Five Year Plan

Fanzine and Blog for fans of Crystal Palace Football Club

Crystal Palace set to secure sensational return for Manchester United winger Wilfried Zaha

Former Crystal Palace star Wilfried Zaha is set for a sensational return to the club.

After bringing back Neil Warnock as manager following Tony Pulis' departure, Palace look to have brought back another familiar face in the shape of the 21-year-old winger.

Zaha is set to join on loan initially from Manchester United, with Palace having the option to buy back their former winger at any time during the season.

The winger came through the ranks at Selhurst Park, making 143 appearances for the club before joining Manchester United for £10m plus add ons in Januray 2013.

Zaha was then loaned back to the Eagles and inflicted defeat on arch rivals Brighton with two goals at the AMEX Stadium in the play-off semi-final second leg, before winning the penalty in the play off final which Kevin Phillips converted to take Palace to the Premier League.

After hitting electric form in the early part of the 2012/13 season, England manager Roy Hodgson included Zaha in his squad to face Sweden in a friendly, and he replaced Raheem Sterling after 83 minutes to earn his first full international cap before appearing against Scotland in August 2013. 

Zaha's United career began well, as he impressed during the club's pre-season tour, but he struggled to find any game time in the Premier League under David Moyes who sidelined the young winger throughout his tenure.

An unsuccesful loan to Cardiff City was secured in January 2014, but new boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer did not feel the winger did enough to warrant selection, and rumours of a bad attitude also surfaced. 

It seemed he couldn't wait to return back home but in his haste he was caught speeding in Coulsdon and received a fine and three points on his driving licence in August, but it did not seem to deter Palace from seeking his signature.

It appears that new boss Louis Van Gaal has decided Zaha is surplus to requirements at Old Trafford and Palace are hoping to confirm a deal soon to bring their former talisman back to South London.


Crystal Palace appoint Neil Warnock as manager...again

Neil Warnock has returned to Crystal Palace and is the club's new manager, taking over from Tony Pulis.

In a saga with more twists and turns than a Dan Brown novel, the Eagles have finally settled on a replacement for Pulis - who left two days before the start of the season.

It had looked like Steve Clarke would get the nod but after talks on Wednesday that deal fell through.

Warnock managed Palace from 2007 to 2010, taking the club to the Championship playoff semi finals in 2008.

The 65-year-old has signed a two year deal at Selhurst.

A statement on Palace's website read: "Crystal Palace are delighted to announce that Neil Warnock has been appointed as their new first team manager with immediate effect. 

"Neil has agreed a two-year deal and will lead the team this Saturday in our Premier League game at Newcastle United.:


FYP Preview: Walsall vs Crystal Palace (26/8/2014)

Tuesday 26 August, 2014. Kick-off 7:45pm. Banks Stadium, Walsall

We go again. After a disappointing defeat in their opening home match against West Ham, Palace are still no closer to appointing a manager but on the pitch they travel to the Midlands to face League One side Walsall, who are without a league victory in four attempts, hoping to bounce back from Saturday's disappointment. They will be hoping for a handsome win to restore a semblence of calm around the club, but with caretaker boss Keith Millen set to name a number of fringe players, it will certainly be no walkover. 

Team news:

Jason Puncheon may return to the side following his one match ban after receiving a red card at Arsenal. Jonathan Williams impressed in a 30 minute cameo and Keith Millen may decide to give him a longer spell in central midfielder after Stuart O'Keefe picked up an injury against West Ham.

Scott Dann was forced off at the Emirates with an injury but is unlikely to have recovered in time to return against his former club, whilst Joe Ledley pulled up in the pre-match warm up on Saturday and is set to miss out.

Palace are likely to name a number of fringe players for the trip to Walsall, and the likes of youngsters Jake Gray, Hiram Boateng, Jerome Binnom-Williams and Sullay KaiKai could be included in the squad. Owen Garvan is also expected to be named in the squad despite his lack of action in pre-season and persistent injury problems.

The Saddlers will be without striker Jordan Cook through injury, while defender Ben Purkiss has not recovered from an ankle injury suffered during pre-season.

Midfielder Sam Mantom and defender James Chambers are both hoping to be involved, but it will be touch and go for the pair to feature against Palace.

