Thursday, 2 May 2013

30/04/13 League Millwall (a) 0-0 draw

A warm welcome back to roving reporter @Paul_Pricey who shares his views on the penultimate game of the season at the New Den ...

After the Blackburn game and vital away point, all Palace eyes turned to our next away game against Millwall. The Blackburn result had kept Palace in 5th but, still not cementing our place in the Championship Play-Offs.

The game at the New Den was vital to our destiny (and theirs) for very different reasons. Prior to the game, a quick check showed Millwall were definitely a team in decline following a very good run in the FA Cup. It is easy to cast your mind back to Palace’s excellent charge in the Carling Cup last year and see what an impact a good cup run can have on the league ambitions of a Championship team.

Since the Millwall appearance on ITVSport and CrimewatchUK in the Semi-Final of the FA Cup at Wembley, their recent form had seen them move one point clear of the bottom three to 20th place. The result of Palace v Millwall could see the visitors gain a well-deserved spot in the play-offs, it could also see Millwall dropped further into trouble at the wrong end of the league, it could save both teams from massive dramas in their last game of the season and, it was another South London derby.

Not a great deal to play for then……

The stakes were massive as the game kicked off. Alan Dunne fouled Dean Moxey in the second minute which set the tone for the evening. A bit of early pressure from the Eagles was followed by some action in the Palace half involving a save from Speroni and some clearances mainly from Gabbidon. Millwall made a substitution, with Martyn Woolford coming on for James Henry in the 19th minute. An unfair challenge on Garv’s sees the first booking of the game for Millwall’s Josh Wright in the 30th minute. Action at either end and saves from Speroni and Clarke see out a rather edgy, gritty and unspectacular first half. A half that showed 2 teams more scared to lose than 2 teams wanting to go for it and seal the points.

The second half progressed in much the same way until Palace had a good spell just before the hour mark. A great strike from Bolasie was well saved by the keeper and a further in-swinging corner was then headed wide by Delaney. Milwall made a substitution in the 73rd minute followed by Jonny Williams coming on for Garvan. Delaney shot wide from a Bolasie corner in the 77th minute. Palace then replaced Bolasie with Stephen Dobbie who had recently had a couple of good games for the Eagles.

Beevers went into the book for Millwall shortly followed by the introduction of Liam Trotter from the bench. Dunne was finally booked late in the game followed by a booking to Wilf before 4 minutes of extra time and the final whistle. A rather frustrating and nervy 0-0 in the South London derby.

Due to superior goal difference, Palace now require just a point at #FortressSelhurst this weekend when we entertain Posh in our final game. This is so typical of Palace to go into the game needing something to seal our spot, something that Palace has done over the years and a reason why 20 year old Palace fans have grey hair and look at least 40.

Whatever happens, this has been a great season so, let’s pack out Selhurst this weekend with noise and positivity and make the place the South London cauldron that we can create. The players will take to the field knowing what they need to do so, let’s make sure that the famous #cpfc 12th Man (women and children!) get behind the boys to help them get the job done. Play-offs, here we come!!

#CPFC #CPFCFamily #PalaceNation #12thMan #1CupFinal #KeepBelieving

Positives from the game

Clean sheet
Away point edging us closer to our destiny
Man of match definitely Joel Ward

Negatives from the game

Murray looking lost in front of goal
A weak refereeing performance
Lack of shots on target

Match Stats

Referee - Salisbury
Attendence 12,745 (really?)
Possession - Palace 46% - Millwall 54%
Shots - Palace 3 - Millwall 3
On target - Palace 1 - Millwall 1

Crystal Palace boss Ian Holloway:

"I've been confident in my team all along. The fact is we have had an horrendous run, but sometimes you have to enjoy what you get. We were a threat, we looked solid and I thought everyone in my team played well so let's enjoy this one. Then we've got another one to enjoy on Saturday and we are one of the lucky teams, we are at the right end. We need one more point and with a performance like that I can see us getting it. I want to get Palace in the play-offs and if we do get there I think we'll be a handful."

View from The Eagles Beak:

"This is typical Palace and what us fans have become used to. A lot has been said of our recent form but the fact remains, one point with one game to go gives us a shot at the post season."


01 Speroni
02 Ward
21 Moxey
27 Delaney
33 Gabbidon
07 Bolasie (Dobbie 83')
08 Dikgacoi
10 Garvan (Williams 74')
15 Jedinak
16 Zaha - booked
17 Murray

Unused substitutes - 34 Price, 28 Ramage, 30 Moritz, 09 Phillips, 18 Wilbraham

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