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View Full Version : How big a role has Speroni played in Crystal Palace's Championship rise?


ZOHAR
24-04-2008, 07:39 PM
Football FanCast columnist Alex Dimond is delighted that Julian Speroni has signed a new contract and feels the Argentinean stopper has played a huge part in Crystal Palace's rise in the Championship.

So, last time I wrote on this website I questioned whether it would really be a good thing for Crystal Palace to get promoted this season. Looking at the massive potential of our youngsters, I wondered if a season amongst the big boys might hinder their development more than it would help them. All I can say is what a difference a week makes...

A couple of weeks ago, I said to an Ipswich supporting friend (ironically, considering the Tractor Boys are now our nearest rivals) that we needed 10 points from our remaining games in order to make the playoffs - a total I thought was optimistic considering the quality of opposition we still had to play. But, with two games still remaining, we currently have 9 points, after previous victories against Scunthorpe and Stoke were added to with Saturday's great 2-0 win at Vicarage Road against Watford. I think, as most Eagles fans surely did, that a couple of points against Hull (away) or Burnley (home) will see us safely into the playoffs, which would mark the culmination of a great turnaround. What is more, I cannot believe there are many teams that would fancy playing us in the semi-finals - nor any team our boys would be scared to face.

Saturday's 2-0 victory away at Watford was a wonderful result - it feels like far too long since we got one over the Hornets, it gives us a psychological edge over a potential playoff opponent and gave us some much needed breathing space for the all important 6th position. It also featured a sublime goal from our future England international Victor Moses - the boy is special - that was matched by Paul ‘back from the dead/injury' (one or the other) Ifil. The Eagles are on a roll coming into the playoffs, and we all know what happens when that is the case (we get promoted, in case you didn't).

Even if you ignore Palace's result this week (although that would take out half the fun) there was another reason to be cheerful. The announcement that ‘keeper Julian Speroni has agreed terms on a new 3 year contract is great news for the club. Julian has been in top form this year, and it is hard to argue with Neil Warnock's assertion that he wouldn't swap him for any keeper in the division. At this level, to quote Jamie Redknapp, he is a ‘top, top ‘keeper'. From my almost unbiased standpoint, he is a similar player to David James - an unbelievable shot-stopper, who sometimes looks a bit suspect under the high ball and is prone to the odd calamity. In the Championship the high ball is the preferred method attack (just watch the tape of Stoke's game against us) but Speroni has made very few handling errors that have cost us a goal - and has cut out the majority of his calamitous moments. In addition, his distribution is pretty handy. All in all, it is not hard to see why, before he joined us, he was considered to have the potential to be Argentina's No.1.

Unfortunately however, when he arrived at Palace from Dundee for £750 000 at the beginning of our last Premiership jaunt (2004/5) he hardly made a great impact - committing an absolute howler in his first home game against Everton that handed Kevin Campbell a goal, and subsequently the match. He was quickly relegated to the bench, as Gabor Kiraly brought his pyjama-wearing antics to Selhurst Park. This was where Julian remained, until Gabor left on a free transfer at the end of last season. His bench warming loyalty was rewarded with the starting spot, and despite initial suspicion from the fans, Speroni hasn't looked back - cementing his place as No.1 even after Peter Taylor spent (*cough* wasted) £1m on Scott Flinders. If Palace do go up this season, our man in green should take much of the credit. So to hear he is going to be at Palace for another 3 years can only be good news for those who follow the Red and Blue

http://www.footballfancast.com/blog/crystal-palace/how-big-a-role-has-speroni-played-crystal-palaces-championsh/3264

WandsworthEagle
24-04-2008, 07:54 PM
great post...completely agree! Speroni has been fantastic this season. Some of the saves he has made have been top class.

telodaja
24-04-2008, 08:33 PM
Speroni has been immense this season. What difference has he made ? Well we would be at least 2 points worse off without his late save against Blackpool at home and the double save from the penalty at Bristol City, plus there have been more. I cannot recall a game where he has cost us points this season. As I have said before, someone on BBS mentioned after one of the pre-season freindlies that he had a habit of coming out of the area and dribbling around players. Now if a fan can spot that flaw why the hell didn't the management spot it and tell him to cut it out, unless of course they did and that's why Dowie dropped him for Kiraly, though he saying that he wasn't dropped staright after the Everton match.

