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Saints win is heaven-sent

December 12 2015

Yohan Cabaye

Yohan Cabaye

Crystal Palace claimed their first Premier League win over Southampton with a 1-0 home victory.

It stretched Palace's unbeaten run to three league games as they move back into the top six after Yohan Cabaye's decisive goal.

The Eagles dominated throughout, and but for the heroics of Saints keeper Paulo Gazzaniga, they would have won by a bigger margin.

He was first called into action on 20 minutes when he tipped Yannick Bolasie's cross-come-shot over the bar. And from the resulting corner, the stopper blocked Cabaye's powerful drive. The Italian later denied Connor Wickham, while Wilfried Zaha fired a chance off target.

Saints almost nabbed a goal on the counter-attack when Shane Long cut in from the left and curled a shot just beyond the upright.

Eagles goalie Wayne Hennessey clawed Steven Davis' close-range header over before his side took the lead on 38 minutes when Cabaye tucked home Bolasie's byline cross from close range.

After the break, Palace continued to press for another goal in a game played in blustery conditions that made it difficult for both teams as Zaha blazed over again.

Gazzaniga then made a brilliant low dive to his right to push Wickham's low strike around the post on 87 minutes.

And Palace were thankful to Hennessey for the win when in stoppage time, he thwarted Shane Long when the Irishman was through on goal.

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Palace boss Alan Pardew: "It was a tough game - Southampton really applied themselves well but I thought we edged it in certain areas.

"Our wide players were terrific, but the difference between the two sides was a masterclass in midfield from Cabaye. He showed every reason why we spent the pennies to bring him here.

"This is a good team. I am very proud to be manager of it and they worked very hard for it. The scoreline says it was a 1-0 but it was more than that - the two keepers had to be brilliant."

Southampton manager Ronald Koeman: "I'm disappointed about the final result, but not in the performance of the team.

"The wind made it very difficult to play our football. Maybe it suited Palace more because they play more direct than we do, but we controlled it for 20 minutes but then they scored. We were the better team in second half and dominated, and we're disappointed not score in the last seconds.

"Maybe we lack a bit of confidence, but the boys showed good character. It's now four or five games where we don't win. I'm a little bit worried about that but not worried about the spirit."

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