After last week’s heroics, City never really turned up at Selhurst Park, beaten by two headers from set-pieces soon after the break…
Nigel Pearson stuck with the same side that humbled United, but they came up against a very well drilled Warnock defence that meant that chances were few and far between.
The first real chance of the game came in the 13th minute, when an Ulloa header set Vardy up. His first touch took the keeper out of the equation but three defenders raced to block the City striker’s shot. The rebound fell to Nugent but his attempted curler beat the far post.
In a very tight encounter both sides were reduced to long-range efforts Jedinak and, at the other end, Nugent both failing to trouble the keepers.
It was Palace who began to apply some pressure towards the break, the nearest they got to an opener was when Cambiasso had to block a Jedinak effort on the line.
Schmeichel then had his palms stung by a vicious Puncheon 30 yarder.
Cambiasso set Vardy up with a chance just before half-time, but he missed the target and 0-0 was a fair enough scoreline at the break.
Although City had the first chance in the second half, Nugent having a shot blocked by Ward, the game soon swung dramatically in favour of the Eagles.
In the 51st minute. Dann rose above the City defence to nod on a corner, and summer-target Campbell touched it past Schmeichel from close in.
Three minutes later another ball was delivered from the left after Morgan fouled Bolasie. Jedinak met Puncheon’s free-kick, heading across Schmeichel and in at the far post.
For a City side that looked out of sorts, with passes going astray and a long ball tactic that was gobbled up by the giants in Palace’s defence, the game already looked out of their reach.
With half an hour remaining, Simpson replaced De Laet and Mahrez came on for Cambiasso, but still City struggled to make any impression on the red and blue wall. James also came on for Hammond but City were being kept easily at bay.
When Vardy didn’t get a penalty after being shoved in the back by Ward we knew that the game was up.
Simpson had a good effort blocked, but City were never able to create any real pressure late on and succumbed to their second defeat of the season.
Gary Lineker summed it up with his: “After the Lord Mayor’s Show” comment on Match of the Day.
We knew there would be days like these, and to suffer one and still be in the top half means that we aren’t doing too bad.
Palace: Speroni, Ward, Dann, Bolasie (Guedioura 90), Campbell (Chamakh 73), Jedinak, McArthur, Delaney, Ledley, Kelly, Puncheon. Subs Not Used: Mariappa, Doyle, Zaha, Hennessey, Gayle.
Leicester: Schmeichel, De Laet (Simpson 64), Morgan, Moore, Konchesky, Hammond (Jamies 71), Cambiasso (Mahrez 64), Drinkwater, Nugent, Vardy, Ulloa. Subs Not Used: Hamer, King, Wasilewski, Schlupp.
Referee: Keith Stroud. Attendance: 24,311.
All photos: Simon Kimber.
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