Monday, 6 May 2013

04/05/13 League Peterborough United (h) 3-2 win

We like to mix things up here at The Eagles Beak so returning with his thoughts and views on the Peterborough game is budding journalist Jason Crame (@JayTheEagle) ...

The final day of the season is always a delicate matter for fans. Some more than others perhaps. But the Championship is a division that is completely mental. Going into the early kick offs across the country there were twelve teams with something to play for so pretty much every game had a say in the final standings.

The fans gathering in SE25 were fraught with nerves. The visitors, Peterborough United, had to win to secure their Championship status for next season. As for Palace, there was a chance that we could miss out on the play offs. Both teams had their destiny in their own hands as well as others if they could not do it themselves.

Ahead of kick off there were a few interesting statistics. The division's top goalscorer Glenn Murray had not scored in 8 games while Peterborough arrive at Selhurst with only one defeat in their last twelve games.

So a packed Selhurst eagerly awaited the arrival of the two teams on to the pitch. The majority of us just wanted to have access to a time machine and jump ahead ninety minutes. Early chance for Palace as a Garvan free kick is cleared but it's Joel Ward that heads it wide to Bolasie who crosses it into the centre. It was Delaney with the header which is saved as is the follow up from Murray. At the other end it's Speroni with a save from Gayle after a defensive howler from Gabbidon. But he could do little with the Peterborough goal to give them the lead.
Tomlin picked up the ball wide, beats Ward and Bolasie, then past three more Palace players before firing home.

Going a goal down really threw the home team and they wobbled for a while after. The lads needed the bit of luck and fortunately it was on its way. It was the pace of Gabbidon that caught out the visiting defence and he was tripped in area after they failed to clear a Garvan corner. Penalty to Palace which was despatched confidently by Murray to finally end his goal drought. The relief from the players, staff and crowd was evident going into the break.

The second half began with Palace still in fifth place and Peterborough safe as the scores stood. But it was Palace with the impotus. A Garvan run to Zaha whose brilliance let in Murray to turn and unleash an effort with was again cleared off the line. It was the visitors however who made an effort count and take the lead once again, Mendex-Laing finishing an effort that Speroni will be disapointed with but Palace seemed to stop after a Posh player went down under a challenge from Jedinak. 

It was time to call the cavalry and on came Phillips, Williams and Dobbie in a short space of time. Soon Zaha had an effort which fell to Murray who blasted it over the bar. Not long for the fans to wait though. Dobbie took a free kick, header by Jedi cleared, Dobbie picks up the rebound and feeds Phillips who did what he does best. GOAL!

The game ended in quite bizarre fashion as Peterborough made a defensive contribution and pretty much immediately conceded a soft free kick. It's taken by Dobbie and Jedi finishes with deft touch of his head. Palace secure all three of the available points and, unfortunately, Peteborough are relegated from the Championship as results did not go their way at all.

A day that began nervously ended in an awful lot of relief. Three draws and a win in the last four games secures a play off semi final with Brighton and some sort of form going into it. The players did a lap of the pitch and Wilf revealed a very emotional vest with a message of thanks. Holloway left that to the players as he disapeared to plot Brighton's downfall.

Boss Ian Holloway
"The way that game went is about as ridiculous as the last few weeks have been. What I'm finding out really quickly about this group is the confidence they have.We got back into the game twice when we needed to after we had got ourselves into a pickle and it worked. Kevin Phillips has been doing that all his career and hopefully he can help us. We've come through it now and I think we'll be stronger for that against Brighton."

View from The Eagles Beak
"Well, it was nervous and tense throughout but the lads got us throught it. That play off spot is ours and we can finally look ahead with some confidence. As we know from past experience, anything can happen in the play offs and probably will. A though for Peterborough though as that was very harsh on them and to be relegated being only 14 points off sixth place confirms what a mad division this is".  

1 Speroni
2 Ward
27 Delaney - booked
33 Gabbidon
21 Moxey
7 Bolasie (Williams '67)
8 Dikgacoi (Dobbie '75)
10 Garvan (Phillips '67 - GOAL '83)
15 Jedinak GOAL '89 - booked
16 Zaha
17 Murray GOAL '45 - booked

Subs 34 Price, 18 Wilbraham, 28 Ramage, 30 Moritz

Referee - Pawson
Attendance -  22,154

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