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May 31 2023 12.11pm

Palace 1-2 Leeds

March 4 2006

Jobi McAnuff

Jobi McAnuff

Palace lost out in the vital top-six clash at Selhurst, going down to an impressive Leeds despite a second-half rally which proved too little, too late, writes Peter Gillman.

Leeds dominated for the first hour, going ahead on 33 minutes after Hulse crossed from the right. Fitz Hall mishit his clearance and the ball fell to Blake who drove home from three yards.

Leeds scored their second on 53 minutes when Hulse was first to a low cross from Miller and thumped the ball into the top of the net.

Iain Dowie brought on Aki and Leigertwood for Watson and Soares, and it was Leigertwood who forced the first save from Sullivan with a 25-yard volley on 63 minutes. Then Sullivan clutched a close-range header from AJ on the line.

As Palace pressed, Leeds resorted to time-wasting, with Sullivan, going down in a heap after running into Jobi McAnuff, the worst offender. Leeds were also indulged by their favourite referee, Dermot Gallagher, who refused to book Shaun Derry despite three cynical fouls in ten minutes.

Palace were now dominant and Jobi brought a glimmer of hope with a stunning cross-shot from an AJ pass in the first minute of added time. With seconds left, the ball fell to AJ after a corner was headed across the box, but his attempt was charged down by the massed Leeds defence.

Dowie commented after the match that Leeds deserved their win. “We were never at the races and that was disappointing for a match of that magnitude.”

Leeds’ victory puts them six points behind Sheffield United in second place with a game in hand. Palace are now five points ahead of Cardiff in seventh spot, also with a game in hand.

Crystal Palace 1

McAnuff 90

Leeds United 2

Blake 33, Hulse 53


Crystal Palace: G Kiraly, D Ward, F Hall, E Boyce, G Borrowdale, J McAnuff, B Watson, M Hughes, T Soares, A Johnson, C Morrison.

Subs: T Popovic, M Leigertwood, A Riihilahti, W Andrews, J Speroni.

Leeds United: N Sullivan, G Kelly, S Crainey, P Butler, S Gregan, E Lewis, L Miller, J Douglas, S Derry, R Hulse, R Blake.

Subs: D Healy, D Pugh, I Bennett, E Bakke, I Moore.

Referee: D Gallagher.

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