Possible line-ups:




 From the other side

Our pals from Bescot Banter give us the lowdown here.

What to expect from the Saddlers

Walsall season ticket holder Martin Evans talks us through what we can expect from Palace's trip to the Banks Stadium here. 

 Stat Attack:

Provided by Palace Stats 

Crystal Palace have won 28, drawn 16 and lost 16 games against Walsall in all competitions.

Walsall have a good record against Crystal Palace when playing at home as they have won 11, drawn 15 and lost only five games.

The Eagles have scored 36 and conceded 50 goals against Walsall away from home in all competitions.

In the only League Cup game between the two sides that took palce five years ago, Crystal Palace won 3-0 at Selhurst Park.

Crystal Palace have lost both of their games so far this season whereas Walsall have picked up one win, three draws and a defeat.

Walsall have failed to win a game at the Bescot Stadium so far this season drawing 0-0 against Bradford and most recently losing 2-1 against Yeovil.

The Eagles were knocked out in the second round against Bristol City last season; a defeat that came off the back of two Premier League defeats.

The Saddlers won 2-1 in their first round fixture this season; last season when they picked up the same result away from home they lost 2-1 against Premier League side Stoke City.


This is Palace, and this is the cup; so naturally I'm expecting something special or something awful. Walsall have struggled this season, despite beating Southend in the previous round of the cup, they have failed to record a league victory. However, with Palace likely to rest a number of players, it won't be easy. Despite that, I still expect us to scrape through with a narrow victory. The Saddlers have lost by a 2-1 scoreline in their two league defeats this season, so I might stick with that and plump for a Palace victory.

Walsall 1-2 Palace.

FYP Podcast 110 - West Ham, Walsall, Newcastle & urban myths!

Another week another podcast, another defeat for Palace.

There is good news though...we still have snacking cheese!

The pod team reconvene at FYP Towers to chat about Palace's defeat to West Ham and look forward to the trips to Walsall and Newcastle.

They also chat about the vacant manager's seat at Selhurst and who should fill it!

They also answer your tweets and Facebook messages.

So join Jim Daly, Andy Street, James Endeacott and Tony Fletcher for 50 minutes of Palace chat.


And check out the podcast's lovely sponsors Vektor Printing

Crystal Palace 1-3 West Ham: Analysis & ratings from Selhurst Park

West Ham came for a point and were gifted three. If that was the team’s means of supporting Keith Millen’s job application, it came up somewhat short, being as good a testimonial as a text from “Mad I” Moody. Many of the traits that kept us up last season were sadly missing for much of the game, the most obvious being the failure to work hard in the unglamorous parts of the game, and in the end it was a comfortable win for a side missing more key players than we were.

Palace lined up in a 4-4-1-1 formation that promised a little more attacking impetus than at the Emirates, with Delaney replacing the unfit Dann, O’Keefe in for the missing Ledley and Bannan on the flank – the right initially – for the suspended Puncheon. The game started brightly and while it took Palace a few minutes to get hold of the ball, we looked more dangerous down the wings, particularly the right where Bannan & Kelly both whipped in threatening crosses, with only one fine defensive far-post header preventing Chamakh from opening the scoring.

However the game soon changed complexion as Palace started to look unaccountable lazy, dropping deep and failing to close down their opponents. This was most marked in the case of Noble, through whom almost all of the Hammers’ moves flowed. Putting a man on him would have cut out their attacks at source, the ideal candidate would have been O’Keefe or even Jedinak, but if anyone was detailed it wasn’t obvious and it was often Chamakh who found himself occasionally trying to interfere. The malaise turned into West Ham’s domination of the ball and Palace were resorting to launching aerial balls towards Chamakh (who won some) or Campbell (who won little) – meat & drink to the Hammers’ last two fit central defenders. At Upton Park last season pace down the wings had unhinged the home defence, not Bolasie seemed unwilling to move unless the ball was delivered on a plate, while Bannan’s skills do not include searing acceleration.

