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Palace make their point

January 30 2007

Kept Sunderland at bay

Kept Sunderland at bay

Palace come away from the Stadium of Light with a 0-0 draw against Sunderland.

Peter Taylor opted for a 4-5-1 formation with Shefki Kuqi up front on his own, and recent signing Paul Ifill starting in midfield.

Darren Ward dropped to the bench, making way for Leon Cort. There was also a recall for Gabor Kiraly between the sticks, who turned down a loan move to Sheffield United this week.

Sunderland made the better start to the game, with Leon Cort pulling off a fantastic block from a David Connolly shot in the 6 yard box on 7 minutes.

On 13 minutes Stuart Green performed a neat one-two with Kuqi and hit a shot which was excellently saved by Sunderland keeper Darren Ward.

Shortly after Kiraly was in action saving a Tobias Hysen free kick which deflected off Mark Hudson.

Palace continued to thwart the Sunderland front line to go into the break with the score goalless.

After half time Palace pressed for a breakthrough goal, and came close on 50 minutes when a Mark Kennedy free kick was headed towards goal by Cort, only to land safely in the hands of Ward the Black Cats keeper.

Palace brought on Dougie Freedman and Tom Soares in the last 15 minutes in an attempt to freshen up the Palace attack - which almost resulted in a goal on 82 minutes. Kennedy crossed a low ball into the area picking out Soares, but the young midfielder was unable to fully connect with his shot, and Sunderland booted the ball clear.

The Eagles held out for the remaining 2 minutes plus stoppage time, to end the match 0-0.

Overall a good point for Palace, from a tough, long travelling away fixture.

Palace: Kiraly, Lawrence, Hudson, Cort, McAnuff, Kennedy, Butterfield, Fletcher, Green (Freedman, 76) Ifill (Soares, 73) Kuqi. Subs not used: Speroni, Ward, Morrison.

Sunderland: Ward, Evans, Edwards (Leadbitter, 66) Whitehead, Stokes, Nosworthy, Collins, Hysen (Wallace, 73) Connolly, Yorke, Miller (Murphy. 76) Subs not used: Fulop, Simpson.

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