Crystal Palace captain Scott Dann has spoken of the hunger he and his teammates had to get stuck in against Stoke yesterday afternoon following a morale boosting victory over Middlesbrough a week earlier.
After seeing a vastly improved display from the side in the second half of our 1-1 draw at home to Bournemouth at the end of August, supporters were treated to a wonderfully spirited display at The Riverside Stadium, resulting in a 2-1 win thanks to goals from Christian Benteke and Wilfried Zaha, setting us up beautifully for a full week of preparations ahead of the visit of rock bottom Stoke City.
Regular watchers of the Eagles won’t need reminding of the difficulty we often have in asserting our authority over seemingly weaker sides but yesterday afternoon, in front of the Sky Sports cameras, we were on top of the Potters from the very first kick of the game.
Plenty, including myself were a tad apprehensive after our woeful performance when falling to an opening day home defeat against West Brom a month or so ago, but the reaction of the players in our last two and a half Premier League games has offered real hope over the potential we now have within the squad.
After taking the armband from the now transferred Mile Jedinak, Scott Dann is certainly talking like the natural leader of the group, whilst performing his duties at both ends of the pitch with the sort of authority that will surely lead to recognition at international level if it continues in the lead up to Christmas.
There was undoubtedly a cloud hanging over the group in the immediate aftermath of our FA Cup Final defeat to Manchester United back in May but yesterday’s performance felt like a definitive opening of a new chapter for both the players and our supporters.
Scott Dann certainly seems to believe wholeheartedly in what we’re doing.