Alan Pardew acknowledged that Leicester City’s pace and power were “too much” for Crystal Palace in their 3-1 defeat, but was adamant that the score flattered the champions.
Leicester failed to win any of their previous three Premier League games before Saturday’s clash, but they found their mark again, as Shinji Okazaki, Ahmed Musa and Christian Fuchs found the net – the latter two for the first time in the top flight.
Yohan Cabaye pulled one back five minutes from time, but Palace were already well beaten and Pardew was left ruing his team’s struggles in front of goal.
“The scoreline wasn’t a fair reflection,” he told reporters. “We had a great start, hit the bar and that could have changed the course of the game.
“But then they cranked it up for the last 20 minutes of the first half and we struggled to hold onto them.
“The second half we had loads of chances but failed to capitalise. We were okay today but their pace and power were too much for us at the end. They are champions for a reason.
“We had good commitment to the game but the final moments just let us down. Our quality in the final third let us down.
“I had warned my players that after they faced Chelsea, we were going to be up against a charged team but they have come up against a good Palace side today.”