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Crystal palace

      Palace and Brentford share spoils in fiery encounter

      Crystal Palace

      Palace and Brentford shared the points from a fiery clash in south London, as a raucous Selhurst Park welcomed Patrick Vieira to the dugout for the first time.

      • Gallagher and Andersen make their full Palace debuts in front of a raucous home crowd.

      • Gallagher hits the bar after just seven minutes, played through by Zaha.

      • Schlupp creates space on the right before finding Gallagher, whose shot is saved.

      • Mbeumo’s curling free-kick clips the top of the crossbar.

      • HT: Palace 0-0 Brentford

      • Toney finds space twice in the area, but fails to convert with his head.

      • Benteke heads overr after rising highest to meet Ward's cross.

      • Ayew volleys over from the angle.

      • FT: Palace 0-0 Brentford

      The atmosphere that met the Eagles as they emerged was an assault on the senses: a teaming sea of red and blue on all four sides, flags flying high, the sound of thousands of straining voices on song once again. ‘Glad All Over’ was belted out by the Holmesdale with a hungry intensity that was 18-months in the making.

      The three newest additions to the side were welcomed in raucous fashion, Conor Gallagher making his bow in a Palace shirt while Marc Guéhi and Joachim Andersen greeted the home fans for the first time.

      It was very nearly the fast start the hosts had craved. After Tyrick Mitchell’s tenacious work to win the ball back in midfield, Wilfried Zaha looked up and played a defence splitting pass to Gallagher, advancing from deep.

      The midfielder’s first touch took him into the penalty area, where he unleashed a powerful effort from the angle only to see it cannon off the crossbar and across the face of goal.

      Palace looked dangerous going forwards. Under the attention of three Brentford defenders on the halfway line, Jeffrey Schlupp did well to turn and race towards goal. Zaha found Gallagher once again, but his attempt to guide the ball into the path of Christian Benteke was cut out by the goalkeeper.

      The visitors were struggling to hold onto the ball, and had to try and make their forays forward count. Their first real chance to do so came 20 minutes in, when Kristoffer Ajer was found in the six-yard box before the ball was scrambled away.

      Just before half-time they came even closer, with Bryan Mbeumo’s curling free-kick clipping the top of the crossbar on its way over the top.

      It was another dead-ball situation that gave Brentford the first chance of the second-half with Ivan Toney finding space in the six-yard box from a corner, but the ball came off his shoulder and Guaita could punch clear.

      At the other end, the aerial prowess of Christian Benteke was on show. Rising highest to meet a floating ball from Joel Ward, the Belgian powered a header goalwards but it was just too high to trouble the goalkeeper.

      Toney had a second bite at the cherry moments later soon after, getting up above Guaita but nodding over the crossbar. With the game opening up, Palace broke forwards, but James McArthur’s shot from the edge of the area was deflected wide.

      Roared on by the Holmesdale, Palace pushed for a winner. Benteke’s hold up play brought the Eagles forwards, and his cross was met by Jordan Ayew at the far post who could only volley high and wide.

      The hosts kept pushing, but ultimately Brentford held firm and the points were shared.

      Palace: Guaita (GK), Ward, Guéhi, Andersen, Mitchell, Kouyaté, McArthur, Gallagher, Zaha, Schlupp (Ayew, 68), Benteke.

      Subs not used: Butland (GK), Matthews (GK), Tomkins, Mateta, Kelly Riedewald, Rak-Sakyi.

      Brentford: Raya (GK), Henry, Pinnock, Nørgaard, Canós, Onyeka (Ghoddos, 70), Toney, Jansson, Mbeumo (Wissa, 77), Ajer, Janelt (Bidstrup, 87).

      Subs not used: Fernández (GK), Goode, Forss, Dervisoglu, Sørensen, Roerslev.