West Ham won a series of corners most of which  were dealt with by Speroni & the defence, with the exception of one close-range header that looped into Julian’s hands instead of the net, but it was notable that two short corner routines caught our defence unprepared. Twice bitten, thrice shy, surely! It was unforgiveable to be caught out a third time, but this error was compounded by Bannan being left unsupported whilst his two attackers swapped passes, no-one coming out to aid him. The eventual cross under no pressure was half cleared to Zarate, the defence was slow to close him down as well, and his shot across Speroni found the corner of the net. If that was bas, worse was to follow minutes later when another Palace move broke down and Downing advanced into the Palace half against a back-tracking defence; no-one moved to close him down until he was about 20-25 yards out when he was allowed to pick his spot in Julian’s opposite corner. Both goals were an example of shocking defending, in both organisation & execution, and probably drove a huge cross through Millen’s job prospects. Heads dropped and the team’s body language was bereft of hope; no-one, including Jedi & Delaney, appeared willing to urge an immediate improvement. Palace did manage a shot into the side netting in stoppage time.

The match was nearly killed off early in the second half when from another West Ham corner a header from a couple of yards out struck the underside of the bar and luckily bounced the right side of the line before being grabbed by Speroni. Perhaps that was the sign of a change in our prospects as within a minute Jedinak set Chamakh free and he finished from the edge of the box. Selhurst was buzzing – after all, if Liverpool couldn’t hang onto a three-goal lead, what chance did Fat Sam’s mob have? Palace had them rocking for a few minutes, winning a couple of corners, but West Ham escaped with only one real effort on target that was saved easily by Adrián. Slowly the balance of play slipped from our fingers and West Ham started to find relief. O’Keefe gave away a cheap free kick inside our half, and from the delivery Hangeland was out-muscled to the first ball, and the knock down fell perfectly for Cole to smash the ball past Speroni. After that West Ham could knock the ball around, and although subs Williams, Gayle & (late on) Murray did improve our attacking prospects on paper, it was West Ham who passed up two good chances to deliver humiliation, thanks to a great tackle by Delaney and a good save from Julian. Murray did force a late save from Adrián while Williams looked useful, but it was a dispiriting result & display, bereft of much of the team & work ethic that underpinned our survival.


Speroni – 6 – Not really given a chance by all three goals, two being sent across him into the far corner, and one driven in from 18 yards. Took some good crosses and made a couple of decent saves, and one bad clearance that we escaped from.

Kelly – 6 – Started brightly with a good run, beating his man and an excellent cross, but that was as good as it got. Should he have been the man who should have come out to aid Bannan at the short corner leading to the goal? Can’t recall anything outstandingly good or bad for most of the game.

Ward – 6 – Has started the season slowly, and was one of those who backed off Downing and allowed him to pick his spot for the second goal. Made a couple of good runs.

Hangeland -5 – Big centre backs should not be pushed / pulled off the ball in the air, and Brede was all too easily eased out of the picture for the third goal. From the far end it was difficult to tell who was organising the defence in the first half and Kouyaté did have an easy headed chance that he blew.

Delaney – 6 – One great late challenge but wasted at 3-1 down. As with Hangeland the defensive organisation, especially at corners, was lacking – should Delaney have taken responsibility to sort it out?

Jedinak -5 – Looks tired, lacking the legs as Hammers kept scampering around & past him; perhaps needed more rest pre-season. While he did make some important interceptions his passing veered from good (the build-up to our goal) to the downright awful. Also looked to go missing when an on-field leader was needed.

O’Keefe – 4 – We badly missed Ledley as his replacement looked just like an inexperienced footballer (in first-team terms) with limited game time in 2014, which was aggravated by his lack of physical stature which might have allowed Stuart to at least fulfil the KG role. Looked well off the pace both physically & mentally, failing to seize a half-chance for glory, and really should have been the man withdrawn for Williams. It was sad that his eventual withdrawal was greeted with booing, but that should really reflect the (caretaker) manager’s decisions.

Bannan – 7 – One of the few players to come out with some credit, Barry looked more dangerous on either flank than Bolasie, working into some good crossing positions, but also a player making runs off the ball to ease his colleague’s efforts. Strange decision to withdraw him not welcomed by the crowd.

Bolasie – 5 – Looked hungry when the ball reached his feet, even if there was little end product, but showed little appetite to go looking for it, or even to move around to provide a non-static target. Not that good at tracking back either, it was a regression to his early days at Selhurst that we thought Pulis had eradicated.

