Premier League
Bournemouth0Crystal Palace2

Bournemouth 0-2 Crystal Palace

Palace's last away league win against Bournemouth came in November 1987

Crystal Palace finally earned a Premier League victory under Sam Allardyce as goals by Scott Dann and Christian Benteke secured the points against Bournemouth at a rain-swept Vitality Stadium.

After a goalless first half, Dann broke the deadlock shortly after the restart from Damien Delaney's flick-on to set Allardyce on his way to a first league win as Eagles boss at the sixth attempt.

Benteke added a second in the closing moments, heading home a pinpoint cross by Andros Townsend, who before kick-off had been strongly linked with a deadline-day move back to Newcastle.

Palace will also take heart from a first away clean sheet in the Premier League since Boxing Day 2015, although the hosts were unlucky to draw a blank with Joshua King and Junior Stanislas both seeing well-hit efforts deflect narrowly wide.

Palace had only earned two points from the last available 24 before this result and remain inside the relegation zone, two points behind Swansea.

The result also brings the relegation dogfight a little closer to Bournemouth's door. Eddie Howe's side drop to 14th place and are now seven points above the drop zone after a run of just one win in seven.

Palace finally shore up at the back

Former England boss Allardyce has built his reputation on teams that are hard to break down, so improving Palace's defensive solidity has been a priority since his arrival at Selhurst Park in December.

The defensive frailties that long pre-dated his arrival have taken time to put right, but this match suggested Allardyce's methods are finally having an impact.

The back three of Dann, Delaney and James Tomkins looked solid throughout, while the protection in front of the defence provided by Yohan Cabaye and James McArthur was tigerish and tireless.

"The key today was keeping Bournemouth in front of us," said Allardyce. "We've let too many people get through us and behind us recently and we had to stop that. I think Bournemouth found that frustrating.

"It's a great result. It's a first clean sheet, hopefully of many. It's three massive points away from home. I'm so pleased about the 'nil'.

"The players today looked like what I would expect a team of mine to look like."

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Allardyce praises 'best' Eagles performance

Bournemouth's slump continues

It's been a worrying winter for Bournemouth, who are now winless in their last four home league games and continuing to ship goals at an alarming rate.

They have now conceded 28 in 12 games in all competitions, although manager Eddie Howe felt his side did enough to contain Palace and was more upset with their failure to ask more of the visitors' defence.

"We had a lot of the ball tonight but didn't do enough with it - there were a lot of sideways and backward passes, which when you're not feeling good about yourself is the easiest thing to do," said Howe.

The hosts managed just two shots on target, but on another night could easily have made a breakthrough, with Stanislas in particular very unlucky to see his first-half shot whistle a whisker past the post after catching the heel of Dann.

And the final result might have been very different had Jack Wilshere's well-struck last-minute free-kick not been met with an equally good save by Wayne Hennessey at full stretch.

Within moments, a loose pass out of Bournemouth's defence by Simon Francis was seized upon by Townsend, who advanced and sent over a perfect cross for Benteke to complete the victory.

Man of the match - Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace)

Wilfried Zaha
Back from the Africa Cup of Nations - and back with a bang. Zaha was very unlucky not to end up with a goal after hitting the post with a lovely 25-yard strike and forcing Artur Boruc into a good save after some trademark trickery in the area worked him a yard of space. He also had the most touches (51), sprints (65) and crosses (6) of any Palace player

Match of the Day analysis

Former England winger Trevor Sinclair: "It was a much-needed win for Palace. It was a brave performance and sometimes it helps being away from home. They had a game plan, which was to get ball wide, and that helps when they have got players like Townsend and Zaha. Everything that Sam Allardyce asked them to do they executed.

"Bournemouth are conceding a lot of goals and it is worrying. For the second goal particularly it was poor defending and poor decision-making."

Former England midfielder Danny Murphy: "It is as well as they have played under him. They have started to do the things you expect a Big Sam side to do.

"Even though they are in the bottom three, you expect they have enough."

Dangerous Dann delivers again - match stats

  • Since the start of last season, Scott Dann has scored more Premier League goals than any other defender in the division (8).
  • Only Christian Benteke (9) has scored more league goals for Palace than Dann since 2015-16.
  • The Eagles have earned a higher percentage of their points on the road than any other side in Premier League history (48.73%).
  • After winning two of their first three away league games this season, that was the Eagles' first away win in nine Premier League matches.
  • It was the first time Palace had won a Premier League away game by more than one goal since August 2015 (3-1 vs Norwich).

