Hodgson hopes Zaha avoided injury

Lynette Rowe
March 19, 2018

Palace are up to 16th, a point and a place below Town and two above the drop line.

Crystal Palace ran out 2-0 winners in one of the biggest matches of their season on Saturday, when they saw off relegation rivals Huddersfield Town on a snowy day in Yorkshire. Huddersfield is only one point further ahead with seven games remaining.

There was optimism surrounding the Eagles heading into the contest as some of their more established stars have begun to return from injury and their fixture list has eased significantly having played a number of top sides in recent times.

Tomkins nearly netted another on the hour mark but his shot at the far post from a unsafe Andros Townsend corner was hacked off the line by Town's Steve Mounie. Huddersfield failed to clear and after Tomkins' initial shot had been saved by Jonas Lossl, the Palace centre-half prodded home the rebound. Milivojevic smashed the spot-kick beyond Lossl's reach to score his eighth goal of the campaign.

Huddersfield looked to respond immediately.

Huddersfield roared back at their opponents, with Milivojevic making a timely intervention as Alex Pritchard stood poised to convert Collin Quaner's cutback.

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The visitors posed the greater threat in the first half with Zaha lively on the left flank, Christian Benteke dominant down the middle and Andros Townsend inventive on the right.

Huddersfield have the spirit and organisation to survive too, on this evidence, but the lack of cutting edge in David Wagner's side - now scoreless in three - is a gnawing concern.

TV replays appeared to justify referee Mike Dean's decision and Huddersfield were staring at a damaging defeat.

Roy Hodgson handed Mamadou Sakho and Wilfried Zaha their first starts since suffering respective calf and knee injuries last month and the extra quality they provided at either end of the pitch will serve Palace well during the crucial period to come.

James McArthur headed Aaron Wan-Bissaka's cross just wide and Cabaye forced Lossl to save his low effort.

Cabaye's neat turn and volley forced Lossl into another save in the closing stages as Palace notched their first win since January 13.

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