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      Report & Highlights: Rovers dent Palace’s push for second

      Crystal Palace U21
      Blackburn Rovers U21
      Leonard 15'
      Burns 43'
      Weston 80'

      On a grey and rainy Friday morning at Copers Cope, Crystal Palace Under-21s fell to Blackburn Rovers.


      • Darren Powell made two changes to the side which lost to Wolves

      • Blackburn Rovers took the lead 15 minutes in through Harry Leonard

      • Jadan Raymond fired just wide of the mark for Palace late on in the half

      • Sam Burns doubled the lead for the visitors just before half-time

      • Half-time: Crystal Palace 0-2 Blackburn Rovers

      • Fionn Mooney saw a free-kick turned behind early on in the second-half

      • Mooney fired wide with 20 minutes remaining

      • Charlie Weston added a third for Blackburn in the 80th minute

      • In stoppage time, Omilabu just dinked it over the bar

      • Full-time: Crystal Palace 0-3 Blackburn Rovers

      U21 Match Highlights: Crystal Palace 0-3 Blackburn Rovers

      After losing to Wolves earlier in the week, Crystal Palace Under-21s were back in action just four days later as they hosted Blackburn Rovers in their penultimate League game of the season.

      Manager Darren Powell made two changes to the side, with Trialist and Matty Vigor coming in for Danny Imray and Noah Watson.

      The visitors got off to a strong start, enjoying more of the ball and creating the majority of the chances. Kaden Rodney blocked Zak Gilsenan’s effort inside the box, after the forward received the ball from his strike partner Harry Leonard.

      It was Leonard who put Blackburn ahead a quarter of an hour in. A free-kick worked out wide saw Jake Batty whip a dangerous ball into the box which Leonard rose highest to get on the end of and divert goalwards.

      After going a goal to the good, the visitors continued to dominate the ball. Palace had one chance of note in the first-half and it came through Jadan Raymond. The No. 7 was played in by David Ozoh and fired just wide of the mark from the edge of the box.

      Blackburn doubled their lead just before half-time through Sam Burns. Gilsenan knocked it forward from a drop ball and an onrushing Burns broke free and finished with ease as the Palace defence were caught napping.

      Vigor, in his return to the starting XI, had another attempt on goal for the Eagles deep into first-half stoppage time, but his effort wouldn’t have counted as he was flagged for offside.

      After the break, Palace started better and offered more going forward. Fionn Mooney drilled a free-kick hard and low, from about 25-yards out, but his effort was turned behind by Jordan Eastham in the Blackburn goal.

      The south Lononders had a few half-chances as the half wore on: another effort from Mooney was skewed wide, while Ozoh forced Eastham into save with a strong effort from the edge of the box.

      Palace were eventually put to the sword as a third goal for Blackburn 10 minutes from time sealed all three points. Burns broke from inside his own half and managed to get to the six-yard box before backheeling the ball into the path of substitute Charlie Weston who couldn’t miss from point blank range.

      There was a chance of a late consolation in stoppage time, however second-half substitute David Omilabu just dinked the ball over the bar after getting on the end of a quickly taken throw from Seán Grehan.

      A second defeat on the bounce means the Eagles remain in third place in the Premier League 2 Division 1 - two points clear of Liverpool in fourth, though they have now played a game more than their Merseyside counterparts.

      Crystal Palace: Goodman (GK), Trialist, Rodney, Balmer, Grehan, Adaramola, Ozoh, Raymond (Umeh, 60), Vigor (Omilabu, 77), Akinwale, Mooney (Reid, 83).

      Subs not used: Izquierdo (GK), Sheridan.

      Blackburn Rovers: Eastham (GK), Duru, Batty, Gamble, Phillips, Mola, O’Grady, Montgomery, Leonard, Gilsenan (Weston, 67), Burns (Wood, 81).

      Subs not used: Honor (GK), Gent, Walker.