Tottenham prevail in energetic Crystal Palace clash

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A newly refurbished Selhurst Park was full to the brim on Sunday as Crystal Palace turned back time in their first Premier League game in eight years against Tottenham Hotspur.

Spurs set out a relatively strong side with England internationals Michael Dawson, Kyle Walker and Aaron Lennon all starting, with the likes of Jermain Defoe on the bench.

The away side held most of the possession in the first half, demonstrating good link up play on the right with Walker and Lennon with good on and off ball movement which allowed Lennon to pressurise with winning corners.

Despite Tottenham's constant attacking pressure Crystal Palace’s defence stayed strong and stubborn with excellent performances from captain Mile Jedinak dropping to help the back four and Dean Moxey clearing any danger.

The closest Andre Villas-Boas' side came to a first half goal was a header from debutant Nacer Chadli who's close range header was just inches over the bar on the stroke of half time.

Although a goalless game up to then, if the second half was anything like the first the fans were in for a treat, and luckily it was, with both teams energised and creating chances.

Lennon was as lively as ever on the right flank using his lightning speed and trickery to see in a cross that struck the arm of sliding Dean Moxey and resulting in a penalty kick to Tottenham.

It was debutant striker Roberto Soldado who stepped up and sent Julian Speroni the wrong way to give Spurs the lead with just five minutes played in the second half.

Both teams pressed on with Palace fans urging the team forward and Ian Holloway decided it was time for a change as he brought on new signing Marouane Chamakh along with striking partner and eleven years his senior Kevin Phillips with 66 minutes played.

The pair did gel well upfront with Chamakh winning a lot of balls in the air to lay off to 40-year-old Phillips.

However. Spurs showed their Premier League experience and were quick to close down Palace and hang on to the 1-0 lead, clinching their first three points of the season.

Despite the result, Palace played impressive football and have a lot of positives to take out of the game.

They will be hoping that goalscoring machine Glenn Murray makes a speedy recovery from his injury and can help them avoid relegation.

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Tottenham Hotspur
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