Chamakh – 7 – Worked hard and made many skilful touches, often looking the best attacking option, but yet to strike up an understanding with Campbell. Took his goal well.

Campbell – 5 – An underwhelming performance, not able to take advantage of some decent play from Chamakh, the only two occasions he had a sniff of goal ending sadly in disappointment. Not a great impression so far but needs to be the spearhead of a functioning unit, which we weren’t for most of today.


Williams – 7 – It is often flattering to a substitute as they come on against tiring opponents, but it should be noted that Palace made more openings after Jonny’s arrival than before, with his willingness to run at opponents.

Gayle – 6 – Almost worked one opening soon after his arrival; again unfair to compare with Campbell as he was not up against fresh defenders and benefitted from Palace’s change in personnel & West Ham’s position allowing them to sit back.

Murray – 6 – Appears to have lost a little weight since Fulham and brought us closest to a second consolatory goal at the end.


FYP Preview: Crystal Palace vs West Ham (23/8/2014)

Saturday 23rd August, 2014. Kick-off 3pm. Selhurst Park, South London (and Proud)

The soap opera continues. Palace still have no manager but have a crucial home game against the Hammers. It's the sort of game the club would have put down as one of those to definitely get three points from. Now...are we all so confident?


Team news

Palace are without Jason Puncheon following his sending off at Arsenal. Joniesta could be handed a starting place as a result.

Scott Dann was forced off at the Emirates with an injury but will have a late fitness test and could start.

West Ham are short of defensive options. James Collins is suspended after his red card in the defeat by Spurs, with Joey O'Brien (knee) struggling for fitness.


Matt Jarvis could be involved following a thigh injury but Ravel Morrison (groin) is not ready to return. Andy Carroll (ankle) is a long-term absentee, with Allardyce hopeful that either Enner Valencia or Diafra Sakho will be fit enough to start in attack.

Possible line-ups



West Ham

Eye on the opposition

By Jack Pierce

Been quite a week, hasn’t it?

But enough of all that, we’ve got a game on Saturday and it’s a London derby as we welcome West Ham to Selhurst, for our first home match of the season.

With both sides pointless after opening day defeats, you would think that both sides will be looking at this fixture as the perfect chance to get off the mark.

But there is a caveat - both managers have a lot riding on the fixture. For Keith Millen, a Palace win would push his case for the management role along nicely; whereas, defeat for West Ham and Fat Sam may well be clearing his desk on Monday morning.

If the West Ham manager was to lose his job after only two games, Hammers’ fans may well ask why he wasn’t relieved of his duties at the end of last season.

The reason why not: a huge severance payment that would be due to Allardyce.

That said, the board will expect improvements on last season’s return and having supported Allardyce with a decent transfer budget, time might not be on the manager’s side.

Their summer spending was spread across the team with additions made to the defence, midfield and attack. The highly rated Aaron Cresswell (Leighton Baines-lite), who must have crossed Palace’s mind when it came to signing a left back, has been bought in from Ipswich. Carl Jenkinson, relegated to third choice right back at Arsenal, made the short trip across London on loan for the season and Cheikhou Kouyate has also been added to the squad. The Senegalese midfielder can also play in defence and his clash with our own midfield enforcer, Mile Jedinak, might have people covering their eyes. Expect some very tasty 50/50s.

As is the annual tradition, Andy Carroll sustained an injury during pre-season which will see him unavailable for selection until Christmas at the earliest so Enner Valencia, fresh from a reputation enhancing World Cup with Ecuador, who was brought in to add competition to the forward position, is now their first choice and will likely starton Saturday. Another addition to the forward ranks was Argentine, Mauro Zarate. Once of Birmingham City, the attacker is a bit of an enigma; brilliant one week, anonymous for the next six. Allardyce will hope that he can get the best out of the winger.

Aspects of the team remain from last season. Adrian remains their first choice in goal and the two centre back positions are shared between the impressive Winston Reid and the less impressive James Tomkins and James Collins (suspended for this Saturday following his red against Spurs last time out).

