Fan View: 'Flaccid Crystal Palace need more firepower'

27th Dec 2018

It has been the tale of Palace's season; an inability to find the back of the net even when creating a large volume of opportunities to do so. 

Daily Football Tips

Cardiff will have come away from this match pleased with a point having been dominated for the most part - particularly throughout the second half - as Palace missed a multitude of chances. It was a flaccid performance in front of goal from Palace. 

But had Vicente Guaita not saved superbly from Junior Hoilett the visitors may well have come away with all three in a smash and grab. 

With just five shots on target from 31 total attempts on goal it is evident where our problems lie. For as great as it was to see Connor Wickham make his first home appearance in over two years, he looked every bit a player with so little competitive football under his belt in recent times. 

It is unlikely we will sign any more than three players in the January transfer window. A lack of funds and a hefty wage bill prevent anything significant from happening, and that will continue to be problematic until high earners like Scott Dann and Christian Benteke who are not justifying their  wages are moved on. The trouble is there is a lack of takers for either. 

Alexander Sørloth is not good enough but he is on relatively low wages, whilst Jordan Ayew is only on loan. 

Dominic Solanke is one player who looks likely to come in, with the Liverpool striker able to provide Palace with another option up front, but he alone is not the answer to our goalscoring woes (ignoring the three against Man City and two against West Ham). 

Regardless of who is signed in January, this squad is good enough to stay up - even if it is largely thanks to the aberration of Cardiff, Fulham, Huddersfield and a few others. Four points from these two games is more than many expected but it should have been six after witnessing how poor the Bluebirds were. 

Roy Hodgson has a decision to make at the back. He had a settled back five for the majority of the season, and rightly so given Wayne Hennessey's excellent form, but since the Welsh goalkeeper's injury, Guaita has come in and made two outstanding saves.

His saves have been exemplary and may well be enough for him to keep his place over Hennessey. But whether Hodgson, who has a penchant for sticking with what he knows works, opts to twist and keep the Spaniard between the sticks, is unclear.

It does, however, seem likely and it would not be unreasonable. Although a little hard on Hennessey who has performed well. 

When Wickham came on, Hodgson opted for a change in formation with Wilfried Zaha and Andros Townsend flanking the target man.

It may not have produced a goal but it certainly worked better than having Zaha isolated in a central position - with him having much more joy down the left attacking the full backs.

It is far more entertaining to watch him run with pace at defenders, and much more effective too.

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