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Palace 2-0 Coventry

November 24 2005

Wayne Andrews

Wayne Andrews

Coventry must be sick to the back teeth of us this season. Usually, it is the other way around. But this has been a week of when history has been made, writes Simon Pophale.

First, we had the first win in Brighton for over 40 years, coupled with that came Dougie Freedman’s 100th goal, swiftly followed by the 101st and now, Wayne Andrews has scored a goal which meant that we have beaten Coventry 3 times in one season. We have never had it so good.

If I am going to be honest, the game was never going to be a classic and with us playing our 2nd game in 3 days, this was going to be as far removed from the beautiful game as possible.

The League should look at this as it is not only short changing fans from watching a quality product, but could lead to more players getting injured.

Yet from the first whistle, we showed that we were fit enough and more important, hungry enough to keep going from where we left off on Sunday.

What a start it was. No sooner had we sat down for the kick-off, we were standing up as Dougie Freedman passed to Wayne Andrews who on the right hand side of the penalty box, smashed the ball in from around 12 yards to send the whole ground into raptures and the relief on Wayne’s face was evident.

One goal in 26 games may not look great for an attacking player, but it is 1 more goal to date than Peter Crouch.

From then on, we kept on looking for the 2nd and had Marton Fulop not tipped Clinton Morrisons’ around the post and then stopped Doogie adding to his tally, we could have been out of sight before 15 minutes had passed.

But Coventry came back into the match and Micheal Doyle had shots on goal but each time was denied by a flying Kiraly, first catching the ball with the greatest of ease on 11 minutes, while the 2nd was more spectacular, as he dived full length to parry the ball away after a corner.

That aside, with a Jorgensen shot and a McSheffrey header that drifted safely over, Coventry offered little in the way of attacking threat.

Which led to our second goal coming after the half hour mark, we had begun to dominate proceedings again and Emmerson Boyce was finding more and more space on the right as he galloped forward and with no challenge forthcoming, sent a cross into the box that between Morrison, Freedman, Fulop and some Coventry defenders, somehow the ball found its way loose spinning delicately towards the goal-line when Boyce, who had continued his run, lifted it high into the corner and it was 2-0.

At this point, it looked like it was game over and with more chances going begging, especially to Clinton Morrison, who missed a sitter shortly afterwards, half time would have come as respite to a Coventry side shell-shocked from the pummelling that they had taken.

But sadly, the 2nd half failed to live up to any expectations as the tiredness aspect of the 2 matches in so many days for both teams looked to have caught up with them.

With a 2-0 lead, we could sit back and let Coventry come at us, which they didn’t really do and we went forward without the conviction of the first half, as the lead was already established.

The most exciting part of the 2nd half came right at the end, with Morrison going one on one with Fulop and blazing the ball against the bar and right at the death, Macken forced a save from Fulop as the Hungarian number 2 saved with his legs.

Another 3 points, another Dowie punch and another clean sheet, but we will have tougher games than this.

Yet it is a shame that we won’t be playing Coventry again in the league this season, as the chant “Can We Play You Every Week” has never been more apt.

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