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Leeds take step towards Premier League safety with draw at Crystal Palace as Illan Meslier achieves stunning stat


Leeds owe much of their 0-0 draw at Crystal Palace to Illan Meslier, who has now made more saves than any other Premier League goalkeeper this season.

The Frenchman has 125 to his name this season, making it seven at Selhurst Park as Jesse Marsch’s pen has struggled up to a point.

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Meslier just had one of those games where nothing could get past him

It’s the 12th time Meslier has made more than 5 saves in a Premier League game this season.

Meslier’s remarkable saves came in the second half, denying a Wilfried Zaha snap midway through.

Zaha was denied again in the 80th minute as Meslier impressively denied him twice in a row.

The result sees Leeds five points clear of the relegation zone, while Patrick Vieira’s side remain 14th.

Patrick Vieira and Leeds boss Jesse Marsch had faced each other nine times while in charge of New York City and New York Red Bulls respectively and the matches were often heated, and the one at Selhurst Park also had its tense moments just before the break.

After the first exchanges in midfield, Palace had the first chance of the match with a long direct ball over Mateta, who chipped the ball past Meslier, but Diego Llorente was able to come back and clear.


Leeds take step towards Premier League safety with draw at Crystal Palace as Illan Meslier achieves stunning stat

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Meslier was beaten all the way but luckily for him and Leeds Mateta couldn’t get enough contact on the cross early on

Palace had another chance in the 11th minute when Nathaniel Clyne crossed the ball towards Wilfried Zaha, who was well placed, but his header lacked power and Meslier was able to collect.

Leeds had to scramble the ball in the 15th minute when Conor Gallagher cleverly picked off Jordan Ayew who went past towards the back post, but Mateta couldn’t get there and drive home.

Leeds had to wait until the 27th minute for their first corner of the game, which fell on Liam Cooper but his effort went straight for Vicente Guaita.

Just before half time there was tension on both sides and the players clashed a few times but it calmed down.

Leeds take step towards Premier League safety with draw at Crystal Palace as Illan Meslier achieves stunning stat

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Zaha had a chat with referee Darren England after his transfer sent Raphinha to the ground

Leeds take step towards Premier League safety with draw at Crystal Palace as Illan Meslier achieves stunning stat

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Joel Ward faced Dan James after the Leeds forward’s late challenge to him early in the second half

Leeds had an opportunity early in the second half, after a lackluster opening 45, when Stuart Dallas picked Raphinha on the wing, and he cut but took too long trying to take his deflected shot large.

With both teams unable to show their quality in the final third, Dallas took a chance from range but was wide of Guaita’s goal.

Shortly after, Zaha had another chance to play Mateta through the cross but his pass lacked pace and Leeds were able to clear. In the 66th minute, Zaha picked off Mateta but his attempt went over the bar.

Palace looked close to breaking the deadlock when Meslier had to make an important save to deny Zaha’s curling effort. The French then denied the Ivorian international twice in quick succession.

Leeds take step towards Premier League safety with draw at Crystal Palace as Illan Meslier achieves stunning stat

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Marsch’s men will gladly take the point and run as they get closer to survival

Gallagher had a chance with less than five minutes remaining, but his shot from the center of the box also went straight for the keeper.

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