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Match Reports

Report: Fulham 1-1 Crystal Palace

1 August 2015

Palace moved into the final week of their preparations for the new Premier League season by sharing a 1-1 draw with Fulham at Craven Cottage.

Ben Pringle gave the Cottagers the lead just six minutes in but Palace were much more lively in the second half and equalised on 49 minutes through Pape Souare, but despite having the lion’s share of the chances throughout the game the Eagles couldn’t quite find another way past Andy Lonergan who enjoyed a fine game in goal for the hosts.

The match began with Palace comfortable in possession and threatening in the final third with Glenn Murray shanking an early opportunity high and wide, but they were stunned six minutes in when the Whites took the lead against the run of play.

Tom Cairney picked up the ball on the right and fed Ross McCormack, and the big striker laid it off to winger Pringle who lashed it into the bottom corner of Wayne Hennessey’s net to mark his home debut with a goal.

Having picked up an early knock, Yohan Cabaye seemed to run it off and went close with a trademark effort from 25 yards which missed the target, but after that the half became a turgid affair with many mis-placed passes and wayward shooting as the pre-season rustiness became evident.

In the final throws before the interval Palace carved out their best opportunity of the opening 45 minutes. Joel Ward and Jason Puncheon played a neat one-two down the right flank which allowed the full-back to overlap and send in a low cross for Murray. The striker held the ball up before sliding it back for Cabaye on the edge of the box, but the Frenchman’s finish was lacking.

Pardew made three changes at the break with Jordon Mutch, Wilfried Zaha and Joe Ledley entering the fray, and after James McArthur had forced Lonergan into a smart stretching save to claw the ball away from his bottom corner, Mutch lofted the resulting corner into the area which was flicked on to an unmarked Soaure who headed in his first ever goal for the Eagles.

Puncheon and Murray then combined for the former to cutely flick the ball into the attacker’s path but his volley was straight at Lonergan, and just past the hour mark Zaha found McArthur in the perfect place to send the ball into the net but he narrowly blasted over.

On a rare foray forward Fulham nearly went back in front when Cairney picked up the ball 25 yards out and bent it towards the top corner which he missed by a whisker, but Palace nearly found the winner when another Mutch delivery into the area caused bedlam and Dwight Gayle forced Lonergan into another reflex save to ensure the spoils would be shared.

Fulham: Lonegan, Richards, Burn, Hutchinson, Garbutt (Voser 70), Christensen, O'Hara (Bodurov 90), Cairney Woodrow (Mitroglou 66), Pringle (Kacaniklic 66), McCormack. Sub not used: Norman.

Palace: Hennessey, Ward (Kelly 75), Dann, Delaney (Hangeland 57), Souare, Jedinak (Ledley 46), McArthur (Campbell 75), Puncheon, Cabaye (Mutch 46), Lee (Zaha 46), Murray (Gayle 75). Sub not used: McCarthy.

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