For the 79th time in the Premier League era, Newcastle United lost in London and their supporters went home with thousands, wondering why they had been hit by such torture.
Newcastle never looked like winning, or even getting a goal, and so their three-hour train journey would be spent picking up the bones of a new afternoon of nothing.
Crystal Palace of Roy Hodgson, the lowest scorers of the competition, won 1-0, but it should have been with a much larger margin. Only Martin Dubravka, the keeper of Newcastle, kept it respectable.
Patrick van Aanholt scored the only goal of the match to give Crystal Palace an important victory
The defender’s free kick just before half-time gave Newcastle keeper Dubravka no chance
“Attack, attack, attack” was the cry of an end that was desperately looking for entertainment.
Even worse for the visitors, it was Patrick van Aanholt, the left back formerly of Sunderland, who assured Palace their first victory in 2020 – via a pinpoint free kick from 25 yards.
Newcastle boss Steve Bruce did not hide his frustration afterwards.
“Maybe it’s time for change, maybe it’s time we try something else,” he said.
Before Newcastle supporters became enthusiastic about the prospect of a new manager coming in, Bruce meant a change in formation or in the selection he chose. “We are disappointed,” he continued.
“You have to accept it (the criticism). We were defeated and did not deserve to win the game. If you don’t deserve the game, you have to accept the consequences. “
Hodgson added to his only complaint: “I would not have missed one or two goals. We would have deserved that. During the 90 minutes it was a good performance. “
These two sets of supporters are known for their energy, but even when they arrived in Selhurst Park, they realized that the odds suggested that this would not be a high-scoring affair.
Palace, as mentioned, were the worst scorers in the division. Newcastle was the second worst.
The home team could have scored more, but goalie Martin Dubravka kept them at a distance
Yet the deadlock would have been broken within six minutes if Dubravka was not there.
The Slovakian stop turned part-acrobat to produce a beautiful one-handed rescue in his upper right corner, preventing Gary Cahill from leading Palace to the lead.
The hosts were well in control at this point. One escape, after Newcastle had lost clumsy possession in midfield, saw Christian Benteke’s shot deflected by Jamaal Lascelles.
From the resulting corner, Scott Dann brought his head to the cross and Dubravka got a hand in it again. The Newcastle goalkeeper, apparently on the radar of Chelsea, earned his money here.
The only chance Newcastle had come from a distance – a Joelinton attempt saved by Vicente Guaita.
There has been a lot of hype about Newcastle’s Allan Saint-Maximin lately, as one of the division’s most dangerous dribblers. Yet he could not have stretched his legs.
It was another miserable afternoon in London for the visitors who never looked like scoring
Steve Bruce’s side is now without purpose in their last three Premier League games
It was all Palace and in the 20th minute, another cross and another chance. This time, from all four yards, Benteke headed wide from Dubravka’s gaping goal.
Hodgson, who is going to sign a new contract as a Palace manager, with his current deal ending at the end of this season, looked just as surprised as someone because of that miss.
In the 40th minute, Jordan cut Ayew on his right foot and hit one of the 20 yards to the far corner. Dubravka dived and it just crawled wide.
It seemed that we would enter the entire square, but Van Aanholt had other ideas.
He sent a rocket of a left foot shot from 25 meters into the upper corner, out of the reach of Dubravka. Make no mistake, Palace has earned this goal.
Ayew should have put the game to bed in the 50th minute, but found the pole from eight meters. Benteke then found Dubravka’s diaphragm.
Wilfried Zaha had been relatively quiet by his standards on the left wing.
Palace is the lowest score of the competition, but created enough opportunities during the match
Ayew should have put the game to bed in the 50th minute, but could only hit the post
Halfway through the second half he skinned his marker and found Ayew, who was waiting all by himself.
The attacker shot in the lower right corner but Dubravka denied him.
Five minutes of downtime was announced and Zaha, who led Palace in a counterattack, was knocked down by Valentino Lazaro, a loan from Inter Milan. Last man, red card.
That limited a horrible afternoon for Newcastle. Another trip to the capital, another defeat.
Valentino Lazaro was sent out in extra time after throwing in Wilfried Zaha who was clearly on goal
There was only one team that looked like winning while the hosts achieved the victory they deserved
The side of Roy Hodgson had not won at home since a 2-1 win over West Ham on Boxing Day
The win brings Palace over Newcastle to the 13th with them now only three points on the ninth
EQUAL FACTS, REVIEWS AND LIVE LEAGUE TABLE
- League One
- League Two
- Scottish premiership
- Scottish Div 1
- Scottish Div 2
- Scottish Div 3
- Ligue 1
- Series a
- La Liga
Crystal Palace (4-3-3): Guaita 6.5; Ward 7, Dann 6.5, Cahill 7, Van Aanholt 7.5; Kouyate 7 (Riedewald 89), McArthur 7, McCarthy 7; Ayew 7, Benteke 6.5 (Tosun 89), Zaha 7
Subs (not used): Hennessey, Meyer, Townsend, Kelly, Keutcha
booked: McCarthy, McArthur
Manager: Roy Hodgson 7
Newcastle (5-4-1): Dubravka 7; Lazaro 4.5, Fernandez 5.5, Lascelles 5.5, Schar 6, Rose 5 (Ritchie 71, 6); Almiron 5 (Gayle 71, 6), S Longstaff 5, Bentaleb 5, Saint-Maximin 5; Joelinton 4.5
Subs (not used): Darlow, Hayden, Lejeune, Yedlin, M Longstaff
booked: Bentaleb, Almiron, Lascelles, Ritchie, Joelinton, Longstaff
sent: Lazaro (90 + 5)
Manager: Steve Bruce 4.5
Referee: Peter Bankes 6