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Palace out of drop zone after productive Christmas

PUBLISHED: 16:03 30 December 2013 | UPDATED: 16:03 30 December 2013

Dwight Gayle was on the mark against Aston Villa. David Davies/PA

Dwight Gayle was on the mark against Aston Villa. David Davies/PA

PA Wire/Press Association Images

Crystal Palace came close to being the first team to take points away to Manchester City this season.

In the end Edin Dzeko’s second-half winner clinched all three for the title challengers but Palace more than played their part in a game where City keeper Joe Hart was named man of the match.

Palace had a number of chances but Mile Jedinak, Joel Ward and Jason Puncheon were all denied by Hart. Marouane Chamakh and Ward also headed over when well placed. Dzeko punished the Eagles’ profligacy from a Jesus Navas cross.

Palace had pulled themselves out of the relegation zone on Boxing Day with a win at Aston Villa.

The game was settled in stoppage time by Dwight Gayle. He cut inside Fabian Delph and fired in an unstoppable drive.

The Eagles are hoping for three points from a home game with Norwich on New Year’s Day. On Saturday they travel to West Brom in the FA Cup.

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