By Tom Meadowcroft (Crystal Palace supporter)
Since his heroics on his second debut for Crystal Palace versus Newcastle Wilf hasn’t had much game time with Palace to give a fully accurate appraisal.
Prior to the Burnley game he picked up a knock in training, but due to Yannick Bolasie only getting back the night before the match Wilf was handed his first start. After a promising opening 15 minutes, including creating one of Palaces best chances of the game, with a trademark jinking run and shot that the keeper nearly fumbled over the line. After that his performance, like most of the team began to wane and he was eventually subbed off. The time he was on the pitch we did see some of the old Wilf though which was a pleasing sight.
Next up was Everton away where Wilf was back on the bench. Unfortunately he didn’t get on the pitch as Palace got their first win of the season and Bolasie putting in a man of the match winning performance.
Newcastle in the cup gave Wilf his second start. There will still signs of rust but he was constantly a thorn in the Newcastle side. Winning a penalty with some trickery which provoked an ill-timed effort by Daryl Janmaat to play the ball/boot it in to touch, which only resulted in Zaha being booted in the air. He was heavily marked for most of the game by two defenders which meant he was never going to be the easy outlet. However, he contributed in Mehdi Abeid being sent off and fashioned a couple of other chances for Palace.
Unfortunately for Wilf, but not so much for Palace, he didn’t get on the pitch again as we picked up our second league win on the bounce, when we took 3 very comfortable points off Leicester City. With great delight on the train home I told the Leicester fans that they won’t get to face a defence like United’s every week in the Premier League. Apparently Wilf didn’t look very happy on the bench, which is a good sign for us, but once again Bolasie and Puncheon were outstanding, both contributing to our goals and Yannick really starting to make an impact since getting a new contract.
Wilf has been in the press saying he would like to fight for his place in the United team next season. I’m sure he would but I fully expect that he will be still be at Palace next year. Wilf will definitely get his chance this season but unfortunately for him I can’t see Warnock wanting to change a winning team. I think we will learn a lot about him once he gets that chance. We are now a team with some form, and for the first time since promotion, I personally think we are looking like a Premier League team who will cause most teams problems.
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Tom is a member of the CPFC BBS forum.
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