Yannick Bolasie backed Yohan Cabaye to bounce back quickly from his penalty miss against Newcastle after the Frenchman missed from the spot in the 1-0 defeat to the Magpies.
Cabaye saw his attempt from 12 yards saved by Toon keeper Karl Darlow when handed an opportunity to put Palace level with a quarter of the game to go, but post-match Bolasie paid tribute to both his teammate and the opposition goalkeeper.
“Yo [Cabaye] hadn’t missed a penalty before for us but that’s part of football,” he said. “Sooner or later you’re going to miss one but he’ll come back stronger because he’s a strong character.
“[Darlow] made a great save for the penalty and I’ve also had a shot that’s come through a crowd of players and he’s saved that too so fair play to him and Newcastle.”
Andros Townsend’s free-kick just before the hour mark proved to be the difference between the two sides, handing the hosts the upper hand after Palace had dominated proceedings in the opening half, and
Bolasie felt that had they seen off that key period of the game then things might have been different for the Eagles, and refuted any idea that his side were distracted with the FA Cup final on the horizon.
He added: “You could say we deserved more from the game but we knew that in the first 15 minutes of the second half that Newcastle were going to come at us and that’s when they got their goal. I think we dropped too deep and let them come into us but sometimes that’s the right thing to do, but unfortunately today it wasn’t.
“We were unlucky not to score today. The defence were fantastic but it was a great free-kick and when you get any goal it obviously changes a game.
“We showed what we could do first half but we didn’t start the second half as we’d like to. You can see from our first half performance and our intent that there has been no distraction [regarding the FA Cup].
We’ve come away with a loss and we’re not happy as a group.
“We’re not safe yet because you never know with the Premier League and we have to go again next week against Stoke.”