Football - Pulis wants Palace fighting

Crystal Palace have found life back at the top table tough, but manager Tony Pulis has promised they will be "fighting for every crumb" in order to stay there.

PA Sport Report

After an eight-year absence, the south Londoners' Premier League return has hardly been the most enjoyable experience to date.

Ian Holloway left just months after leading the Eagles up via the Championship play-offs, having overseen losses in all but one of the opening eight matches despite bringing in 14 new players.

It took a month for ex-Stoke manager Pulis to finally be named successor, but there are at last some positive signs.

Palace moved off the bottom after their midweek victory against West Ham in Pulis' first home match in charge and now welcome fellow promoted side Cardiff to Selhurst Park.

Malky Mackay's side sit 15th in the standings after a decent start to the season, but the fact they have won the same number of matches as Palace highlights how tight it is down at the bottom.

"If we don't win games, we mustn't lose games," Pulis said. "That is what Cardiff have done, they have got four more draws than us. It is getting every point.

"When I first got promoted, I can remember talking to a very experienced Premier League manager who said to me goal difference is vital.

"It is an extra point at the end of the season, that is how tight it is in the Premiership at the end of the season.

"Teams have gone down and been relegated because of goal difference, never mind that single point.

"So you are fighting for every crumb on the table. We're sat at the top table and we're at the bottom of that, but we're sat at it.

"You have to work for everything and make sure that everything works for you."

Pulis was quick to praise the work done by counterpart Mackay in south Wales and rejected the notion it was extra important to beat another promoted outfit.

The match will, though, have added significance for sporting director Iain Moody, facing his former club for the first time since his peculiar recent exit.

A key part of Mackay's backroom team at Watford and then Cardiff, the head of recruitment was controversially ousted from his position in October and replaced by 23-year-old Kazakh Alisher Apsalyamov.

It was a surprise move by owner Vincent Tan and one Palace swiftly made the most of, appointing Moody as their sporting director.

"Iain is good," Pulis said. "I did not know him until I joined the football club, but he is good.

"He is in Europe watching a game on Thursday, so hopefully he will bring me some good players."

It was all Pulis had to say on the matter, although he freely admitted that Moody will have a busy time ahead of him when the January transfer window opens.

Peter Crouch at former club Stoke is said to be one of Pulis' targets as he looks to beef up a frontline that has impressed the Welshman so far.

Cameron Jerome, another of his former players at the Britannia Stadium, has impressed in his two matches at the helm, as has Marouane Chamakh.

It has been a difficult few years for the Morocco international after a move to Arsenal soon went sour.

Chamakh struggled for form at the Emirates Stadium and also on loan at West Ham, against whom he netted the winner on Tuesday evening.

"He has been fantastic in the two games we've played," Pulis said.

"We watched him at Bordeaux when he had that very, very good season before Arsenal took him and he looked a top player.

"He did well initially at Arsenal, but he has just lost his way and people do that.

"I've only been here and watched the team in three games and three games don't determine whether he is going to be the right one or wrong one for us.

"He has got to keep doing what he is doing, and if he does that then brilliant."

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