Crystal Palace player ratings as Scott Dann steals a point in injury time

Crystal Palace snatched a late draw against AFC Bournemouth on Saturday afternoon.

Scott Dann’s thumping header three minutes into second-half injury time secured the Eagles’ first point of the season following Josh King’s opener.

It was a mixed performance from Alan Pardew’s side. Boos were heard in the first half as the South Londoners flattered to deceive defensively and struggled to test Cherries goalkeeper Arter Boruc.

The one time the Polish shot-stopper was tested was when Yohan Cabaye had his penalty saved in the first half.

How did each player perform on the sunny afternoon at Selhurst Park?

Player ratings (Must play at least 15 minutes to achieve a rating)

Steve Mandanda (7 out of 10): A very solid debut from the Frenchman making his Premier League debut. Kept Palace in the game with a save from Callum Wilson which would have put Bournemouth 2-0 up and out of sight. Distribution is far better than any Palace goalkeeper in recent history and could potentially be one of the best signings made this summer.

Joel Ward (5 out of 10): The right-back very rarely makes mistakes defensively, hence why he is in the team. However, leaves a lot to be desired going forward. A couple of very poor crosses left Christian Benteke and Connor Wickham frustrated. Was unlucky to have one effort scrambled off the line following a goalmouth scramble.

Scott Dann (8 out of 10): The saviour, once again. A Palace defence lacking the big centre-back would have conceded a hatful in the first half. Dann blocked anything that came his way and tried his hardest to force his team up the pitch. Deployed as a makeshift striker for the last few minutes and it paid off. A bullet header from 15 yards found the corner of the net to snatch a point when the game seemed lost. Your call, Sam Allardyce.

Damien Delaney (4 out of 10): Slightly contrasting performance to his point-winning partner. Slight bemusement when he was named ahead of the far superior £10 million James Tomkins and he did just about everything to confirm Tomkins’ place in the team after the international break. Stupidly barged into the back of Wilson to concede the free-kick that led to the opening goal and then conceded a free-kick in an even more dangerous position soon after. Very slow and out of position quite a lot. Did improve as the game went on but this was largely down to Bournemouth not troubling the Palace back four in the second half.

Pape Souare (6 out of 10): provided some of the best crosses of the game from the left flank and looked dangerous every time he strode forward. Slightly erratic defensively but, overall, heavily improved since his arrival in England just over 18 months ago.

Dann powers home a header from just inside the area | Photo: Getty images
Dann powers home a header from just inside the area | Photo: Getty images

Midfield improves as game wares on

Jason Puncheon (7 out of 10): The wide man rather epitomised his side’s performance. Started the game on right-hand side of midfield and struggled to get into the game, but was then moved into a more familiar central position and dictated every Palace attack in the second half. Inch-perfect cross from a difficult angle for Dann’s goal.

James McArthur (7 out of 10): Having the Scotland international back fully fit is a huge boost for Pardew. The midfielder was very tidy on the ball, producing a couple of neat turns and intelligent passes. Could do with a bigger presence next to him as Cabaye is of a very similar calibre and this often clashes. Unlucky not to score with a near post header. Replaced by Chung-yong Lee late in the game.

Yohan Cabaye (5 out of 10): The French international almost changed the game last week against Tottenham Hotspur but this performance was summed up by a poorly taken penalty midway through the first half. Cabaye then took his frustration out on Adam Smith and was rightly booked, but then seemed intent on being shown a second yellow card in a bizarre five-minute spell. Pardew had a word in his ear and he calmed down to help Palace find a way back into the game.

Andros Townsend (6 out of 10): Palace fans will warm to Townsend very quickly. A very positive winger who’s also very honest – summed up when he gestured an apology to the crowd when a poor touch led to the ball running out of play. Not his greatest performance but almost found an equaliser when his over-hit cross almost caught out Boruc.

Benteke shows promise whilst Wickham struggled

Christian Benteke (7 out of 10): Club-record signing Benteke looked a step above every single player in the pitch. Held the ball up superbly and was unlucky not to score on a couple of occasions. Service to him will need to improve if he is to score the 15-20 goals that the Eagles need from him.

Connor Wickham (4 out of 10): Felt desperately sorry for the forward who was partnered with Benteke in a strike force that never seemed as if it was going to work. Pardew quickly realised this and he was moved out to the left flank where he struggled to get into the game. replaced by the much more effective Wilfried Zaha.


Lee Chung-yong (6 out of 10): Replaced McArthur as Palace made a double change on 66 minutes. Missed a sitter from no more than ten yards – blazing over the bar with just Boruc to beat – although moved the ball with much more intent and speed than many other Palace players.

Wilfried Zaha (6 out of 10): The other half of that double sub made by Pardew to change the game, and it worked. Zaha – recently linked with a move to Spurs – appeared to have a point to prove and Charlie Daniels struggled to deal with his trickery. Still needs to work in his final ball but has time as his advantage. Could still be a top player one day – hopefully with Palace.

Martin Kelly (NA): Replaced Ward on 88 minutes and does not qualify for a rating. Could possibly be preferred to his fellow full-back in future.