can’t afford to go 1-0 down after three or four minutes and then 2-0 down after 50 minutes and come away with a result unless you play outstanding football but we didn’t play outstanding football. The bottom line for me is we didn’t pass the ball anywhere near well enough and we have to accept that we lost to the better team. We were not able to pressurise them like they pressurised us. We are a passing team and when we don’t pass the ball well we fall below our standards.”

MARCELO BIELSA – “Not having conceded is important. We didn’t commit any errors that would facilitate their attack. Our offence game was good enough to get the two goals and we could have scored some more. Scoring at the beginning of the game is always important. We maintained our offensive conduct throughout the game. The most important thing is to show consistency. To have a period of the season where we have consistent results. The pitch is much better than it was previously. There are a couple of games now were they are adapting to the characteristics of the pitch. In the last game we slipped many times but in this one not as much.”


The Who Scored man of the match was Jack Harrison (8.3) while the most shots were from Patrick Bamford (5). The most tackles were by Liam Cooper, Ezgjan Alioski, Stuart Dallas and Tyrick Mitchell (4) while Luke Ayling, Jack Harrison and Andros Townsend (2) had the most dribbles.

  • Team rating: 7.32 – 6.21
  • Total shots: 17 – 8
  • Shots on target: 7 – 3
  • Possession: 68.9% – 31.1%
  • Pass success: 87% – 76%
  • Passes: 703 – 317
  • Dribbles: 5 – 8
  • Aerials won: 14 – 11
  • Tackles: 20 – 13
  • Fouls: 7 – 8
  • Corners: 5 – 3
  • Saves: 3 – 5
  • Dispossessed: 10 – 12


Palace are 13th in the Premier League with 29 points from 23 games, level with Southampton in 12th and 2 points ahead of Wolves in 14th.


13/02/2021 Burnley (h) – Premier League (8pm – Sky)

22/02/2021 Brighton & Hove Albion – Premier League (8pm – Sky)

28/02/2021 Fulham (h) – Premier League (12pm – BBC)


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