Palace grab deserved draw at leaders West Ham
Crystal Palace extended their unbeaten run to five games as they secured a credible 0-0 draw at West Ham United.
The Eagles were good value for their point and arguably could have had more as they pressed West Ham throughout when they didn’t have the ball and passed it around with confidence when they did.
But for Robert Green they would have been ahead in the first half as he saved twice from Chris Martin, and once from both Wilfried Zaha and Mile Jedinak – who also put a free header over the bar.
The Hammers in contrast were poor and lacked ideas as they Upton Park faithful got agitated.
They were better in the second when Carlton Cole and Sam Baldock were introduced and the latter should have scored twice but shot straight at Julian Speroni on both occasions.
As early as the first minute Palace showed their attacking intentions as Zaha set up Darren Ambrose on the edge of the box but he curled uncharacteristically wide.
Jermaine Easter then had a chance two minutes later after Winston Reid’s mistake but Abdoulaye Faye recovered to put in a goal saving block.
Green was then called into action as he saved from Martin’s swerving long distance.
Martin again tested him from range and this time Zaha picked up the rebound and saw his shot deflected off James Tomkins and tipped over by Green, who had been going the other way.
From the resultant corner, Jedinak met Ambrose’s delivery six-yards out but planted his header over the bar and then drove a low shot toward goal before the break that Green pushed away from the corner.
It had been all Palace and all West Ham had to show was a header from Reid at a corner that was simple for Speroni.
West Ham booed their team off but were immediately buoyed as half-time substitute Cole began to impose himself after the break.
A poor Zaha pass gave him a chance on the edge of the box but he curled wide.
He then put Ricardo Vaz Te in but Jonathan Parr, impressive throughout, recovered brilliantly to tackle the winger just as he was about to shoot.
Palace were having to defend more than they did in the first half but still fashioned a superb chance when Martin’s delightful ball found Easter on the far side of the box and although he controlled well with his chest, he flashed his shot horribly wide.
Baldock arrived with 17 minutes left and should have scored with his first touch as Mark Noble played him in but he shot straight at Speroni’s near post.
He should have scored with his second touch too two minutes later as well as this time Cole put him in in the exact same position as his previous chance, but again the outcome was the same.
Glenn Murray could not quite reach Zaha’s cross as both teams looked for the winner but could not find it, leaving the Hammers fans booing and the Eagles fans singing.