Monday, 24 December 2012

22/12/12 Huddersfield Town (h) 1-1 draw

Julian Speroni bleeds red and blue

We welcome the return of captain Mile Jedinak for this game as well as former favourite Sean Scannell. 

The opening of the play was Palace but there was quite an odd atmosphere even though the Holmesdale fanatics had played their part with more wonderful banners. It what was to turn out to be one of the oddest games I have witnessed, and in front of the Sky cameras. After two minutes Bolasie was challenged by defender Woods which to  me looked clearly a two footed tackle. A yellow card was shown and Garvan was just wide with the free kick. Then in the 12th minute Damien Delaney was given a straight red card for what can only be described as an assault on Huddersfield striker Darren Beckford. It could have been last man or a dangerous tackle, take your pick. As the half wore on, Palace adapted well to be one man short until Scannell went down in the area rather easily from a half hearted challenger from Joel Ward. Speroni was up to the resultant penalty and saved the weak effort. Speroni was called upon to make a couple of great saves to keep the game scoreless. This spurred the lads on and the moment of pure brilliance arrived just before the half. Attacking down the right, Bolasie and Zaha taking on three defenders. Bolaise looked unlikely to control the ball but an amazing back heel sold two defenders and Zaha was free but with a lot still to do. A few more strides into the area, and then boom, top of the net without touching the bar.  No description can do it justice, you simply have to see it. Palace went it one nil up.

The second half started to play into our hands, the visitors really did not look like having much in the way of opportunities and it rarely looked like we had ten men. But Danny Gabbidon who replaced Garvan as soon as Delaney was sent off was immense throughout. In fact we had enough chances to finish the game but then the tide turned as a shot from Southern squirmed through Speroni’s grasp and into the net. That gave them impetus but that changed when the referee levelled things up  in the way of numbers when he viewed Gerrard’s tackle on Bolasie as two footed and handed him a straight red. A lot of huffing and puffing but the game ended as a score draw. 

View from TheEaglesBeak; This is a blip for sure but you cannot expect a team to win every game. We are drawing games instead of losing but we are 3rd in the table as it stands with a Boxing Day fixture at Cardiff. The hard work starts here to maintain this great effort so far this season. A few additions in January (and hopefully not losing anyone) and we have a squad to match any in this division.  
01 Speroni
02 Ward (Moxey 53’)
27 Delaney – red card
28 Ramage
04 Parr
07 Bolasie (Moritz 82’)
08 Dikgacoi
10 Garvan (Gabbidon 15’)
15 Jedinak
16 Zaha GOAL 39’
17 Murray 

Unused substitutes; 34 Price, 22 O’Keefe, 19 Easter, 24 Appiah

Referee; Scott
Attendence; 17,993

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