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Match Reports

Match Report : 02/02/2016

2 February 2016

Bournemouth came back from a goal down to edge past the Eagles, whose search for a league win stretched to seven games.

Things looked to be going well when Scott Dann drove home a shot after 27 minutes but Alan Pardew’s men were quickly pegged back by Marc Pugh, and after half-time Benik Afobe nodded in his third in three games and what proved the be the game’s crucial goal.

Emmanuel Adebayor made his debut from the bench and he saw a late chance squeak wide of the mark, meaning it’s now five Premier League defeats in a row for the red and blues.
The contest was just a few minutes old when Lee fired over after a corner, but that was as good as things got in the first 20 minutes as the game quickly turned into a midfield scrap with a spate of fouls preventing anything to flow.

The Cherries’ January signing Afobe had a sniff of goal when he was picked out by a good pass from left by Matt Richie but got his feet mixed up and could only push the ball away from goal, but after that let-off the Eagles capitalised on their next opportunity by taking the lead after 27 minutes.

Jason Puncheon swung a corner into the area which was flicked away by the Cherries defence, but Lee chased it down and produced an exquisite backheel which fooled Harry Arter and allowed Wilfried Zaha to get past Richie and drive the ball across the box, and Dann was on hand to lash it into the net past Artur Boruc to score his fourth league goal of the campaign. 

However the lead lasted only seven minutes as the visitors drew level after a neat finish. Charlie Daniels played the ball inside to Pugh on the edge of the area, and he twisted and turned to find a yard of space away from Dann’s shackles before drilling low past the outstretched arm of Wayne Hennessey.

Three chances fell to the Eagles in the minutes before half-time but they all flew straight into the Whitehorse Lane End. Firstly Zaha volleyed over a good Pape Souare cross from the left then James McArthur drilled off target from 25 yards with a first-time shot, and Souare himself couldn’t quite get good contact onto another delicious delivery from Joel Ward as Palace failed to edge back in front before the break.

Once again the second half started slowly but a minute before the hour mark the visitors turned the game on its head. Arter jinked towards the area and threaded the ball into Richie who flashed a shot towards goal. Hennessey got down well to push the shot away, but Afobe was on hand to get just enough onto his header and loop it into the net.

That was the cue to introduce Adebayor for his Eagles debut, but the chances weren’t falling for the Togolese striker, with Puncheon and Mile Jedinak next to send the ball over the top of Boruc’s bar, but he did half a half chance when Puncheon drove a shot through a crowd of players and it ran straight into the new man’s feet, but he couldn’t get a good connection on it and the ball trickled through to the Cherries’ keeper.

Seven minutes from time the Eagles created a golden chance when Zaha released Jedinak down the left and he got the byline before cutting the ball back for the perfectly placed, unmarked Marouane Chamakh but he could only fire straight at Boruc with the rebound eluding the on-rushing Adebayor.

Desperate to get something from the game, Puncheon had a crack from the edge of the box but once again Boruc was equal to the attempt, but in injury time Adebayor nearly got his Eagles career off the dream start when some magic from Zaha down the wing led to him putting the ball across the area and it fell to the striker at the second attempt but his shot just crept wide of the mark and ended up in the side netting as Palace fell to another league defeat.

Palace: Hennessey, Ward, Dann, Delaney, Souare, Jedinak, McArthur (Mutch 46), Zaha, Puncheon, Lee (Chamakh 68), Campbell (Adebayor 60). Subs not used: Speroni, Kelly, Hangeland, Boateng.

Bournemouth: Boruc, Smith, Cook, Francis, Daniels, Surman, Richie (Grabban 84), Arter (Distin 90), Gosling, Pugh, Afobe (King 74). Subs not used: Federici, O’Kane, Iturbe, Murray.

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