Jordan Ayew was Crystal Palace’s match-winner as the Eagles edged to a 1-0 victory against 10-man Aston Villa. The Ghanaian, who scored Palace’s first goal in last weekend’s 2-1 triumph at Manchester United, broke the deadlock in the 73rd minute as the home team enjoyed a rare success at Selhurst Park.
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Palace had early appeals for a penalty waved away by referee Kevin Friend when Douglas Luiz appeared to barge Ayew out of the way. The Eagles should have taken the lead in the 22nd minute but James McArthur failed to hit the target with his close-range shot when it seemed easier to score.
Ayew couldn’t quite latch on to McArthur’s low cross as Roy Hodgson’s side dominated the first half although they were unable to break the deadlock. Villa improved at the start of the second period and Trezeguet lashed a 20-yard free-kick over the bar. However, the 24-year-old Egyptian was sent off in the 54th minute for a second bookable offence when his late challenge upended Wilfried Zaha.
Palace stepped up the pace in search of a winner and Tom Heaton had to make a very good save to keep out Luka Milivojevic’s shot from the edge of the area before Ayew finally beat the Villa goalkeeper with a curling right-footed strike. That proved to be enough to finish off Villa who never really looked like grabbing an equaliser.