With our opponents in our first away game of the new season taking on our opponents in the League Cup just 15 minutes walk away, it was a fortuitous opportunity to take a look at the 2 teams. Aldershot were hosting Crystal Palace in a friendly at the Recreation Ground.
1356 fans turned up for the match, which included an excellent turnout of 525 Palace fans. The pitch in fantastic condition. Aldershot playing in an unfamiliar all black strip, Palace in their traditional red and blue. Former Grecian, Dean Moxey, starting at left back in the number 3 shirt.
Both teams got in early chances, though the goalkeepers but not too troubled. The Shots No. 33, Jordan Roberts, looking very good on the right and keeping Deano busy. Palace favoured attacking down the right, this looked like it had led to a goal on the 35th minute, when Ben Herd had to clear off the line from a Wilbraham header.
A period of pressure from Palace, led to a corner from the right, that was cleared only as far as Palace’s No. 4, Stuart O’Keefe, who volleyed it from 25 yards straight in to the net. A video of that goal is here. Half-time 1-0 to Palace.
The second half started with a raft of Aldershot substitutions and they started the half well. Shots Roberts moving to the left wing. Aldershot were wasteful in front of goal, only one shot having to make the Palace keeper do some work.
Whilst Aldershot had the majority of the possession, Palace looked good going forward, and Jermaine Easter having a number of opportunities. A number of changes for Palace bought the likes of Wilfried Zaha, Alex Wynter, and Thomas Diaz on to the pitch, and the balance started to swing to the way of Palace.
Coming in from the left, the ball found Murray who bamboozled the defenders to lay-off a great ball on the edge of the box for Wilfried Zaha, who went left and right before burying firing a shot under the advancing keeper. 2-0 Palace and that is how it finished.
A good game, got the impression that Crystal Palace could have stepped up a few gears. Aldershot looked well organised, but not too good in front of goal, taking 3 touches of the ball, when 1 was needed. There were too many changes to decide on what the best team was for either side. A number of players looked good, Dean Moxey was as you would expect.
To beat Palace and get at least a point from Aldershot will need the Grecians to be at their best, no mistakes or poor defending like last season, and hopefully we will know where the back of the net is!