Palace’s development side started the second half of their under-21 league campaign in seventh heaven after recording an emphatic 7-2 win against third-placed Queens Park Rangers on an incredible afternoon at the KNK Stadium.
Morgan Ferrier was the star performer as he hit a hat-trick, and a brace from Kyle de Silva as well as efforts from Reise Allassani and Jake Gray completed the drubbing as the Eagles ran riot.
They took the lead after just 12 minute and never looked back. Allassani had been lively during the early stages and when he got the ball on the byline he flashed a driven centre across the box. In wet conditions, the ball slipped under Rangers keeper Aaron Lennox to hand Ferrier the simplest of tap-ins.
And just five minutes later de Silva received the ball on the right and floated a great cross into the area towards Sonny Black. The midfielder headed the ball into Allassani’s path and he casually slipped the ball past the goalkeeper to double the lead.
It was all Palace in the opening half and Hiram Boateng nearly converted a stinging blast from 30 yards that Lennox pushed past his post, and Gray scuffed a one-on-one narrowly wide.
But it didn’t matter as on 38 minutes it was 3-0. Palace a won a free-kick just outside the area and Black’s wicked delivery was met at the front post by de Silva who rifled the ball home.
That how it stayed until half-time, but the second period exploded into life with four goals in the opening six minutes. Ten seconds after the restart Black cut in from the left and played in Ferrier who lofted the ball over Lennox, and straight after the subsequent restart Palace regained possession and Allassani slipped in the striker who rolled the ball into the bottom corner to complete his treble.
He nearly had a fourth when he again got behind the beleaguered R’s defence but screwed the ball wide, but the visitors went straight down the other end and pulled one back when Reece Grego-Cox jinked into the area to fire past David Gregory.
But Palace restored their five goal cushion on 51 minutes when de Silva was next to capitalise in the huge gaps in the Hoops’ defence to go one-on-one with Lennox and he found the near corner to score his second and Palace’s sixth.
He could have completed his own hat-trick just after the hour mark but put the ball over under pressure from Lennox and substitute Fisayo Adarabioyo skimmed two shots wide as Palace looked to increase their lead, but Gray did add a seventh 10 minutes from time when another mistake in the Rangers defence allowed him to race through and round Lennox before tapping home.
With a minute to go Ossie Kakay found the bottom corner from the edge of the area to reduce the deficit but it was scant consolation for the visitors who had been on the end of a superb display from Gary Issott’s side.
Palace: Gregory, Egbo, Chambers, Magri, George, Gray, Black (Sow 66), Boateng, de Silva, Allassani (Adarabioyo 73), Ferrier (Berkley-Agyepong 66). Subs not used: Pain, Phillips.
Queens Park Rangers: Lennox, Furlong, Wise (Kakay 54), Laurent, Mende, Comley, Gibbons (Mulraney 58), Anau, Dago, Grego-Cox (Shodipo 68), Mitchell. Sub not used: Lumley.