Date: 26th September 2016 at 2:43pm
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Manager Alan Pardew has been talking of his pleasure at seeing Crystal Palace fightback against Sunderland to take what had looked a very unexpected victory at the weekend.

Making the trip to the Stadium of Light to face off against David Moyes strugglers, Jermain Defoe wasn’t following the script as he gave them the two goal lead as we reached the hour mark in the game, but Palace dug in and kept going and belief grew when Joe Ledley levelled one minute after Defoe completed his brace, and James McArthur had us back on level terms with just under 15 minutes left to play in the game.

At that point most would more than have settled for a point, but Christian Benteke popped up four minutes into stoppage time at the end of the game to show his worth and return all three points.

Speaking to Crystal Palace FC in his post game press conference, a clearly delighted Pardew explained that Ledley’s goal was definitely the turning point in the match.

‘We`re playing a style where we have chances and we`re playing with such confidence that I couldn`t see us making any mistakes at the back. The final third was an area that we`ve worked a lot on so when Joe made that mistake it was really galling as we had played so well. The second goal was probably Sunderland`s best spell – I think it was offside by the way – so I was stood on the sidelines scratching my head, wondering how we were going to get this back. Without any thought process it was 2-1 and then I really felt confident that we could get something out of the game.’

With the substitutes on the day having a good impact when they were introduced, he went on to say.

‘It was difficult to put seven or eight guys into the team in midweek, it was almost as though they were playing their first game. They didn`t play well at Southampton, but when you put them in that team out there today they`re more confident and they looked fine. Connor made a difference when he came on, Zeki created a goal and so did Chungy, and it shows the margins that playing in a confident side can have. It was a terrific victory for us in the end which looked like being a defeat.’

As for Zeki Fryers, he certainly came in for praise.

‘Zeki is a player that we have kind of rebuilt, he was struggling last year and his confidence was low, but we`ve built him up in pre-season. He has a great left foot and his only problem is in his mind, and when he gets that focused he`s OK, and it is at the moment. That was our nicest moment today – that he created that goal. We gave him a little cheer and a clap after and he`ll be all the better for that.’

As for our start to the season and 2016 in general he went on to say.

‘The margin between us and the top teams is not that great and you`d have to include Everton, Southampton and a few others in that. We`re all pushing and jostling, and for us 10 points is a great total. We can go to Everton now and if my team play like that today, I`ll be overjoyed as I think we would get something.’

Adding.

‘Everyone keeps leaning on last year and no-one knew those stats more than us, that`s why we changed the squad. The chairman and his backing has been tremendous for me and we now look like we have goals in the team. We would never have scored three goals in the second half of last season but Christian and a bit of confidence in the group has changed that. I thought Townsend was going to get the winner when he cut inside, it was unusual for him to miss in that situation. It was a great win for us and I`m chuffed.’

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