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Liverpool 3-1 Crystal Palace
CRYSTAL Palace's defensive frailties were exposed once again as they were comfortably beaten by Liverpool at Anfield.
Ian Holloway's side have now conceded 13 times in seven Premier League games as first half goals from Luis Suarez, Daniel Sturridge and Steven Gerrard consigned them to a sixth league defeat, despite Dwight Gayle's consolation.
It leaves Palace, who made four changes to their team for the trip to Merseyside, in the Premier League relegation zone ahead of the international break, with only Sunderland below them.
Palace's fortunes might have been different had Cameron Jerome managed to make better contact with Jason Puncheon's early cross, but the writing was soon on the wall when Suarez scored in his first home game after a 10-game ban.
The Uruguayan played a neat one-two with Jose Enrique before prodding his right foot at the ball as he lost balance.
<;p>His effort trickled past Julian Speroni's despairing dive into the bottom corner to put Liverpool ahead in the 15th minute.
Palace's task became even harder two minutes later as Sturridge twisted and turned before drilling a low shot past Speroni into the far corner on his favoured left foot.
But Holloway's side, to their credit, never gave in and created some nervy moments among Liverpool's defence.
Jimmy Kebe pounced on a breakdown in communication between Liverpool's Mamadou Sakho and Martin Skrtel but, as he tried to round keeper Simon Mignolet, Kolo Toure was on hand to intervene for the home side.
Sakho was then thankful that his wild clearance from a cross drifted just wide of his own goal, but a penalty in the 37th minute all but ended the game as a contest.
Raheem Sterling was pulled back by Dean Moxey on the edge of the area and Gerrard stepped up to drill home from the spot, sending Speroni the wrong way.
Mike Jedinak's shot from 40 yards, that was closer to the corner flag than Mignolet's goal, summed up a poor first half for the visitors.
Holloway responded by bringing on Gayle and Jose Campana at half-time before later throwing Yannick Bolasie into the mix.
It was an improved second half from Palace, but the damage had already been done.
Gayle got the goal his performance deserved when he headed Campana's 76-minute free-kick into the bottom corner, but it proved to be nothing more than a consolation for visitors as they headed back to Selhurst Park empty handed.
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Crystal Palace: Speroni, Ward, Delaney, Mariappa, Moxey, Puncheon, O'Keefe, Jedinak, Kebe (Gayle 46), Chamakh (Bolasie 68), Jerome (Campana 46). Subs not used: Phillips, Guedioura, Price, Inniss. Att: 44,721
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