Crystal Palace boss Sam Allardyce cited fixture scheduling but refused to allow his players the sanctuary of that excuse after the Eagles slumped to a miserable defeat against Swansea last night.
The Swans moved off the foot of the Premier League through full-back Angel Rangel’s late strike after a stunning Wilfried Zaha scissor-kick had drawn Palace level following Alfie Mawson’s first-half headed opener.
“You can see it with your own eyes, you don’t have to be a football manager,” said Allardyce. “Some people say it’s rubbish but it’s not, the players were trying 100 per cent but they were not physically able to reach their usual levels. They are shattered.
“It’s beyond our control, certain elements. But we can defend better for the two goals and our first-half performance was nothing like I expect to see from my team.”
Defeat left Palace 17th in the table, just one point from the relegation zone, while Swansea, whose newly-appointed manager Paul Clement joined caretaker boss Alan Curtis in the technical area during the second period, leapfrogged Hull into 19th.