Crystal Palace 4-1 Stoke City: Eagles dominate visitors to claim all three points

The home-side secured back to back victories with a fantastic performance over the Potters

Crystal Palace 4-1 Stoke City: Eagles dominate visitors to claim all three points
Palace beat Stoke 4-1 thanks to a fast start Photo: Getty Images: Ian Walton
Crystal Palace
4 1
Stoke City
Crystal Palace: Crystal Palace - Mandanda. Ward, Dann, Tomkins (Delaney 45'), Kelly, Ledley (Flamini 78'), McArthur, Zaha, Puncheon, Townsend (Lee Chung-yong 85') C Benteke
Stoke City : Stoke City - Given, Johnson, Shawcross, Cameron, Martins Indi, Whelan, Allen, Walters, Bojan (Diouf 68') Arnautovic, Bony
SCORE: 1- 0 (Tomkins 9') 2-0 (Dann 11') 3-0 (McArthur 71') 4-0 Townsend (75') 4-1 (Arnautovic 90'+4)
REFEREE: Referee - Craig Pawson
INCIDENTS: Premier League

Crystal Palace convincingly defeated Stoke City 4-1 at Selhurt Park, as Alan Pardew's side secured their second win of the season.

Hosts fire themselves into early two-goal lead

Palace began brightly, as Wilfred Zaha drove at Stoke left-back Bruno Martins Indi on a number of occasions in the first minutes, and it was good play from Zaha which lead to the first goal after just nine minutes.

The winger won a freekick on the right hand side, which Andros Townsend whipped in and found debutant James Tomkins at the backpost, with the centre-halves downward header beating Shay Given in the Stoke goal. 

The visitors didn't learn their lesson from the first set piece chance of the match, and they were two down just two minutes later. A deep Townsend cross was headed behind for a corner, which when delivered found Tomkins' centreback partner Scott Dann completely unmarked, and his header was again too powerful for Given and Potters midfielder Bojan who attempted to clear off the line.

Palace continued to dominate the set-pieces, but Stoke got their first chance of the game when forward Wilfred Bony dispossed Dann and ran in on goal, however his shot rolled past home kepper Steve Mandanda's left hand post. 

The home side had the beating of the visiting full-backs, and after Martins Indi brought down Townsend, the resulting freekick was well beaten away by Given at the near post.

Despite his team creating so little, Marko Arnoutovic was Stoke's liveliest player, and his driven cross was easily defended by the home side as not one away player was in the box. The one stat that summed up Mark Hughes' sides half showed that they had only managed one touch in their attacking penalty area.

Palace rewarded for dominance with two further goals after the break

Palace lost Tomkins at half time due to injury, and he was replaced by Damien Delaney, and after this change the first chance of the second half fell to Stoke, as Shawcross rose highest at a corner, however his header was straight at Mandanda.

Despite that one delivery, Palace continued to dominate set pieces in eithe rbox, and at their next corner Dann powered a header at goal that was well cleared by Bojan on the line. Substitute Delaney's first involvement saw Arnoutovic played through on goal and the defender swept up with a well timed slide tackle.

Like in the first half, the visitors could not handle Townsend, and in the 53rd minute his dangerous cross lead to a goal line scamble that Stoke just managed to clear away after Zaha attempted a backheeled finish. Zaha was again involved after the hour mark, after his driven shot was tipped wide by Given after he was played in by Jason Puncheon.

Palace were rewarded for the dominance ten minutes later, when a deep corner fell to James McArthur on the left hand side of the box. The Scottish midfielder then fired a shot which was deflected by Geoff Cameron into the net. 

The win was sealed with 15 minutes to go, as the excellent Townsend cut in on his right foot and curled home from just outside the box to make it four nil.

Easily one of his best performance in a Palace shirt, Townsend was a constant threat all game. Photo: Getty Images : Ian Walton
Easily one of his best performance in a Palace shirt, Townsend was a constant threat all game. Photo: Getty Images : Ian Walton

Stoke continued to struggle, and their best chance of the half feel to Bony, who had had a poor game overall and a poor first touch from the unmarked Ivorian in the middle of the box allowed Delaney to clear. 

The final act of the match saw Arnoutovic pull one back for Stoke in added time, as the ball rolled across the edge of the Palace box, the Austrian curled home a powerful strike to make it 4-1.

Pardew's side finally finding their feet, while doom and gloom continues for Potters

After so long without a win, its now two in two for the Eagles, and this convincing performance will please everyone involed with the club despite Arnoutovic's late strike. Summer signings Townsend, Benteke and Tomkins were all impressive, showing that they are finally settling into their new side. 

Meanwhile, it was another terrible performance for Mark Hughes side, who will most likely remain bottom of the table this weekend having suffered four defeats in their opening five games this season, with just one goal in their last three games.