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First Team

Allardyce Delighted With "Sweet" Victory

18 March 2017

Sam Allardyce revealed his pleasure at seeing his side pick up a"sweet" 1-0 victory against Watford at Selhurst Park thanks to Troy Deeney's own goal.

The Palace boss has now seen his side claim three successive wins to edge clear of the relegation zone, and despite having to grind out these particular three points, Allardyce was happy with the work rate of his team, and particularly his rock-solid defence, to beat the Hornets.

In his post-match press conference, he talked about topics including:

Nervy encounter: "Every game cannot be deemed as easy, and there was none tougher than this one today. We had to tough it out for long periods of time playing against a huge side with ability, and a lot of strength in the team because they recently beat Arsenal away. At times it wasn't pretty but the fans got behind us as usual and kept us going, and really enjoyed the goal when it came like we all did."

"Watford are no mugs and for us today it was about matching them, and then producing a bit of quality to win the game. That came on a couple of occasions before Yohan put the free-kick in and then a couple more after we could have sealed it, but the 1-0 win is very sweet for us and that comes about by our outstanding defending today. The whole team is working extremely hard to nullify their strengths and give them little or no opportunities and they did that brilliantly today, and we waited patiently to get the opportunity to score and we got what we deserved."

Survival chances: "It's on because we've won three on the trot and four from our last six, and we've made the team and the squad better. We've disappointed some players who have not played as much as they would have liked to, but the players are picking themselves and it's nice to look at the team and say 'why change?'. That's been the case for the last three games as we've only been forced to change due to Patrick's injury, and prior to this I had to change every week to find a solution which was very difficult."

Improvement in home form: "We've put it behind us somewhat and that's because the new players that have come in haven't got that fear. The four new players have all made a big contribution and that's lifted the rest of the players' fears of playing at home. The resilience is very good at the moment, and the effort to win the ball back is one of the reasons why we've turned things around."

Christian Benteke's chances: "He was a bit anxious, he would have normally have hit them first time. If we can get him scoring then we're going to be an even bigger force than we are now, so we're looking forward to that. He will start scoring goals sooner rather than later, and if we keep providing him he'll pop one or two in."

Upcoming weeks: "We have another two-week break now so you want to finish on a high and we've done that. Hopefully the players who go on international duty come back fit and pick up where we have left off. This is our third time on a two-week break and we've got it all planned out; the players can spend some time with their families and relax and build up their mental resilience for the Chelsea game. We can look forward to that now and give it our best shot - no-one expects us to win so if we play our best we can see if that'll be enough to get anything."

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