Ian Holloway rues slow start as Crystal Palace drop points against Blackpool

Crystal Palace 2 Blackpool 2

selhurst park

In the long hard road of Championship football, relentless application separates the successful from the rest. Ian Holloway will be frustrated this morning after seeing his Crystal Palace team fritter away two points against Blackpool.

Palace are now three points behind first-placed Cardiff City but for much of yesterday's game they did not look like potential league leaders. Holloway's team were dismal in the first half, deservedly going behind after 37 minutes. They improved and went 2-1 up but allowed Nouha Dicko to equalise with a minute left.

Holloway wished his team had started harder. "We looked like we were in a good run and thought we could just turn up," he said. "There was a lot wrong in the first half. At this level you cannot waste 45 minutes by not being at your best. I'm very disappointed, we dropped two points."

It was immediately obvious that Palace were not at the required level. Blackpool, playing as Holloway had taught them, pressed quickly and passed incisively, making chances for Isaiah Osbourne and Wes Thomas in the opening seconds.

So there was no surprise when Blackpool went ahead. Alex Baptiste won the ball in midfield and found Tom Ince, who assessed his options before striking a perfect curled pass to the far post. Nathan Delfouneso thundered in, lengths clear of Darcy Blake, and headed home.

Palace were intensely negligent, and Thomas had two more chances to score before the interval while Ince exchanged passes with Tiago Gomes and shot over.

But that was Blackpool's chance to win the game and they missed it. Palace finally started playing after the break, with their two thrilling wingers Wilfried Zaha and Yannick Bolasie leading the charge. Holloway saw his own team again. "That was much more like us."

Both wingers combined for the equaliser eight minutes after the re-start. Zaha tore down the right, and his cross ended up with Bolasie who checked back and centred again. Owen Garvan arrived at the far post to head in his first goal since August.

Zaha's run down the left set up the second. Four Blackpool players were sucked towards him, so he rolled the ball to Garvan who chipped to Murray, who did well to place his head beyond Matt Gilks. Murray could have won the game soon after, but Gilks pulled off a fine save after some more dazzling build-up play from Bolasie.

So Palace regretted their inattention when, in the 89th minute, Thomas ran down the right and crossed to Dicko, clear at the near post, who reminded Palace of their 90-minute obligations.

Crystal Palace (4-2-3-1): Speroni; Blake (Moritz, 57), Ramage, Delaney, Parr; Dikgacoi, Jedinak; Zaha, Garvan, Bolasie (Moxey, 90); Murray.

Blackpool (4-1-4-1): Gilks; Baptiste, Broadfoot, Cathcart, Crainey; Martinez (Slyvestre, 75); Ince, Gomes (Dicko, 75), Osbourne, Delfouneso (Phillips, 89); Thomas.

Referee Keith Stroud.

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003