Mark Noble, who has already provided a serious contender for ‘Worst Penalty of the Season’ with his casual attempt last weekend, remains a mainstay in midfield and will hope to form a decent partnership in the engine room with new arrival, Kouyate. Further forward is Allardyce’s go-to man, Kevin Nolan; who, be it his close connection with the disliked gaffer or his own poor form, came in for a fair bit of stick from West Ham fans last season. One of the biggest receptions for a substitution I heard at Selhurst last season was when the West Ham skipper was hauled off during last December’s 1-0 Palace win.

West Ham have two seasons until they move to the Olympic Stadium at Stratford and the idea of them moving there as anything other than a top flight club is not one that the club’s board wish to entertain. While the fans will continue to demand better football; as long as Allardyce continues to keep his side out of the bottom three, it’s unlikely the board will rock the boat too ferociously.

However, should West Ham become embroiled in a relegation battle as the season progresses, you would wonder as to who they could possibly get in, if Fat Sam was given the chop.

Is there an out of work manager who has an outstanding CV when it comes to keeping sides up?

Is there an out of work manager who has an outstanding CV when it comes to keeping sides up… and likes to wear baseball caps?

If only we had the answers.

Stat Attack

Provided by Palace Stats

Crystal Palace have won eight, drawn three and lost eight games against West Ham at home.

West Ham are without a win at Selhurst Park in their last six visits; drawing two and losing four.

The Eagles completed the double over West Ham last season in their return to the Premier League; winning both games 1-0.

The last time West Ham lost their two opening games in the Premier League back in 2010-11, they were relegated that season.

Crystal Palace have only lost once in their last four games at Selhurst Park; winning games against Aston Villa and Chelsea, a defeat to Manchester City and drawing against Liverpool in an epic 3-3 comeback from 3-0 down.

The Hammers' last clean sheet away from home occurred six league games ago at Aston Villa on 8th February. 


A HUGE game already at Selhurst given what's gone down at Palace this summer. A win would be a massive lift for everyone at the club and given Keith Millen's CV a big bump. There is a Holmesdale display planned and with the Eagles fans being amazing again we reckon Palace can sneak it.

Palace 2-1 West Ham

Iain Moody leaves Palace amid allegations of misconduct

Sporting Director Iain Moody has left Palace amid allegations of misconduct relating to his time working with Malky Mackay at Cardiff.

Mackay had looked set to be the new Eagles manager but was turned down by Palace after former Bluebirds owner Vincent Tan sent a dossier outlining some texts Mackay and Moody had sent.

They included some examples of sexist, racist and homophobic texts, which the FA is set to investigate.

A statement on Palace’s website read: “In light of the events of yesterday, Sporting Director, Iain Moody has tendered his resignation and it has been accepted with immediate effect. 

“There will be no further comment from the club on this matter.”

Kick It Out, the organisation working to eradicate racism from football in the UK also released a statement reading: “Kick It Out is aware but not shocked to hear of reports revealing alleged racist, antisemitic, sexist and homophobic comments made by former Cardiff City manager Malky Mackay, and Iain Moody, the former Sporting Director at Crystal Palace.

“These revelations are further confirmation of how football is tainted with racism, sexism, homophobia and antisemitism, and the culture which continues to exist throughout the game and in wider society as a whole. The reality is that these views are most dangerously held by those people in positions of power, and the football establishment knows and condones it.

“What you see at face value is not always reflective of the attitudes which are actually held deep down. It’s easy to present yourself as being reasonable and fair, and to behave in ways that hide prejudice and bias. However, any in-depth forensic examination or analysis of hidden views would be likely to reveal otherwise. That is what makes it difficult to eliminate and eradicate such prejudices, bigotry and even hatred.

“This familiar scenario acts as a challenge to the leadership of football that cannot be shirked again. The governing bodies and the clubs must denounce such attitudes prevalent in the game, and take the appropriate action. If these types of exchanges made privately make it into the public eye, the individuals concerned must accept the full consequences of their actions. Kick It Out now awaits the outcome of The Football Association’s investigation.”

It leaves Keith Millen as caretaker again, for the visit of West Ham on Saturday as Palace’s search for a new manager goes on.

"It's difficult for me to comment on the text messages," Millen said, speaking in his news conference ahead of Saturday's match against West Ham United at Selhurst Park. "It's not something you hear all the time.

