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Match Report: ~ Fulham draw at Crystal Palace ~ Prem MD 06 ~ 23/24

last updated Saturday 23rd September 2023, 10:47 PM

Match Report

Crystal Palace (0) 0-0 (0) Fulham

Premier League Match Day 06 23/24 at Selhurst Park

Saturday 26th August 2023    KO: 15:00

Referee: Paul Tierney (Lancashire)

Fulham and Crystal Palace played out a goalless draw at Selhurst Park on Saturday afternoon.

The Whites had the better of the chances, drawing a number of good saves from home goalkeeper Sam Johnstone, but in the end there was nothing between two sides who had begun the season in symmetrical fashion, with seven points apiece going into this London derby.

Marco Silva made two changes to the XI that started the win over Luton Town a week earlier. Kenny Tete picked up an issue in that game, so in came the fit again Antonee Robinson, with Timothy Castagne reverting to right-back, while Bobby De Cordova-Reid was preferred to Harry Wilson in front of the Belgian.

Good interplay down the left between Robinson and Willian opened up a chance for Andreas Pereira inside three minutes, but Johnstone was able to parry away his angled drive.

That was a fairly routine stop, but his next one shortly after was more taxing when he needed to be at full stretch to keep out Willian’s curler from 20 yards.

Palace didn’t register an effort on goal until the 32nd minute, but it wasn’t a troublesome one for Bernd Leno to catch Ebere Eze’s free-kick.

At the other end, Castagne showed his attacking nature by carrying on his run after feeding Harrison Reed. He got the ball back and chopped inside his man, but shot straight at Johnstone.

Fulham’s best chance then came when Andreas showed good vision to pick out Raúl Jiménez. His first touch was impeccable and his strike fierce, but Johnstone just about got enough on it to divert it behind for a corner.

The game had opened up a little, and Eze was next to try his luck, working a yard of space on the edge of the box before fizzing a low shot wide.

The second half was proving as finely balanced as the first, with an Eze cross-shot beaten away by Leno before Raúl nodded a Robinson cross wide.

The Whites should have gone in front on 66 minutes when, after De Cordova-Reid picked Hughes’ pocket high up the pitch, we had a three-on-two situation. The Jamaican slipped in Raúl to his right, but he wasn’t able to pick out Andreas for a tap-in with his square pass.

As we entered the final 10 minutes, Reed and Castagne combined neatly down the right, allowing the former to pick out Willian at the far post, but Johnstone got across his goal quickly to keep out the veteran’s first time strike.

Jean-Philippe Mateta had offered a physical presence up top for the Eagles since his introduction from the bench, and he drew a smart stop from Leno after muscling his way in behind.

Carlos Vinicius had also come on and thought he had a chance to win it in the final minute of stoppage time, but the flag went up, with Johnstone making the save regardless.

Fulham coach Marco Silva was left frustrated by his side's wastefulness after proclaiming Fulham to have been the best side on the field at Selhurst Park.

Asked if a draw was a fair result, he said: "I don’t think so. Overall we were the team that created the most chances to win.

"I’m pleased with the performance, we just have to be much more effective in attack. We created at least three clear chances to score.

"We take many positives from this game. We showed character and came to play our way in a tough place. We controlled everything from Palace, even when they changed to 4-4-2.

"We were the best team on the pitch and deserved three points."

Crystal Palace coach Roy Hodgson said he did not feel referee Tierney had a particularly bad game but took aim at the directives issued to officials this season, including preventing multiple coaches from the same team occupying the technical area.

"I’ve given up thinking about refereeing performances to be perfectly honest," said Hodgson. "I feel so sorry for referees with all these new directives which, to most of us who have been in football for a long time, don’t make a lot of sense.

"We didn’t get any benefit from the referee today - if anything, we might have come out second - but it wasn’t a bad refereeing performance.

"Little things annoy you. Why can’t one of the coaches stand by me for 30 seconds before being told to immediately go back to the bench? It’s our job to coach the players. Where is the problem? How does football benefit from that?

"I have to accept it but it’s a sad thing when you’ve been in football for as long as I have and there are so many things happening which aren’t making the game any better."

Fulham host Norwich in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday - kick-off 7.45pm. Marco Silva's side then welcome Chelsea to Craven Cottage in the Premier League on Monday October 2, live on Sky Sports - kick-off 8pm.

Crystal Palace : Johnstone, Ward, Andersen, Guehi, Mitchell, Doucoure, Hughes, Ayew, Schlupp (Mateta 70), Eze, Edouard (Rak-Sakyi 91)

Unused substitutes: Holding, Clyne, Ebiowei, Richards, Henderson, Matthews, Riedewald

Booked: Ayew (21,f), Mitchell (40,f), Doucoure (68,f)

Fulham : Leno, Castagne, Diop, Ream, Robinson, Reed, Palhinha, Pereira (Iwobi 75), De Cordova-Reid (Wilson 79), Jimenez (Vinicius 79), Willian

Unused substitutes: Rodak, Bassey, Cairney, Ballo-Toure, Muniz, Francois

Booked: Palhinha (14,f), Ream (16,f)

Referee: Referee: Paul Tierney (Lancashire)

Attendance: 25,072

Source Joe Shread at Sky Sports
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