Jeffrey Schlupp supplies 10-man Crystal Palace's win over …

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This may not have been much of a match but it certainly served to show Roy Hodgson’s Crystal Palace in their best light. Down to 10 men after 19 minutes, with another player lost to injury shortly afterwards, Palace not only put their bodies on the line but also had the endurance and ability to grab victory over Bournemouth in the closing stages.

None of it was luck, all of it was thoughtful, and a raucous Selhurst Park was delighted with what it witnessed. Jeffrey Schlupp’s goal was a beauty in itself. The Ghana international received the ball on the fringes of the Bournemouth half and drove at goal until there was nigh-on nowhere left to run. At that point his left foot took aim and powered a shot under Aaron Ramsdale. The goalkeeper’s dive was like his team’s performance more generally; it looked decent enough but it certainly was not effective.

About Jeffrey
Jeffrey may refer to:

Jeffrey (1995 film), a 1995 film by Paul Rudnick, based on Rudnick’s play of the same name
Jeffrey (2016 film), a 2016 Dominican Republic documentary film
Jeffrey (name), a common English name
Jeffrey’s, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada
Jeffrey City, Wyoming, United States
Jeffrey Street, Sydney, Australia
Jeffrey’s sketch, a sketch on American TV show Saturday Night Live
Nurse Jeffrey, a spin-off miniseries from the American medical drama series House, MD
Jeffreys Bay, Western Cape, South Africa

Jeffrey Schlupp supplies 10-man Crystal Palace's win over …

About Schlupp
Jeffrey Schlupp (German pronunciation: [ˈdʒɛ.fʀiː ˈʃlʊp]; born 23 December 1992) is a professional footballer who plays for Premier League club Crystal Palace and the Ghana national team as a left back or winger. He started his career as a striker.

“I was absolutely delighted with the performance,” said Hodgson, a broad smile plastered on his face. “We had to play with 10 men for a long period and they stood their ground, maintained their shape, maintained their discipline and when we did get a chance to come out with the ball we asked a lot of questions. I am really proud of the team and they deserve an awful lot of credit.”

Mamadou Sakho was the player sent off, his high lunging challenge on Adam Smith earning a prompt red card from the referee, Anthony Taylor. “You always feel a bit hard done by in those situations as the ball was there to be won,” Hodgson said. “It was a fierce challenge and there was a time when it was part and parcel of the game.” It sounded like a sympathetic defence but the wince the Palace manager gave as he watched the incident in real time suggested other feelings he had chosen to keep to himself.

Jeffrey Schlupp supplies 10-man Crystal Palace's win over …

Sakho’s sending off did not unduly affect Palace’s performance. Nor did the departure of Patrick van Aanholt with what is hoped is only a hamstring strain. The old saw about 10 being harder to play against than 11 does not quite cover it. For not only are Palace temperamentally suited to digging in, but also being denied the option to play expansively in front of their home fans actually took a burden off their shoulders.

Hodgson was full of praise for Cheikhou Kouyaté and the way the midfielder deputised as a makeshift defender after Sakho’s dismissal. He called the suggestion that Kouyaté had done a good job “one of the biggest understatements I’ve ever heard in football”.

Just as impressive as Palace’s defensive anticipation and physical bravery was the direct, brutal nature of their counterattacking. With nothing to do but run at a massed Bournemouth defence, Wilfried Zaha and Jordan Ayew almost pulled it off on a number of occasions. It was a hasty clearance from a Ayew run that set up Schlupp for his decisive opportunity.

For Bournemouth this was a fourth defeat on the trot and they have won just once since September. To make things worse, their next two matches are Liverpool at home and Chelsea away, and that is before the hectic Christmas schedule begins in earnest.

Eddie Howe has been in such troughs before and it would be foolish to back against his side recovering their poise but they were limp, despite (or perhaps because of) four changes to the starting lineup. Howe looked concerned, choosing to apologise to the away fans after the final whistle.

“We weren’t good. There is no hiding that fact,” he said. “It’s very disappointing because it was a good opportunity with the sending off to secure much-needed points. But we didn’t attack well or pass the ball well enough. We became predictable and a bit stale. They defended well and we couldn’t break them down. I have to take responsibility for that. I coach the team, train the team and we pride ourselves on bright, innovative attacking play, but we were disappointing out wide and predictable. They waited for the transition moments and we paid the price.”

One tactical regret for Howe might be the selection of Philip Billing over Lewis Cook, with the physicality of the former turning out to be no compensation for the absence of the latter’s passing range. He might also be scratching his head at the struggles of his £17m striker Dominic Solanke. Since joining in January, the 22-year-old has yet to score and was guilty of missing Bournemouth’s best chance shortly after half-time when he failed to connect with a superb cross from Harry Wilson.

Asked if he was worried his team may be drifting towards trouble in the table, Howe said: “There’s a risk. The Premier League is so tough. We have two really tough games to come but you have to rise to those challenges and find a solution to the problems you face. We need a result as quickly as possible.”