Duffle Coat
24-04-2008, 08:41 PM
Very good columnist. Great to read a writer with a sense of perspective.

KevMason98
24-04-2008, 08:52 PM
just 4 mistakes all season

charlton at home
ipswich away - wandering out on the right flank and deliberately hand balled
ipswich away - wandering out on the left flank and delibertaely clattered someone.
blackpool at home when he bizarrely lost the ball that bounced behind him and he stopped on the line.

That's it.
Saves - too numerous to mention.

Have to say he was having a good season but became outstanding when the management team and new coaching staff arrived:lux:

pauldrulez
24-04-2008, 08:57 PM
Not really a mistake against Blackpool IMHO. But against Ipswich (home) I think, he clattered into one of their players on the edge of the area.

He really doesnt like Ipswich, so complete opposite to a fat man that I know.

pauldrulez
24-04-2008, 08:58 PM
And one save that stood out was Charlton away in the first half. World-Class and a deserved POTY IMO.

chris2344
24-04-2008, 09:11 PM
i was certainly one of those not sure if he was too high risk. eat my words, a rock at the back this year

Super-Ste-Cious
24-04-2008, 09:12 PM
Remember him dropping an absolute piss easy cross at the Whitehorse End agianst Bristol City (?), but fortunately their forward wasnt paying attention, and he smothered it.

But he has been immense this season, absolutely top quality.

sunshine lucas
24-04-2008, 09:29 PM
His shot stopping at Selhurst v QPR was sensational - 2 or 3 one-on-ones foiled... and that result was a springboard for us...

KevMason98
24-04-2008, 10:16 PM
Originally posted by pauldrulez
Not really a mistake against Blackpool IMHO. But against Ipswich (home) I think, he clattered into one of their players on the edge of the area.

He really doesnt like Ipswich, so complete opposite to a fat man that I know.

you're right it wasn't handball for the home game. edited my original post. thanks:p

philsick
24-04-2008, 10:20 PM
He has been absolutely ••••••• brilliant.

klimskady
24-04-2008, 10:42 PM
Originally posted by philsick
He has been absolutely ••••••• brilliant.

Would have to agree :p

adrenalin john
24-04-2008, 10:53 PM
Originally posted by pauldrulez
And one save that stood out was Charlton away in the first half. World-Class and a deserved POTY IMO.

agree and agree. I thought at the time it was an astonishing out of this world save, but then thought maybe you're just too drunk John

gadford4th
24-04-2008, 11:01 PM
Originally posted by adrenalin john
agree and agree. I thought at the time it was an astonishing out of this world save, but then thought maybe you're just too drunk John

I was three metres from it when occurred and it was all I could talk about afterwards. Out of this world.

If he does get the POTY award I would like the club to prepare a video montage with that save just playing over and over.

JHJ EAGLE
24-04-2008, 11:07 PM
He has been a bit special this season.

David
25-04-2008, 12:11 AM
Originally posted by philsick
He has been absolutely ••••••• brilliant.

Agreed.

MasterYoda
25-04-2008, 07:57 AM
has certainly won us far far more points than he's cost us.

It would be interesting to see whether another keeper has won so many points. Guess they don't keep those sort of stats.

DANCOO
25-04-2008, 08:01 AM
Also:

How important was it for us to score goals in order to win games?

How important has it been for us to not concede in order to not lose?

CHERRY TREE BRB
25-04-2008, 08:03 AM
We got the best goalkeeper in the league,
We got the best goalkeeper in the league,
We got the best goalkeeper in the league,
We got the best keeper in the league!

Well done Jules, you've proved me and so many others wrong, and deserve all the plaudits you've had for an amazing season between the posts. Credit to Jim Stannard too, for turning Jules into the magic keeper he now is

calne eagle
25-04-2008, 08:05 AM
Will definitely be my vote for POTY.

CHERRY TREE BRB
25-04-2008, 08:14 AM
Originally posted by calne eagle
Will definitely be my vote for POTY.

Me too, you cant really vote against him