Palace recorded successive home wins in the league for the first time this season thanks to Yohan Cabaye’s fifth goal of the season which was enough to beat Southampton.
The Eagles’ top scorer struck after 39 minutes to clinch the three points but they needed Wayne Hennessey to be at his very best as he made two great saves to keep his sheet clean.
The win leaves Alan Pardew’s side in the top six and registered their first ever win against the Saints in the Premier League.
The conditions at the start of the game were very blustery and Palace found early joy when the ball was in the air, and it nearly helped them take the lead on 19 minutes when Yannick Bolasie’s in-swinging cross caught the wind and headed for the top corner but Paulo Gazzaniga managed to backpeddle and tip the ball over.
A minute later Cabaye tested the Argentinian keeper when he smashed a vicious half-volley towards goal which the Saints man did well to beat away, and then he was called into action again when Connor Wickham met a corner with his head but was lucky to see a stinging shot from Wilfried Zaha go narrowly over the top.
Ronald Koeman set his men up in a 5-3-2 formation to try and hit Palace on the counter and they nearly succeeded following an Eagles corner and Sadio Mane swept a ball into the path of the unmarked Shane Long but he was wayward when he tried to find the top corner of Hennessey’s goal.
The Welshman then had to pull off a great reaction save when Steven Davis got his head onto a good ball from Cedric Soares but Hennessey managed to get a strong hand to it and push the attempt over, and it proved to be crucial as his side got the breakthrough on 39 minutes.
The move was started and finished by Cabaye, with the Frenchman finding Zaha who in turn played the ball into Bolasie’s path, and the winger got past Jose Fonte before cutting it across the box, and Cabaye continued his run to stroke past Gazzaniga from a few yards out to net his fifth of the season.
That boosted the home side going into half-time but after the break the Saints began to enjoy some pressure. Long saw a shot on the turn fly way over the bar and Virgil van Dijk was even further off target when he took aim from 30 yards, but Oriol Romeu did get one right however his drive from outside the area was comfortable for Hennessey.
Palace could have wrapped things up when, in a similar move to their opening goal, Bolasie once again got to the byline and found his fellow wide man Zaha in a good position inside the box but he screwed the ball well over the bar.
With minutes remaining Wickham had another chance to get off the mark for the club when he was picked out by a raking pass by Cabaye, and after taking a good touch he saw a rasping shot well stopped by Gazzaniga, and from the resulting corner Scott Dann flicked the ball on to Bolasie who hit it first time and somehow the Saints custodian managed to keep the ball out.
But Palace weren’t home and dry and in stoppage time they were indebted to Hennessey when Long escaped from his marker and looked set to equalise, but the keeper managed to save with his feet and secure the win for his side.
Palace: Hennessey, Ward, Dann, Delaney (c), Souare, Cabaye, Zaha, Bolasie, McArthur, Puncheon (Mutch 85), Wickham (Chamakh 90). Subs not used: McCarthy, Mariappa, Kelly, Lee, Campbell.
Southampton: Gazzaniga, Soares, Yoshida (Pelle 68), Fonte, van Dijk, Bertrand, Wanyama, Davis (Tadic 68), Romeu (Ward-Prowse 79), Mane, Long. Subs not used: K Davis, Martina, Clasie, Juanami.