Very few had the Eagles down to return from the London Stadium with anything in their back pocket but a resilient hard working display ensured a point but could well have been more.
28th August 2021
West Ham United 2-2 Crystal Palace
London Stadium, London E20 2ST
Referee: Stuart Attwell. Assistants: Dan Cook, Harry Lennard. Fourth official: Josh Smith. VAR: Graham Scott. Assistant VAR: Simon Long
BOOKINGS – Declan Rice (90)
RED CARD – none
Pablo Fornals (39), Connor Gallagher (58, 70), Michail Antonio (68)
This was one of those games of two halves as the travelling Palace support had to endure a poor first 45 minutes where the hosts could really have taken advantage. Thankfully they failed to do so and there was always a chance for the Eagles being just a goal behind at the break. A much improved second half really showed much of what Patrick Vieira is trying to achieve with this side.
Not only are the statistics uncommon with a Palace side of recent seasons, but the fight within this team came to the fore after battling back from behind on two separate occasions. Two goals from the impressive Conor Gallagher took the headlines but there were plenty of moments in this game that you could point towards being as pivotal – Joel Ward clearing off the line, James McArthur starring with the armband, a blossoming centre back partnership, and even Marc Guehi almost snatching a winner at the death.
This side continue to be one in transition and it will be interesting to see how active the club will be before the transfer deadline passes on Tuesday evening, even after the unveiling of Will Hughes from Watford before this game kicked off.
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.
“On every level it was a classic respect the point against a West Ham team that had started the season in a free flowing style. Our first half display was way off the pace and tempo and arguably it was a relief to still be in the game at half time.
The second half proved to be a different story as we played more on the front foot asking serious questions of the Hammers back line. It says much about the resilience of the team that after clawing our way back into the game with a well taken Gallagher equaliser, we responded quickly to an Antonio goal to level again. Our second and Gallagher’s double was an excellent piece of individual technique to create the space to finish.
Overall confidence is the key as players adapt in the transition to a new system and style of play. Circa 54% possession confirms the changes in approach from the ball retention of last season. Converting goal scoring opportunities as we did on Saturday will be critical to establishing a secure foothold in the table and ensuring those necessary ten wins as soon as possible.
Let’s hope we can get the two necessary signings over the line by the end of this transfer window and then we can look forward to further progress after the international break. My man of the match and no surprises – Conor Gallagher.
Up the Palace!”
1 Vicente Guaita (6), 2 Joel Ward (6), 16 Joachim Andersen (6), Marc Guehi (6), 3 Tyrick Mitchell (6), 23 Conor Gallagher (9), 8 Cheikhou Kouyate (7), 18 James McArthur (captain – 7), 9 Jordan Ayew (7), 11 Wilfried Zaha (6), 20 Christian Benteke (8)
1 Jack Butland, 5 James Tomkins, 14 Jean-Phillipe Mateta, 15 Jeffrey Schlupp (6 – replaced McArthur on 88 mins), 34 Martin Kelly, 4 Reece Hannam, 44 Jairo Riedewald, 46 Rob Street, 49 Jesrun Rak-Sakyi
1 Fabianski, 5 Coufal, 15 Dawson, 21 Ogbonna, 3 Cresswell, 28 Soucek, 41 Rice, 20 Bowen, 8 Fornals, 22 Benrahma, 9 Antonio
SUBSTITUTES – 7 Yarmolenko (replaced Fornals on 87 mins), 10 Lanzini (replaced Bowen on 79 mins), 13 Areola, 16 Noble, 23 Diop, 24 Fredericks, 31 Johnson, 54 Coventry, 75 Bapiste
POST GAME QUOTES
PATRICK VIEIRA – “It was a well-deserved point. We played well in the second half. I was really pleased with the character we showed today. We have to build on those performances I’m really pleased with those goals we scored of course. I never had a doubt we would score them it’s just a matter of time.”
DAVID MOYES – “There were lots of good things, not so good at times in the second half, but we can only praise the players for what they’re doing, they’ve been very good. They did better, we didn’t play so well in the second half, and didn’t get on the ball quite as well as we had done. There were periods before they equalised where we should have made it 2-0 and didn’t. All in all, it was a good game, I’m not overly disappointed, but we’ll move on.”
The Who Scored man of the match was Conor Gallagher (8.8) while the most shots were from Michail Antonio (5). The most tackles were by Vladimir Coufal, Aaron Cresswell, Tomas Soucek and James McArthur (3) while Jordan Ayew (6) had the most dribbles.
- Team rating: 6.69 – 7.01
- Total shots: 14 – 9
- Shots on target: 4 – 2
- Possession: 45.7% – 54.3%
- Pass success: 78% – 82%
- Passes: 378 – 462
- Dribbles: 11 – 15
- Aerials won: 15 – 29
- Tackles: 16 – 13
- Fouls: 10 – 7
- Corners: 5 – 3
- Saves: 0 – 2
- Dispossessed: 8 – 10
POSITION IN THE TABLE
Palace sit 14th in the Premier League with 2 points from 3 games played, level with Southampton in 13th and ahead of Newcastle United in 15th.
11/09/2021 Tottenham Hotspur (h) – Premier League (12.30pm)
18/09/2021 Liverpool (a) – Premier League (3pm)
27/09/2021 Brighton & Hove Albion (h) – Premier League (8pm)