Crystal Palace 2-2 West Ham United
Saturday, 1st October 2011
by Gordon Thrower
1st October and 80 plus degrees? This was clearly not what anyone had envisaged when this one came up on the fixture computer.
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Player RatingsManuel Almunia
Can?EUR(TM)t remember him having to make too many saves to be honest, A fraction slow maybe for their second but his sight wasn?EUR(TM)t helped by Faye?EUR(TM)s positioning.
Excellent first half that had the away support chanting his name. Quieter in the second half.
A couple of decent crosses from the left led to the goals just as well because nobody else (in the absence of Taylor) seems able to deliver from that side.
Generally solid though at both goals he was guilty of not getting close enough to his man.
Continues to mature. Will benefit from having Faye?EUR(TM)s experience alongside him for an extended period.
Papa Bouba Diop
Good ?EUR" if unspectacular ?EUR" debut. Gets my MOTM for his calm consistency over the 90.
Largely anonymous, save for one decent run in the first half.
Better than his last outing ?EUR" though that wouldn?EUR(TM)t have been difficult. Scored one and possibly ought to have had another.
Seemed keen but too many blind alleys was the end result.
Still lacks sharpness, which led to his getting caught in possession on a number of occasions.
Not a great game. Partly his fault (his touch and tendency to take on players unnecessarily didn?EUR(TM)t help) and partly the system?EUR(TM)s ?EUR" playing like that he needs to hold the ball up until the cavalry arrives, which is difficult enough when you?EUR(TM)re at the top of your game. Which he wasn?EUR(TM)t. If Mr Allardyce insists that this was a 4-3-3 (as he often does) Cole might want to ask who the other two were that were supposedly supporting him.
(Replaced Collison, 68) Held the ball up well and automatically looked better than Cole as the simultaneous introduction of Baldock meant that he had someone alongside him throughout. Nice bit of movement for the goal.
(Replaced Cole, 68) Just beginning to find his feet at this level. Some lively runs as we played a little more to his strengths in the last quarter of the game than we have seen in other matches since his arrival.
(replaced Bentley, 88) A clock-runner-downer really.
Did not play.
Did not play.
Match FactsWest Ham United: Manuel Almunia, Julien Faubert, George McCartney, Abdoulaye Faye, James Tomkins, Papa Bouba Diop, Henri Lansbury, Kevin Nolan, David Bentley, Jack Collison, Carlton Cole.
Goals: Kevin Nolan 16 John Carew 80 .
Booked: George McCartney 88 .
Sent off: None.
Crystal Palace: Julian Speroni, Jonathan Parr, Patrick McCarthy, Anthony Gardner, Dean Moxey, Jonathan Williams, Mile Jedinak, David Wright, Darren Ambrose, Glenn Murray, Wilfried Zaha.
Subs not used: Lewis Price, Aleksandar Tunchev.
Goals: Darren Ambrose (6), Glenn Murray (52).
Booked: Jermaine Easter (90+3).
Sent off: None.
Referee: Kevin Wright.
Man of the Match: Papa Bouba Diop.