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Zaha the hero as Palace get off the mark

MAIN MAN: Wilfried Zaha (left) with Yohan Cabaye

CRYSTAL PALACE recorded their first victory in the Premier League this season as they beat the champions Chelsea thanks to the winner by Wilfried Zaha, who returned from injury (October 14).

However their manager Roy Hodgson appeared to be a little bit irritated by the suggestion that the victory was just down to Zaha. He said: “I am a little bit disappointed that it is the way you have decided to go. Don’t get me wrong I thought he (Zaha) was excellent.

"We are delighted to have him back. I thought it was a good team performance. It is unfair to suggest that our victory is down to one good player who returns. I would rather flag up that our defending was excellent from the first to the last minute. Wilf has played a large part today. But we won because we had ten other players and Zaha.”

Hodgson also paid tribute to Andros Townsend who had one of his best games in a Palace shirt for a while. He said: Our midfield passing was very good. Andros and Wilfried made a big difference to our game today.

"Wilfried played a large part in our play today with out a shadow of doubt. You will have to forgive me for not putting my name to the fact that the reason we beat the champions of England today was because we had Wilfried Zaha. We did it because of Wilfried Zaha and ten others.”

Palace had many chances but Hodgson was content with the score line. An own goal by César Azpilicueta and another by Zaha was enough to seal the points. Tiémoué Bakayoko was on the mark for the Blues.
Hodgson said: “We had a lot of chances but they had chances too. We would not have apologised had we scored more. I am happy with what we got. We would like to rewrite today’s chapter, but next week is another story.”

"It is a nice feeling to win. I have to stop myself from thinking about what is coming without taking stock of what we did today.”

Meanwhile Chelsea’s manager Antonio Conte admitted they were second best all day, but bemoaned the fact that they were missing Alvaro Morata and N’golo Kante due to injuries. Victor Moses also picked up an injury during the game against Palace.

He said:” I think today was a difficult game for us. Our start was poor. When you start against Palace you have to start with more personality. We conceded a goal; we were able to come back and in the last few minutes we conceded another bad goal. The last few minutes were difficult for us.”

"At this time it is a very difficult moment for us. When we started the game without Morata and Kante it is not easy and then Victor Moses picked up an injury. It is a big problem for us.

"Despite this we have to find the will to fight. It is not enough to put only 100 per cent like last season. You have to put in 150 per cent. We want to try to be competitive in all competitions but it is not easy.”

"To lose a player like Kante is not simple because he is a very important player on the pitch. The balance is very important if you want to win. Today our balance was poor.”

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