Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

'Stick Together and We'll Get out of This' Holmesdale Fanatics Urge Frustrated Palace Supporters to Back Team as They Return to Scene of 4-0 Mauling. by Giuseppe Muro

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

'Stick Together and We'll Get out of This' Holmesdale Fanatics Urge Frustrated Palace Supporters to Back Team as They Return to Scene of 4-0 Mauling. by Giuseppe Muro

Article excerpt

Byline: Giuseppe Muro

CRYSTAL PALACE are back at Selhurst Park tomorrow for the first time since their crushing 4-0 defeat against Sunderland.

Palace were booed off at half-time after they conceded three goals in three minutes at the end of the first half in that game and one furious fan ran onto the pitch to confront defender Damien Delaney as the mood turned ugly.

Home supporters chanted "you're not fit to wear the shirt" and the atmosphere was poisonous on an afternoon when Palace folded.

Palace players might fear a backlash from home fans when they play Middlesbrough tomorrow but a key group of Eagles supporters say it is important everyone is behind the team for what is a huge relegation clash at the bottom of the Premier League.

"The Palace fanbase will be doing what it does best and creating a strong, unified front," say the Holmesdale Fanatics. "We have stood together and made it count at Play-off Finals, facing liquidation, relegation and coming from three goals down against Liverpool [2013-14 season] that is what Palace are famed for and, as a club, these are our strengths.

"This season will go down to the wire and these games are now do or die. The players know what must be done and they will have support from the stands in doing it.

"We can restore the unity and spirit which has defined the Palace way that has made us so successful these last few years. In the players and supporters working together and uniting the club, we have the power to climb out of this situation. Tomorrow can be a turning point."

Palace chairman Steve Parish (below) went into the home dressing room after the Sunderland defeat to speak to the players and get across the sense of frustration among fans.

The relationship between Palace supporters and the team has seemingly fractured in recent months but, with Palace in real danger of going down, the Holmesdale Fanatics feel it is important for the club to show unity on and off the pitch in the battle for survival.

"We have a unique identity which should be proud to stand apart and take on the rest of the Premier League," they insist. …

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