Hey look, we won a league game in 2003! And we scored from open play - wonder will never cease...
In truth, Palace deserved their victory tonight. A fairly even first half, saw Derby have the best of the chances, but Palace with much greater possession. Derry struck the bar with a free kick, whilst Derby's Chadwick had also struck wood with header earlier in the game.
The main talking point of the half also came early on, whenck was send clear down the right. As he neared the box, Derby's keeper came rushing on and upended him, with no attempt to the play the ball. The Referee bottled it, however, preferring to note that their was Derby defender covering in the box and therefore ruling Black wasn't the last man. That was immaterial, the crudity of the challenge would have seen any outfield player dismissed instantly. Had Black remained down perhaps the Referee would have had to think twice.
Adebola limped off early, to be replaced by the once more ineffectual Akinbiyi, but in the Sceond half Palace didn't need their expensive flop to help control the game. On 61 minutes Gray surged down the left and delivered a pinpoint cross onto the head of Black, who got a super connection blasting it past Grant, in a moment of sweet justice.
Palace agian struck woodwork from a Granville free-kick and Berthelin was more than equal to Derby's rare forays forward, so the rest of the half was uncharacteristically comfortable for Palace.
Crystal Palace: Berthelin, Butterfield, Popovic, Powell,
Borrowdale, Derry, Mullins, Thomson, Gray, Black (Granville), Adebola (Akinbiyi). Subs: Kolinko, Symons, Routledge.
Posted by neil