Tony Pulis has thanked his Eagles for buying into the Pulis philosophy, and keeping him in a job.

The boss was full of praise for his charges after a 1-0 win over Aston Villa at Selhurst Park lifted Palace to 12th in the Premier League.

Jason Puncheon’s fifth goal of the season decided the game, but Palace could have been out of sight by the time his 76th strike edged the hosts in front.

Palace’s Cameron Jerome hit the bar and post, and on another day would have had two penalties.

Meanwhile, a woeful Villa offered very little until going behind when Julian Speroni was called on for the first time in anger to deny Andreas Weimann from close range.

Anything other than three Palace points would have been unjust, such was their dominance of the majority of the game.

Pulis said: “It was a fantastic result. I thought we started slowly, for the first 20 minutes we were as slow as I have seen us at home.

“Villa had control of the game in that time, but they did not seriously threaten Speroni.

“Then we worked hard to get back into the game and we finished by far the stronger, and in the second half we were better the team.

“The penalty shout on Bolasie was a tough one because I thought he had his standing leg touched, but the second penalty shout was spot on from the linesman, not a penalty.”

The three points lifts Palace seven points clear of the dropzone, although Pulis continued to insist the Eagles are not yet safe.

“Let’s talk about being safe at the end of the season, we have Everton and West Ham United next and they are both very difficult games, so we’re not safe yet,” he said.

“But it’s been encouraging and you have to give credit to the players. When you come into a new club, you try to have your own philosophy and if the players don’t buy into it, they can cost you your job, “But the players have been excellent, and have taken on board what I want them to do, and I think we are all enjoying it.”

Palace go to Everton on Wednesday night for the match rearranged after the storms in February.