Roy Hodgson said he was “satisfied” with the 0-0 draw between his Crystal Palace side and rivals Brighton & Hove Albion.
Neither side could break down their opposition’s back four and the M23 derby failed to meet the pre-match hype.
Hodgson said, “it was probably a fair result. Both sides had their moments in the game and I’m particularly pleased that we were able to keep a clean sheet because we haven’t had too many of those so that’s a step in the right direction.”
The clean sheet was Palace’s first away from Selhurst Park this season, while the draw also earned the Eagles their first away point having lost their previous six.
The former England boss, though, believed Palace could have offered much more to the fixture: “I think we have more in our locker. We showed it in patches and we’re disappointed we couldn’t extend those patches in the game because we had moments in the final third where we were only a good pass away from a good chance (to score).
“This is a derby game away from home and it was important to come here and not lose the game,” said Hodgson, whose side defended resolutely and reduced the hosts to a few chances at set-pieces.
Zaha chance rued while tempers flared between fans
Palace’s best opportunity came 15 minutes into the game when Christian Benteke’s tame toe-poke was parried by Maty Ryan and the rebound fell to Wilfried Zaha, who was denied by a stunning save from Ryan.
Hodgson added, “we got ourselves into positions (to score) tonight but didn’t capitalise on them, but at the end of the day it’s a derby game and they (Brighton) defended well, too, so we have to be satisfied.”
Hodgson noted that the derby, fuelled by tensions in the 70s, was played in a “fair but competitive” manner. “There were no nasty challenges and only a couple of bookings in the game."
Hodgson joked that he did not expect “too much jubilation from the media” following the stalemate, which involved more action off the pitch than on it – with several pyrotechnics being set off in the Palace fans' end, while at least 150 Eagles fans were denied entry to the ground despite being in possession of a match ticket.