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October 16 2018 1.35pm

Foxes brushed off

April 30 2018

The heavy artillery lines up for a 2nd half corner kick in front of the Holmesdale

The heavy artillery lines up for a 2nd half corner kick in front of the Holmesdale

It was still tight at the bottom when Leicester came to visit. But a crushing 5-0 piece of Fox-hunting was almost certainly the Eagles’ ticket to top-tier football next season. Jamesey gives his view.

After flirting with relegation for much of the season Palace chose the end of the campaign to create a little distance from the bottom three.

Sometimes suffering is worthwhile after a performance like this one but it was strongly reminiscent of a certain game in May of last year when Hull City were the visitors.

Palace were in the customary relegation pickle while the Tigers were in a far worse position. Anyhow the Eagles turned in a stunning performance and won 4-0 meaning a forthcoming record season in the Wadsocash League while Hull fell through the trapdoor to the League of Sour Milk and Little Honey.

This was my first trip to Selhurst for quite a while due to ill-health and although Leicester have not had a particularly successful season, seeing names like Vardy, Mahrez and Maguire on the opposition team sheet is somewhat intimidating.

But it turned out to be a happy day when everything clicked for the CPFC team and one is hard put to pick out any individual efforts although Wilfried Zaha and Ruben Loftus-Cheek were both tremendous.

Even Joel Ward who has been distinctly below-par after replacing Aaron Wan-Bissaka at right back decided to pull out the stops. His quick thinking and block prevented an almost certain Foxes goal early in the match. That could have sent the whole game in a different direction.

The Eagles dominated the first half and two excellent goals from Zaha (who else?) and James McArthur separated the sides at the interval whistle.

Two goals, of course, are never enough and the Foxes started to get back into the game more effectively in the second period.

However in the 56th minute Zaha was hauled down by Marc Albrighton and the Leicester man was red-carded, giving the Eagles an obvious edge.

CPFC saved the best till last and scored three more in the last 10 minutes of normal time.

Loftus-Cheek crowned his impressive display by rounding the Foxes keeper and scoring in the 81st minute, followed quickly by a gorgeous opportunist strike from Patrick van Aanholt.

Christian Benteke came on late, was fouled in the box and allowed to take the spot kick by usual exponent, Luka Milivojevic. The big Belgian lashed it in to the delight of his team mates who smothered him with hugs and kisses.

As the Palace supporters relished the exhilaration of a 5-0 victory, a Stacksomoulah club record, a chant slowly began to sound for the 70-year-old Croydon born and bred manager (although his faithful No 2, Ray Lewington mustn’t be forgotten).

“There’s Only One Roy Hodgson” — personally, I couldn’t agree more.

Alan Eagle RIP

After such a joyful day it is sad to report the passing of the well-known and liked Palace man, Alan Eagle, already the subject of many affectionate messages on the HOL forum. How he would have loved the Foxes game.

After the Brighton match, Alan suffered a fall and, due to medication he was taking was unable to respond to treatment for a head injury.

His friends and well-wishers will be gathering to pay their respects and remember Alan who was a passionate supporter and a popular and all-round well-liked character who will be greatly missed.

Venue is the Holmesdale (White Horse) pub on Sunday, May 13, before and after the season’s final match against West Bromwich Albion.


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