Swansea City 0 Referee 0
28th December 2009
10-man Swansea City got a well-earned point at home to Crystal Palace this afternoon as Neil Warnock's side were helped thanks to a poor referee.
Albert Serran was unfortunate (to say the very least) to get sent off after just 17 minutes following a nothing-challenge just outside the box, but Sousa's side remained strong and well organised to keep the score remained at 0-0 for the remainder of the game.
Swansea City started the game very well and at an exciting pace, as they attacked and dominated the opening quarter of an hour but our promising start was ruined by an awful decision from the referee.
Moses, who was Palace's most dangerous player early on, raced onto a through ball which Serran chased after, blocking his path to the ball, Dorus De Vries picked it up and we thought the match would continue as normal. A few seconds passed before the referee decided to stop play, fans were appealing against what we thought was a free-kick we conceded, but out came the red card and Albert Serran was shocked to be given his marching orders.
The sending off changed the game completely. Swansea's dominance going forward came to a halt as Palace were given the confidence to attack. What was likely to be an entertaining bank holiday match turned into one of mostly damage-limitation for the Swans, as they battled well with a man down against a side regularly aided by an awful referee.
Captain Garry Monk was brought on to replace the unlucky Joe Allen to give us a stronger defence as Alan Tate moved out to right back.
Despite their advantage, Palace failed to trouble Swansea for the rest of the first half as the sides went in at the break still goalless.
Gorka Pintado had our best chance in the opening 45 minutes, trying his luck from outside the box but his low drive was palmed onto the post and back into the keeper's safe hands.
Van Der Gun was also one of most dangerous players going forward, and was often given the opportunity to get forward. He went on an exciting run towards the penaltybox but instead of going all the way himself, probably the better decision as he had space to shoot, he decided to pass out wide which let the visitors off the hook.
Palace were creating chances after we lost Serran after a shocking referee decision. They went close from a free-kick but Clint Hill headed just over from Ambrose's free-kick.
Swansea City then started the second half well, as Gorka Pintado was played through on goal but he was brought down just outside the box, he was the last man but of course with this referee he wasn't going to send off a Palace player. Clint Hill was booked and so too was Pintado for back-chat I imagine. We had a free-kick less than a yard outside the box, Butler played it back to Van Der Gun who scuffed his shot, the ball fell to Tate but his shot was easily saved.
Nathan Dyer was then brought on to give us some pace and movement going forward but the winger struggled to show the quality we've seen so often this season. He did however get in a good attacking position as the ball was played through to him but he was brought down, the referee ignored the foul much to the anger of the 18,000 home fans.
Dorus De Vries had to make two important saves later in the second half and he did well to keep composed and to keep out two efforts that were one on one with the Dutchman.