'They executed the game plan brilliantly'

Palace boss Sam Allardyce: "It's relief for me. It [the first league victory victory] really should have happened in the first game at Watford and it's been a long haul since.

"You can't argue with the result with the amount of chances we created. They executed the game plan brilliantly today."

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Bournemouth lacked confidence - Howe

Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe: "I thought we played with a lack of confidence today. We didn't hurt them enough. They got a lot of men behind the ball and it's up to us to find a way through.

"We didn't play well but we didn't look like we were going to concede. I don't think our problem was defensively today.

"Usually at home we have a spring in our step but that wasn't there today and that's concerning.

"We had some very good chances we didn't take, even though we played poorly."

What's next?

Both these sides are back in Premier League action at 15:00 GMT on Saturday, when Bournemouth are the visitors to Goodison Park to face Everton and Crystal Palace entertain Sunderland in a crucial relegation meeting.



  • 1Boruc
  • 15A Smith
  • 2Francis
  • 3S Cook
  • 14B SmithSubstituted forArterat 68'minutes
  • 6Surman
  • 32Wilshere
  • 19StanislasSubstituted forIbeat 61'minutes
  • 17King
  • 24Fraser
  • 9AfobeSubstituted forC Wilsonat 61'minutes


  • 4Gosling
  • 7Pugh
  • 8Arter
  • 13C Wilson
  • 21Allsop
  • 26Mings
  • 33Ibe

Crystal Palace

  • 13Hennessey
  • 5Tomkins
  • 6Dann
  • 27DelaneyBooked at 90mins
  • 2WardBooked at 53mins
  • 7CabayeSubstituted forLedleyat 76'minutes
  • 42PuncheonSubstituted forFlaminiat 90+3'minutes
  • 3van Aanholt
  • 11Zaha
  • 17BentekeBooked at 90mins
  • 18McArthurSubstituted forTownsendat 76'minutesBooked at 85mins


  • 1Speroni
  • 4Flamini
  • 8Remy
  • 9Campbell
  • 10Townsend
  • 16Ledley
  • 19Fryers
Jonathan Moss

Match Stats

Home TeamBournemouthAway TeamCrystal Palace
Shots on Target

Live Text

Match ends, Bournemouth 0, Crystal Palace 2.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Bournemouth 0, Crystal Palace 2.

Jack Wilshere (Bournemouth) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace).

Jack Wilshere (Bournemouth) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Christian Benteke (Crystal Palace).


Substitution, Crystal Palace. Mathieu Flamini replaces Jason Puncheon.


Christian Benteke (Crystal Palace) is shown the yellow card for excessive celebration.


Goal! Bournemouth 0, Crystal Palace 2. Christian Benteke (Crystal Palace) header from very close range to the top left corner. Assisted by Andros Townsend with a cross.

Attempt saved. Jack Wilshere (Bournemouth) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.


Damien Delaney (Crystal Palace) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Joshua King (Bournemouth) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Damien Delaney (Crystal Palace).

Attempt blocked. Jack Wilshere (Bournemouth) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Simon Francis.

Attempt blocked. Steve Cook (Bournemouth) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Foul by Jordon Ibe (Bournemouth).

Andros Townsend (Crystal Palace) wins a free kick in the defensive half.


Andros Townsend (Crystal Palace) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Adam Smith (Bournemouth) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Andros Townsend (Crystal Palace).

Attempt missed. Steve Cook (Bournemouth) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Ryan Fraser.

Joshua King (Bournemouth) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Jason Puncheon (Crystal Palace).


Substitution, Crystal Palace. Joe Ledley replaces Yohan Cabaye.


Substitution, Crystal Palace. Andros Townsend replaces James McArthur.

Attempt missed. Harry Arter (Bournemouth) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Adam Smith.

Steve Cook (Bournemouth) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Christian Benteke (Crystal Palace).

Foul by Steve Cook (Bournemouth).

Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Jack Wilshere (Bournemouth) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by James McArthur (Crystal Palace).

Foul by Simon Francis (Bournemouth).

Christian Benteke (Crystal Palace) wins a free kick in the defensive half.


Substitution, Bournemouth. Harry Arter replaces Brad Smith.

Ryan Fraser (Bournemouth) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace).

Foul by Callum Wilson (Bournemouth).

Jason Puncheon (Crystal Palace) wins a free kick in the defensive half.


Substitution, Bournemouth. Jordon Ibe replaces Junior Stanislas.


As It Stood

5Man City22134543281543
6Man Utd22118333211241
8West Brom239683129233
11West Ham2284102936-728
18Crystal Palace2354143241-919
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