Crystal Palace manager Dougie Freedman was delighted with a hard-fought win after his side eased their relegation worries with a 1-0 success over promotion-chasing Cardiff at Selhurst Park.

Kagisho Dikgacoi netted the winner eight minutes from time to fully punish Peter Whittingham's 69th-minute penalty miss for the Bluebirds. Palace are now. Palace are now unbeaten at home in 10 matches and have a four-point cushion above the relegation zone.

Freedman said: "It's very pleasing to win a very hard-fought match. We certainly had to work hard for that. Any win is pleasing right now."

He added: "The lads are buzzing in the dressing room. They've done well and stuck to the game plan throughout the match.

"I've got a team, substitutes, a squad and fans here that are all pulling in one direction. It's getting us through - everyone is. We're sticking to training, sticking to working hard and sticking to smiling and we're getting these hard-fought victories.''

Cardiff's second successive defeat left them two points off the Championship's automatic promotion places.

Boss Dave Jones felt his side deserved at least a point from the game and refused to single out the penalty miss as the turning point in the match.

Jones said: "To say we deserved something from the game is an understatement. They clung on for dear life. They've ridden their luck and held on.

"We deserved it and I'm not even talking about a point - we deserved all three. I think the goalkeeper has pulled off three unbelievable saves. It's definitely not bad finishing from us.

"They didn't do anything in the second half from my memory, they've ridden their luck and held on so fair play to them. I don't even think the penalty miss is a key moment. We still had the ball and the possession and we're still going but you can't give a goal away like we did."

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

Topics:
Sunderland
Dougie Freedman
Football
Peter Whittingham
Championship
Cardiff City
Crystal Palace