Crystal Palace’s most impressive wins of the season 

Crystal Palace sacked manager Patrick Vieira last month after 18 months in charge.

Vieira’s reign started strongly, with a vibrant, possession-based style of football, but the Eagles were in relegation turmoil at the time of his departure, sitting just four points clear of bottom club Southampton.

However, if Vieira’s sacking was justified, some questions were asked when he was replaced on a short term deal by former manager Roy Hodgson.

The appointment prompted oddschecker, which compares football odds and offers, to make the Selhurst Park outfit one of the favourites for the drop this term. 

Make no mistake, Crystal Palace are still embroiled in the relegation dog fight, as are eight other English top-flight outfits.

But the appointment of the veteran former England manager has so far proven to be a masterstroke.

Hodgson has led Palace to back-to-back victories against two of their relegation rivals, namely Leicester City and Leeds United.

And the victory against the aforementioned Leeds – at Elland Road no less – was without a doubt Palace’s finest victory of the campaign.

Let’s look at it and some of the other impressive wins in detail.

Leeds United 1-5 Crystal Palace 

Crystal Palace headed up the M1 on Saturday for what could well prove a relegation six-pointer.

Football fans across the country may well have favoured the heavyweight clash between Liverpool and Arsenal which was taking place at Anfield on the same day but the Eagles still made their own impression on the weekend.

Hodgson and his side knew that losing in West Yorkshire would leave them in trouble, and they probably relatively happy to pick up a point, especially after a lacklustre first half.

What they got was much more than anyone could have ever expected, especially after Patrick Bamford gave the hosts an early lead with his third league goal of the season.

When that happened, the visitors may well have feared the worst, but they were in for a pleasant surprise for what was about to come. 

Centre half Marc Guehi – who has been one of the shining lights for Palace throughout the last year and a half – bundled home a scrappy equaliser from a Jeffrey Schlupp free-kick on the stroke of half-time.

Then, whatever Hodgson said to his side during the interval clearly worked wonders.

Eight minutes after the break, trickery down the right-hand touchline from the ever-impressive Michael Olise freed him up to deliver the ball into the box where striker Jordan Ayew was waiting to nod home just his second goal of the season.

Barely two minutes later, Olise was once again the architect-in-chief, dancing past two defenders before sliding in Eberechi Eze, who made it 3-1.

And the best was yet to come as 14 minutes later, Olise picked up his third assist as he powered into the Leeds half before sliding the ball into the path of French striker Odsonne Édouard who slammed home left-footed.

The travelling fans were in dreamland, and 12 minutes later, the rout was completed when Ayew added his second of the afternoon after being played in by Will Hughes. 

The result catapulted Palace up the table and eased their relegation worries.

They are now four points clear of Leeds and six points clear of the relegation zone, and whilst there’s still a long way to go, their English top-flight status looks more secure than it did two weeks ago.

HAMMERED: The London Stadium played host to Palace’s first away win of the season

West Ham 1-2 Crystal Palace

Palace were flying as they went into their penultimate game before the World Cup, with ten points from their last five games and sitting 10th in the league.

That game was a tough London derby as they travelled to the London Stadium to face a struggling West Ham and despite their solid start, the Eagles were yet to win an away game in the Premier League.

Moreover, as was the case with the recent trip to Elland Road, the visitors fell behind early.

Algerian attacker Saïd Benrahma smashed the hosts into the lead with a stunning strike from the edge of the area after just 20 minutes.

However, in similar fashion to the recent tussle in West Yorkshire, the Eagles came roaring back into life. 

Wilfried Zaha equalised shortly before the interval after great work from Eze, who won the ball down the left-hand side and high up the field.

He fed Zaha, who brilliantly turned a Hammers defender before lashing home past Łukasz Fabiański, who was beaten by the sheer pace of the strike at his near post. 

As the second half got underway, Palace began to threaten more and more but it wasn’t until the 94th minute before they got their just desserts.

It was once again Olise who was the shining star.

The ball found its way out to the talented French winger on the right-hand side of the penalty area.

He cut inside and wrapped his left boot around the ball, which deflected into the top corner, leaving Olise, Palace, and the travelling Palace fans housed behind that goal to celebrate wildly at another crucial three points.

Crystal Palace 3-1 Aston Villa

And finally, Palace’s other impressive win this season was actually their first one, way back in August.

Despite strong performances in their opening two fixtures against Arsenal and Liverpool, Palace had just one point from their opening two games, and needed a result against Steven Gerrard’s Villa.

It was Zaha who was the star of the show on that occasion with two goals as once again the Eagles were forced to overcome an early setback.

Villa striker Ollie Watkins took just five minutes to give the visitors the lead, but Zaha equalised inside two minutes with an impressive solo effort.

Palace benefitted from a controversial VAR decision just before the hour, as Guehi’s header came off the arm of Villa defender Lucas Digne and the penalty was eventually given.

Zaha missed from the spot, but was able to turn in the rebound to give Palace a deserved lead, which they were able to turn into a deserved win.

Substitute Jean-Philippe Mateta wrapped up the win barely a minute after coming off the bench with a well-taken finish off Tyrick Mitchell’s cut-back.

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