Crystal Palace and Everton had their kickoff delayed by fifteen minutes, but unfortunately, that delay did not bring about gratification. At least, not in the form of goals. The hosts, however, are likely thrilled to have earned their first point in eight matches, despite the fact that they remain deep in the relegation zone, and could be bottom again if Sunderland earn a point against Manchester City. Meanwhile, Everton are sixth, but could be pushed down to eighth if both of the Manchesters win on Sunday.
While on the surface, the hosts, still without a manager, have every right to be thrilled with a point, you have to think they’re also kicking themselves just a little. Palace did have opportunity to take all three points, but managed to squander their chances. One of the worst mishaps occurred when Kagisho Dikgacoi mistimed a free header. The South African, lurking at the far post, got on the end of a ball from Jerome Thomas, but rather than stick it in the back of the net, managed to head the ball the opposite direction.
Moments later, Thomas very nearly put his side in front with a shot from 20 yards, but Tim Howard was up to the challenge. The American goalkeeper dove to his left, tipping Thomas’s shot into safety. In the second half, Thomas himself squandered an opportunity, when Yannick Bolasie dispossessed Leighton Baines, setting Thomas free on goal. The forward chipped in his shot, but it was well wide.
Everton’s best chance came late in the second half, when Phil Jagielka’s header hit the bar in the 77th minute. Even Roberto Martinez’s changes, introducing Ross Barkley and Gerard Deulofeu before the hour mark, didn’t produce the anticipated breakthrough. Deulofeu came close in the 90th minute, but in the end the visitors had to be content with just a point.
Crystal Palace: Speroni, Ward, Gabbidon, Delaney, Moxey, Jedinak, Dikgacoi (O’Keefe 45), Bannan, Thomas (Puncheon 85), Bolasie, Chamakh (Jerome 63)
Subs not used: Price, Mariappa, Kebe, Gayle
Everton: Howard, Coleman, Jagielka, Distin, Baines, McCarthy, Barry, Mirallas (Deulofeu 56), Osman (Barkley 56), Pienaar, Lukaku
Subs not used: Robles, Heitinga, Stones, Naismith, Jelavic