Date: 22nd March 2015 at 9:23am
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Manager Alan Pardew has said he was delighted with the character shown by the Palace lads in yesterday’s two one victory over Stoke City.

Hear Pardew Speak Following The Stoke Game (click here)

Speaking to the press following the game Pardew described it as a massive victory for us and he was delighted to see us battle back from behind to take all three points.

‘This was a really big victory, because Stoke were terrific today. We really had to dig deep. It was character more than anything that got us the win here today. This is one of the best teams I have managed for that, in terms of that credential. Fantastic character, to win that.’

Pardew went on to say that he felt really we should have got the third just after the half time restart and he knows the scoreline could’ve been larger as we did have some really good chances across the game.

‘I am absolutely overjoyed for the players, because they have worked really hard today. Some of the things we tried to do did not really come off, so we had to dig deep and come up with different ideas and solutions, which we managed to do. We have had a tremendous record away from home and this is another victory.’

With Palace up to 36 points now and 11th in the table, whilst he wouldn’t guarantee we were safe for the season now he knows it should see us safe baring an amazing turnaround in our form over the remaining eight games.

’36 points is us done really, with eight to go, so I am really, really pleased. It`s not enough but, with eight games, and the way we are playing, you would expect us to comfortably be there. It is always dangerous for a manager to say that but we are really playing well.’

Going back to the game, Pardew admitted that despite having chances to make it more comfortable for us, he knows we needed Julian Speroni because Stoke had moments of their own in the game.

‘It was a really tough game to win. We needed our goalie to play well, our centre-forward to play well, and we needed to get a grip in wide areas, which we did in the second half.’

Key to that obviously was also Glenn Murray.

‘It was emphatic and he is in great form. I think he has been waiting for this opportunity in the Premier League. He has shown quality through the divisions in his career, and never really had this opportunity, and now he is putting a marker down to say, ‘I was good enough all along`. It is good news for me and good news for Palace.’

With the penalty taking the headlines, Pardew admitted without replays he had no idea if the referee had made the right call or not, but he was delighted it went our way and he knows it was the turning point in the game really for us.

‘I was not sure. I did not really see it. I was pleased though, because we were not particularly great up until that period, and that sparked us back to life.’

There was also the potential hand ball by Joel Ward that Stoke manager Mark Hughes called the ‘best save of the match’ so that should be a nice highlight.

Nice to get the luck going our way, but Pardew did admit it was a difficult day for the officials – but he felt both sides made it a difficult day for the ref in the right manner.

‘It thought it was a cracking game today and that Stoke were good. I think it was a tough day for the officials today. I thought all of it was pretty fair, but tough – it was a tough, physical encounter, almost like a Six Nations rugby union match at times in terms of real aggression in the right way. The referee had a couple of calls to make and he was never going to get them all right because both sides were as aggressive as each other. But it made for a cracking game.’

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