A youthful Crystal Palace team ran out 2-1 winners over Bromley Town on Tuesday night thanks to a very well taken brace from the extremely impressive Sullay Kaikai.
Having laboured to a sloppy and fully deserved defeat against Fulham in our most recent pre-season friendly last Saturday at Craven Cottage, manager Alan Pardew was keen to ensure that the team got back to winning ways as soon as possible, coupling academy starlets with experienced heads under the floodlights in South London.
Alongside the youngsters, Palace fans were given the chance to watch Martin Kelly, Lee Chung-Yong, Jonny Williams and the aforementioned Sullay Kaikai, who if his performance on the night was anything to go by, will be creeping his way further and further into Pardew’s first-team plans ahead of the Premier League kick-off against West Brom in a little under two weeks’ time.
If the winger’s first goal was instinctive, reacting well to a loose ball after good work in possession from Chungy and Williams immediately beforehand, his second strike was pure brilliance; proving beyond any doubt that he has more than enough strings to his bow to have earned a shot at impressing amongst the first-teamers on a regular basis over the course of the upcoming campaign.
Experienced midfielder and passionate South Londoner Jason Puncheon made his way down to Bromley to watch the friendly amongst the fans, and he will no doubt have been as impressed as anyone by the individual display Sullay mustered up on the night.
In a week which has already seen Jake Gray and Jeome Binnon-Williams depart SE25 for pastures new, Kaikai’s continued rise proves that there is definitely still a huge amount of potential bubbling away underneath the first-team picture.
On this showing, it would be a crime not to see what he can do when challenged on the biggest stage.