"The focus is on Saturday for our first home game of the season. I don't think this has weakened us. The players trust me and we will do our homework on West Ham. We know we've got a tough game so the set-up is here.

"On the training field the lads have been fine -- they're serious and focused and we haven't changed too much tactically. Gerry Francis is here with me to help. There are no excuses.

"The fans have been fantastic. The chairman knows what I can do. It's whether he feels it's the right time [for him to be appointed]," he added. "The chairman doesn't feel like he has to rush and make sure it's the right person. My case becomes stronger if we win on Saturday.

"If you get results, then the chairman might think I tick enough boxes to take this club forward."


Crystal Palace U18s 4-4 Huddersfield Town U18s

Palace U18s earned an 4-4 draw in an enthralling clash with reigning Category 2 champions Huddersfield in their first U18 league game of the season on at the Copers Cope Road training ground, but threw away a three goal lead in the process. Gary Jones takes us through the action. 

6 mins – Elliot List beats two men in dribble down the right and wins a free kick. Martin over hits the free kick when crossing to far post

14 – King-Elliot covers across well behind his centre backs with a good block tackle to thwart a break

19 – Palace pinch the ball deep in oppo half and Andrews is stopped attempts to beat the last man

27 – Howlett-Mundle concedes a FK on left for a shirt pull – from the FK Huddersfield head over from 6 yards out

36 – GOAL: 0-1 - Huddersfield CF Ricky Hill makes a great spin and turn and fires into roof of net from 14 yards out

38 – Lovely one touch passing move from Palace down the left puts Andrews in and from a narrow angle he fires low and just wide of far post

40 – GOAL: 1-1 – Andrews makes a good run beating two men going across the pitch, plays a one two with Martin and then crosses low from the right to Andre Coker who side foots home low into corner from 18 yards out

42 – Towering header from Huddersfield CB is cleared off line by Martin

52 – Huddersfield CB goes close after neat passing move culminates in ball inside Palace FB but his low shoot across goal misses far post

55 – Good tackling by Phillips in the Palace pen area stops a dangerous attack

57 – Howlett-Mundle clears from almost off of his own line as the Huddersfield number 7 gets in down their right and crosses low into box

61 – GOAL: 2-1 – Palace right wing corner is played short to Coker who beats his man and crosses for Phillips to head home from close range

65 – Huddersfield go close after left wing cross results in goal bound shot being blocked by Palace defenders who throw themselves in the way of it

67 – Ref gives Huddersfield a soft pen for a shirt pull at a corner – Coker is booked for protesting – but Comins makes a brilliant save low to his right from the number 8’s pen

69 – GOAL 3-1– Bissaka beats a man in the box and keeper just about manages to save his shot but Andrews is on hand to tap in the rebound – 3-1 to Palace

71 – GOAL 4-1 – Martin fires home a half volley from edge of area into the corner giving the keeper no chance – 4-1

74 – GOAL 4-2 - Huddersfield make it 4-2 as wide left player scores a lovely chip from 20 yards out

79 – GOAL 4-3 – Four-three as Huddersfield CF Ricky Hill heads home from close range after a FK is harshly given against rather than for Elliot List

85 – Comins makes a good flying punch from a crossed FK

88 –Comins makes a fine close range save to deny Huddersfield and Ricky Hill fires rebound over bar

90 – GOAL– 4-4 deserved equaliser as number 10’s cross shot is deflected home

Injury time – late free kick for Palace as, not for the first time, Andrews is fouled off the ball – Coker crosses it but Phillips header back across goal is cleared

Final score 4-4.

It was a fine start for a young Palace U18 side of whom most played in the U16s last season against a strong opposition with more second year U18 players. There were strong performances by all of the Palace side which is a big positive as they all looked at home at U18 level and have a sprinkle of stardust in the wide areas.

Palace line up: 

GK Brad Comins
RB Ryan King-Elliot (Ben Wynter)
LB Jason Akiotu
CB Michael Phillips
CB Jahmal Howlett-Mundle
LM Aaron Bissaka
CM Will Hoare (Shawn Clement-Peter)
CM Kiye Martin (Captain)
RM Elliot List (Ibby Akanbi)
AM Andre Coker
CF Corie Andrews