Crystal Palace fans have taken to Twitter to reveal that they think the team performed better without Luka Milivojevic in the 1-0 win over Newcastle on Saturday.
The Serbia international was missing for the visit of Steve Bruce’s side with illness, which meant that Patrick van Aanholt stepped up to take set-pieces in his absence – the Dutchman bagged the game’s only goal with a brilliant first-half freekick.
A midfield three of Cheikhou Kouyate, James McCarthy and James McArthur started against the Magpies, and they worked well to help the Eagles record their first win since Boxing Day – some supporters below think Milivojevic’s absence actually had a positive part to play in proceedings.
The former Anderlecht midfielder – Crystal Palace’s captain – has started 22 Premier League games this season.
However, his last outing in the 3-1 win saw Roy Hodgson’s side have just two shots on target, whereas they had nine against Newcastle – the quality of the opposition must be taken into account, although Palace looked much more free-flowing without the Serbian.
Let’s see what the Crystal Palace fans on Twitter have been saying…
Not the first time this season we’ve played very well without Luka.
Just saying. #cpfc
— Gooders (@RobGooders) February 22, 2020
To kick off the reaction, Rob Gooders said that it isn’t the first time this season that Hodgson’s side have played better without the former Olympiacos man.
We look a better team without Luka. #CPFC
— Martin Jaggs (@MisterJaggs) February 22, 2020
1. Better without Luka.
2. Cahill plays better as captain.
3. Benteke won absolutely everything!
4. Ayew offered more than Wilf going forward, again.
5. Can the anti-PVA boys please stand up 😅 #Ping #cpfc
— Mark Pratt (@MarkyP7) February 22, 2020
Elsewhere, Martin and Mark both echoed that claim.
Martin said that Palace look a better team without their skipper.
Mark then also mentioned that the south Londoners are better without the midfielder.
Again it showed today how much better we are without Luka, drop him for good and captain Cahill. #CPFC
— CPFC🦅 (@ZacCPFC) February 22, 2020
It’s not a coincidence that we won without Luka. Drop Him. #cpfc
— Tom 🦅 (@tmgarrad) February 22, 2020
Meanwhile, Zac said that Milivojevic should be dropped for good and the captaincy should be handed to Gary Cahill – a bold suggestion.
Tom then added that it isn’t a coincidence Palace won a game without the Serb, before also calling for him to be dropped.
Is anyone else thinking that perhaps Luka is the problem? We looked half decent today. #cpfc
— Dan Welch (@DanSquelchy) February 22, 2020
Lastly, Dan felt the same.
He asked if anyone else is thinking that the No.4 might actually be the problem, as Hodgson’s side looked half decent without him against Newcastle.
In other news, Dougie Freedman’s transfer masterclass is paying off big time for Crystal Palace…