First friendly ends honours even.
Pre-season got underway once again at Bromley last Saturday (as seems to be the tradition now), as Palace took a squad of 20 plus players to Hayes Lane, not all of whom were used.
The result: a 1-1 draw courtesy of Clint Hill's 2nd half strike.
Amongst the un-used and watching from the sidelines in-between signing autographs were Johannes Ertl, Jose
Fonte, Sean Scannell, Darryl Flahavan and Tom Soares.
With Neil Warnock and his coaching team all present the team included some of the new arrivals, plus appearances from a number of the academy players from last season.
Making debut's were midfielder Nick Carle and centre half Paddy McCarthy, and Rhoys Wiggins was back from injury
and took up the left back position, with Clint Hill partnering McCarthy in the middle.
Territorially Palace had advantage for much of the game, but Bromley with a pair of settled strikers up front looked
sharper once in front of goal, and had the earlier clear cut chances.
Palace started with left winger James Dayton (also back from injury) on the right, and Lee Hills on the left wing and the forward pairing was Dougie Freedman alongside Paul Ifill, although the keen to get forward Dayton sometimes added to the pairing to make it a 3 upfront.
It was Bromley who had the first shot on 8 minutes though as striker Nick McDonnell turned Paddy McCarthy just inside
the area to shoot straight at Julian Speroni. Speroni then was called into action again 5 minutes later, when he palmed
away a shot heading for the top of the net, from the right hand side of the area.
Enjoying a larger share of the forward possession, Palace then responded in the 19th minute with a move that almost resulted in a goal. Freedman laid the ball along the deck into the penalty area in front of Ifill's run, and holding off the defender he just managed to get a shot off. At the same time though, goalkeeper Gareth Williams had come off his line and managed to successfully smother it though. Following a corner, Lee Hills then returned the ball with a left sided cross, and as a defender headed it away from the 'keeper's hands, Freedman's cushioned header on the far side was then just over the crossbar.
Moments later James Dayton started one of many runs, but the 'keeper again came out to the edge of the box (on the right) to put a stop to his forward momentum, and put the ball out of play.
Bromley then took the lead on 31, following a corner from the right. With the ball arriving in the centre of the penalty area, it was met by a stooping goalbound header in a packed box. Speroni had it covered, but then from about 2 yards out one of the Bromley players (McDonnell possibly) stuck out a boot to deflect it, and give the home side the lead.
Palace's response two minutes later was a neat run on the right from Dayton, who cut inside and laid the ball off for
Hills. From just on the edge of the box, the young Palace defender hit a well struck effort towards goal that was also
met with a well timed dive and save from Williams, who tipped the ball over for a corner.
Speroni then made a low save to his right to push a shot round on 38 minutes, and at the same time Dayton swapped flanks, moving to his natural left wing position. The half passed though without anymore goal incidents.
Having made one substitution during the first period that saw youngster Keiran Djillai replace Lee Hills, Palace then made a couple more at half time.
James Dayton was the first player to step up with an effort though after the break, when he cut in from the left and shot at goalkeeper Williams. The same player then put in a cross on 54 that just eluded Dougie Freedman in the box, as the defender beat him to it to put the ball over.
Substitute Jamie Smith then tried from distance 10 minutes later with yet another shot at the 'keeper, but only minutes after, Palace claimed the equaliser.
Palace won a corner on the left hand side, quickly taken and played short, it was fed to Clint Hill. Unmarked, he struck his shot goalbound towards the near post, and it was suddenly 1-1. Young first half substitute Kieran Djillai then had the final notable effort of the match. His lively runs had worried the defence throughout, and his late effort saw him cut inside from the right, but yet again the short was straight into goalkeeper Williams arms.
Not too bad a performance for an opener. Nick Carle looked quite sharp in the middle during the first half, and was certainly impressing with his close ball control and knocks forward to setup play during the first half. Youngsters Djillai and Dayton also looked keen and eager, and hopefully both can carry this into the forthcoming pre-season games to come.
Palace Team: Speroni, Butterfield, McCarthy, Hill, Wiggins, Dayton, Carle, Derry, Hills, Freedman, Ifill (c)
Subs: Djillai (For Hills '39), Watson (For Ifill '46), Dalhouse (For Wiggins '46), Smith (For Derry '59)
Bingham (For Carle '67), Abnett (For Butterfield '79), Comley (For Dayton '85), Cadogan (For Freedman '78)
Palace Shots/Headers: 9 (5 on target)
Bromley Shots/Headers: 6 (3 on target)
Palace Crosses: 10 (7 from right / 3 from left)
(Dayton 4, Djillai 2, Wiggins 1, Hills 1, Freedman 1, Watson 1
Bromley Crosses: 3
Posted by alan