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U23s Report: Leeds United 0-1 Crystal Palace

13 March 2017

Andre Coker’s third goal of the season proved to be enough to give Palace victory against Leeds United in Yorkshire and record their first win in three games.

The attacker popped up with 15 minutes to go to lash home a loose ball and secure three points for Richard Shaw’s men against the Whites in a game that Palace controlled throughout and deserved to return back to south London with the win.

The first half was a very quiet affair with the hosts failing to dirty Kelton Perntreou’s gloves as Eoghan Stokes and Tom Pearce both saw efforts from range sail wide of the mark, but in the final 10 minutes of the opening 45 the Eagles created plenty of openings and were unlucky to go into the interval not ahead.

Firstly, Oliver O’Dwyer saw a header saved by Bailey Peacock-Farrell in the Leeds goal following an Eagles corner, and then the towering centre-back once again got on the end of another set-piece to flick the ball on for Andre Coker who nodded the chance over the crossbar. 

Then on 40 minutes, Levi Lumeka managed to escape past the defensive line and forced Peacock-Farrell into another stop, before O’Dwyer headed straight at the shot-stopper with the last action of the half after another corner.

Shaw’s side continued to look the livelier once play restarted and Jason Lokilo was next to test Peacock-Farrell as his stinging blast from distance was pushed away, but finally Palace found the breakthrough they were looking for with a quarter of an hour to go. Another delivery into the area caused the Whites problems, and after the ball only landed at the feet of Coker he volleyed it home via the crossbar to put the Eagles ahead.

O’Dwyer seemed adamant to get on the scoresheet and he could have put the game to bed on 78 minutes when he once again met a Kian Flanagan free-kick but Peacock-Farrell was again equal to his effort, and despite a late rally from Leeds that saw the goalie join the attack during injury-time, the Eagles held firm.

Palace: Perntreou, Wan-Bissaka, Tavares, O’Dwyer, Mitchell, Phillips, Dreher (McGregor 62), Lokilo, Flanagan, Lumeka, Coker. Subs not used: McAdden, Woods, Sturgess, McGregor, Hungbo.

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