Sam Allardyce praised his Palace side for showing plenty of quality to turn around a one-goal deficit to beat Bolton Wanderers in the FA Cup third round replay.
Christian Benteke came off the bench to score twice and seal the 2-1 win, and claim Allardyce’s first win as Eagles manager, and he was pleased with what he saw from his much-changed team in what he labelled as their best display since his first game in charge.
In his post-match press conference, he talked about a number of issues, including:
The game: “Two quality goals won it for us in the end, and in fact there were three in this game today. When I saw Bolton’s worldy go in, I thought ‘how many more are going to go against us?’ We had Giroud, Andy Carroll and now Henry on his bad foot. It caused us a bit of panic but Christian’s goals and Andros’ cross was the sort of quality we haven’t shown in the Premier League apart from the Watford game. Hopefully that will bring us more goals and bring us a bit of confidence.”
Room for improvement: “I changed the side around a lot today and I thought we were comfortable without penetrating Bolton enough to have won it sooner before they scored. That was frustrating and disappointing for me due to the amount of control we had in the first half but nothing to show for it, so there’s still a weakness there.
“Defensively we were quite good and kept Bolton out, but when you go back to the Premier League, it’s a better quality of player that we have to more defensively-minded about so hopefully that’ll get better.”
Next round: “We went all the way to Bolton and drew so it was nice to get through and when Manchester City come here it’ll be nice to play that game, but the most important thing now is getting the players ready for Everton.”
Transfers: “We are spreading our wings far and wide and hopefully in the next 48 hours, at least one of those targets will be saying yes, pass a medical and sign for us. It’s hard to say how many we’re looking for; we’ve had about five, six or even eight bids in for players across Europe and in this country, and we’ve only had one accepted which is Jeffrey Schlupp.”
Confidence: “Wins grow confidence and how much we get from this going into Everton will show on Saturday. I think that it will be a big test, and if we get a result that will grow the confidence a bit more. I don’t think we have to beat them to build confidence, but if we got a win that would be fantastic.”
First win: “I like to win every game and I would not have wanted that team to have lost to Bolton because that would have told me that a lot of them wouldn’t have been good enough to play for me in the Premier League if they can’t beat a side in League One. I told them that so I’m glad they pulled it around and got the victory.
“Winning gives everyone a bit of relief for a short period of time, but by tomorrow lunchtime it’ll be getting our minds on Everton.”