Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Puncheon above Our Weight? Not Us, Says Jason as Eagles Eye Top Six; EXCLUSIVE

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Puncheon above Our Weight? Not Us, Says Jason as Eagles Eye Top Six; EXCLUSIVE

Article excerpt

Byline: Giuseppe Muro Football Correspondent

THESE are exciting times at Crystal Palace. Still on a high after winning at Liverpool just before the international break, the club are on the verge of American investment that will help realise their ambitions of European football and they will go sixth with a win against Sunderland tonight.

Palace continue to impress under Alan Pardew and there is a growing belief around Selhurst Park they can challenge for a top--six finish this season.

"It is a wonderful place to beat the moment," says midfielder Jason Puncheon. "The Liverpool game was massive for us. To go toe-t-toe with a team like that away from home just shows the direction we are going in. To see where the club are now is unbelievable. Who would have thought we would have been in this position a few of years ago? We finished 10th last season and it is only a few more places to get into Europe. That is what we should be striving for and we have the players to do that."

The imminent investment from Josh Harris and David Blitzer, in a deal that should be completed before Christmas, will pave the way for Pardew to strengthen in the January transfer window.

"The Premier League is very open this season and that pack of chasing teams is getting bigger with the likes of Southampton, Everton, Swansea, West Ham and ourselves," says Puncheon. "Belief is the most important thing we have shown since the manager came in and if we continue to show that belief I think this team can do great things. We have just got to aim to better what we did last season and then we can call that progress. The most important thing for us players is to worry about what is happening on the pitch and then everything else will take care of itself. But I believe the sky is the limit."

Palace's only experience of European football was in the Intertoto Cup in 1998. …

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