Alan Pardew gave supporters a reason to be cheerful in relation to Crystal Palace’s recent injury crisis following yesterday afternoon’s defeat at home to Chelsea.
Having been forced to play the last three games without the likes of Connor Wickham, Yannick Bolasie, Bakary Sako and Dwight Gayle, Pardew was dealt a further blow ahead of the visit of the defending champions, after influential midfielder Yohan Cabaye picked up his fifth booking of the season, ruling him out of our game against Chelsea through suspension.
Whilst the first half of the season has been extremely successful for the club both on and off the field, the recent raft of injuries have seen us lose the cutting edge that has been such a huge factor in our run of good form, leading to three straight games without a single goal being scored.
Although our first-choice 16 are arguably more than good enough to sustain a place in the upper section of the Premier League table, the last few games have highlighted the lack of strength in depth at our disposal, culminating in a thoroughly frustrating performance in the pouring rain at Selhurst Park yesterday.
With a week to go until we face Southampton in the FA Cup, our players will get some much-needed time to fully recover from their exploits in recent games, with Pardew’s quotes above boding well for both our trip to St Mary’s and the subsequent clash against Aston Villa a few days later in terms of the personnel who will once again be available for selection.
Let’s all hope we don’t pick up any more niggling injuries to our key men between now and next Saturday; I’m not sure I could take it.