In arguably Palace’s best performance of the season to date, the Eagles totally dominated a poor Burnley side at Selhurst. Mike Scott looks at how the players performed…
Wayne Hennessey - 6
A very quiet afternoon for the man who finally stopped Wan-Bissaka winning player of the month. Again. He was hesitant on a couple of crosses, but he put in some decent, routine saves and his distribution was solid.
Patrick Van Aanholt – 7
Most of what PVA can be judged on for the game was his attacking play, because precious little came down the Burnley right. Was a good outlet for many cross-field balls – and had a couple of decent efforts too
Mamadou Sakho – 8
Another fine performance from Sakho. He kept the two front men so quiet that you barely noticed they were there. He looked assured, passed with purpose and marshalled what little work the defence had to do perfectly.
James Tomkins – 6
Aside from being caught in possession once (and being cleaned out towards the end of the game), you won’t watch a game where James Tomkins had to do less.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka – 8
What little attacking flair Burnley had came down their left in the first half – and Wan-Bissaka had the better of Guðmundsson when he did look to cause a threat. Going forward he was the spare man in a plethora of moves – his crossing is looking more and more threatening too.
Luka Milivojevic – 7
The Serbian missed an absolute sitter, but otherwise he had another good game. He was given a lot of time on the ball and looked calm and assured because of it, whilst mopping up on the few occasions he was called to do so. An absolute rocket of a shot at the end of the first half would’ve broken the net had it not been deflected, too.
Cheikhou Kouyate – 8
As was the case at United, Kouyate looks like he’s really settled in now. It was a box to box performance, supporting Meyer, getting involved in some lovely triangular passing and moves with PVA. Was unlucky not to score early on when Zaha knocked a low cross in.
Max Meyer – 9
The German played his best game in a Palace shirt at Old Trafford last week, but this was a step up again. He absolutely dominated midfield, setting Zaha on countless runs down the left and Townsend out on moves both down the right and through the middle. His range of passing was on show, with some lovely cross field balls to exploit the space down Palace’s right, when moves began the other side of the pitch. If he plays like that week in, week out, Palace’s fortunes will be on the up.
James McArthur – 7
The Scottish Terrier won’t score too many luckier goals. That it was past Joe Hart was just a nice bonus. He had a lot more attacking intent than we’ve seen this season so far, with those late, hazy runs to the edge of the box very much back.
Andros Townsend – 8
Townsend was all over Burnley, who had no answer to his pace, or to his desire to chase down 50/50 balls and lost causes. At times, he was outnumbered by a narrow looking Burnley defence who tried to drown out a Palace side intent on walking the ball into the net, but on breaks he was menacing. And that finish, well….perhaps the best of his three screamers this season.
Wilfried Zaha – 7
Like Townsend, he was too much for the Burnley defence on the break, but they totally surrounded him every time he was played the ball to feet. Half the time, as Wilf does, he got past them anyway, but he suffered from a real lack of options once he got into the box, so a lot of the time his balls across goal looked to lack purpose. In truth, he did everything he could – but the shot he had that came back of the underside of the bar summed up his luck.
Jeffrey Schlupp – 4
On for McArthur (78 minutes), Schlupp didn’t have a great deal of time on the ball, with his main contribution being a cross that ballooned over the bar.
Alexander Sorloth - 6
On for Townsend (88 minutes), he gave a glimpse of what a target man could do for a side playing like Palace were, when he won a threatening header on the edge of the box
Jason Puncheon – 5
On for Meyer in stoppage time, it was good to see him get a run out.